Baking

Here’s what’s been going on at Stahrs Cakes.

December:  There were lots of goodies made.  Peppermint bark, peanut butter fudge, cornflake wreaths, lots of cookies.  I attempted a cookie I saw on Pinterest.  Chocolate Melted Snowman.  Copy (1) of IMG_0006

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I used my own triple chocolate cookie recipe and white royal icing for the snowman but I used the same design I saw on Pinterest.  I used a mini peanut butter cup for the hat and some red and green sprinkles for the eyes and mouths.  They were cute and the kids say they are part of the Christmas cookie line up.

 

January started out with a Chocolate cola cake.  That’s what my husband asked for our New Years dessert.  So moist, chocolaty, rich.  I dressed it up a little with miniature chocolate chips on the glaze.

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Then my husband’s birthday with his red velvet cake with peanut butter buttercream.  I’m not sure what my obsession is with mini chocolate chips but it does dress up a cake…

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Since there are only five here, I made a six-inch round and torted the layers so it was a tall cake but still small to not waste.

Then my oldest daughter turned 11!  Aside from her first birthday (which was chocolate cake), she has always asked for strawberry cake with strawberry icing.  This happens to be the pinkest cake ever.  This year she had a hard time deciding.  She actually wanted to have peanut butter fudge.  But when she asked if she would get her star-shaped cake (a tradition I’ve been doing since she turned one) and was told no, she decided on chocolate cake with strawberry icing.

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And, yes, she got her little star…

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I also had an order for a special birthday.  Twin boys who were turning 11!  Mom wanted them to have individual cakes but similar and didn’t want a lot of cake left over.  So we decided on 6 inch one-layer cakes.  Mom also said that boys were, well, boys and didn’t really have any ideas on what they want their cakes to look like.  She had a picture of a cake she thought was neat and decided on gold, purple, and black for colors.   I tinted chocolate icing black and covered and filled each layer with it.

I rolled out purple fondant for straight ribbons and white fondant for curvy ribbons.  I used edible gold spray on the white.  I also used a star-shaped cookie cutter for some star confetti.  While I still used the same decorations, I wanted the cakes to be different for each of the boys.  So I purposely placed the fondant decorations differently.

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I finished the cakes off with Happy Birthday and their names in gold gel.

Can I get a beat?

My 8 year daughter’s drum teacher had a birthday (in October, *gasp*) and his wife wanted a drum set for his cake.  My daughter was so excited because she had to tell me about each drum and what it does and where it’s placed.  To say she was a tough critic is putting it lightly.  The cake had to be perfect.

The cake part was pretty easy…white cake and white icing.  They wanted the drums to be red since it’s the birthday boy’s favorite color.  So I used red fondant to color the drums.  I colored dowel rods with edible silver spray and used edible gold spray on white fondant for the cymbals and high hat.I rolled red fondant around two small dowel rods to make sticks.  The only things that were missing according to my daughter were a china cymbal and a look-alike Peter who should have been sitting on a seat behind the drum set.  Oh if only I would have had a couple of extra days and a few more pounds of fondant…I was pretty happy with the cake and it was a hit at the birthday party.  I hear my daughter is thinking of a set of her own for her birthday!

Halloween Treats

I have a few Halloween treats that I wanted to share yesterday but just didn’t have a chance.  First we have bones…Actually they aren’t real.  I know, I fooled you, right?  These are sugar cookie bones.  Their real name is Boneyard Cookies.  My son wanted me to try to make them and they turned out ok but I felt they needed a little help.  While they were shaped like bones, they really didn’t look like bones.  So I dipped them into white chocolate…Since I dipped them, they kind of got a “creepy” look to them but tasted so so yummy.  My son approved!

Next we had an assortment of cupcakes.  As I’ve mentioned before, my husband takes cupcakes in for his squadron’s cadet birthdays.  They all agreed that they wanted “funfetti” flavor which is just my vanilla cake recipe with sprinkles thrown in.  I used vanilla icing and dipped them into colored sugar or various Halloweeny sprinkles to make them festive…The kids are in a sugar coma from all their treats.  I hope Halloween was fun for you too!

Supporting Teachers

This week is our parent/teacher conferences at school.  The PTA coordinates suppers for the teachers so they can do their conferences and get them all completed before Fall break.  I volunteered to do some cupcakes for them.  The kids helped pick out four different flavors.I made chocolate peanut butter cupcakes with peanut butter buttercream and dipped them into chocolate sprinkles…and white chocolate chip cupcakes with vanilla bean buttercream…and applesauce cupcakes with maple buttercream…and carrot cupcakes with cream cheese icing…

A good variety to support our great teachers!

