Tag Archives: frosting

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Star wars, sugar, cookies, frosting, icing, royal, piped, fill, 20 second, darth vader, yoda, boba fett, storm trooper, stormtrooper, return of the jedi, a new hope, empire strikes back, William Sonoma, cookie cutters, punch, sugar cookies

Hola. I'm not sure how many times I'm allowed to apologize for being a negligent blog updater, but...I'm sorry. Life is crazy right now for me, as I'm sure it is for all of you as well! Holiday season is nuts.

I won't go into too much detail, but my company is getting ready to submit our device to the FDA for approval so we've been running around like crazy gathering data and working on paperwork, I am taking a photography class AND a cooking class online (remind me to talk about that later!), I have my cruise in less than three weeks, and I'm hoping to finish the first draft of my second book by then. phew. 

But, look at this. STAR WARS COOKIES!

Star wars, sugar, cookies, frosting, icing, royal, piped, fill, 20 second, darth vader, yoda, boba fett, storm trooper, stormtrooper, return of the jedi, a new hope, empire strikes back, William Sonoma, cookie cutters, punch, sugar cookies

I guess since my last post was about an Avengers party, an unsuspecting visitor might get confused and think that I'm some sort of nerd. But luckily, my faithful reader, you know better. There is no doubt in your mind that I'm a HUGE nerd. :)

My boyfriend is the big Star Wars geek though, so when I saw these cookie cutters on sale at Williams Sonoma on Black Friday, I had to buy them, and surprise him with a batch or two. It gave me the perfect chance to dive headfirst into the time-consuming world of cookie decorating, but I ended up having so much fun, and it's hard not to love biting into a stormtrooper head.  ...continue reading

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brain, science, brain cupcakes, nerdy cupcakes, baking, zombie, desserts, nerd, geek, science, neuroscience, psychology, buttercream, meringue, piping, biscoff, beaker, microscope, slides, ganache, chocolate ganache, filled cupcakes, filling cupcakes, stuffed cupcakes

Cooking is a lot like art. You can experiment and substitute and adapt, and still get fantastic results. Baking, on the other hand, is a lot more like science.

Being a "scientist" myself, you'd think that this make me a pretty good baker. Unfortunately this wasn't the case. It took me several months before I could bake an edible cupcake, and several more before they actually tasted good. I guess my creative, artistic side is more at home in the kitchen than my precise, analytic scientist side.

Photography is another art that can be boiled down to science. Our brains are wired to find certain pictures appealing, and others unattractive. This makes food photography even more difficult, because you have to find a way to tell a story and create a mood...while making the food look appetizing!

These brain cupcakes were a fun experiment (ha) in combining the art and science of both baking and photography, as part of my new desire to take better, more interesting pictures.

I remade my favorite biscoff cupcakes, but this time I added a chocolate ganache filling and a swiss meringue buttercream frosting to pipe the cute little cortex. I got the idea directly from Not So Humble Pie, a great blog that unfortunately isn't updated much anymore, but has an awesome section dedicated to science-themed cookies and cakes.

brain, science, brain cupcakes, nerdy cupcakes, baking, zombie, desserts, nerd, geek, science, neuroscience, psychology, buttercream, meringue, piping, biscoff, beaker, microscope, slides, ganache, chocolate ganache, filled cupcakes, filling cupcakes, stuffed cupcakes ...continue reading

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biscoff, biscoff spread, biscoff cookies, cupcakes, biscoff cupcakes, biscoff frosting, biscoff buttercream, buttercream, sprinkles, biscoff cake, cooking, baking, biscoff recipe, delicious, easy, fun, picky palate recipe

As I type out this blog post, I am already rearranging my schedule around in my head so that I have time to make a double batch of these tonight. The first batch, which I made last week, disappeared far too quickly for me to savor them. Granted, the cupcakes were phenomenal. Simply the most successful cupcakes I've had since Ken and I made the chocolate and beer cupcakes with Baileys buttercream frosting.

