Friday, May 31, 2013

Hello there, Kitty

I'm not at all a fan of cats.

They strike fear in me. I don't know why...

Hello Kitty is probably the only exception to my lifelong nemesis.
Perhaps it's the lack of a mouth and fangs (yes, they DO look like fangs to me).

Her cute little red ribbon perched askew might have something to do with making her less feline scary, too.

Check out more of our red desserts:
> Sweet, sweet strawberries
> Rich red velvet cake
> Red Santa hats
> Poppin' red cherries, even the jackpot ones

Whatever the case, she's the only kitty I'm gonna be friends with.


I drew inspiration from cake pop goddess Bakerella, with just a few minor modifications. She's got the most amazing imagination, and has the superhero power of visualizing uses for any piece of candy.

Start off with regular cake balls, shape them into ovals and flatten them a little.

Then it's off to the details:

Minute oval balls for her  black eyes and pert lil' yellow
nose - these were barely 1mm each, soooo teeny tiny!

Uh-oh... she has SIX whiskers each... that's a whole of
ant-sized rods to make by hand. I lost count of how
 many I broke along the way, they were so fragile.

Just make sure you make tons of extras, they'll break
every step of the way. Oh. and don't freak out if they're not
perfectly shaped, animal parts are never symmetrical anyways :)

I had these sweet little confetti hearts that
were perfect for her signature bow

A cheeky lil' Hello Kitty towel to top the birthday basket off

Mission completed - my kitty litter is born!

More character cake pops:
> Never too much red with Elmo around
> A Rilakkuma birthday
> Curious George... almost!

Friday, May 24, 2013

I love birthdays!

Next to Christmas, they're my favorite celebrations.

They're your day, with your name on it (even the cake message says so).

Everyone's extra sweet, you're queen/king of the day.

There's a legitimate reason for you to eat, drink and be extra merry, and push the food guilt all away till the celebrations die down.

More birthday celebrations:
> A very lovely elephant day
> 10 years young
> Hole in one, anybody?
> Petite Pops goes to the zoo... dinosaur roarrr!

You probably share your birthday with 10 dozen people round the globe. BUT as long as those 10 dozen birthday babies stay well across the globe and far out of reach from my birthday treats - I can live with that :)

This birthday request was spur of the moment, for an office celebration of the boss' 40th.

I thought it'd be nice to make it extra rich and decadent, and paired the 4-0 cupcakes with rich, chocolately cake balls.

Started off with a sea of scrumptious red velvet
cuppies... impossible to walk away from, I tell you.

The right corner cupcake's missing, found it's way
into my stomach (taste test!), the empty spot
conveniently cropped out of the picture. 

Each of the survivors got their own crown of
strawberry buttercream, topped with gold rocks

The chocolate cake balls - dipped in a layer of bitter chocolate,
topped with a teeny bit of green sprinkles for color and sparkle

Happy 40th birthday!

Cake pop birthdays:
Petite Pops goes to the zoo... Ponies
Never too much red with Elmo

Friday, May 17, 2013

Bicycle pops: challenge... accepted!

I've neglected writing about my pops for a bit.

Time to make amends.
The cycling type.

The type that involves supreme hard work, extreme endurance, will of steel.

Presenting... the bicycle pops!

I did these a while back - a request to commemorate a very special book launch.

The author is a brilliant mind with strong insights, and has just completed his book tour, bringing Floating on a Malayan Breeze to the US.

> For more on author Sudhir Vadaketh:

If you do a quick search for bicycle cake pops, you'd find there aren't too many options that come up.
> Another sportsy cake pop outing: Hole in One

To the obvious 'why' question: Bicycles aren't meant to balance on a stick.

Humans riding and staying atop bikes - that in itself is a skill.
Balancing 2 wheels and a frame on a lolly stick - near madness.

Highly risky business.

Simple physics.

Still, I enjoy a challenge every now and then.

If Sudhir could cycle round every state in Peninsular Malaysia with nothing more than a bike, daily allowance of US$3 and two changes of clothes, I could darn well create these bicycle pops and make them stay up on sticks.

Yes, I do know these are 2 vastly different challenges.
But hey, whatever does the job of motivating, right?

Wheels made of cake pops, bike frame
painstakingly fashioned by hand. Nearly went
blind assembling the tiny parts. Many were broken
along the way, snapped in pieces - much patience
needed... just like writing the book.

Told you there were similarities ;)

Hand-painted flags (yes, edible too) of Singapore and
Malaysia, ethos behind  the book.

Making it personal: a personalized note
upon a trusty 2-wheeler

Sudhir is starting research on his next book, so catch up quick and get a copy of Floating on a Malayan Breeze on Amazon.

More cake pops you might like:
> A very lovely elephant day
> Hello, 2013!
> Rabbit pops
> Pony pops

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

'Nekkid' series: Sweet, sweet strawberries

I'm quite in love with strawberries.

Hokkaido has the best ever. Sweet, alluring, beckoning, juicy.

Strawberries sing of spring.
Ooh, almost got a whole line of alliteration in there.

Strawberry jam. Strawberry ice-cream.
Mmm-mmm good ....

My strawberry epiphany happened in Phuket. Strange... yes, I think so too.

As a child, I had not-so-tasty King's strawberry ice-cream and chucked strawberries in the 'ulgh' part of the food spectrum. Won't miss that for sure.

On a steaming hot Phuket afternoon about 7 years ago however, we were seeking sun refuge at a cafe. We sat down, and I was drawn (I could not look away, I kid you not) to a mountain of strawberry ice-cream piled high at the next table. A little boy was polishing it off with extreme gusto, his dripping shirt pulled back around his head, a temporary hairband as he tunneled through his mission.

The ice-cream beckoned. It called my name. It singled me out.

I caved.

It was such excellent ice-cream, I tasted meadows and happiness.
I'm serious.

I'm now a strawberry-holic, and proud of it.

Ok, that was a long intro for this post.
I'd meant to talk about two strawberry desserts I'd made recently - Chocolate Strawberry Cake, Classic Cheesecake with Strawberries.

Maybe too much strawberries makes you forgetful.

I'm willing to risk it.

Oh yes, back to the desserts. 

Chocolate Strawberry Cake

Start with a rich chocolate cake,
doesn't matter if it aian't too pretty yet...
make sure it tastes good though!

Mix up a batch of strawberry happiness,
also known as strawberry frosting. 

Pile on frosting, lick fingers,
stack on strawberry mountain.
All done.

Need some help with the recipes?
> Fantabulous chocolate cake from IAmBaker
> Strawberry frosting that actually tastes GOOD - I just swapped the raspberry for strawberry in IAmBaker's awesome recipe 

Classic Cheesecake with Strawberries

Assemble your classic cheesecake. Make sure there's plenty
 of crust (double's a good place to start) cuz everyone loves crust.
Me and my greedy family and friends can vouch for that.

Whip up fluffy cream cheese topping. Feel free to make
a little extra, just for you and anyone who walks through
the kitchen when you're working on the cake.

It takes steel will to resist the wafting smells of freshly baked
cheesecake, you WILL need that extra frosting.
Crown with strawberries - the key to making any cake look delicious!

The cheesecake recipe I used came from one of the many baking books on my shelf, so it's a little hard to teleport that here. 

But no fear, I will lead you to my Cake Oracle - Bakerella! 
She can do no wrong, and you're in good hands with her cheesecake recipe.

Other crimson bakes:

Sit back, smell the strawberries and enjoy!