Monday, December 20, 2010

Pink Holiday Cupcakes

I am in NYC this week (yay!) and I hope to share lots of goodies with you as I come across them.  For those of you who don't know, I went to college in NYC and haven't been back in over a year! It will be so nice to see my friends - many of whom are scattered across the world but will be coming back for the holidays!

In the meantime, I have some holiday cupcakes to share with you.  I think they're holiday perfection: pink, glittery and chocolatey.  You can't tell very well from the photos, but I sprinkled edible glitter on top along with the snowflake sprinkles.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

My Favorite Things: Meri Meri Cupcake Kits

I LOVE Meri Meri's products - they're cute, playful, and fun.  I especially love their cupcake kits; they're the perfect way to dress up your cupcakes in an easy and inexpensive way.  They have cupcake kits for the holidays, kids birthdays, and bridal/baby showers - each kit comes with two types of wrappers and four different cupcake toppers.  Here are a few of their holiday kits:

and here are some of their other party kits:

[Images via Meri Meri]

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Papery and Cakery

I have been a fan of Papery and Cakery for a while now and thought their holiday cookie/brownie package was such a cute idea.  They are currently offering a half dozen or dozen Cakery Confections (cookies and brownies or flourless cake) for the holidays.  When I found out I would be in NYC on one of their pickup days I just had to order one!  I can't wait to try their goodies.  If you're not in the NYC area you can still order one - they ship throughout the continental US.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Holiday Baking Gift Wrap

I love packaging my baked goods. I mostly use baker's twine, but I just love the ideas Anthropologie is rolling out in the gift wrap department! Check out their tinsel ribbon and chalkboard tags.

Available at Anthropologie here & here

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Review: Williams-Sonoma Holiday Piecrust Cutters

I noticed these Holiday Piecrust Cutters at Williams-Sonoma, originally their Thanksgiving set, a few weeks back - they had a station with pie dough and a set of cookie cutters out, so of course I tried them out! They were so easy to use, but Thanksgiving was already a few days away and I knew I wouldn't be baking a pie any time soon.  As I was testing them out one of the employees came by, said there was a holiday set, and offered to bring it out.  As soon as I saw it I just had to have it. I thought of all of the cute little cookies I could make and thought they'd be perfect for setting atop a cupcake.  

I finally got a chance to use them last week when I tested my first gingerbread recipe.  Even though the recipe didn't work, these were a total hit! The face/button indentations on the gingerbread came out perfectly -- they were so so cute and I wished the cookie recipe had turned out okay.  I plan on testing another one, so hopefully I'll have real pictures to share next time!

If you see these at Williams-Sonoma, definitely pick them up! 

[Photos via Williams-Sonoma]

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Review: The Perfect Brownie Pan

Or, how to turn your perfectly good brownies into rocks.  Just after making the. best. batch. of. brownies. ever. we pulled out The Perfect Brownie Pan so that we too could get all of our brownies the same size.  After whipping up our brownie batter we poured it in the pan and inserted the divider thingy.  When they were done baking we removed the brownies from the pan (it's sort of like a tarte pan where you can lift the sides) and lifted the divider. It was perfection. All of our brownies were the same perfect size! We thought, "this is the perfect brownie pan!"

I couldn't help myself, so of course I ate a brownie right away. It was good -- kind of hard to tell for sure since it was still hot.  I had a meeting that day so I packaged up a couple to take to the party.  Everyone ate a brownie but I didn't get the rave reviews I was expecting...I mean, these were the greatest brownies ever! When I got home I ate a brownie to see how it was. I take a bite and ...ew! "OMG!" I thought, "I can't believe I SERVED these to people!"  They were rocks. They were so compact! The divider didn't give my brownies any room to breathe and expand! This is what foot binding must be like - uncomfortable, painful, and an ugly end result.

