Saturday, February 11, 2012

A Cookie for your Heart?

Cupcakes are my "thing." What does Sydney like doing? Baking cupcakes. We're having a party, who wants to bring cake? Sydney does. We need cupcakes for an upcoming event, who should we ask? Sydney probably wants to bring cupcakes.

Well guess what? Yes, I would agree to all those statements. But sometimes Sydney likes baking others things. Sydney has recently entered into an obsession with cookies. Sugar Cookies with Royal Icing. Yes, what a beautiful art.

Now don't get me wrong, I love cupcakes...but I also love cookies and cake and truffles and brownies. So with all of that in mind, I dedicate this post to cookies. Cookies for your heart.

I've been doing a lot of blog searching lately (more than usual) and have stumbled upon some breath-taking techniques for Royal Icing. And of course, I couldn't resist the urge to attempt each and every technique I found. And thanks to so many helpful tutorials, I have mastered lace piping, brush embroidery, and heart-lines.

This was a day-long task, but it was totally worth it in the end. Of course I was a bit sad to have to eat my new creations but they did taste lovely.

So lace piping has been something I've wanted to try for a really long time. But truth-be-told, it scared the crap out of me. It looks so intricate and delicate. But once I found SugarBelle's tutorial, I had to give it a try. And try I did. And to my surprise I did it!

It was so simple! If you examine lace closely, it's just lines connected with symmetry. I won't try to explain how to do it, but please do take a look at the tutorial.

The second technique I conquered was brush embroidery. This is something I've tried before...and failed miserably at. But wait! I did it this time!

So I may not be pro at this one, but it was a huge step up from my last try. This technique is explained over at the Wilton site. I will definitely be practising this more and more, but for a second attempt I'm very happy.

The last method was the easiest ever but it looks really complex. So if you're looking to impress something this Valentine's Day you have to try this.

I don't really know the "official name" for it, but I've decided to call it the heart-line. Because that is just what it is. A line of hearts. So for all of the above techniques, the pink icing has been flooded and set for about two hours before any further work happened. But for this one, that is not the case.

If you haven't heard about flood icing and the different thicknesses of icing, I suggest checking out SugarBelle's page once again. For these heart-line cookies, the icing needs to be at a flooding consistency.

These guys were so easy! My color smudged a bit, but I don't mind much. For a step-by-step guide check out Glorious Treats. Super cool and super easy!

Well this is probably my last post before Valentine's Day. So have a good one; eat lots of chocolate and watch a sappy, romantic movie or two.

T'is the Season of love,

Tuesday, February 07, 2012

The Big Ol' V-Day

Hello all. Let me fill you in on a few things.
1) Today is February 7th.
2) February 14th is Valentine's Day
3) Seven days from today (February 7th) is February 14th (Valentine's Day).

Let me continue with these points.
4) People like eating chocolate on Valentine's Day
5) But more than chocolate, people like eating homemade food
6) Fact number six is not a fact... more of an opinion.

Shall I make some more points?
7) I might because I'm just that bored
8) I probably will not because I don't want all of my new followers to leave me
9) Savour this point, it is the last one.

Okay, that's enough nonsense for one post. Back to the real world. I have been flooded with Valentine's Day baking ideas for the last month. This may be partially my fault since I spent lots of my time scrolling through baking blogs. However, I wouldn't have it any other way!

Now one of my favorite bloggers over at Glorious Treats has some crazy talent! And these cupcakes were inspired by her.

Well, hers are chocolate and mine are obviously not...but the key word was "inspired." It's such a simple technique but it looks super duper wonderful. Now I ran into a problem because I didn't have a small enough heart-shaped cookie cutter but I made it work. You'll see in the center cupcake in the picture above that the bottom of the heart seems to be unattached. That's because it is. But I managed to piece it back together and all was well once again.

Now to do this, simply over-fill your cupcake liners and bake some cupcakes. Once they have cooled slice off the top, using the liner top as a guide and then cut out a heart-shape from the middle with a cookie cutter. Then spread some frosting on the cupcake, with a small mound in the middle area and then plop the top back on. I sprinkled the hearts with coarse sugar to make it sparkle but do as you'd like. Be creative with it.

Now these guys here, are also super easy. Alls I did was pipe a large swirly on top of the cupcakes and place a fondant heart on top. To make the hearts I just rolled fondant and used a cookie cutter to cut out some hearts. After they had hardened for a few hours I wrote on them with some food markers and plopped them down on the cupcakes.

So with Valentine's Day right around the corner, what are your plans? Anything special? Yes? No? Maybe so? Well I'd love to know how you celebrate, if you care to share.

One more note: the little heart guy in the middle of the previous picture. He was made from the cutouts from the other heart cupcakes and I just iced two of them together. Oreo Cakester anyone?

Okay well that is all for today. But stay tuned for another Valentine's Day post coming up very soon. Oh, and want to do me a favor? Why not share my page with someone. And then you can say you got me a present for Valentine's day :)

Happy Monday,
Sydney <3