Evil Yumminess in the Land of Giant Cupcakes

April 23, 2010

Swedish and Italian Flag Sheet Cakes

Filed under: Cake,cotton candy,italian flag,sheet cake,swedish flag — by queenofevilyumminess @ 4:49 PM

One of the professors in my department requested that I make two 9×13 inch sheet cakes for his son’s birthday party this weekend. Being the nice person I am, I promised him I would make the cakes. He wanted one to be the Swedish flag and one to be the Italian flag. I’ve never made a sheet cake before but I figured I could handle it. Turns out…I was completely correct. I don’t think I’ve ever had a project go so smoothly. The cakes baked up great. The icing mixed great. The decorating went smoothly. I got the cakes delivered without incident. And Prof. P loved the cakes.

I used one of my nifty planner sheets that I have mentioned in previous posts and managed to stick to the time table. It was a busy week. Besides these two cakes, I also have a ton of cookies to make for a church function. I got everything done on time, though. Yay!!!

Swedish Flag Cake

This cake was obviously decorated to look like the Swedish flag. The cake itself was a blue raspberry cake with cotton candy butter cream icing. I took a white cake mix and added in some Jolly Rancher Blue Raspberry flavored syrup I had found to flavor the cake.

Sadly, this cake used up the last of the syrup and I don’t think the stores around her have it anymore. I’m sure there are plenty of other ways to flavor the cake, though…jello, soda, sno-cone flavoring, etc. To flavor the butter cream I used melted cotton candy flavored ice cream. Talk about yummy!

Italian Flag Cake

I was very, very pleased with this one. I was worried about the lettering. I don’t have much practice with lettering, but I thought it went well. Good enough anyway! This cake was a strawberry cake with cotton candy butter cream. Since using the ice cream to flavor the icing colors it a funky bluish-green color, I had to use a different method to flavor this cake’s icing. I used some of the candy flavoring you get in those little bottles. I don’t think it tastes like cotton candy at all, but it still tastes good. I need to experiment with the flavoring a little to get it to taste more like actual cotton candy. I thought about adding in some raspberry or strawberry flavoring.

I was really glad to get these done and it felt strange to have been able to do them so easily. Usually when I’m baking for other people, anything that can go wrong goes wrong and I’m a wreck of nerves and rage by the time I get everything done. These cakes brought out the Calm Baker in me and I had a lot of fun!

Next week…pina colada giant cupcake and 2 dozen regular cupcakes…I hope it goes as smoothly as these cakes did!

Butter Rolls

Filed under: butter — by queenofevilyumminess @ 9:28 AM

So, before yesterday I don’t think I have ever, EVER seen a roll of butter. My Uncle Mark gave me some sticks of this Troyer butter the other day, and let me just say…this stuff was awesome!!! True to my natural form, I didn’t remember where Uncle Mark said he’d gotten the butter, and I haven’t gotten around to asking him about it either. My parents frequently visit an Amish Bakery (Beachy’s outside Arthur, IL) and I had asked them to look for this butter. I was totally unprepared for what they found:

Yes, everyone, this is what a two-pound roll of butter looks like.  I’m told that this is how butter used to be sold back in the day(?). I decided to look up the company and see if they had a website. Good news! They do: Troyer Country Market. They make all kinds of other yummy looking stuff, too. After looking around on their website, I realized that I had been seeing all this Troyer stuff for a long time at the local Amish markets, but I guess I never really paid attention to the brand name.

They also sell the butter in a 10 ounce size.

And a whopping 5 pound roll.

As well as the normal sized sticks.

I’m not sure how efficient this whole roll of butter thing is going to be when making my cake icing, but I”m sure going to give it a try. I certainly want to use this excellent butter in all my baking now! I’ll just have to work out the measuring kinks first. I figure I’ll just have to let it get soft, measure it all out, wrap it, and then chill it again. I may just have to ask Uncle Mark where he got the sticks of butter. I’m not sure that I have the patience and time to put in all the extra work that the roll requires. I don’t often make a batch of icing big enought to warrent using a whole TWO POUNDS of butter!

This butter is so rich, sweet, and creamy. Truely amazing. I think it is lots better than the sweet cream butter you can buy in regular stores. So, if you are in the Millersburg, OH area, I recommend stopping into the Troyer Country Market and checking things out!

April 9, 2010

White Velvet Cookies

Filed under: Cookies,Red Velvet,Root Beer,white chocolate,white velvet — by queenofevilyumminess @ 11:21 AM

Ever experience on of those moments where something seems so obvious that you feel silly for not seeing it before? Well, I had one of those moments the other day in my pre-sleep mental shutdown process. I was laying there pondering how to make Easter colored Red Velvet Cookies. You have to add so much dye to the cookies to get the color to overpower the chocolate, so it is next to impossible to get a pastel colored cookie. And then it hit me… why not substitute white chocolate for the semi-sweet chocolate. And THEN, I got really excited about the possibilities this substitution would open up for these cookies. Not only could I make them in any color I wanted, I could also add pretty much any flavoring I wanted to. Let’s just say, after this epiphany, it took me a while to shut my imagination down so I could get to sleep!

