Monday, July 28, 2014

Grandma Dorothy's 94

My Grandma turned 94 last week.  Ninety-four!!!  She's still just as independent as ever and I look forward to making her cakes every year.  This year she wanted an angel food cake with old fashioned frosting.  

The frosting I chose was a 7-minute frosting that is meringue-based and totally yummy and marshmallow-y.  It's my Grandma's favorite.  The angel food cake is made from scratch and there's a hint of lemon in there.  I also macerated some strawberries so that she could have those on the side; a little strawberry shortcake, if you will.  

I topped the cake with some pink sugar and gum paste flowers and letters.  

Here's my Gramma Dorothy.  

Happy Birthday, Gram-gram!  I hope you had a spectacular day!

John's Mustang

My friend, Dani, contacted me to make a cake for her car-loving husband, John.  Dani and her husband live out of state, but she would be coming into Wisconsin right around his birthday and wanted me to make a cake for him.  Now, this isn't just ANY cake.  No.  It had to be a cake inspired by John's car.  A Mustang limited edition.  Hertz partnered with Rodger Penske to design 10 manual transmission Mustang GTs and John got #8.  And here's an article about the car.  Pretty cool, eh?  

Dani took a few pictures of John's car for me, hoping that I would be inspired.  And I was.  

Here's the cake I made for John.  It's a chocolate cake with buttercream filling and frosting.  I make the Mustang logo out of Gum Paste and fondant and got the sheen from an edible silver spray.  I made the cake black and brought in the yellow for the stripes on his car.  

HPGT 008 stands for Hertz Penske GT and his is #8.  Beautiful car!  I hope I did it some justice!

John is also a fan of Captain America and requested some cupcakes as well.  These are vanilla cupcakes, filled and frosted with buttercream and topped with fondant/gum paste decals.  The cupcakes themselves were also red, white, and blue.  But that was a surprise!

 Happy Birthday, John!  Dani, I'm sorry I missed you this time, but it was wonderful catching up with Hilde!  ;)

Monday, July 21, 2014

Cake FORE a Golfer

Amanda ordered this cake for her Dad, a golfer.  It's a simple cake but don't let that fool you.  It's PACKED with deliciousness.   It's a chocolate cake with vanilla bean buttercream, chocolate fudge and Oreos on the inside.  I think it's a hole in one, but I digress...

I hope the birthday boy had a fantastic birthday celebration!

Ali's Mermaid Party

Alicia, or Ali as she's known, loves fruity cake flavors.  I had made a cake for her sister last weekend and that one was a yellow cake with raspberry preserves, so I wanted to do something new for Ali.  I scoured the Internet for recipes and came across a bunch of cherry recipes that required cake mixes and we all know I'm a scratch baker.  After combining a few recipes, I came up with this one and just hoped beyond all hope that it would turn out.  A cherry chocolate chip cake.  Sounds good, right?

Here's the batter before it was baked.  I thought it looked so pretty.  The flecks of chocolate and the flecks of cherry with a slightly pink tinted batter.    

And here's what the cake looked like baked.  Perfect!

Ali was having a mermaid party.  She's a fan of all things Ariel, the Little Mermaid, and I just happened to be in Los Angeles the weekend before her birthday.  I went to the Disney store and picked up this gem.  It's a cute little purse-like castle and when you open it up...

 ...Ariel and Prince Eric are there with Sebastian, a dingle-hopper, a tub and a screen.  How cute is this?!!!  It would make the perfect cake topper.

Ali's invitation had the view of teal water and a mermaid tail.  I wanted to incorporate these into the cake decoration.  And here's what I came up with.  

The top tier of the cake is a chocolate cake with buttercream filling.  The bottom tier is the cherry chocolate chip cake with a maraschino cherry frosting.  I topped the top tier with some brown sugar (for sand) and placed her toy on top of that.  The outside of the cake is frosted with my vanilla bean not-too-sweet buttercream and I used some fondant accents to make some shells, a star fish and an Ariel.

 Ali couldn't take her eyes off the cake.  I just love it!

And her mom just happened to have a sparkly #4 candle that matched the design beautifully!

Ali got to play with her toy while we cut the cake.  This made my heart just melt.  She was so excited to see Ariel and Prince Eric inside!

And here's what the cake looked like on the inside.  Moist, chocolately and very much full of cherries!  YUMMY!!!

Happy Birthday, Ali!  I loved being a part of your special day!

Thursday, July 17, 2014

I > U

Sometimes you just need to say it.  
("I am greater than you.")

Why not say it with cake?

Libby Lou's One!

Libby was celebrating her 1st birthday with a cute woodland animal themed birthday party.  I had a good time decorating this one!  Lots of fun colors.  Lots of fun animals.  Interesting trees.   What more could you ask for?





