Thank you for the amazing 8 years here at A Baked Creation, we can't thank you enough for the memories! But we've decided to move over to a new site - Sincerely, Syl. Please join us there for future posts on all the things you loved here!


Sunday, February 21, 2010

For the Love of Cake and IronCupcake Toronto

Hi! I got an e-mail blast from Genevieve Griffin (the artist behind For the Love of Cake) last Tuesday. She was letting us know that they had bought the rights to IronCupcake Toronto - which starts next month! Whoohoo!!!

Being from the east side, we haven't explored Liberty Village before, but upon discovering a bakery there... I asked (begged) Howard to take me there on Friday. Yay!! After all, it was near the pho restaurant we went to for dinner, it made sense to me that we picked up cupcakes before dinner.

Here was our brief trip:

For the Love of Cake
171 East Liberty Street, Unit 117
Toronto, ON M6K 3P6
(416) 306-6446

Liberty Village, it is quite pretty!

The storefront of For the Love of Cake!

Display cakes and cupcakes!

Maple Bacon

The first cupcake I picked out. I had heard about bacon cupcakes in the news, and this was my first chance to try it. This cupcake is a part of their "Mancakes" collection (also includes Stout Spice, Guinness Chocolate, and Black Forest). The Maple Bacon is a maple and bacon flavoured cupcake filled with blueberries and topped with a maple frosting and bacon bits. I don't usually eat blueberries and thought "what an odd filling choice," but I learned something that day. Blueberries go very well with maple and bacon. What a great combination of flavours, Howard and I agreed that the pairing was delicious!

Salted Caramel

Remember how I was going to make a sweet and salty cake last weekend, but didn't get the chance to? Well, it was just my luck that they had a Salted Caramel cupcake! This was a chocolate cupcake filled with caramel and topped with chocolate buttercream. You can also taste the pinch of sea salt! Oh, I forgot to mention it above for the Maple Bacon, but the frosting for both of these cupcakes were so smooth and creamy!

Chocolate Hazelnut

This was Howard's pick from the bakery! He surprised me there, he'll make a fuss about my sweet tooth and orders a Chocolate Hazelnut last minute!

Overall, I enjoyed eating the 4D cupcakes from For the Love of Cake, keep it up!

Monday, February 15, 2010

CNY and VD

I managed to do a Chinese New Year (my year of the Tiger, growl) and a Valentine's Day treat in the kitchen yesterday. First, my mother taught me and Laura how to wrap Zong (I pronounce it joong in Cantonese). Mom prepared all the ingredients below:


Sticky rice

Zong leaves

Not pictured are the pork fillings (basically pork chopped into cubes). We had to learn the finesse of wrapping all the ingredients into the leaves, so that they stay intact for boiling.

We took one leaf, folded it into a cone shape and added the sticky rice and beans. Then we added one piece of pork.

Then, we covered the pork with more sticky rice. We use a second leaf to help cover the top.

Here was the fun part, wrapping the zong with string to keep it from bursting.

My first zong! Not very pretty and not in the ideal triangle shape.

We made a whole pot full! These are ready to be boiled.

Next, Laura and I made cupcakes!!! Initially, we were going to attempt the Sweet and Salty Cake from Baked. But, after wrapping zong and making lunch, we needed to hurry to make our dinner plans. So we made chocolate cupcakes with hazelnut buttercream - so rich and delicious!

Brooklyn Blackout Cupcakes

Recipe adapted from The Hummingbird Bakery Cookbook
(Makes about 18 regular cupcakes)

1 stick of unsalted butter
1 cup of sugar
2 eggs
1/4 teaspoon of vanilla extract
1/3 cup of cocoa powder
3/4 teaspoon of baking powder
3/4 teaspoon of baking soda
1 1/3 cups of all-purpose flour
2/3 cup of milk
  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F) and have all ingredients at room temperature. Also have your cupcake liners ready.
  2. With your electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar together.
  3. Add in one egg at a time. Continue mixing until combined.
  4. Add in the vanilla extract, cocoa powder, baking powder, and baking soda. Mix well.
  5. Pour in half of the flour and mix.
  6. Pour in all the milk and mix until combined.
  7. Finally, add in the other half of flour.
  8. Using an ice cream scoop, fill the liners to about 2/3 full, and bake for 20-25 minutes. Or until a cake tester comes out clean.
  9. Let the cupcakes cool before frosting.
Don't they look like Kisses?

Hazelnut buttercream
Recipe adapted from The Hummingbird Bakery Cookbook
(Makes enough to frost 18 regular cupcakes)

1 stick of unsalted butter
2 cups of confectioner's sugar
2 tablespoons of milk
1/3 cup of hazelnut spread (like Nutella)
  1. Using an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar together until smooth.
  2. Add in 1 tablespoon of milk, beat until combined.
  3. Add in the hazelnut spread and mix.
  4. Finally, add in the rest of the milk and beat until smooth and fluffy.
  5. Use a spatula or piping bag to frost your cupcakes.
We hope you have a wonderful long weekend!

P.S. My Valentine's Day card from Howard:

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Collar Cupcakes

Well I heard you.

Batter photos make you lick your monitor.

What about this one?

