Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Baking Catch Up

First up I have some Ginger Cupcakes with Butterscotch Frosting and topped off with a drizzle of butterscotch syrup. I made these for my coworkers awhile back. (Recipe Below)



Next up I have a cake I made for the swim friend (person I made my cards for) which is a yellow cake covered in a vanilla marshmallow frosting and has both lemon curd and pastry cream for the filling. (Recipes Below)


Ginger Cupcakes
with Butterscotch Buttercream Frosting
Makes 12 standard cupcakes


Ingredients

FOR THE CUPCAKES
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 Tbs ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup sour cream
2 eggs, at room temperature
1 Tbs  Rum


FOR THE FROSTING
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 cups confectioners’ sugar
2 tablespoons butterscotch schnapps (or syrup)
pinch of salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In a large bowl, or the bowl of a standing mixer, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, ginger, and salt. Add the butter, sour cream, eggs, and vanilla and beat until smooth. Scrape the bowl, making sure there are no streaks of flour remaining (do not over mix).
Place three tablespoons of batter in each of the paper liners in the prepared muffin pan.
Bake for 18 to 22 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Transfer to a wire cooling rack and allow to cool completely before frosting.

To make the frosting: In a large bowl of a standing mixer, beat the butter for 3 minutes. Beat in the sugar and salt until combined. Add 1 Tbs of schnapps and beat on high for 4 minutes, until light and fluffy. Add more schnapps if the frosting is too thick (1/2 tsp at a time) until desired constinency is reached.

Drizzle with butterscotch syrup (found wherever your ice cream condiments are sold)

Yellow Cake with Marshmallow Frosting and Lemon Curd, Pastry Cream filling

I do not have a recipe for the pastry cream filling. I had a mix which I purchased from King Arthur Flour but honestly any pudding mix would work just as nicely.

For the cake and frosting you can find the recipes here Who Needs Hostess but you will need to double the cake recipe for 2 8" cake rounds, the cake shown above was 2 6" rounds which I then sliced in half to give me four layers.

The recipe for lemon curd can be found here /homemade-lemon-curd-in-under-10-minutes

To assemble cake, slice the layers in half to make four layers. Put a thin layer of pastry cream (don't go all the way to the edge) on the bottom layer and follow with a layer of lemon curd, then top with another cake layer and repeat filling - repeat for remaining cake layers. Frost (I used the back of a spoon to give it the swirled look) with Marshmallow frosting and adorn with sprinkles.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

A Tuesday Post

Tuesday is not one of my normal posting days but I forgot I made this card for a challenge on Simon Says Stamps blog and wanted to get it up and posted before the deadline on Wednesday. The stamp is from Art Impressions which I embossed then painted with Stampin Up Watercolors, the background stamped in Versamark is from Judkins and the sentiment stamp is from Kraftin Kimmie.





Monday, April 21, 2014

Birthday Cards times two

I am going to a birthday dinner this evening for a woman I swim with and decided I need to make her a card and I made two because my mom is going with me and of course you know she will be asking me for one anyway so I jumped the gun and made one for her to give too.

The first card uses stamps from Papertrey Ink and dies for Memory Box along with some Washi tape and my homemade enamel dots.

The second card I cheated a little. I had already colored the ladies and they were on a card I wasn't happy with so I disassembled them and redit it. The stamp is from Art Impressions and the sentiment stamp is from Rubberneck stamps.


Sunday, April 20, 2014

Happy Easter

Wishing you and your family much happiness on this beautiful Easter Day!



Friday, April 18, 2014

Reusable Snack Baggies


I stumbled across this Sisters, What! blog post the other day showcasing a tutorial on making reusable snack bags and knew right away I needed to make some of these. I bring my lunch and breakfast every day to work and guiltily use a lot of plastic lunch baggies. I love that I can wash these and that the liner is waterproof. It's made from the same material as a diaper cover.

I headed to my nearby Joanns and purchased the following supplies and the good natured clerk showed me how to use multiple coupons to save me the most money..thank you dear kind lady. The most expensive item here is the diaper covering ($12 for 3 ) but with a coupon it's workable. I was able to make two baggies from one set of fabric and liner.

 
So here are the baggies all said and done. I will admit that the first set I followed the sizes on the linked blog but my ds pointed out it wasn't big enough to fit a sandwhich in so I added 1 inch all around and was pleased with the larger bag


Here are the two baggies side by side and you can see the pink is in the original size and the flowered pattern is a bit larger.

