Thursday, July 30, 2009

Lemon Dinosaur Cookies

Tomorrow is Walter's birthday. We have guests from out of town staying with us until tomorrow evening, so I did not have time to make the cake I had planned on. However, our guests went into the city for some sight-seeing today, so I whipped up some cookies.

Lemon Dinosaur Cookies

These cookies are Walter's favorites. I used this recipe and substituted lemon extract for the vanilla extract.

Wilton's Fluffy Boiled Icing

It occurred to me while baking the cookies that I had no powdered sugar, so I whipped up this icing instead. It was a little gritty, but for a sugar cookie icing, that is not really an issue. Instead of the 1/2 cup water, I used lemon juice to give it that fantastic lemon flavor.

-3 tablespoons Meringue Powder
-1/2 cup cold water
-2 cups granulated sugar
-1/4 cup light corn syrup
-1/2 cup water (I used lemon juice instead)


1. Beat meringue powder and 1/2 cup cold water until stiff, about 4 minutes.
2. Mix sugar, corn syrup and water (or lemon juice) in saucepan. Bring to boil and cool slightly.
3. Slowly add corn syrup mixture to meringue, beating until stiff and glossy.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Funfetti Picnic Table Cake

My family has a lot of July birthdays, so we have a joint party every year. I saw a cake similar to this one in Wilton's Celebrate with Fondant book, and I HAD to try it.

Funfetti Cake

For this cake I used this recipe for white cake and made the following changes:

Ommitted almond extract
Added 1 4-ounce box of French vanilla instant pudding
Added 1/4 cup rainbow sprinkles

I used Wilton's Classic Buttercream (also in the link above) for the filling and marshmallow fondant and white modeling chocolate for the details.

Close up of the cake, burgers, hot dogs, and catsup and mustard dispensers. All made from fondant and white modeling chocolate.

Close up of watermelon.

Close up of ants on the picnic table. When I was cutting the cake I thought they were real bugs!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Lemon Cornmeal Cookies

Once, I mistakenly purchased corn meal instead of cornstarch. And so, I wanted to find a way to use it.

Lemon Cornmeal Cookies

This recipe came from the book "501 Cookies" by Gregg R. Gillespie. These cookies were very chewy, and they didn't have much lemony flavor without the glaze. They were very sweet, though, which was nice. However, I probably wouldn't make them again. Also, they were the first cookies that didn't get completely finished at Walter's office, so that should say something about the recipe.

-2 3/4 cups flour
-1/2 cup yellow cornmeal
-1 teaspoon baking soda
-1/8 teaspoon salt
-1 Tablespoon grated lemon zest
-1 cup packed light brown sugar
-2 Tablespoons canola oil
-3/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
-1 Tablespoon fresh lemon juice
-1 large egg white

For glaze:
-3/4 cup powdered sugar
-2 Tablespoons lemon juice

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Combine flour, cornmeal, baking soda, salt, and lemon zest. Set aside.
3. In a large bowl, beat the brown sugar and oil. Beat in the applesauce and lemon juice.
4. In a small bowl, beat the egg white until stiff peaks form. Fold into applesauce mixture.
5. Gradually blend dry ingredients into applesauce mixture. Chill for up to two hours.
6. Drop dough by spoonfuls 1 1/2 inches apart on baking sheets. Flatten with the bottom of a glass. Bake for 6-8 minutes or until lightly colored. Transfer to wire racks to cool.
7. Combine powdered sugar and lemon juice and mix until smooth. Pour over cooled cookies.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Three Little Pigs Cake

My sister-in-law's baby shower was yesterday. I did a fun Three Little Pigs cake.

Each tier was a different flavor of cake that corresponded with the colors of the tier. The straw tier was a yellow butter cake (recipe below) with Wilton's buttercream with butter flavoring. The stick tier was chocolate cake with chocolate cream filling. The brick tier was strawberry cake with vanilla cream. All of the tiers were covered with marshmallow fondant. For the chocolate tier, I used chocolate marshmallows and a little bit of chocolate syrup instead of regular marshmallows. The three little pigs and big bad wolf were made with white modeling chocolate.

