December 24, 2010

Jamaican Black Cake

Thank you to Nadine who requested a Jamaican Black Cake for the holidays.  This is a traditional holiday dessert which is deliciously, dark and rich and unlike any other fruit cake you will run across.

It is a dense cake soaked with rum and port wine and allowed to sit and ferment for several weeks or months.  It is also served at weddings and special occasions.

Here is the recipe that I used for this delicious cake. 
1 1/2 cup flour
8 ounces margarine or butter
8 ounces sugar
4 eggs
1 pound raisins*
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon mixed spice
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 ounces mixed peel*
4 ounces cherries*
1/2 pound prunes (chopped)
1 cup wine/brandy*
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 lime or lemon, finely grated rind only
2 tablespoons browning

*I grounded and soaked these ingredients in rum and wine a few weeks in advance.  Kept in a sealed glass jar.

Cream butter, sugar and browning until soft and fluffy. Sieve all dry ingredients together Beat eggs, wine/brandy together. Add egg mixture to creamed butter and sugar. Add fruits. Add flour and fold in. Do no over-beat when mixing. Bake at 350F for 1 1/2 hours. 

This baked an 8 1/2" round. I decorated this cake with royal icing and silver dragees.

December 13, 2010

Give Away - Hot Drinks

Yey! My first blog giveaway just in time for cool  (I mean cold) weather.  Hot Drinks by Mary Lou Heiss and Robert J. Heiss.

Nothing warms up frigid fingers and toes like a mug of spicy mulled cider or creamy hot chocolate. HOT DRINKS presents 50 original recipes for mixed coffees, teas, punches, cocoas, ciders, and cocktails perfectly suited for cozying up by the fire or heating up holiday family get-togethers.
This giveaway is available to residents of the Canada and U.S. ONLY. I will mail a copy of the book to the winner, so please make sure that I have a way to reach you by including your email address if it is not in your profile.

How to Enter
- Question: What is your favourite cake flavour that I baked? Search my blog and leave me the answer in the comments with a copy of the link to the post.

- Earn an extra entry by tweeting about the giveaway on twitter - include a link to THIS post. I will need a link of your tweet. Please leave a separate comment for each entry.

The giveaway ends on Monday December 20th at Midnight PST. One winner will be chosen randomly and announced on Wednesday December 22th on my blog.

A BIG thank you to all! Good luck everyone!

December 12, 2010

Jack and Jill Cake

Thank you to Lori-Ann who placed a request for a Jack and Jill Cake for Shane and Jodi. 
It was to be two tiered with the bottom flavour a two layered cookies and cream.  The top tier would be a two layered vanilla cake with the bottom layer dyed with a blue food colouring and the top tier pink.  Here is my recipe for the cookies and Cream Cake.
1 (18.25 ounce) package white cake mix
1 1/4 cups water
1/3 cup vegetable oil
3 egg whites
1 cup chocolate sandwich cookie crumbs

1.Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour two 9 inch round cake pans.
2.In a large bowl, mix the cake mix, water, oil, and 3 egg whites with an electric mixer on high speed for 2 minutes. Gently stir in crushed cookies. Pour batter into the prepared pans.
3.Bake for 25 to 35 minutes in the preheated oven, or until a knife inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes in pans. Remove from pans, and completely cool on racks.

I decorated this cake with buttercream frosting and added fondant accents to bring the theme together.  I made the baby onsie and booties with gumpaste.

December 7, 2010

Red Velvet (CHRISTMAS) Cupcakes

I received a request for Christmas Cupcakes once again. Tis the Season! I had carte blanche on this 35 plus cupcake order. I thought nothing says Christmas like the Red Velvet Cupake.
Wait a second.... I will add that you cannot go wrong with Red Velvet for any occasion.
I decided on a Pull Apart Cake aka a Pull Away Cake. This is a number of cupcakes placed together to create a theme or an actual cake. I had completed this project in August for 1 year old Drew by completely icing over thirty cupcakes so they ended up looking like a sheet cake.

Today I formed cupcakes as a Christmas Tree. First of all here are the ingredients that you will need to bake your Red Velvet Cupcakes:
1 package white cake mix (18.25 oz size)

2 tablespoons cocoa
5 large eggs
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 cup buttermilk
2 (1 oz bottle) red liquid food colouring

While cupcake batter is blending I add red food colouring

Hmmm.....kind of red
Let's fill those cups!
Nicely baked
Arrange cupcakes in form of a ChristmasTree

Decorate all with cream cheese frosting (click for recipe). I had to dye it in various colours.... And Voila!

