I Tried My Hand At Iced Cookies!!

So what have I learnt from my experimentation with iced cookies?

That I need a LOT of practice!

:D

Apart from that, here are a few tips from a novice.
1. Once you find the right recipe- one that bakes nice and flat- bake your cookies the day before you want to ice them and several days before you want to serve them. The icing takes up to 24 hours to dry.
2. Do not underestimate the value of YouTube tutorials!
3. Decide on a couple of designs you want to try on your cookies. Trying to think of a design when you have your icing mixed and ready does not work.
4. Once your cookies are cooled and ready to ice, your mise en place is essential!!! Its a French phrase which means “putting in place”, as in set up.
5. Have three times as many piping bags as you think you’ll need. If you’ve never folded a paper piping cone, plastic disposable bags work really well and if you snip off the tip carefully you don’t need nozzles.
6. Mix your royal icing. I found that for me a 20 second icing was perfect for lines and a 14 second icing for flooding. What this means is that once you’ve finished mixing, count how long the icing takes to smooth out again. You want it a little runny for flooding, but for piping and lines it has to hold its shape.
7. If you’re not trying the wet-on-wet technique to start with, wait for the icing to dry!

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Sheesh… What A Week!

It actually started out really well…

Last week my website host moved me to my own, bigger, faster server. It seems that with all of you popping over here every day, the other websites they host were battling to keep up since my website was hogging all the bandwidth!
:D
Hopefully this will put an end to the access hassles I’ve had in the last 6 months or so, with my site being frequently unavailable.

Unfortunately, the move cancelled my email access to the POP3 server I was using, so I wasn’t receiving all the emails that were being sent to me. For almost a week!
I really hope it was a quiet week because I would hate for anyone to think I was ignoring them… Its fixed now, thank goodness.

Then last Saturday our house was broken into while we were out.
They took all our laptops (my husband’s work machine as well as our old machines), a phone, my jewellery box, my husband’s casual clothes AND… and this absolutely breaks my heart… all three of our back up hard drives.
What that means is that all my original photos for the last 5 years as well as all my business admin is gone. If I hadn’t uploaded it to Facebook or my blog, its gone. The invoices and quotes are mostly still in my email archives, but my costing, expenditure and income spreadsheets are gone.
Its going to take me a while to get my admin sorted out again, so PLEASE let me know if you have emailed me in the last couple of weeks and I didn’t reply. I always reply to an email within 24 hours, even if its just a message to say I saw your email and I’ll get back to you as soon as I can.

I hope you all have a blessed Easter, whether you celebrate it or just enjoy a long weekend off.

My Mommy Darling’s Birthday Cake

My mommy darling celebrated her 60th birthday this month, and she had a wonderful birthday lunch with close friends and family to mark the occasion.

The party had a Bohemian theme with bright colours the order of the day. The cake turned out looking more vintage than Bohemian though, I got too busy to add all the sugar work I planned to, but my mommy darling loved it.

two tier cake, sixtieth birthday cake, flowers, lace, pearls, vintage

The bottom tier was my delectable chocolate cake with chocolate butter icing, and the top tier was a delicious green-blue velvet with cream cheese icing, and the cake served as dessert for the luncheon.

Check out my price lists here:
Cupcakes ~ Cakes and Cookies ~ 
Sugar Art ~

Chocolate Brownies In-A-Jar!

This is my latest offering and it is perfect for party favours, wedding favours, corporate gifts, gifts for teachers… just about anyone would enjoy getting one of these!

The jars will have a sticker on them bearing my logo and the baking instructions, and you can then add your own message tag to the ribbon (which I can also match to the colour of your choice as closely as possible).
The stickers can also be customised- to a degree- to include a personal message along with the instructions.

These brownies are super easy to make, with a yield of between 10 and 12 cupcake sized brownies. Personally, I like making brownies in cupcake trays because then all my brownies have that divine crispy outside and a gooey inside, and these jars are not big enough to fill a more traditional brownie pan.

chocolate brownie mix in a jar

brownie mix in-a-jar without nuts

chocolate brownie mix in a jar

brownie mix in-a-jar without nuts, with the dark & white chocolate “twin” chips, with added Smarties as an option

chocolate brownie mix in a jar

brownie mix in-a-jar with and without nuts

The prices for the various brownies-in-jars can be found here:  Cakes, Cookies, Sweets.

Check out my price lists here:
Cupcakes ~ Cakes and Cookies ~ 
Sugar Art ~