Friday, February 27, 2015

Easy Minecraft Birthday Cake

If you have elementary-aged children, you know about Minecraft. Okay, that's not true at all. I know nothing about Minecraft, but many of my kids' friends do. And this birthday cake was for one of them.

What You Need:
Square Cake (This is two layers of 8" square)
Chocolate Ganache Icing (2 cups)
Buttercream Icing (1-2 cups) - colored dark green

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

S'mores Toffee Bark {Recipe}

This recipe is amazing.
I found it in the Busy in Brooklyn blog a few months ago when making a special S'mores treat for my sister's wedding festivities. I changed it just a little, as I like a little more s'moresy goodness on top.

I highly recommend making it only when you have somewhere to take it, or you may end up eating the entire batch all alone! It is also called "S'Mores Crack," and for good reason!

What You Need:
2 sleeves honey graham crackers
2 sticks (1 cup) butter
1 cup brown sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
pinch of salt (if using unsalted butter)
1 1/2 cups mini chocolate chips
2-4 cups mini marshmallows

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Guinness Chocolate Chunk Cheesecake with Pretzel Crust {Recipe}

My hubby is a chocoholic. For his birthday, it's always a challenge to come up with something new that is chocolatey enough for him.This year, brainstorming brought me this...

A chocolate cheesecake with Guinness, chocolate chunks and a pretzel crumb crust.

What You Need:
For the Crust:
4 cups of pretzels to crush, or approx. 3 cups crushed pretzel crumbs.
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter (melted)

For the Cheesecake:
3- 8 oz. packages of cream cheese (at room temperature)
3 large eggs (at room temperature)
1/2 cup sour cream (at room temperature)
1 cup sugar
3/4 cup (6 oz.) Guinness -or similar- beer
3/4 cup (6 oz.) melted semi-sweet chocolate
3 Tbsp. flour or 2 Tbsp. corn starch
Optional: 3/4 cup chocolate chunks

For the Chocolate Ganache Swirl:
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup (4 oz.) semisweet chocolate

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Learn to Decorate Cakes in 2015!

Happy New Year! How about a fun New Year's Resolution you'll enjoy?! Learn to Decorate Cakes this year. I just happen to have many, many classes that will help you to do just that!


You can join me any month at the Hobby Lobby in Woodbury for Wilton Cake Decorating classes.
Wilton classes are taught all over the country, and are really a great place to start if you are a home decorator. You learn all of the basics of cake decorating, cupcake decorating, icing and more!

Upcoming Class Dates:
Tuesday evenings in January - Jan. 6, 13, 20, 27
Wednesday evenings in February - Feb. 4, 11, 18, 25
Thursday evenings in March - Mar. 5, 12, 19, 26
Sign Up at the Hobby Lobby Store (9895 Hudson Road Woodbury, MN 55125)


If you don't have four weeknights in a row, I also teach one-time cake and cupcake classes through Community Education. If you click the date/school, it will take you to the registration page for that class.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Pan Goop - Copycat 'Cake Release'

This is the best, easiest, quickest, cheapest gift for the baker in your life.
It's called "pan goop." I found it on another baking blog when I ran out of my favorite, Wilton's Cake Release, and I needed something to grease my cake pans with.

This stuff is a-maz-ing! It works perfectly, and it's SO easy and cheap to make.

What You Need:
1 cup shortening
1 cup vegetable oil
1 cup flour

Homemade Hot Cocoa Mix {Recipe}

My boys and I made these homemade hot cocoa gifts for their teachers this year. Just because I thought they needed it, I also threw in a mini bottle of schnapps to flavor their cocoa. They work with second graders all day. They deserve it!

What You Need:
1 cup Hershey's Cocoa Powder
1 cup Hershey's Special Dark Cocoa Powder
2 1/2 cups granulated sugar
2 Tbsp. corn starch
1/2 cup mini chocolate chips
Pinch of salt
1/4 tsp vanilla extract

* Note: You could use all of the original Hershey's unsweetened cocoa, and you may cut back about 1/2 cup of the sugar.

Friday, November 21, 2014

Pumpkin Treat Roundup

Looking to 'spice up' the Thanksgiving table with something other than the traditional pumpkin pie?
Here's a collection of pumpkin-inspired recipes and ideas that you can make to impress your holiday guests.

Pumpkin Cheesecake Cake

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Thursday, October 30, 2014

Easy Halloween Eyeballs Cake

A super quick post to show you a super quick Halloween cake idea that's easy on the eyes... get it?!?

What You Need:
Round Cutters (or Icing tips)

Simply cut out the white and black fondant in various round sizes. Layer them, using vanilla to help them stick to one another.
Voila! Spooky Eyeball Cake.

For an Easy Fondant-Free Halloween Cake...

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Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Spy or Secret Agent Birthday Cake

My boys turned eight (eight?!) over the weekend. Their birthday party had a spy (or secret agent) theme.
I made this super simple magnifying glass cake for the party. All you need is white and black frosting, and two or three round icing tips. It couldn't be any easier!

What You Need:
Cookies & Cream Cake Recipe
  (I used the exact recipe as you will find on my link above. However, since the cake was a large 9x13, I doubled the cakes, and made 1 1/2 times the icing recipe.)
Black Decorating Icing
  (You could even purchase 2 or 3 tubes of black icing to make it more simple.)
Crushed Oreo or other cookies
Piping Bag and Icing Tips #3, 7 & 12