Sunday, September 27, 2015

korean hanbok cookies for a baby first birthday 'dol' party

Along with the blue bunting smash cake that I made for my friend Irene's son's first birthday party, I also made these Korean hanbok cookies! Irene was going to have a traditional Korean "Dol" table set up, so we thought it would be adorable to have plated Korean hanbok cookies (colored to resemble her son's Korean hanbok outfit for the party!)

I of course did not have a hanbok cookie cutter, so I asked my hubby to make me another custom copper cutter (yay hubby!). Armed with my shiny new cutter and a few batches of my favorite sugar cookie dough (recipe in my book, The Hello Kitty Baking Book), I cut out my shapes, baked them at 350F until golden (about 10-12 minutes), and let them cool.

Once the cookies were cool, I started on the royal icing (recipe also in my book). I tinted the majority of it navy blue (Americolor royal blue gel coloring, along with a few drops of super black and violet), and piped the outline of the vest with stiff navy icing.

Then I filled it in with runny navy icing. Next I piped the details of the inside shirt with white stiff icing, and then filled it in with white runny icing.

Next I used stiff pink icing to outline the pants and a bit of detail on the vest, and then filled in the pants with runny pink icing (by the time I started on the next set of icing details, it was dark out so please excuse badly lit pictures!).

Next I outlines the sleeves with stiff brown icing, then added yellow dot details along the vest, as well as a yellow stripe and red stripe on the sleeve (done with medium stiffness icing).

To finish the rainbow sleeves, I filled in the remainder of the stripes (blue and green medium icing), and used red stiff icing to pipe a sash-style belt. And then (several hours later) it was done!

They came out better than I had expected!


I'll leave you with a few pictures from the party ...

... and I of course had to include a picture of little Aaron in his adorable Korean hanbok outfit, with his matching cookies!

Happy first birthday, sweet Aaron!!!

Sunday, September 20, 2015

baby first birthday carrot cake (with applesauce instead of sugar) smash cake with handmade fondant bunting

My friend Irene has a son named Aaron, who recently just turned one! For his first birthday party, Irene asked me to make a few goodies, one of which was a carrot-cake smash cake for baby! To decorate, we decided that I would make a fondant blue bunting with his name on it, along with a big fondant number "1" for the cake topper.

About week before the party, I started making the topper, so that it would have enough time to dry. I basically took a big hunk of white fondant, rolled it out to about 3/4" thick, and then cut the number "1" out with a paring knife. (I did it this way, instead of shaping it, because I wanted the nice sharp edges).

To help smooth the fondant out a bit, I used square-edge handle on a fork, along with some cornstarch to prevent sticking.

Next, I started on the blue fondant bunting. After tinting my fondant a pretty shade of blue, I rolled it out really thin, and then used a pizza wheel (and a ruler) to cut out my triangle shapes. Then I used white royal icing to pipe letters onto each triangle of fondant (not pictured).

For the cake itself, I started on it two days before the party (I typically give myself one day to bake and cool the cakes, and then one day to frost and decorate). Irene wanted a cake without sugar in it, so I found this recipe from Natasha's Kitchen for an applesauce carrot cake. However I omitted the honey, and added a few squirts of agave instead, and I also made homemade applesauce instead of store-bought.

I also bought organic carrots to grate into the carrot cake (only the best for baby!).

I baked the cakes in four 6-inch round cake pans, and let them cool before filling and stacking them with freshly whipped cream.

Then I covered the tops and sides with cream cheese buttercream (crumb coat, chilled for 30 minutes, and then then final coat).

To finish off the cake, I used a Wilton #7 tip to pipe little beads of frosting along the top and bottom of the cake.

To secure each bunting triangle, I piped a small dot of frosting on the back of the triangle, before placing it on the cake.

And the final touch - the big fondant number "1"!

In the next few posts I'll have more on the rest of the goodies that I made, but in the meantime here's a picture of the birthday boy as he investigates his cake! He's SO cute!!!

Happy First Birthday, little Aaron!

Sunday, September 13, 2015

dump truck cookies

My cousin-in-law Kristen has a son named Caleb who absolutely loves dump trucks! So for his second birthday this year, she asked me to make dump truck cookies for him. And since I didn't have a dump truck cookie cutter on hand, I asked hubby to make me another custom copper cutter!

For both the cookie dough and royal icing, I used the recipes in my book, The Hello Kitty Baking Book. Once the cookie were baked and cooled, I used stiff royal icing to outline each one - black for the tires and window, yellow for the cab, blue for the rest of the truck, and brown for the dirt.

After the outlines had dried, I went back and filled them in with their respective colors.

And after letting that dry for several hours, I went back with more blue stiff icing and re-outlined the blue part of the dump truck, just to clean it up and make it pop.

Aren't they cute?

Happy Birthday, Caleb! Hope you enjoyed your dump truck cookies!

Sunday, September 6, 2015

rainbow sprinkle first birthday smash cake

In addition to the Princess Leia cookies that I made for my best friend Sue (who was having a Star Wars themed first birthday party for her daughter Leia), I also made a rainbow sprinkle smash cake for the birthday girl!

Since this would be the first time Leia would be trying cake, we didn't want to go with anything too overpowering, so we decided to go with a vanilla cake, filled with fresh strawberries and whipped cream. So I baked up two 6-inch vanilla cake layers (half of the recipe of the vanilla cake from my boo, The Hello Kitty Baking Book), let the cakes cool, and sliced each one into half horizontally, giving me four cake layers. Then I filled each layer with freshly whipped cream and chopped strawberries (normally I slice the strawberries, but in this case I wanted them in little pieces for baby Leia).

Then I whipped up a batch of cream cheese buttercream, and covered the tops and sides of the cake with it (crumb coat, then chilled for 30 minutes before applying the final coat).

The final touch was adding rainbow sprinkles!

In order to let the number 1 show up in white frosting through the sprinkles, I drew a big "1" on a piece of cardstock, then placed it on the cake before adding the sprinkles.

Here's a picture of the birthday girl enjoying her first cake ever!

Happy Birthday, Leia!!! Hugs and kisses from Auntie Michele! :)