The recipe I used to make theses White Velvet Cookies is the same as the one listed on the Green Velvet Cookie post. I simply substituted white chocolate squares and chips for the semi-sweet ones.

I also decided to make a couple of variations. I added root beer extract trying for a root beer float taste…

and raspberry extract and a little pink food coloring for the other.

I about passed out when I tried one of the first cookies out of the oven. It was SO good! And the flavor possibilities are endless. On my list to try are: blackberry (with fresh blackberry, strawberry, lemon, orange, and mint.

April 6, 2010

Easter Bunny Cake

Filed under: Bunny,Cake,coconut,Easter,Rabbit — by queenofevilyumminess @ 1:49 PM

I pestered my mom into telling me what kind of cake she wanted for her birthday, and she said she wanted a version of the Coconut Neapolitan Cupcakes, but in the shape of a bunny or egg. We were celebrating her birthday on Easter this year since the two were so close together.

I was thrilled since that meant I got to buy a new cake pan, once again to my husband’s dismay. I couldn’t find the pan that I wanted on such short notice, so I just bought the Wilton Bunny Pan (http://www.wilton.com/store/site/product.cfm?sku=2105-2074).

Since the pan instructions said it used any two-layer cake mix, I opted to just doctor up a single white cake mix. I mixed up the white cake mix with the coconut cream pudding (dry). Then divided the batter into three even portions. One portion I left alone. One portion I added strawberry flavoring and some pink food color. The last portion I added about two tablespoons of cocoa powder. Then I layered the cake batter as best as I could, which turned out to be not very well. I think it would have been easier to layer if I had done the three separate cake mixes, but then I would have had a ton of left over batter and ended up with too much batter in the pan. It worked out the way I did it, though.

I switched up the icing a little, too. My mom doesn’t really like sweet, sweet icing. So, instead of using milk or half & half in the buttercream like I usually do, I used heaving whipping cream. I had to use around three times as much of the whipping cream as I would have with the other options, for whatever reason, but it turned out really nice. It was a lot lighter and fluffier and had a really nice whipped cream flavor to it. She loved it. The only drawback is that the cake needed to be refrigerated since I had used the whipping cream for the icing.

So, anyway, here’s the end result…

I had planned on icing it and then using coconut to make it look furry; however, my mom has a thing about dried out coconut, so she asked that I find another way to make it look like fur.  I iced the cake and then took me icing knife and tapped the icing lightly so that it pulled out little peaks all over the bunny. I thought it looked very furry and gave a nice effect. Here’s a little closer look at the face and some of the “furry” icing…

April 1, 2010

Neopolitan Coconut Cupcakes

Filed under: coconut,Cupcake — by queenofevilyumminess @ 10:25 AM

Do you remember the Sundaes Neapolitan Coconut candies from Brach’s? If not, here’s a little reminder. They look like this…

Except that in the olden days, they used to have a caramel stripe, too. I was inspired by these little puppies the other day and decided to try making a cupcake that evoked the true Sundaes spirit. I’m not sure how close I got, but the result was a pretty dang yummy cupcake.

I tend to bake with cake mixes simply because I’m lazy. It doesn’t really required a lot of extra work to make things from scratch when you have a finished recipe already; however, it does take some time to find a good recipe that you can alter to fit your needs. Plus, you never know how it is going to turn out. I find it is much easier to just add stuff to a cake mix.

The first time I made these (sorry no pictures) I used a single box of white cake mix. I added a box of coconut cream instant pudding (dry) to the mix and prepared as directed on the box, with the exception of using 1/3 cup of oil instead of the 2 tbsp of oil the box recommends. I then divided up the batter into three equal portions. One I left completely alone. One I added strawberry flavoring and some pink food coloring to make the color more boldly pink. The last one I added about 3 tbsp of cocoa powder. I then layered the different flavors of batter in a cupcake pan. Once they were cooled, I added a mixture of store-bought caramel sundae topping and coconut instead of icing. Everyone thought they were really good, but I wasn’t happy with the way the turned out.

So, I tried again. This time, I used three separate cake mixes. A plain white one, a plain strawberry one, and a butter recipe chocolate one. I prepared each separately and added a box of coconut cream instant pudding (dry) to each bowl of batter. I also added a little bit of coconut cream (like what you would use to make a pina colada drink) to get some extra flavor in the cupcakes. Another addition was some Kraft Caramel Bits (like teeny little caramel balls). You can find these in the baking section with all the chocolate chips.

I opted to use a King Size cupcake pan and liners this time so that I didn’t have to be quite so exacting in the amount of batter for each layer in each cupcake. I used the following order when building the cupcakes: white cake, caramel bits, strawberry cake, chocolate cake.

Now, I wanted to incorporate more of the caramel flavor into the cupcake, but don’t like the caramel flavoring that Watkins makes. It just doesn’t work for me. So, as I was mixing up the buttercream, I added a couple of big spoonfuls of the leftover caramel from the previous trial. The icing turned out really yummy, but I wish I had some homemade caramel to use instead of the store-bought stuff. Maybe next time.

So, with no further ado… (drum roll): “I am Cupcake…hear me ROAR!!!”

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