Surprise Cupcakes

Some of you may know that my husband is an officer in the Air Force and currently working at USAF Academy.  He is in command of squadron 6, The Ragin’ Bulls.  Today marked the day that all the firsties (senior cadets) get to know what their jobs will be in the Air Force after they graduate.  So my husband thought it would be cool to put their jobs on a piece of paper and stuff them into cupcakes.  We went with red velvet cupcakes (Red for Rage) with cream cheese buttercream.Since the graduating class is a silver class, I lined the pans with silver cupcake paper.  I also used Wilton’s edible decorating spray in silver and sprayed the tops and added some silver sprinkles…We also labeled each cupcake with a toothpick that had the cadet’s name attached.  We wouldn’t want anyone to find out the wrong job.  No one ate their jobs, by the way.  I was happy to hear that!  The treats went over quite nicely and the cadets were happy with their jobs.  Good luck in June, Firsties!!

Chocolate Bacon Almond Bars

Yesterday I attempted a new recipe.  My husband made some bacon for me.  I typically end up charring the bacon so it’s really his area of expertise ;-)!  I melted some dark chocolate in a double boiler and combined it will some heavy cream.  Then I folded in some slivered almonds.  I poured the mixture into a pan and popped it into the freezer to set.  While that was hardening, I melted some white chocolate in a double boiler and combined it with some heavy cream.  I mixed in the finely chopped bacon and poured that on top of the set dark chocolate mixture.  I put it back into the freezer to set for about an hour.  This is what it looked like when I pulled it out of the freezer and cut them into bars…Looks yummy, right?  But it needed something else.  So I popped them bars back into the freezer.  While they were getting nice and hard, I melted some semi-sweet chocolate in a double boiler and added some canola oil.  Then I took the bars out the freezer and coated each on with the semi-sweet chocolate.Messy goodness right there!  I have found that most things that are gooey or messy are just so yummy.  This was true of these bars too.The bacon added the saltiness that complemented the chocolate in such an “oh so good” way.  The almonds added the crunch and light nutty flavor.  The three different chocolates were just yummy together.

Back To School

So I had a little problem with my computer and it’s hard drive.  Long story short, I have lots to post on here.  I want to come back to all that.  Let’s start with back to school treats.

My kids started back to school today.  All three of them, all day long!  They deserved a home-baked treat.  They never agree on one treat but they do always agree on chocolate.  So I decided to make chocolate peanut butter cupcakes and top them with peanut butter buttercream and dip them in chocolate sprinkles.

To say these cupcakes are good is a total understatement.  These are melt-in-your-mouth yumminess.  While my son was enjoying his tonight, he noted there were chocolate chips in them and asked, “How did you not melt the chips?”  My daughters didn’t say a word while eating and that’s saying something ;-)!  These are best the day they are made but I’m pretty sure the leftovers will be eaten over the next few days.

Green Things

March is a fun month in this house.  While we aren’t Irish, we do celebrate St. Patrick’s Day.  My son loves all things green and it kind of represents the Spring is right around the corner for us.  So more green things appear, like the grass and the buds, etc.  So I decided to try my hand at some truffles.  I made mint chocolate truffles.  According to my kids, they were yummy…I used green candy melts for the coating and drizzled white chocolate on top.  They were very minty and refreshing!For St. Patrick’s Day, I treated my kids with mint chocolate chip cupcakes with vanilla mint buttercream.  My 10-year-old said it was almost as good as the ice cream, which is her favorite.  I’ll take that complement ;-)!And one more “green thing”…since Spring break is upon us, it was time to celebrate the cadets’ birthdays for March.  I made a green velvet cake with vanilla buttercream tinted green.I had never even heard of green velvet before.  I saw that one of my pinterest friends pinned it.  I had to try it with my yummy new red velvet recipe.  It smelled the same but looked green and turned out so wonderfully that I was giddy with glee!

Cuppies for Cadets

Today my son and I went to the Air Force Academy to celebrate the February birthdays in Squadron Six!  We took along red velvet cupcakes with cream cheese icing and they were pretty much devoured by the end of the day.

We love celebrating their birthdays.  I may have to think of something green for March birthdays!

Class Cakes

I ended up with such a large class for my Decorating Basics course at Hobby Lobby that I had to split the class and have two!  The students were awesome and they had lots of fun.  I have to say that I did too.  It wonderful for me to see students get excited when they realize they did something cool.  And they did lots of cool things!   But I’ll let you decided by looking at their final cake projects…These were from a husband and wife couple who took the class together. 

I had another couple in my second class.  He loves her, if you couldn’t tell…And she’s pretty smitten with him…and their little guy…

I even had a student who decided to do cupcakes for their final project instead of a full cake.  Such a good idea…

Aren’t they all great?  There were 4 students who were under 18 in the class too.  I am so impressed by these cakes.  I love the colors and the ideas the students had.  They all did a great job!

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