Thursday, May 22, 2014

Gingerbread People and Gifting Jar

What a fabulous gift idea! The layered ingredients look great presented in a glass jar. All the fiddly measuring has been done, just add the wet ingredients. This can work for any recipe with predominantly dry ingredients, just add the instructions on a cute gift tag. This recipe is reprinted with permission from our friends at Chelsea. On their website, you’ll find a fabulous free download for all sorts of different gifting tags. (click here for the download of tags - which you can print for free)
At Kiwicakes we have hundreds of cookie cutters with a special category just for gingerbread people
2 ½ cups plain flour
½ cup Chelsea soft brown sugar
1 Tbsp ground ginger
1 tsp mixed spice
1 tsp baking soda


125g softened butter
½ cup Chelsea treacle or Chelsea golden syrup
1 egg yolk

Layer all the dry ingredients in a 500ml decorative glass jar. Tie a gingerbread cookie cutter to the jar with a special note and instruction tag.

Attach these instructions:

Simply beat 125g soft butter with ½ cup treacle or golden syrup and 1 egg yolk until creamy and smooth then add the contents of the jar and mix until a sot dough forms. Knead into a ball, wrap and chill for 20 minutes. 
Pre-heat oven to 170°C and line two baking trays with cooking paper. Roll out gingerbread dough to about 3mm (if its sticky roll between two sheets of baking paper or cling film) and use the cookie cutter to make little people shapes. 
Transfer to baking trays and cook for 10-15 minutes until golden and set. Ice and decorate when cold.

* You can decorate your gingerbread people with smarties or baking chocolate drops and mini baking marshmallows before cooking or add afterwards with a drizzle of icing.

* For simple royal icing beat 1 egg white until soft peaks gradually add approx 1 cup icing sugar and a few drops of lemon juice or food colouring until icing is piping consistency. Transfer to a piping bag or use a snaplock bag and snip the corner off!

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Sweet Cream Cheese Button Cookies

Cream Cheese Button Cookies 

100g butter softened
100g cream cheese softened
1C white sugar
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
3 C flour
1 tsp baking powder
gel food colourings

In a bowl cream butter, cream cheese and sugar until fluffy. Add egg and vanilla, mix until smooth.
Add dry ingredients to the creamed mixture. Divide dough in to your required number of colours and tint each batch of dough with colour of your choice (it must be gel paste colourings). 

Chill dough in fridge at least 2 hours. The dough become soft quickly. I rolled my dough out on cook-a sheets and cut chilled dough in to buttons, using 2  round circle cutters. use the next size down circle to imprint the round indentation. I used a tip 3 piping nozzle to imprint the button holes. 

Preheat oven 180C. Bake 10 minutes. Chill completed cookie designs for 5-10 mins before baking. This helps to ensure the cookies don't spread.

I printed the cards on the top of my cookie bags, using this wonderful free printable from the lovely ladies at  On To Baby blog. You can change the colours to suit your own theme and there's other great free button printables for party invites, table cards &  much more. The bags are our size 2 cello bags

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Quick and Easy Peanut Butter sand from the Kiwicakes test kitchen

Creating "sand" from peanut butter is quick and easy using Maltodextrin

To create my sand I used the old fashioned natural kind of peanut butter that needs a mix to bring the oil/paste back together.  You can also create sand with any fat, such as cream based caramel, Nutella or a flavoured olive oil to make a dust to have with steak etc.

The ratio is 40% maltodextrin to 60% peanut butter. using this ratio, you can make enough for one plated dessert or ten.
With a spoon mix the peanut butter and maltodextrin together in small bowl. Transfer mix to a blender and process for a few seconds, stop the blender and shake to make sure ingredients are evenly distributed .Repeat a few seconds at a time until you have a fluffy peanut butter dust or sand. Do not leave your food processor running, the heat and friction will undo your work of making sand and turn it in to a paste. Pass through a fine seive for an even lighter result. 

Store in a sealed air tight container until ready to use. The dust dissolves with moisture so add it to your plated dish at the last minute. I love the look on peoples faces as the sand dissolves on their tongue and they realise it’s peanut butter. I cannot wait to try making more different types of sand.

Monday, May 19, 2014

Sparkly Tiara Treats - from Kiwicakes test kitchen

Today in the kitchen I used our tiara cookie cutter to showcase our new silver dragee range and produced these adorable crowns fit for a princess.