November 22, 2010

Ornamental Cupcakes

I had fun decorating holiday cupcakes.  The flavour?  Lemon and decorated with a buttercream icing.  I posted the recipe in April.  It has a very light tartness which is a nice contrast to the icing.  Check out the pics:
Just poured batter into cupcake cups.
freshly baked!
Time to decorate.
You can keep these in an air tight container for up to three days.  ENJOY!

November 18, 2010

Coach Bag

Thank you to Sharon for requesting a cake for her sister Sophia.

The theme?  A Coach Bag.  Since Sharon would be transporting this after delivery, she asked if I could decorate this cake flat on a cake board.  Sharon is a fan of Pumpkin Spice... So Pumpkin Spice it was.  She also wanted it in turquoise and yellow.
I have posted this recipe in January of this year.  Here is a tip if you want to bake an eggless cake.  Replace your eggs and water in this recipe with a can of club soda.

Here are some pictures of the process.
Turquoise butter cream icing on the first layer.
Time to icing the top layer.
Crumb coat complete!
Let's add that icing again.
Fondant is placed over cake.
Oops.... I forgot to cake more pictures in between.  I did use two round cookie cutters to make the letter C.  One large one and a smaller one to cut out a hole in the middle.  I will add an update of this cake sliced, once Sophia has cut into it.

November 13, 2010

Cake for McKenzie

Thank you to Renae, who asked if I could decorate a birthday cake for her princess of a daughter, Mckenzie.  This is a two layered white cake, however, for the bottom layer I added pink food colouring to the cake batter.  I wish I could be there to watch Renae and Mckenzie cut the cake.

Udate: Here are some photos from McKenzie's cake event.

Here is a the recipe I used for this easy white cake.  Found on this is a can't go wrong cake.

1 cup white sugar
1/2 cup butter
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 3/4 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 cup milk

1.Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour a 9x9 inch pan or line a muffin pan with paper liners.

2.In a medium bowl, cream together the sugar and butter. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, then stir in the vanilla. Combine flour and baking powder, add to the creamed mixture and mix well. Finally stir in the milk until batter is smooth. Pour or spoon batter into the prepared pan.

3.Bake for 30 to 40 minutes in the preheated oven. For cupcakes, bake 20 to 25 minutes. Cake is done when it springs back to the touch.

November 8, 2010

Christmas Cupcakes

Well, what can I say.  I really dropped the ball on posting Halloween themed treats. But I am not one to dwell on the negative.  Let's move on to the next big season.
I baked Devils Food Cupcakes.  This recipe was found at and is by Diane Rattray.

•3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
•1 1/3 cups granulated sugar
•1 1/4 cups milk, scalded
•2 cups cake flour, sifted or stirred before measuring
•1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
•1 teaspoon salt
•2/3 cup shortening
•3 eggs
•1 1/4 teaspoons vanilla extract

Prepare two 1 dozen cupcake trays with cupcake liners. Sift the cocoa with 1/3 cup sugar; pour into the milk gradually; stir until well blended. Set aside to cool. Sift together flour, remaining 1 cup sugar, soda, and salt. Add shortening and half of the cooled cocoa and milk mixture. Beat at medium speed of an electric hand-held mixer. Add eggs, vanilla, and remaining cocoa and milk mixture. Continue beating for about 2 minutes, scraping bowl with a spatula occasionally. Pour into cupcake tray. Bake at 325° for 25 to 30 minutes.Cool and frost devil's food cupcakes as desired.
I used icing colors to dye my icing, and my designs were piped using a #2 tip, and smoothed over with a spatula knife.

November 6, 2010

Southern Strawberry Cake

Thank you to Helen for requesting a baby shower cake.  She asked if I could bake a Strawberry Shortcake.  I'll be honest with you.  I tried my hand at one awhile back and let's just say.... it wasn't very pleasant.  So I suggested a Southern Strawberry Cake.  I found this idea by Joy The Baker.

