Favorite Quote Ever :)

Life is short. Eat more cake!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Heavenly Key Lime Pie

I have confessed in the past to Key Lime Pie being one of my absolute favorite desserts of Summer and after making it over the weekend, I thought I'd share what's in my opinion, the best recipe I've yet to come across!

Heavenly Key Lime Pie (as adapted from Southern Living Magazine)

1-14oz can sweetened condensed milk
3 egg yolks
2 tsp key lime zest (which I omitted for my quick version!)
1/2 cup key lime juice
1-9in. graham cracker pie crust
1 cup whipping cream
3 tbsp powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Whisk together condensed milk and next three ingredients until well blended. Pour mixture into pie crust. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes or until pie is set. Cool completely on a wire rack (about an hour). Chill in refrigerator one hour before serving. Beat whipping cream at high speed with an electric mixer 2 to 3 minutes or until soft peaks form, gradually adding powdered sugar. Top pie with whipped cream and garnish with key lime slices if desired.

*So I totally cheated this time around and went the "quick, fast & in a hurry" route with the recipe! I didn't use fresh key limes - we visited A Southern Season yesterday and I picked up more of the same bottled key lime juice that I used in my Key Lime Cupcakes - a brand called "Nellie & Joe's", so I was a little worried about how it might turn out as I'd actually squeezed all those tiny key limes by hand last go-round! Turned out wonderfully!! I couldn't tell any difference in taste and still had use of my hands afterwords, which was also nice to say the least! :)

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Hello Kitty Cupcakes

As connoisseurs of Hello Kitty at our household, I have truly been looking forward to this cupcake project for quite some time! And now that the moment has finally arrived...behold the awesome cuteness that is...Hello Kitty in all her pink bowed glory!! (Taking it a bit far, yes I know - I apologize, just got a little carried away there) There were two dozen cupcakes for this Birthday girl - one dozen vanilla, one dozen chocolate both topped with a swirl of pink vanilla buttercream. I then placed toppers formed from gum paste/fondant on top - some even had a sprinkling of edible rainbow shimmer dust for added girly glee! Ah, the cuteness of it all! :)

Simple 60th Birthday

This was a simple request for a Mom who loves both the beach and pound cake with cream cheese icing! Pound cake with cream cheese icing (and filling) edged with crushed graham cracker "sand" and fondant shells. "60" for the top of the cake was cut out of fondant and brushed lightly with bronze shimmer dust - loved the simple elegance of this cake!

Monday, June 20, 2011

Yummiest Chocolate Cupcakes Evah!

Truly, the title says it all...these cupcakes are just wonderful! :) I've been wanting to try my hand at Italian meringue buttercream ever since discovering that was what I enjoyed every time I dined on the heavenly cupcakes at Sugarland, but it just always sounded so complex and honestly anything that involves a candy thermometer just scares the daylights out of me!!! But, after watching a few youtube videos and finally gathering my courage (and the required 7 & 1/2 sticks of butter - yes, you heard correctly!) I finally decided to give it a try! I thought my favorite chocolate cupcake recipe, my ultra-moist chocolate espresso would pair nicely with the smooth, creamy buttercream so I started with that as my base. I did burn my first batch of syrup (drats!) and have to move on to batch #2, but other than that, all went very well and out came a beautiful batch of smooth vanilla italian meringue buttercream! Success! I then decided to top it all off with some chocolate shavings - ah, yes - just right!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Army Guy Birthday Cake

This was a Birthday cake for a special little guy turning five who is especially into "army guys" right now! :) Chocolate cake with vanilla buttercream icing, topped with a chocolate army helmet cake covered in cammo colored fondant and accented with fondant "dog tags" bearing the Birthday boy's name! (All the green army guys you see on the cake were plastic toy soldiers)

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Funky Pink and Black Wedding Cake

I actually had the pleasure of working on this wedding cake back in May, but have been anxiously awaiting the photographer's views of the cake as I was so focused on getting the cake and all my gear to the venue that I forgot my own camera!! I loved, loved, loved the colors, design - just the free spirit that both the Bride-to-be and her cake embodied! :) Bottom tier was white vanilla cake with vanilla buttercream filling, next tier was chocolate cake with chocolate ganache filling, next tier was vanilla buttermilk cake with vanilla buttercream filling and finally the top tier for the Bride and Groom was white vanilla cake with vanilla buttercream filling. All layers were covered with white fondant and all the detail work was black or hot pink fondant. The Bride-to-be provided the beautiful brushed metal toppers which couldn't have been designed to match the cake any better or so I thought! :) Many thanks to the talented Stephanie's Creative Photography for the wonderful photos!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Fresh Strawberry Cupcakes

The strawberries really weren't the main reason I wanted to try out this recipe (shocking, I know!) While the hubby loves strawberries, my main draw to this recipe was trying my hand at swiss meringue buttercream which I've never made before. Nervous, yes - but determined! :) Strawberry cupcakes (made with two whole cups of chopped strawberries no less!) topped by strawberry swiss meringue buttercream and fresh strawberry slices! *Side Note - I almost gave up on the icing (!) after adding the butter - I was dismayed that the consistency turned soupy, but decided to put my Kitchen-Aid to good use, kicked up the speed, walked away for a few minutes and when I came back - voila! Perfect consistency swiss meringue buttercream!*

Monday, June 6, 2011

Princess Belle Birthday Cake

Belle Birthday cake for a very special little princess turning 6! Both the square cake on the bottom and Belle's dress (the skirt) were fudge marble cake with vanilla buttercream filling. Square cake was covered with pink fondant imprinted with a pretty vine pattern. Belle's dress was all yellow fondant, set off by a pretty pink gum paste flower! Happy Birthday, Miss Savannah! :)

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Little Miss Matched Birthday Cake

Oh, if only Little Miss Matched had been around when I was growing up...I mean we had Lisa Frank, but still! LOVED this cake!! Both layers were yellow vanilla cake with vanilla buttercream filling. Bottom square cake was covered in blue fondant and black zebra pattern fondant (which I just loved the way it really popped against the blue!) Top round cake was covered in lime green fondant and varying shades of fondant circles, edged in orange fondant ribbon and an orange fondant bow. The whole crazy thing was topped off by fondant/gum paste curly-que's in varying shades! Now that's what I call a cake! :o)