Monday, January 21, 2013

Nike, Converse and Adidas Shoe Cupcakes

I'm really not a shoe person.

In another life maybe I would be wearing shoes like this, I love the idea of sexy heels and expensive brands but in reality that is just not me.

I hate spending money, especially on shoes and because I walk at a million miles an hour my shoes need to be comfy.

Converse Chuck Taylors CupcakesConverse Chuck Taylors Cupcakes
Nike Shoe CupcakesNike Shoe Cupcakes
Adidas Shoe CupcakesAdidas Shoe Cupcakes

My favourite pair of shoes I owned were some black Converse Chuck Taylor high tops. I remember drawing tiny checkered patterns on the sides (I went through a bit of a punk phase).

Sadly I had to throw them away when they started to resemble a homeless persons shoes rather than the original classic shoe they used to be.

So making Chuck Taylor cakes is something close to my heart, I've made two cakes already and decided to add to my shoe collection with these cute cupcakes.

Converse Chuck Taylors Fondant Shoes
Fondant Nike Shoes
Fondant Adidas Shoes

These cupcakes were for a  21st. The idea was that I was to make six dozen cupcakes that were themed around his favourite shoes.

I decided to go with Nike, Adidas and of course, Converse. I made one dozen each of the shoes and one dozen of each logo.

Converse Chuck Taylors Cupcakes
Nike Shoe Cupcakes
Adidas Shoe Cupcakes

I wanted to show you that when I make cool stuff like mini shoes to go on top of cupcakes, they don't always come out right the first time round.

Sometimes my fondant creations are too big or the proportions are off or they just look plain retarded. This is my way of saying "if at first you don't succeed try, try again"

See the shoes on the left? They are the prototypes. The ones on the right were after a few goes. Practice makes perfect right!

Fondant Shoes

I wonder what shoe creation I'll be given next. Who knows, maybe another stiletto shoe? Or perhaps some cowboy boots? Yeeharr, bring it on!

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Air Jordan 3D Shoe Cake

You know when you tell your brain not to do something and you end up doing it anyway?

Well that is what happened when I made this cake. I said to myself, don't worry about making enough cake, it will be plenty, it just won't look like it.

Air Jordan 3D Shoe Cake

But when it came time to carve the cake down to actual shoe size I just couldn't bare to remove all that cake!

This little internal argument resulted in a rather fat cake.

One that didn't have the right proportions of a Air Jordan shoe...or any other shoe for that matter, and proportions is what matters when you're making a 3D shoe cake.

Air Jordan 3D Shoe CakeAir Jordan 3D Shoe Cake

Despite the width of the shoe I was still happy with how this cake turned out.

I love details and this cake had plenty of detail work! The stitching, the laces and not to mention the slam dunkin' Jordan (that was pretty hard to cut out of fondant!)

Air Jordan 3D Shoe Cake

So far this puts my shoe cake total to four!

Speaking of shoes and baking I also made some Nike, Adidas and Converse shoe cupcakes, so it's shaping up to be a very shoe-themed week!

If you're keen to check out my oldies, here is my Converse Chuck Taylors Shoe Cake, my Nike Kicks Shoe Cake and my Stiletto Shoe Cake. I'm getting quite a shoe collection here!

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

High Tea Picnic

Here in New Zealand our summer's are lucky dips. We never know what we're going to get, one day it's raining, the next it's blue skies and shining sun.

So when Melissa and Courtenay from Baking Makes Things Better and I organised a high tea picnic for early December we had no idea what kind of weather to expect!

Luckily, we had a beautiful clear day which was probably one of the first of our season.

Sun does have it downsides though, if you're vampire-white like me, you burn like crazy (which is exactly what happened to me) so it has kind of marred my memory of this amazing picnic.

Though my tan lines are finally fading I won't forget the awesome and food and company on that sunny day.

High Tea
High Tea
High Tea

We were going to have the high tea at the Auckland Domain but we changed plans when we downsized so Melissa hosted it in her lovely spacious backyard.

The area was totally transformed with the pretty honeycomb balls from The Pretty Baker hanging up, the pretty props from Melissa and The Vintage Table's beautiful vintage china with matching tea cups.

I think all these details really helped create a real high tea vibe. We felt very spoilt indeed!

High Tea
High Tea
High TeaHigh Tea

We organised to bring one sweet and one savoury item each, at first we weren't sure there would be enough food but by the time we put everything out it was clear we could have catered for a small village.

We served our home made baking alongside freshly popped popcorn in adorable cones and delicious lemonade and blood orange juice in Moccona glass jars.