This cake is so pretty, and I thought it would work for the occasion (great for bridal showers as well).  Here is the recipe:
Ingredients Cake
1 (18.5 ounce) box white cake mix (without pudding)
1 (3 ounce) package strawberry jello
1 Tablespoon self rising flour
4 teaspoons granulated sugar
3/4 cup vegetable oil
4 eggs
1/2 cup water
1/3 cup fresh strawberries, finely diced.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F

Ingredients Cream Cheese Frosting
1 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup butter, softened
4 cups sifted confectioners' sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 cup sweetened shredded coconut
pink food coloring
4 sliced strawberries
Wash your strawberries, cut the tops off, and dice them up.  I put them in a large Ziploc bag and rolled a can over it to crush them.
To make the cake, combine to cake mix, Jello, flour and sugar in a large bowl. Mix well. Add the oil. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition Add the water and strawberries and mix well.
Divide the batter evenly into two 8-inch round baking pans that have been oiled and floured. Bake for 25-35 minutes, or until a tooth pick inserted into the center of the cakes comes out clean and the layers pull away from the sides of the pan. 
**I baked this cake using two 10" round baking pans.  For this recipe I doubled up on my ingredients and baked this cake for 50 minutes at 325 degrees F.

Transfer the layers from the oven to wire racks. Let them cool, still in their pans, for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, run a knife around the inside edge of each pan, then unmold each layer onto the racks to cool completely.

In a medium bowl, cream together the cream cheese and butter until creamy. Mix in the vanilla, then gradually stir in the confectioners' sugar. Store in the refrigerator after use.
**I found the frosting to be a little sweet, so I added a teaspoon of salt to my (doubled up) ingredients.

I crumb coated the bottom layer and added some more diced strawberries on top.
I added the top layer and finished off my crumbcoat.
Put the coconut in a small bowl and sprinkle with two or three drops of pink food dye. Mix with a spoon to distribute the color.
Once the cake is frosted, decorate the top of the cake with the shredded coconut and sliced strawberries.

November 3, 2010

Raptors Win!

Thank you to my friend Dale who requested a Toronto Raptors Cake.
I used the FBCT technique for this one and added red licorice as a border.
Perhaps if they were always baked a cake on game night, they just might win?
(Friday Oct 29/10) Toronto Raptors roasted the Cleveland Cavaliers 101-81. 

Coincidence?  I think not!

October 14, 2010

Spyro The Dragon

Thank you to my friend Kelly who thought of my cakes as her daughter Madyson's birthday neared.  Kelly requested a cake with Spyro the dragon.  Yikes!   I had never done a dragon before, but as usually as was up to the challenge.  Hmmmmm..... but how was I going to get the image of Spyro on Mady's cake?  I'll get back to that in a bit.

So Kelly wanted a marble cake to serve over 20 people.  We decided on a 10" two layered, that would end up being almost 5" high.

So here are the ingredients I used for my Marble Cake recipe:
- 2 cups sifted cake flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup butter or margarine
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 cup sugar
- 3/4 cup milk
- 3 egg whites 1 1/2 0Z. (1 1/2 sq.) unsweetened chocolate, melted and cooled
- 2 tablespoons hot water
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
(found on

Sift flour, baking powder, and salt together.

Cream the butter with extract; gradually add sugar, creaming until fluffy.
Beating only until smooth after each addition, alternately add dry ingredients in fourths and milk in thirds to the creamed mixture.
Beat egg whites until stiff, not dry, peaks are formed.
Fold beaten egg whites gently into batter until thoroughly blended.
Turn one half of the batter into a prepared 8x8x2-inch baking pan.
Lightly, but quickly, stir a mixture of the remaining ingredients into batter in bowl.
Spoon chocolate batter into pan. Gently lift white batter through chocolate until marbled effect is produced.
Spread batter evenly to edges of pan.
Bake at 350°F 40 to 45 minutes, or until cake tests done.

And now let's bring on Spyro the Dragon!
I went online and found a black and white drawing of Spyro.  I taped it to the base of a 9" square pan, and then taped parchment paper on top. 
On top of the parchment paper, I traced Spyro with a mixture of black buttercream icing and piping gel.  I used a #2 tip.  This gave me a nice thin line, but I still applied the lines a little thick.
I then applied the colours needed to make Spyro come alive.  I filled in colours in layers using a round tip. Make sure to use medium consistency frosting.  Using a knife dipped in hot water (and re-dipping as needed) I gently smooth frosting from the back to push down into crevices.  
I Filled in around pictures with my green background colour.  I chose the same colour I was using for the cake. 
I filled in the rest of the top and smoothed the icing out. I measured mine to a slightly smaller size than the diameter of the cake to place it on top of my already decorated cake.  I covered this with wax paper and lightly smoothed it with my handshands.  I then placed it in the freezer for overnight.

I removed the wax paper from the back of FBCT and placed it on top of the cake that had been completely frosted.  I peeled the wax paper from the front of FBCT, added boarders and wording.
And here we are!