The cake was a yellow cake with raspberry preserve and buttercream filling.  All decor is made from fondant.  I hope that Libby had a wonderful 1st birthday celebration!

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Abie's Olaf Cake

I absolutely ADORE receiving an email message from my friend Scott (another camp counselor friend) requesting a cake for Abie.  This is the 4th cake I've done for her and I've loved every one!  Abie chose a carrot cake for her cake and wanted Olaf from the movie Frozen to be front and center.  In fact, here's the picture she wanted on top of her cake.  

I'm going to be honest with you.  This was a challenging cake.  To make this picture out of gum paste was not an easy thing to do, but I translated it the best way I could.  To get the striping look of the ball and umbrella, I placed the gum paste in the different colors next to each other and then rolled them together as thin as I needed them to be.  So it looks like it's just one piece of gum paste.  

The cake itself was a carrot cake with cream cheese filling and frosting.  Carrot nose.  Carrot cake.  Why not?!!  The top is decorated with the gum paste and for the sand, I used brown sugar.  

I hope Abie had a wonderful birthday celebration!  

Erwin's Birthday Cake

My dear friend, Erin, began her month-long birthday celebration earlier this month.  Yes.  I said, "month."  She is a big birthday fan, particularly of her own.  Although, I don't think she's met a birthday she didn't enjoy celebrating.  She's a fantastic host and coordinator, so I'm lucky to call her a friend.  Everyone needs a friend like her.  

Erin absolutely adores all things owls, so it was a no-brainer for me to put one on her lemon, poppy seed cake.  I thought he turned out pretty cute!

Nope.  That's not a mistake.  I put "Erwin" on the cake because that was her camp name when we met at Camp Whitcomb/Mason in Hartland about 18 years ago.  You can read all about our camping experience here.  

Happiest of Birth-months to you, Erwin!  It's always a pleasure to celebrate you, my friend!

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Impromptu 4th of July

Our family really didn't have plans on Friday, the 4th of July.  Our community celebrated on Saturday with a parade and fireworks, but Friday was kind of up for grabs.  Late in the morning, my neighbor stopped by and asked if we had any plans for that evening because they didn't either.  So, what to do?  Let's all grill out and celebrate the Independence Day of our country!  What fun!

So we went to the grocery store and my husband bought some hamburgers and I picked up some ingredients to make potato salad, corn salad, Josie made a fruit salad and I whipped up some cake balls too. Our neighbors brought over some wine, chips and dip and Drumsticks ice cream cones.  We had a FEAST!!!  

Josie made this ALL BY HERSELF.  She's super proud of her delicious creation!

Vanilla cake balls with red, silver and blue sprinkles!  

After a round of Bocce Ball, the kids ran around with sparklers.  The perfect end to a perfect (totally impromtu) 4th of July celebration!

Thanks, neighbors!  We had so much fun!!!

Monday, July 7, 2014

Nicole's Birthday Cake

Nicole is my next-door neighbor and also my girls' babysitter.  She's a fantastic young lady!  I was so excited to make this cake for her!

It's a chocolate-flecked cake with buttercream filling and frosting.  I topped it with a gum paste bow and decorated it with fondant pinwheels in her favorite colors. 

I hope she had a wonderful birthday celebration!!  We were so happy to celebrate the 4th of July with her and her family!  What fun!  

1 + 91 = 4th of July

Erin ordered a cake for her son's 1st birthday and one for her Grandfather's 91st birthday.  They were going to be having a spectacular 4th of July celebration with these two fantastic birthdays!

The first cake I made was for her son, TJ, who turned one on the 4th of July.  They were having a red, white and blue party for him.  The inside of the cake is a layer of red vanilla and blue vanilla cake, filled with white vanilla buttercream.  I carried the theme to the outside of the cake, too!  It looks incredibly festive, doesn't it?

Grandpa's birthday cake is a chocolate cake with chocolate frosting.  He's not a fan of fondant, so I used buttercream to write on the top of it.

I hope both Grandpa and TJ had a wonderful birthday celebration!!!!

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Evan's Colorful Birthday Cake

Michelle ordered this cake for her son for a family celebration they were having.  She told me that she wanted something with a lot of color and she liked the look of the cakes that were covered with frosting using the star tip, like my Buzz Lightyear cake here.  

This was a pure joy to do!  And I photographed each step of the way so you can see the progress as I did!

I started with orange and then progressed from there:

Evan's cake is a chocolate cake with vanilla bean buttercream frosting.  His name on the cake is made out of fondant.

I really like how this turned out!  A truly fun, colorful cake for a fun, colorful little boy!  Happy Birthday, Evan!