I find that the further I push myself into becoming a better cook, the more my palate evolves. Where once I preferred my cupcakes as sweet as I could make them, I now gravitate towards more savory desserts. As soon as I bought my first jar of biscoff I knew I wanted to start baking with it right away, but I wasn't sure how to make sure the sweetness didn't overpower the dish.

biscoff, biscoff spread, biscoff cookies, cupcakes, biscoff cupcakes, biscoff frosting, biscoff buttercream, buttercream, sprinkles, biscoff cake, cooking, baking, biscoff recipe, delicious, easy, fun, picky palate recipe

Biscoff, for those of you who don't know, is heaven in a jar. Made from Lotus biscoff cookies (you might have had them in Europe, or on planes), it's similar in consistency to peanut butter, but deserves a spot on that high pedestal right next to nutella. It has a gingerbready flavor with a hint of cinnamon, and maybe even a little bit of toffee in there. It's to die for, and you can use it in so many ways. Luckily, I found the prefect recipe to use the unique flavor of this spread without being too sweet. ...continue reading

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There are no recipes in this post. There aren't even any hints or techniques for decorating cakes. Because, let's be honest, I have no idea what I'm doing.

But neither does Ken, so I think we're pretty evenly matched.

I've been planning this little contest for a few months now, and with Valentine's day just around the corner, it seemed like the opportune time. The rules were simple: We would each bake and decorate a two-layer cake of our choosing. And we would post the pictures online and let people decide who won.

I baked a red velvet cake, and Ken chose a marble cake. Mine rose a little more than his, but it meant that I had to level mine.

 

We printed out these practice sheets, taped them to the table under a piece of wax paper, loaded up our piping bags and began practicing our techniques. I was confident that I would school him at this stage because I have years of art classes under my belt, but as it turns out, this is not intuitive at all. We both sucked at it (me a little more, I'll admit), and after 10 minutes we gave up and decided to wing it. ...continue reading

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Merry Christmas everyone! 

I...can't think of anything else to say here. It's too early in the morning, and I'm already all hopped up on sugar and peppermint. And ginger cookies of course. Breakfast of champions.

I made these cupcakes from my brand new cupcake cookbook that my sister gave me, and I'm so excited that they worked! We all know I've had cupcake troubles in the past, so I was thrilled that not only did they poof nicely,  but they tasted pretty damn good too ;)

It's a simple chocolate cupcake recipe paired with a fluffy white frosting with crushed peppermint candies in it and sprinkled on top! And a few candy canes, in case they weren't minty enough. ...continue reading

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So, good news! My cookie cutter worked!!! I was able to make a batch of red eared slider turtle cookies for my coworker's last day.

I may have gone a little overboard when I was piping the frosting, but it was my first time using the little tip and I was just so excited to decorate them!

I won't lie, these cookies take a long time to make.  I started these on Sunday and did one or two steps every day, finishing at 10:30 PM Tuesday night. If you need a quick and easy cookie recipe, I would find a less labor intensive one. But if you have the time and creativity they are so much fun!

This recipe will work for any cookie cutter, obviously!

Cut-out sugar cookie recipe (adapted from here)

You will need:

  • 1/2 cup shortening
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt

...continue reading

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So, on Saturday I may have visited a certain TJMaxx, and I may have purchased a set of 100 cookie cutters for only $10!!! Who could resist!

LOOK AT THEM ALL! So, being adventurous as always, I decided I needed to make a huge batch of cookies to try them out. I found a recipe online and started making the dough.

As I mentioned in a previous post, I quickly learned that trying to roll out cookie dough on a hot, humid day is damn near impossible. But I did my best, rolling it out on wax paper like I thought I was supposed to do, then I popped it in the oven!

Soon I smelled smoke. And lots of it. Turns out wax paper is not the same as parchment paper. Who knew? (Remember how new at this I am.) I grabbed the pan before the wax paper ignited totally, but it was nice and singed on the corners. Disappointed, I threw the rest of the dough into the fridge and left to do something else.

I came back later that night, once it had cooled down, to give it another shot. And lo and behold it was a huge success!

Except for a few minor slip-ups here and there...

The countertop needed more sprinkles, obviously

But they turned out SO WELL! And it was a lot of fun. I made dinosaurs (duh!), airplanes, teddy bears, hearts, rocket ships, stars and my personal favorite:

ICE CREAM CONES!!! =) How cute are these?

Now that I have more cookie cutters than I'll ever need, I'm stoked to perfect my cookie making abilities and become the best cookie froster ever.

Yum.