Vanilla Cupcakes
Recipe from The Hummingbird Bakery Cookbook
(Makes about 36 mini cupcakes)

1 cup of all-purpose flour
3/4 cups of sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons of baking powder
3 tablespoons of unsalted butter
1/2 cup of whole milk
1 egg
1/4 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F) and have all ingredients at room temperature. Also have your cupcake liners ready.
  2. With your electric mixer, beat the flour, sugar, baking powder, and butter on low speed until everything is combined.
  3. Gradually pour in half the milk and mix.
  4. Whisk the egg, vanilla extract, and remaining milk together. Then pour into the mixture.
  5. Scrape and continue mixing until the batter is smooth.
  6. Divide your batter evenly into the paper cups, about 2/3 full, and bake for 20-25 minutes. Or until a cake tester comes out clean.
  7. Let the cupcakes cool before frosting.
I wanted to make little collars. To do these, before you pour the cupcake batter in, take a pair of clean scissors and make a small cut. Then, fold down the left and right side to make a collar.
Don't you think these would be great for Father's Day, a corporate look, or as shirts? I think I'll add a bow tie next time!

Pink Grapefruit Buttercream

1 stick of unsalted butter
2 cups of confectioner's sugar
2 tablespoons of honey
1/4 cup of grapefruit juice
  1. Using an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar together.
  2. Add in the honey and mix until combined.
  3. Slowly add in the grapefruit juice until buttercream is smooth.
  4. Optional: add one tiny drop of red food colouring or pink gel paste to dye the buttercream pink.
Bonus tip: The collars make it easier to rip off the shirt, err, I mean peel the liner from the cupcakes. Easier access! ;)

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Mini Celebrations

Look! I'm blogging more!

I will be back with something baked or something decorated, but in the mean time, here are some of the things I've been doing:

My friend and I went to The Chef's House for their Winterlicious lunch menu. I apologize for not taking pictures of the meal, but you know that I like featuring desserts!

I ordered the Sticky Toffee Pudding, Salted Caramel Sauce (above) and Laura had the Apple Frangipane Tart with Cheddar Cheese Ice Cream (below). It was delicious melt-in-your-mouth toffee pudding and that caramel sauce! Everything was made from scratch and I'm pretty sure I could use that caramel sauce on anything. So buttery, but so good!
I tried a bit of Laura's cheddar ice cream - a bit too odd for me, but she enjoyed it! We were very full from the lunch, yet we continued on to Starbucks, but not for coffee...
Yes, we picked up a pack of 4 cupcakes. Two chocolates and two red velvets. Laura took a red velvet for the road (she told me it was very rich) and I was left with the three!

I had the chocolate one and sadly, did not enjoy it. The chocolate cupcake had absorbed all the coffee flavours from the shop. So while it looked like chocolate, it had the smell of diluted coffee. Not that I don't like coffee-flavoured desserts, but it was an odd taste. I would recommend going earlier and getting the fresher cupcakes!

Oh wait, I didn't tell you about what we were celebrating. Well it was Groundhog Day, my one year mark at work, and Howard's birthday! No dessert photos from Howard's dinner - we had Japanese food!

Monday, February 1, 2010

Cupcake Couture Contest Winner

Thank you for entering the Cupcake Couture Contest! I said we would be announcing the winner today, so without further delays, *DRUM ROLL* please!

The winner of the Cupcake Couture class is MEAGHAN S!
Meghan's told us that the Royal Treatment class is on her wish list
and she did the bonus entry - adoring Lisa's oh baby cupcakes:
Congratulations! I hope you enjoy the workshop!!
Thank you again to Lisa Bugeja and Scott Bradley for this generous giveaway!

Once again, here are the details of the prize:

Class: Cupcake Couture
Date: Sunday, February 21, 2010
Time: 1:00 to 4:00 PM
Location: Flour Confections, 1750 Plummer Street, Unit 19, Pickering, Ontario (Google Map)
Description: Join Flour Confections for this fun hands-on workshop. The cupcake trend is here to stay, and really who doesn’t like a cupcake? The class instructor will demonstrate proper mixing, baking and portioning as well as piping techniques and decor. Each student will take home their custom creations to admire and devour! Students will learn about flavour pairing, how to measure and bake cupcakes properly in order to yield consistent and fabulous results. You will learn different icing techniques as well as finishing details to help embellish your cupcakes for the added “wow” factor.
What to bring: All tools, supplies & pre-baked cupcakes will be provided. Please bring an apron.
Conditions for the class are as per Flour Confection's registration policies can be found here.

Even if you didn't win, I would still encourage you to visit Flour Confections (they are a very friendly bunch and will answer any questions you may have). Sign up for a class, the beginning of the year is always a good time to start!

Here are some fun tidbits from the giveaway:

Top Classes at Flour Confections that are on your wish list:
2. Cookie Couture

For those that included their bonus entry, favourite cupcake creations by Lisa Bugeja are the following (click on the images to see more on Lisa's flickr account):

Amazing gravity defying cake with a "cupcake" on top!
I actually saw this cake during my visit at Flour Confections! =)

Adorable little bows!

Awww baby bear!

These are just darn cute!

Great colour combo here! I love the use of the silhouettes.