WE'VE MOVED

Hello!

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!

Sincerely,
Syl

Monday, January 24, 2011

Moomin Cupcakes


Do you remember Moomins? Or the better question may be, do you know what Moomins are? I am sad to admit that I don't know Moomins as well as I should.

So how did I come to make Moomin cupcakes? Well... it all began with a celebration for a colleague (Claire) who found a new job. As a surprise, two of my colleagues (Ellen and Jenny) asked me to make her Moomin cupcakes. I would usually hesitate in making fondant decorations of characters that I'm not sure of, but when I saw the Moomins (they're pretty darn cute), I wanted to make them.


So this is Moomintroll, the son of Moominmamma and Moominpappa. He's also best friends with Snufkin. Teehee, I love their names!


Here's Moominpappa with his top hat and walking cane.


This is Moominmamma with her apron and purse. I was told that she always has her purse with her.


Come on Moominpappa! Let's go shopping! - Do Moomins like shopping?


What's a story without a little romance? I hear that Moomintroll is in love with the Snork Maiden. She has blond hair and wears a gold anklet.


Snufkin here, as I mentioned above, is Moomintroll's best friend.


This is Little My, she's Snufkin's half-sister!


Sniff here is also Moomintroll's friend.


Too-Ticky is a friend of the family.


This is the Groke, who is very lonely...


Thingumy and Bob here remind me of mischievious Thing 1 and Thing 2 from The Cat in the Hat.


Finally, the Hattifatteners! All I could think of when we were making these were jazz hands.

We will miss you Claire! Wishing you the best of luck - and remember, behave!

Yum! I kept half a dozen cupcakes for myself - they will make great afternoon snacks and after dinner desserts this week.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Calvin and Hobbes Birthday Cupcakes


You've heard of Bill Watterson's Calvin and Hobbes right? The comics are about a 6 year old boy and his stuffed tiger, Hobbes. Calvin is very adventurous and has quite the witty mind when it comes to dealing with life.

These cupcakes are inspired from his many snow adventures (how fitting as we're getting tonnes of snow here in Toronto). To see some of the Calvin and Hobbes snowmen comic strips, you can do a quick search on Google Images. I think you'll laugh at their crazy antics and hopefully enjoy some of our variations and additions:


Let's start off with the mischievous Calvin, while he can be devious, Howard sculpted him out of fondant and has Calvin making snow angels in the vanilla buttercream frosting.


Poor Hobbes, he looks stuck! I guess someone tricked him and got a big snowball over his head.


Maybe it was the snow minions? But they look innocent enough...


Buddy! Help me! The snow sharks are trying to eat me!


Sorry I can't help, I'm not even sure how I fell into this tree...


I can't help either! I'm being buried alive!
Well, at least your head is still intact...


Yeah, I'm not doing so well over here.


Yeah, well I was here minding my own business, listening to my iPod when...

That. Happened.
Who would throw a snowball at a snowman?


Clean and right through my body! What am I going to do???
What are you looking at ski-man?


I'd say that a hole is much luckier than what my sledding buddy did to this poor dude:


He accidentally (was it really an accident?) ran over someone at the bottom of the hill.


He can be rebuilt if necessary, but this guy...
It looks like he ate too much pizza, cheese, baguettes, and... is that chicken wing?
Well, I think if you over eat, or over drink beer... then you deserve this:


What? Throwing up sprinkles?


You never know, weird things can happen to your body here.
Would you rather have three eyes, two noses, and one body?


Or two heads and one body?


You think that's bad? The other day I was watching TV and reading books, basically minding my own business when...


My pet cat came over and ... ugh! I can't even finish that sentence. Let's just say, yellow snow was involved. Enough said.


Yellow snow is nothing compared to warm weather! We're meltinggggg over here...


Well, you're not a snow ghost yet.


We hope you enjoyed our little twisted land of snow. We had LOTS of fun making these. =)


Did you have a favourite? Let us know in the comments below!


Happy Birthday Greg!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Grapefruit Birthday Cake


Last weekend, Howard made me a birthday cake! It may come to a surprise to you, but after making lots of decorated cupcakes, I only wanted a simple cake.


