Sunday, September 2, 2018

pink and white floral wreath cake

It's been a while since my last post! Things have been super busy with work, and then summer with the kids at home, and then vacation, and then after vacation watching the kids while I worked from home until school started ... and now the kids are back in school! It's an exciting year because my oldest started middle school! And my youngest started Kindergarten! Time sure does fly by fast!

Anyhow, back to this cake! I made this for my friend Kim, for her birthday last March, at at time when I was absolutely obsessed with floral wreath cakes! (You'll see several more in the next few upcoming posts!) This one happened to be a coffee chiffon cake, filled with espresso whipped cream, and covered with vanilla whipped cream.

The coffee chiffon layers were baked in three 6-inch round cake pans. Usually I bake two cakes and then slice the in half horizontally to give me four layers, but since chiffon cake is so delicate, I find that they tend to collapse when sliced in half horizontally, so I do three uncut cake layers instead.

After smoothing out my whipped cream frosting as best as I could, I was ready to decorate with buttercream flowers. Unlike this mother's day floral wreath cake, where I piped rosette flowers directly onto the cake, I used this method instead, where I piped my buttercream flowers in advance using a flower nail and pieces of waxed paper. The buttercream flowers are then frozen until I'm ready to use them!

Rather than just adding my pre-piped buttercream flowers directly onto the top of the cake, I first piped a ring of whipped cream dollops on the top, so that I could nestle my flowers easily and position, also allowing them to stay on better. Then I just peeled each flower off of the waxed paper, and placed them in a wreath around the cake.

Once I was happy with my flower placement, I finished it off by piping green buttercream leaves in between and around the flowers.

I love this technique!

This technique allows you to use the best of all the dozens of piped buttercream flowers, and if you work quickly enough you can even move the flowers around before they start to melt.

I especially love the view from the top of the cake, where you can see the flowers in wreath formation.

Happy Birthday, Kim! Hope you enjoyed your cake!

Stay tuned to see more wreath cakes in the next few posts!

Sunday, June 24, 2018

pink sprinkles birthday cake with gold birthday topper

My friend Hsing has a daughter named Avery, who just had a birthday this past February! And I was beyond flattered when she asked me to make her a birthday cake! She sent me a picture of a adorable pink cake, with rainbow sprinkles and a gold birthday cake topper, so I set out to make exactly that!

I started with my favorite chocolate cake recipe (which you can find in my book, The Hello Kitty Baking Book!), which I halved and baked in two 6-inch round cake pans. Once they were cool, I sliced them in half horizontally to give me four cake layers, and then filled each layer with freshly whipped cream and sliced strawberries.

Then I whipped up a batch of cream cheese frosting, which I tinted with pink gel-based food coloring, and then covered the top and sides of the cake with a quick crumb coat.

After letting the cake chill in the fridge for 30 minutes, I did a final coat, and smoothed it out as best as I could with a long metal spatula.

For whatever reason, I had a hard time smoothing out the top of the cake this time. It could have been that the weather was super warm, or maybe it was that it was the middle of the night and I was super tired, but it just turned out way messier than I had wanted! But I went ahead and added the rainbow sprinkles to the bottom of the cake, and then let it chill overnight.

In the morning I was ready to add the gold acrylic cake topper, which I had bought a few weeks earlier on Etsy.

It was the perfect finishing touch!

Hope you had a happy Birthday, Avery!

Sunday, May 20, 2018

red white and blue flag cake for fourth of july

Last year for the Fourth of July, my husbands parents were visiting from Hawaii, and his dad's cousin Holly invited us over for a Fourth of July party! His mom was going to make a curried rice salad, and I said I would make a cake. I pictured a red, white, and blue cake on the inside as well as the outside!

For the cake, I baked up my favorite vanilla cake (recipe in my book, The Hello Kitty Baking Book!) in two 8-inch round cake pans, let them cool, and then sliced them in half horizontally to give me four cake layers. Then I filled each layer with fresh whipped cream, sliced strawberries, and fresh blueberries.

For the frosting I whipped up my cream cheese frosting (recipe also in my book!), covered the top and sides with a quick crumb coat, and chilled it for 30 minutes. Unlike most of my cakes, this one wasn't going to need a final coat of frosting, as I was planning on decorating the sides with red white and blue piping.

For the piping, I used a disposable pastry bag fitting with a medium star tip, and piped little "heart"s down the cake, alternating with blue and white frosting. These were going to be the blue and white star portion of the flag.

Then I did the same with red and white frosting, except I piped them from left to right to give me red and white "stripes".

I kept going from left to right, until I eventually had gone around the entire cake and was back to my blue and white piping.

All done!

I kind of think the piping looks like a knitted design, don't you think?

Holly's party ended up being amazing! They had everything decked out in stars and stripes, including the paltes, tablecloths, selfie props, and they even handed out red white and blue beaded necklaces for everyone to wear! So much fun!

Happy Fourth of July!

Sunday, May 13, 2018

rainbow unicorn sugar cookies with royal icing

To go along with the rainbow unicorn cake that I made for my daughter's 8th birthday, I also made these rainbow unicorn cookies as party favors, and also to pass out to her classmates on the actual day of her birthday.

For the cookies, I used my favorite sugar cookie dough (recipe in my book!), rolled it out to about 1/8 inch thick, and used these adorable unicorn cookie cutters from Cookie Cutter Kingdom to cut out my shapes. Then I baked them at 350F for 10-12 minutes, until golden brown.

While the cookies were cooling, I whipped up my royal icing (recipe also in my book!). Then I used a disposable pastry bag fitted with a small round tip to outline each cookie with stiff white icing, before filling them in with runny white icing. Then with the rest of icing, I used Americolor gel-based food coloring to tint them yellow for the horn, and rainbow colors for the mane and tail.

I had originally planned to do each unicorn with several rainbow colors, but after icing a few, I didn't like the way they looked. So instead, I chose one color for each unicorn, and did multiple colors that way.

I wrapped each cookie in cellophane favor bags and tied with closed with raffia, so that they would be easy for her to hand out to her classmates (and so they would fit nicely in her party goodie bags!)

Happy Birthday, Miss Melodie! Hope you enjoyed your unicorns!