Posts tagged ‘frosting’

May 3, 2011

and the verdict is…

It’s been one heck of a day! I can’t believe it’s only Tuesday!

My stauge at the Cupcake bakery was scheduled for today at 9am. Because the bakery is not very close to where I live, and they asked me to come in at a time there would be high traffic, I stayed at one of my best friend’s house last night. She lives literally down the street from the bakery! I decided that if I get this job, I’ll rent out an apartment close to the bakery.

So I woke up way later than I would’ve if I had come from home, got an Iced Soy Latte from Starbucks, and drove 5 minutes to the bakery. It was nice!

My stauge today was much, much shorter than the one on Sunday. I worked directly with the owner/boss today, who is super nice and down to earth.

First she had me practice frosting cupcakes on their “reject” mini cupcakes:

This was much, much harder than I thought. Frosting cupcakes is not that hard, but frosting cupcakes exactly how they wanted it was super difficult! When the boss was showing me how they frosted their cupcakes, I thought “Alright, hand over the spatula! This should be a cinch.” =) Ehhh…not so much. None of the cupcakes up there are up to their standards.

And that’s something that I love about this cupcake bakery. They have a “Gordon Ramsay” mindset where they don’t want to send anything that’s not perfect. Love that!

They also had me practicing some of their basic designs…

The most challenging out of these was definitely the Hostess swirls – getting them uniform and straight.

I left the bakery with 2 boxes full of those “reject” cupcakes and being told that they would let me know their decision tomorrow…

But just a few hours later I got a call from them. They started out by telling me good things about me and so I was just WAITING for a “but” like “but we think we have to go with someone a little more experienced” but the “but” never came! They said, “We’d love for you to come work with us!”

And I replied, “Well, I’d love to accept!” And then came all the details which is always the fun part about starting a new job, besides getting hired of course.

My first day is on Thursday! The days I work will be Wednesday through Sundays and the hours will start at 6am and end anywhere from 1pm to 3pm, depending how busy the day is! I’m actually excited about these hours!¬†Starting early and getting out early > Starting late and getting out late.

Thanks for all your crossed fingers (and toes!). =)

In other news, here’s what you get when you mix a Pyromaniac (Jeff) and these 2 objects…

A sad me:

Jeff had an urge to burn something with that mini torch, and so I gave him this ramekin thinking it’d be safe because it’s oven proof. I guess oven proof doesn’t mean direct fire proof? There was a sticker on the bottom of the ramekin, and Jeff burned the sticker off another ramekin and it came off really well. Not so successful this time…

Even though Jeff blew up (literally) my ramekin, I have him to thank for getting this job. I wasn’t even going to apply because I’m a huge natural pessimist and doubted I would even have a chance at the position. He urged me to apply those few weeks ago, and now look what happened. I have a new job to look forward to!

March 28, 2011

that’s what she baked: cake pops

I may be the last one on earth to try making Bakerella’s cake pop’s, but I finally did this past weekend. Better late to the party than never right?

To be honest, the first time I had a cake pop was when Starbucks was giving them out for free, which was a few weeks ago. I never really had a desire to try a cake pop – let alone make one myself. But Jeff and I fell in love with cake pops at first bite.

And there was no more holding me back to making it for myself.

Jeff and I may be in the minority here, but both our favorite flavors at Starbucks (note: Starbucks is our first and only experience with cake pops!) was the pink Birthday Cake flavor. I was surprised because I was sure he’d love the Rocky Road one, but nope, for once we were in agreement with our food preference!

But cake pops from Starbucks cost about $2.50 for two of them. After doing the math I realized I could make about 50 cake pops for less than $10! Sure, I’d need to do the work, but it’s fun work. =)

I wanted to make a cake pop as close to the Birthday Cake one as possible so I started with Yellow Cake cake mix and Buttercream frosting.

Yellow cake…I love it.

And this is why I love parchment paper. Just lift and transfer the whole cake in one swoop.