Don't you love the cute straws and twine on the jars? I think they really add something to some otherwise boring drinks.

High Tea
High TeaHigh Tea

Courtenay made a delicious raspberry and lemon cake and some pork and apple sausage rolls which were lovely to balance out all the sweet food and drinks.

Melissa whipped up a number of goodies including mini mince pies, spinach and feta pinwheels, orange drop cookies and some amazing mini raspberry swirl cheesecakes.

While I hadn't quite got the memo on making something new (we discussed it but it didn't register in my blonde head) I just baked a batch of vanilla cupcakes decorated with mini fondant roses.

I also made an abundance of mini club sandwiches which almost turned into toasties while outside in the sun!

High TeaHigh Tea
High TeaHigh Tea
High TeaHigh Tea
High Tea

All in all our high tea picnic was a complete success. When we finally got to sit down and eat (after taking a million photos) we were able to relax and enjoy the start of summer.

I enjoyed getting to know Melissa and Courtenay and their partners, though I think Max, Courtenay's son, stole the show in his cute summer outfit. What a model child!

We originally planned to have this little get together including Kirsten from High Tea with Dragons as well but unfortunately she couldn't make it so it was a party of three, plus our partners.

I did miss Kirsten's presence but I do have some plans for get togethers with my food blogging friends this year so I'm sure we'll bake together some time soon!

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Mini Fondant Rose Tutorial

It's only the second week of the year and I'm back to work again! I decided to take on some temp work (back at my old work again) and work two days a week at my preschool from now until uni starts up again. It's not all bad though, I think I go a bit crazy when I have nothing to do. I get restless and bored if I haven't organised anything during the day and there's only so much tv and catching up on blog posts that I can take before I loose it!

High Tea
Me, Melissa and Courtenay

Though my break hasn't been terribly long or interesting it was still nice to spend it with friends and family and of course it was nice to have a break from study!

One of the exciting things that I got up to in my break was a high tea picnic with my friends from Baking Makes Things Better.

We organised a little get together where we baked new recipes and tried each others baking. It was lots of fun and was a great way for me to get to know them (we had never met before then!)

We had lovely weather and once all the baking, styling and photographing was over we were able to relax and enjoy each others company.

I'll be sharing my photos and little more about the fun day later on in the week, in the mean time check out Baking Makes Things Better for the whole story.

Mini Fondant Rose Cupcakes

I made cupcakes and mini club sandwiches for my contribution, very un-original I know. But I see them as high tea essentials!

My cupcakes were made using the vanilla cupcake recipe which I'll be posting over at Baking Makes Things Better later in the week. The flowers on top of the cupcakes are so easy to make that I thought I would share a little tutorial on how to make them.

They are made without cutters which is a bonus (I think). You can use them without all the tools I listed, just using your hands to flatten the fondant, I just find this way works best for me.

Please excuse my voice, I know everyone hates to hear themselves on recorded things but I especially hate it. Hate hate hate it. Just concentrate on my pretty zebra striped nails rather than the voice okay? Actually, concentrate on the tutorial itself if you like.

Mini Fondant Rose CupcakesMini Fondant Rose Cupcakes

Mini Fondant Rose Tutorial

You will need:
Plastic cutting board/mat
Mini rolling pin

Mixture of icing sugar and corn flour (I put this in an unused Chux cloth and tie it up to make a dust puff)

  • Roll icing into a pea sized ball.
  • Sprinkle some icing sugar/corn flour mix onto the matt and flatten ball with rolling pin, the fatter you do it the more cute it looks, if you're going for a more elegant flower then try flattening it until it's quite thin on the edges.
  • Roll the flattened fondant from right to left and place on matt.
  • Roll another pea sized piece of fondant and flatten again.
  • Attach fondant on the seam of the last piece and slightly above it.
  • Roll another 1 - 2 balls of fondant and flatten them.
  • Attach to the rose on the seams.
  • Gently pinch and curl the petals on the rose until you like how it looks.
  • Turn the rose over, pinch the amount you want to take off and set the fondant down to set.

This was the first time I tried filming a tutorial this long and with voice commentary (scary!) and it was a lot harder than I thought!

I had to buy a new memory card, got Mr S to try and operate the camera (which he knew nothing about) and I had pretty much no video editing software except what came on my laptop, but all in all I'm reasonably happy with it...although it's a lot clearer on my computer than on Youtube! 

Let me know if you have any other tutorials you would like to see and I'll do my best to accommodate!