There are a dozen new shapes in our range including the tear drop, marquis and rice dragees pictured above.

To make these treats I used the same cutter for both the cookie dough and the pink fondant. Once my cookies were baked and cooled, I brushed a little sugar glue on and eased fondant tiara shapes over.

To stick the bigger dragees securely to the iced cookies I used a fondant cement. To make one is simple! Inside a disposable piping bag add a small lump of the coloured fondant you are using and a few drips of water. Microwave it for 5 seconds then massage the liquid into the fondant to create a paste. Snip off the end and pipe blobs where the big dragees will sit. If this  hardens inside the piping bag while you are working then pop it back in to heat up for a couple of seconds again. Smaller decorations can be stuck on using the tiniest dab of sugar glue.

Let the peaks of the crown determine the placement of your decorations or freestyle it like I did. Lastly highlight the cookies with a shimmery lustre dust to give them some magic!

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Sweet 16 Dot explosion cake - fun tutorial

Todays fun post comes from my American friend Autumn Carpenter. Autumn designs and manufacturers a broad range of cake decorating supplies, which I'm proud to stock at Kiwicakes.

This cake would look great for any age birthday and could easily be customised to other colours.

Tools and Ingredients
4", 6" and 9" cakes
purple, blue and green candy melts
purple, blue and green chocolate modelling paste
yellow rolled fondant
buttercream icing
perfection strips

Ice cakes with thin layer of buttercream. Cut dot explosion texturemat in strip to fit around 4" and 9" tiers and wavy dots texturemat to fit around 6". 
Melt desired colours of candymelts (blend colours to match colours in picture). 
The strips should be cut to the height of the cake. Place the cut strip, raised side down, on top of a silicone mat, or parchment paper. 
Place the medium size perfection strips on both sides of the texture sheet. With a brush, coat the strip with a thin layer of melted candy melts, brushing all the details, to avoid air bubbles. Pour melted candy melts over the texture sheet, spreading it to nearly the edge. Use a cookie sheet with a straight edge and drag over the perfection strips: these strips allow for (consistent thickness). 
Pick up and move to clean space. Allow chocolate on the strip to cool until it is almost set (generally 5-10 minutes). Don't let it set too long, or it will crack when you try to put it around the cake. While it is setting, pipe buttercream on the side for the strip to attach. 
Place strip around the cake. Place in the refrigerator for 20-30 minutes. Remove texture sheet. Cut 6" circle out of the texture sheet and repeat same process attaching to top of cake for middle tier. 
Roll out yellow fondant, cut wavy edge and cover top of 4" tier allowing fondant to hang over the edge, repeat with 9" tier. 
Use the purple, blue and green chocolatemodelling paste to make various size balls. Attach balls to top and bottom edge of middle tier and randomly around base of bottom tier. 
Cut 5" strips from both texture mats about 3/4" wide and using green candy coating repeat same process as above for covering strips with coating. 
When almost set press ends together to form bow loop, clip if necessary while candy coating is setting and then remove texture mat. Assemble bow on top of cake by attaching loops with warm candy melts. Mould "16" from purple chocolate modelling paste and attach to cake with warm candy melts. Roll yellow fondant out and cut out "SWEET", attach to cake with buttercream.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Poppy's marvellous creations

My daughter poppy recently created her own "Poppy's marvellous creations" chocolate bars in preparation for her Willy Wonka themed birthday party

Poppy started with a simple bar mould, that mimics the shape of a store bought chocolate bar. Along with a mixed pack of wrapping foil.

Poppy raided the Kiwicakes test kitchen for candy, pop rocks, chocolate & other tasty additions. In planning her chocolate bars, she somewhat themed them to her foil colours.  

Pink foil: Strawberry pop rocks, strawberry daquiri jelly beans, freeze dried strawberry slices in white chocolate

Green foil: Watermelon pop rocks, lime jelly beans in milk chocolate

Orange foil: Orange jelly beans, orange marshmallows, cornflakes, chopped peanuts in dark chocolate

Dark pink foil: Raspberry flavoured M&Ms, pink marshmallows, hundreds & thousands  in "Limited edition raspberry flavoured" candy melts by Wilton

Blue foil: "birthday cake" flavour jelly beans, white marshamllows, blue sugar pearls in white chocolate.