After cooling, crumbling, and mixing in3/4 a can of frosting, I got to rolling…


Then I dipped each lollipop stick into the melted pink candy melts before sticking them into the balls…

I’m not sure if this¬†actually helped with the stick staying more secure in the ball, but it couldn’t hurt!


And then I got to dipping and sprinkling…

I even made my own DIY cake-pop-holding-mechanism. It worked, but next time, I’ll invest in some styrofoam. ;)


I also dipped some cake pops into white “confetti” candy melts.

They were cute, but hands down I will be sticking with the pink candy melts. For some reason, even though the ingredients and nutrition and everything was practically the same between the white and pink candy melts on the package, the white candy melts had a much thicker consistency. That almost made it easier to dip the cake pops because it didn’t drip as much, but the end result was more thick and “chunky.”


The verdict with these cake pops? Well, we did a taste test between these and the Starbucks ones (yep we actually went to Starbucks to get their cake pops so we can do a side-by-side test!). And here are our thoughts:

1. The homemade ones had a much more “bready” texture inside. This may be because I added as little frosting as possible to the cake crumbs, while still having the dough stick. This “bready” texture wasn’t better or worse, just different.

2. Starbucks’ cake pops were bigger than the homemade ones. We both liked that. Next time I will be making my cake pops bigger.

3. We both agreed that the homemade cake pops were richer and sweeter than Starbucks’ cake pops. Jeff didn’t think that was better or worse, just different. I thought that was worse. I enjoy Starbucks’ cake pops more because it’s not so rich and sweet. The outer shell is already sweet, so I thought it would be fine – in fact better – if the insides were not so sweet too. I think the richness and sweetness is due to the frosting, so next time I will try an alternative to the frosting to make the dough stick. What that alternative is, I’m not sure. But I’m willing to experiment!

4. I think I will now stop talking about our unnatural obsession with studying cake pops.

I can’t wait to keep experimenting with these. What is your experience with cake pops?

March 22, 2011

cake box cupcakes

This cupcake is made from a cake box mix. But I almost don’t care! In fact, I may be sticking with the box mixes from now on when making the standard cake…

Today, I used these mixes.

And I’m so glad I did. Maybe it’s because I’m obsessed with all things “vanilla” but this, to me, was the perfect cake.

I actually wanted to use this cake box mix to make cake pops, but I needed to make sure the cake mix was good itself. A taste test of sorts! It passed the test and I can’t wait to make cake pops with these.

Even though I was using a cake box mix, I decided to spruce things up just a little bit with a few details…


1. I sifted the dry ingredients…


2. I used these cute brown cupcake liners. They were a nice change from the usual pastel colors!


3. I used Kerrygold butter for the frosting. This may be my new favorite butter. It seems to get softer quicker than regular butter and it tastes divine.

I’m salivating just thinking about it.


4. Lastly, to spruce things up, I added beautiful vanilla bean specks to the frosting.

So lovely! The little specks always add a little special something.


These cupcakes were so fun to decorate! After letting them cool…


I busted out my pastry bag and tips!

True story: I bought these in high school, along with a bunch of other kitchen tools with money that my mom had given me. I came home from the kitchen supply store with bags of kitchen tools, for some reason expecting my mom to be proud of me. It was more like the opposite. She was furious that I had wasted so much money!

Well, look at me now, ma! Still using these pastry bags, and much of the other kitchen tools I bought some 9 years ago or so. I wouldn’t call that a waste of money — I’d call it an investment. ;)


It was really easy mixing up the frosting.

I love my hand mixer…even though I think it’s older than I am…

It hasn’t let me down yet!

Then I filled up my pastry bag with the frosting…


And then I piped my head off..

My favorite design was the “roses” (the ones on the right). It definitely got easier to do as I decorated more. Whenever I did mess up, I just smeared the frosting like the ones on the bottom left. I also really liked the ones on the top left. The ones below those looked a little too much like spiky hair or something haha.

All in all, I will definitely be using these cake box mixes again!