Friday, May 7, 2010

Cupcake Bouquets

I was so excited to try out the gorgeous cake that I saw at Kids Culinary Adventures.

I will give my usual disclaimer (ie. excuses)....

this was the very first time that I tried this dessert. At my class, I intentionally like to do things for the first time, so that all of the participants see the errors ... If I just make a perfect dessert, not as much learning takes place.

ALSO, I imagine this would be a bit easier on a large cake, but I wanted my class participants to have something to take home, thus I went with cupcakes. It was harder to manage the intricate details, but ultimately, they were so pretty and we learned the techniques that can also be used for a big cake.

Anyhoo......on with the show.....

I made cupcakes with the Dove Chocolate Baking Mix, and then cut them to make a mini, stacked cake. I think it is important that the cake have height, to have room for the chocolate siding. Using a round cookie cutter as my guide, I went around with a parring knife, so that there was no fluting. I also cut off the tops, so they were flat.

I wanted a fresh, Spring look, so I chose to use Dove Spring Transfer Sheets, giving the appearance of grass

The bottom end of the chocolate strips will need to be flat, but the top end is intentionally uneven. For this reason, I cut the strips at double the length, and will break them in the middle when ready to apply.

I tempered Dove White Chocolate, and spread it on the design transfer strips

Once the chocolate is on the strips, I move them to a new piece of parchment, so that they dry without smeared chocolate attached to the strips. Then they are put in the refrigerator to set up.

When the chocolate strips are ready, I pull the transfer sheet off the back, and break them into the right height. They can be put onto the side of the frosted cupcakes.

(note: some of the bright, spring colors look best on white chocolate. When I do this again, I will also use white frosting, as I think the dark chocolate frosting didnt quite go with my "fresh spring" motif.)

I took straws and inserted them in 3 places, cutting them off just a bit above the cake. This will serve two purposes; keep the cake sturdy, and allow me to input flowers (so they arent in the cake itself.) A bonus, is the flowers will stand up a bit straighter too!

I trimmed fresh flowers to insert. NOTE: make sure the stem is thin enough to fit inside the straw (I found lovely gerbers that were too thick to fit...ultimately I found a variety that was just right)

Once the chocolate siding is on, wrap the base with ribbon, and tie a pretty boy. This really does help secure the sides and pull them into place.

And one more bow on top

You can mix and match flower types, colors and ribbons to match your special occassion.

I waw really pleased with how this turned out, and cant wait to celebrate future events with the big-cake version.

Thanks again Kids Culinary Adventures for the great idea!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Baking Class Tonight!

I am so excited to make some BEAUTIFUL cupcakes tonight!

I first saw this pretty cake on the Facebook page for Kids Culinary Adventures;

They do incredible work, and I cant wait to share it with you....

So, if you are in the neighborhood; My house, 7:30 tonight, $10 per person. Let me know you plan on joining us; 949-584-7577

If you arent able to make it, stop back later for photos....

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