 
Lastly, here is a peek of the insides and after feeling pretty good that I made these late at night with no major problems I realized I sewed one piece of the velcro wrong side down..ugh..this is why I shouldn't sew at night. Needless to say it's an easy but tedious fix.

All in all I think these turned out super cute, who wouldn't want to snack from these fun colored bags? These would make a perfect gift for moms with little ones. Which makes me think I need to make some for my grandbabies.



Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Stamped Note Cubes

If you need a quick, inexpensive and easy gift you can make these cubes lickety split for very little $. I purchased the note cubes on Amazon. They are made from recycled paper and do have one side with adhesive so the user can tear off a sheet of paper as they need to. Click here for the Notecubes

All you have to do is take a rubber band to firmly hold the sheets together and then stamp various images around the cube. I did stamp on the adhesive side but it did take ~5 days for the ink to cure or dry. Once done tie a brightly colored ribbon and you have an instant gift.

I did purchase 6 of these and used one as my prototype but it came out so cute that I will be able to use it for myself. The rest I plan of giving away as Christmas gifts.




Come back on Friday and I will be sharing some uber cute reusable snack baggies that I made.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Altered Frame and In Depth Look at Making Faux Enamel Dots

Happy Monday everyone, I don't know about you but I was busy, busy, busy this weekend. Altered projects were on my list of things to do and I tackled quite a few so be prepared for some of these to be posted this week including making reusable snack baggies.

First up is a frame I bought at Michaels (with a 40% coupon of course) that I planned to alter for a friend for her birthday but at the time I had too much going on so I never got around to it..that is until this weekend. I still plan on giving this to her, just not sure when.

The bling I found in some expo make N take kits that I stored away from the past few years. I cut it down from 4 strands wide into two. Added some ribbon trim, paper roses that I misted with Radiant Pearls glued in a few leaves added die cuts and used a Spellbinders die to cut the quote that was printed on the computer. It looked a bit bland all white so I opted to ink it with Tim Holtz Pumice Distressed Ink.




Enamel Dots

Next up, after reading about making your own enamel dots I decided I needed to venture into this since I use a lot of them and lets face it these things aren't cheap. Nearly $4-6 for a package. The bead of choice were Perler beads. I bought this package for $5 at Joanns.

I had read quite a bit up on these and noticed that some people were melting their Perler Beads at 325 degrees and others at 400 degrees, I decided to try both.

In order to get the smaller size you need to cut them in half. Most people were using a pill cutter but I didn't have one. After trying various things I did find a box cutter knife worked just fine.

 After cutting a bunch up I proceeded to cook my beads on a sheet of parchment paper in a 325 degree oven for 30 min

You can see them begin to melt at 10 minutes. Full size are in the front and the ones I cut in half are in the back.


Peeking in at 20 minutes you can see they are almost done but a little dimple still is present. 

And here they are at 30 minutes. So basically you have small and medium sizes.

 
Next I tried 400 degrees and they took about 15 minutes to melt and I decided to let them go even longer to see if they would flatten out a bit. These dots are a nice size but not as thin as what you normally purchase.

I also wondered if I could get larger dots and stacked two beads together (one on top of the other) and you can seem them below.  The don't quite expand as much as I would like. I tried squashing them when they came out of the oven but they didn't budge. Then I decided to try 500 degrees thinking that would work, but alas the beads became discolored and mishappen. In fact, if you cook too long they become ovalish in shape.






Then my son said to try the microwave, ok we did and it took 25 - 30  minutes before they melted, but they were much hotter than the oven version and I was able to squish these but they look more like discs than the dots.

Finally in my mix of oven temps I did try different mediums. As I mentioned above I did use parchment paper but also tried aluminum foil and a silcone mat. The dots tended to stick to the aluminum foil.

Last I wanted even smaller dots so curiosity got the best of me and I halfed the bead and then quartered it.
For the most part they turned out pretty good, some were a bit ovalish.


Most of these dots came out perfect. I would say 10% of your batch will have some sort of flaw. Are they perfect, no but while they are not exactly a perfect enamel dot that you would buy from a manufacturer, they are pretty good especially if you are more concerend with saving $ on products.

Bottom line if you're interested buy a box of beads ($5 or use a coupon) from Joanns (I read Walmart also sells them), some parchment paper and a pill cutter if you aren't comfortable with a box cutter. Then cook these at 325 degrees for 30 minutes and if you are in a rush then 400 degrees for 15 -20 minutes depending on your oven.

Sorry for the extra long post, hopefully you found some useful information. Wed I am show casing stamped note pads.