Needless to say, The Perfect Brownie Pan was not perfect at all. Thank god we didn't pay full price...although I kind of wish I had ordered it on TV because I probably could have gotten my money back because I was NOT satisfied!

Have you used this pan before? What did you think?

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Holiday Chocolate Dipped Marshmallows

Chocolate covered marshmallows are SO good. Sometimes we dip them in caramel before we dip them in chocolate and it is heaven! Here are a few holiday marshmallows we made -- I decided to sprinkle some crushed Andes peppermint candies on one and it turned out great! I'm not really a fan of the tiny sprinkles -- they're very crunchy - but they look so pretty!  Which one do you like best?

Monday, December 6, 2010

Candy Cane Cakepops

I love cakepops. After having made them probably about a dozen times I think we've finally worked out all the kinks.  Although they're time consuming, they are SO worth it.

Last year around the holidays I wanted to make a "candy cane" type of cakepop -- rather than just dipping it in white chocolate and drizzling in red, I decided to flavor the cake with peppermint oil. They turned out great! I've waited all year to make them and finally got around to it this weekend.

It's hard to package cakepops -- I have yet to find a good way to transport them or a bag/box that they fit into just right, but I like how these turned out.  What flavor cakepop do you like best? What flavor would you want to see?

Friday, December 3, 2010

Snowflake Peppermint Bark

I LOVE peppermint bark but I hate how it tastes with candy canes crushed on top. The candy canes are just so strong and sticky.  This year, we decided to make peppermint bark using crushed andes peppermint candies (you could also crush the candy cane Hershey kisses) and they turned out deeelicious! Instead of the usual broken bark we decided to make the bark into snowflake shapes -- they're so christmas-y!

Jewelry Magnets

How cute are these magnets from Anthropologie? My kitchen drawers don't have drawer pulls, so I can never get any of those, but these? These I can get! They would look so pretty holding a sweet recipe, don't you think?

Available at Anthropologie, $32

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Chocolate Peppermint Cookies

I found these cookies yesterday while perusing Food Gawker and Tastespotting (a couple of my favorite websites!). The recipe looked SO easy and I had the ingredients on hand so I made them right away. These tasted GREAT right out of the oven - they were soft, warm, and tasted like Christmas. I had a hard time gauging when they were done, so I experimented with baking different batches at 8, 9, and 10 minutes. Some of my 8 and 10 minute batches came out crunchy and some came out chewy, so I need to make them one more time to figure out the perfect baking time! Either way, I like both outcomes. I used the holiday candy cane Hershey kisses, but you can also use Andes' Candies.

Chocolate Peppermint Cookies


1 chocolate cake mix (I used devil's food cake mix)
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup oil
2 eggs
1 cup chopped Hershey's candy cane kisses

Let's Bake!:

Preheat oven to 375F. Mix together cake mix, oil, eggs, and brown sugar. Stir in chopped kisses. Drop dough balls onto greased/parchment lined cookie sheet. Bake 8-10 minutes. Remove from pan and cool.


Tuesday, November 30, 2010

For the Holidays: Caramel Popcorn Drizzled with Chocolate

A couple weeks ago The Wedding Pantry held a holiday boutique.  I sold handmade cards and sold some of my mom's delicious caramel popcorn drizzled with chocolate. I packaged it in a white bag wrapped with baker's twine and a little hand stamped tag I made.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Halloween Dessert Table

Happy Halloween! I created this dessert table for The Wedding Pantry's Halloween party...this was my first official dessert table for people other than my family =D I baked so many delicious treats including cake pops, cupcakes, brownies, chocolate-caramel pretzels, chocolate covered macadamia nuts, rice krispie treats, ladies kisses, caramel popcorn drizzled with chocolate, and white chocolate macadamia nut cookies.  I found these adorable test tubes at Michaels, filled them with Reese's m&m's, and labeled them as "creepy crawlers," "eyes of newt," "frogs legs," etc. Then, I hand stamped treat bags so that people could take home the extras.