Yellow Butter Cake

This cake was very moist and a fantastic example of what yellow butter cake should be. I found the recipe here at Joy of Baking.

-6 large egg yolks
-1 cup milk
-2 teaspoons vanilla extract
-3 cups cake flour
-1 1/2 cups sugar
-1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon baking powder
-3/4 teaspoon salt
-12 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature and cut into pieces
I also added 1 4-oz package of instant vanilla pudding.


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease two nine-inch cake pans and set aside.
2. In a medium bowl, combine egg yolks, vanilla, and 1/4 cup milk.
3. In large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and pudding mix (if using). Mix until well combined. Add butter and remaining 3/4 cup milk and mix until well-combined.
4. Add egg mixture gradually, beating well.
5. Pour batter evenly into prepared pans. Bake for 25 to 35 minutes or until a pick inserted into the middle of the cake comes out clean. Cool on wire racks.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Strawberry Cake

My sister-in-law's birthday is July 1st, and Walter's is July 31st. Because of this, they usually have a joint party in mid-July to celebrate both.

Strawberry Cake

I found the recipe for this cake here at Country Living. It was well-loved, very moist with a great strawberry flavor. I do wish I had added more food coloring than I did, because it was not as pink as I wanted it to be, but that is purely an aesthetic issue that nobody seemed to mind.

I used marshmallow fondant to cover and decorate. I used the star imprint mat from Wilton to get the star design on the cake--it was really easy to work with, but I do suggest spraying the mat with nonstick cooking spray before you use it. It's a silicone mat and very easy to clean. I liked it a lot.

I used vanilla cream for the filling and placed fresh strawberry slices between the layers. It was a perfect summer cake.

-2 1/2 cups cake flour
-1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
-3/4 teaspoon salt
-1/2 teaspoon baking soda
-3/4 cup butter, softened
-1 1/2 cups sugar
-1 cup strawberry preserves
-4 eggs
-3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
-1/8 teaspoon red food coloring
-1/2 cup buttermilk

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease two 9- or 10-inch cake pans and set aside.
2. Sift together flour, baking powder, salt, and baking soda, and set aside.
3. Cream together butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add strawberry preserves and vanilla and mix well.
4. Add eggs to butter mixture, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
5. Add dry mixture to butter mixture in thirds, alternating buttermilk between additions, beginning and ending with the dry mixture and beating well after each addition. Add food coloring and mix well.
6. Divide batter evenly among cake pans. Bake at 350 for 20 to 30 minutes or until a pick inserted in the cake's center comes out clean. Cool in pan on wire rack.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Apple Oatmeal Cookies

Last week, I made oatmeal chocolate chip cookies. Not a new recipe, but I realized that I have far too many oats that need using up. A coworker of Walter's recommended that I use fruit in the cookies one week, so I decided to give it a try.

Apple Oatmeal Cookies

These had a good taste, but I thought they had a sort of strange, gummy texture. Walter said they tasted okay. They were very moist and fell apart easily.

I found the recipe here at Allrecipes. I was originally going to add dried cherries as well, but I did not buy enough of them, and my car is currently non-functioning.

-1/2 cup margarine, softened (I used butter)
-1/2 cup honey
-1 egg
-1 teaspoon vanilla extract
-3/4 cup stone ground whole wheat flour (I used all-purpose flour)
-1/2 teaspoon baking soda
-3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon (I used pumpkin pie spice)
-1 1/2 cups quick-cooking oats
-1 apple, cored, peeled, and chopped
I also added 1/2 cup brown sugar.

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
2. In a large bowl, cream together the margarine/butter, brown sugar (if using), honey, egg and vanilla until smooth.
3. In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking soda and cinnamon/pumpkin pie spice.
4. Combine dry ingredients with butter mixture and mix well. Stir in oats and chopped apple.
5. Bake for 8 to 10 or until light golden brown. Cool cookies on baking sheet for 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.