This grapefruit cake has been on my "to try" list since I got Ad Hoc at Home. So what was a better way to try it without even lifting a finger? Have Howard make it! =)

He was quite the sweetheart, bought the ingredients home, and rolled up his sleeves. He especially likes recipes where he gets to use the microplane zester.



Grapefruit Cake
Recipe from Ad Hoc at Home
(Makes 10x4 or 9x5 loaf, we made two 6-inch round cakes)

Cake
2 cups of all-purpose flour
1 3/4 teaspoon of baking powder
1 teaspoon of kosher salt
1 2/3 cups of granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 cup of whole milk
3/4 cup of canola oil
1 tablespoon of grated pink grapefruit zest
1 teaspoon of vanilla paste or pure vanilla extract

Grapefruit Syrup
1 cup of strained fresh pink grapefruit juice
2/3 cup of granulated sugar

Grapefruit Icing
3/4 cup of powdered sugar
1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon of fresh pink grapefruit juice
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 F. Line your pan with parchment paper or use nonstick spray.
  2. Sift the flour and baking powder together, then stir in the salt. Set this aside.
  3. Using a stand mixer with a whisk attachment, beat the sugar and eggs at medium speed for about 3 minutes.
  4. Beat in the milk, oil, grapefruit zest, and vanilla.

  5. Reducing the speed to low, add in the flour mixture.
  6. Spread the batter in the pan. Spray or lightly oil a paring knife and run the knife lengthwise down the center of the batter, about 1/2 inch deep. This will give the top of the baked cake an even crack down the center.

  7. Bake for 30 minutes and rotate the pan in the oven so that the cake will colour evenly. Bake for another 30 minutes or until a cake tester comes out with just a few moist crumbs on it.

  8. While the cake is still baking, make the syrup! Combine the grapefruit juice and sugar in a small saucepan. Bring it to a simmer, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Simmer for 1 minute and set aside.

  9. Transfer the baked cake to a cooling rack. Using a long skewer, poke deep holes every 3/4 inch over the top of the cake. Immediately begin brushing the syrup over the cake. You may have to wait for the syrup to soak through, but continue until you've used all the syrup. Then let the cake cool for about 10 minutes.

  10. Unmold the cake and let it cool to room temperature on a cooling rack.
  11. For the icing, stir the powdered sugar and grapefruit juice together into a bowl until it is smooth. We got a great light pink tint with ours!

  12. Using a spoon, drizzle the icing over the top of the cake, allowing it to drip down the sides!

Trust us when we say you need to make all three components to truly enjoy this cake. My parents even enjoyed it with the grapefruit icing and they shy away from anything that is "too sweet!"

Friday, January 14, 2011

The Cupcakery


The Cupcakery
at Monte Carlo
9680 South Eastern Avenue #100
Las Vegas, NV 89123
(702) 207-2253

Surely you didn't think I'd go to Las Vegas and not visit a cupcake shop? Well I did. Twice. The first day I went it wasn't open, that was disappointing as business hours weren't posted on the screen. But we didn't give up and came back on our last day to see the cases filled with cupcakes:


Lots of different flavours to choose from, let's take a closer look!


Here were some of my top contenders, Strawberry Shortcake: strawberry cake with heavy cream and strawberry buttercream.


The Coco Frauline that looks like a giant Ferrero Rocher is a devil's food cake with German chocolate filling, iced with ganache and covered with chopped pecans.


Always present, Southern Belle: red velvet cake with cream cheese frosting.


Peanutbutter Jammer: peanut butter cake with grape jelly filling and peanut butter topping.


The Julius: orange and pineapple cake with orange buttercream. Well, I haven't seen this one around before!


The Julius it is!


The cupcake smelled good, just like an orange smoothie from... well Orange Julius! The cake was moist and while I didn't find orange chunks, I did find the pineapple ones. The buttercream was smooth and worked very well with the cake. Notice that there's edible disco dust on top, everything is flashier in Vegas!
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