The jelly beans we used were all Jelly Belly brand, hence the more unusual flavours

The wrappers were printed on gold paper, left over from her  "Golden ticket" party invites.

Her finished bars were a huge success, they looked great on her party table, and have impressed family and friends after her party (we had quite a few left over, so have been feeding them to visiting family and friends over the last week)

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Pretty shell cake - great for birthdays and weddings

Todays fun post comes from my American friend Autumn Carpenter. Autumn designs and manufacturers a broad range of cake decorating supplies, which I'm proud to stock at Kiwicakes.

This cake would be a sure favourite with Grandma Kiwicakes, she adores shells and corals.

Tools and Ingredients
6", 9" and 12" two layer cakes
14" cake board or drum
light blue rolled fondant
ivory rolled fondant
Hawaiian Texture Sheet Set
white candy coating
milk chocolate
mop brush
8mm sugar pearls
pastry brush
flexible poly blade
pastry roller

Melt chocolates separately and place in towel lined electric skillet to keep warm and fluid. To add stripes to shells, dip finger in milk chocolate and wipe finger into cavity. 
Flood cavity with white candy coating and place in freezer to set. 
Once set, remove from mould and use mop brush to brush tops of shells with lustre. 
Roll light blue fondant to desired thickness, brush board and cakes with piping gel and cover. Using mop brush, dust cake and board with pearl dust. Prepare cakes for stacking and assemble. 
Roll ivory fondant to 1/8" thickness, roll shell texture sheet over fondant making a strip long enough to go around the cake. Make a straight cut along the bottom of the strip using a pastry roller then use the flexible poly blade to cut shells so that strip is 4" high. 
Brush sides of cake with piping gel then apply shell strip. 
Repeat with each cake layer. 
Attach shells and pearls to cake using piping gel.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Mothers Day 'Borrowed' Rhubarb Treats - from Kiwicakes test kitchen

Most mums want nothing more for Mothers Day than a visit or a phone call. Or that's what they say. I reckon you'd be pretty popular if you arrived with a tray of these fruity beauties! If you don't have rhubarb planted in your own garden, whip around to a good gardener (often our mums) and steal a couple of stalks. Trust me she'll thank you for it later!

Rhubarb Cupcakes

You will need:

125g softened butter
2/3c firmly packed brown sugar
1/2t vanilla bean paste
pinch salt
2 large eggs
1/2c milk
1 & 1/2c self-raising flour
& 1/2c washed and diced rhubarb
Owl design cupcake cups
plum icing
20g melted butter
1/2c sifted icing sugar
1/3c nougat, cranberries or similar to top

1. To prepare your rhubarb cook it with 2T water for 5+mins until soft. Let it cool. This will reduce to approx 1c of stewed rhubarb.

2. Cream first measure of butter, sugar, vanilla and salt. Whisk eggs and milk and add to butter mixture ever so slowly to combine. (Here is the egg mixture pictured with a sturdy mini whisk I totally recommend for prep jobs). Add the flour and continue mixing on low speed until a thick batter forms. Fold in 1c stewed rhubarb gently. 

3. Fill cupcake cups 2/3 full and arrange them in a 7x3 grid on your tray. Its important to leave space between for them to cook evenly. This recipie makes 21. Bake at 170`C for about 25 mins or until a cake tester comes out clean. 

4. Meanwhile prepare your icing according to packet instructions. This requires a little melted butter and some water. Add icing sugar to turn it into a pipeable consistency. Fill a piping bag that has been fitted with a tip to pipe through. I used wilton tip #109 for the gentle swirls.     

5. When the cupcakes have cooled, decorate with a swirl of the punchy plum icing and top with a thin slice of nougat or some whole dried cranberries. These cupcake papers are thick and robust to travel as well as simply being sweet! In the same range are eye-catching aeroplane, carousel, bluebird, babushka, patchwork paper cup designs and more.

These rhubarb cakes are also beautiful and light served simply with a fine sprinkling of icing sugar. Do it through a paper doily for maximum effect! This  really lets the classic rhubarb and vanilla flavour combination shine through. 

Remember that rhubarb leaves are poisonous so don't be 'helpful' by sticking them in the compost! Simply lay the leaves you cut off around the base of the rhubarb plant to keep moisture in the surrounding soil. They will decompose with time and the gardener will stay happy :-) 

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...