Monday, September 21, 2009

Thank You

12th Spetember 09 will mark a special day in my dairy for two loving brother Vijay's birthday and my very first opportunity to coordinate a stall...not just any stall...but the most anticipated, most sought after and the MOST SWEETEST stall of all (literally) the cake stall.

A week filled with loads of baking, wrapping paper and ribbons and cupcake cases and cookie cutter all over the house......we were in desperate mode the night before the Fair. My good friend Jin ...ever so reliable, dependable....every virtue one could expect in a real friend came to my rescue. Armed with both her kids and husband, she was at my door step at 8.30pm and we started wrapping, all the goodies. With everyone assigned a task...(yes, everyone...even the little ones) we were able to complete packing by 1am!!! Dawn of the fateful day...I was busy creaming 2 different icings for the 140 cupcakes I had made the night before. A quick stop over at the school at 8.30 for decorating the stall and I was back home to complete icing the cuppies. Finally managing to get to the school with all the goodies at 10.45....I was greeted by Jin and Felicia again....bless them. We started selling and my banker/cashier Jin ,was as expected SUPER efficient at managing the cash. At the end of the day we had collected $680.00 and managed to sell out every thing in the stall. Yeeeaaaaahhhhhhh!!! so happy with the results...specially because they will go directly towards the Computer Lab at the school.

I had to thank all the wonderful volunteers at my stall and this is my way of saying a big thank you to all the parent volunteers for helping out at the cake stall at Anya's school's Spring Fair. I baked close to 40 Custard Yoyo's and packed and labelled them and personally delivered them to the volunteers.
Thank you Jin, Felicia, Jaya, Deva, Dewi, Beena, Amanda, Prasad and Mica. With such fantastic support I look forward to next years Spring Fair.
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Sunday, September 6, 2009

Father's Day Red Velvet Celebration Cupcakes

So it was meant to be a picture perfect day....sunny, 21 degrees, with a subtle chill wind, we set out to celebrate a double hat-trick....Fathers day and my Birthday. All reservations were made for lunch at our local Thai restaurant....or so we thought!!! cause we were informed that the reservation your truly made was misunderstood for 4.45pm instead of 12.45pm.....yes, I hear you say what??? but the hostess was apologetic and accommodated our tiny gathering of 8. The food took a while to arrive.....and the little ones were behaving as if they were on a sugar high..guessing that's what happens when you starve them! When the food did finally arrive, we attacked it and devoured it as soon as it was brought. It was divine and worth the wait. As this was a big occasion and all, I decided to match it with an equally divine cake and so decided to make Red-Velvet cupcakes (might I add, this was the first time). I was very happy with the way they looked and the beautiful yet distinct flavour that the cupcake had (due to the magic ingredient: buttermilk). I would highly recommend this recipe if you would like to shine.....cause that's what this cake does....MAKES YOU LOOK LIKE A PRO....SOMEONE WHO HAS FIGURED OUT ALL THERE IS ABOUT BAKING!!

These are the list of ingredients you would need:

2 1/2 cups sifted flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
2 oz. red food coloring (two bottles)
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups sugar2 eggs, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup buttermilk, at room temperature
1 teaspoon white vinegar
1 teaspoon baking soda


Cream butter and sugar until pale and fluffy. Add eggs one at a time and beat well. Add cocoa powder and food colour and blend.
To the above mix add half of the buttermilk and sifted flour and Baking powder. Stir gently and add the remaining, remembering to add flour at the end. Now mix the baking soda and vinegar in a separate bowl and add to the batter. Stir to incorporate all. Spoon in cupcake cases and bake in a preheated oven marked 180 degrees for 15 minutes. Baking time varies according to your oven temperature so check them at the 10 minutes mark. This recipe makes approximately 18 domed cupcakes.
Decorate with a swirl of cream cheese mixed with icing sugar.
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Thursday, September 3, 2009

Sample Labels for Spring fair

I am very excited to introduce these labels. These are samples (and may I say how very pleased I am with the outcome :)) of labels being made by myself for the very very very BIG Spring fair at my daughters school next weekend.
The idea and inspiration for these labels came from Ratukek on flickr. She was more than kind enough to share her techniques and methods in helping me make them. Her work is truly out of this world...beautiful and very inspirational. Thank you Ratukek.
Now that I have some idea of creating these....all I have to do is get someone trusting ....( Neil!!!) who is a computer wizzzz with an extra wizzzzzzzzz to help...(I'm sure this will do the trick :)) and get the labels ready before Friday next week (no pressure love!).
I will try and post some snaps of the finished products sometime next weekend....between baking, more baking, wrapping up baked goodies, making posters for the stall...and on and on and on.
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Recipe for Basic Vanilla baby cakes

Ok! so how long does making 180 baby cakes from scratch take??? well .....lets say from start till the end (not including frosting) it took me 2.5 hrs. Given they had to be frosted and delivered by 4.45pm....I was running out of time. I finally managed to get all things into the boot of the car with the kids all dress up for the BIG...(yes....really big....THIS I'M TOLD BY MY 6YR OLD :)) PYJAMA STORY TIME at school , last evening. It was a huge success ( the story time, I'm told) and so were my baby cakes. Parent were invited to visit the school's library for the Book fair and have a cuppa with cake/cookies ...for a gold coin donation. This is my favourite quick recipe for basic Vanilla Butter cakes. This recipe would make: 1 6inch cake or 18 regular cupcakes or for the adventurous chef's 48 baby cakes. This recipe is taken from The Australian Womens Weekly Cakes and Cookies Booklet. The ingredients you would need:


125gm Unsalted Butter (chopped @ room temp.)
1 tsp Vanilla essence
3 eggs
2/3 cup Caster sugar
11/2 cups Self-raising flour
1/4 cup milk.

Preheat oven to 180 degrees. Place all ingredients in a eletric mixer and beat on low spead for 1 minute or until all ingredients are combined. Turn the speed to medium and beat for another 3-4minutes. By this time the mixture will resemble a paler colour. Pour or divide mixter into baking pan/trays and bake. For a single cake check after 30minutes and for cupcakes it would take 15-17 minutes depending on the our oven.
Turn cake/cupcakes on a wire rack top side up for cooling before spreading with your favourite frosting. ENJOY.
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