Sunday, September 23, 2012

Winnie the Pooh Comes to Howard Beach!

I love love love lov LOVE Winnie the Pooh. Honey and bears...and a lazy Sunday afternoon. Sweeeet! 

The cake you will see in just a bit is a three tiered cake, inspired by Classic Winnie in the Garden. As he lays on top in a field of flowers with butterflies flitting and one landing on his full little belly while he stares up at the sky contently....his honey pot awaits at the bottom.

Winnie and the honey pot  was sculpted by my daughter, Theodora who in her own right is an artist.

The plaque you see on the top tier was printed on sugarpaper and adhered to the fondant backing with a bit of kept the vodka away from Winnie!

The inside you ask? A simple chocolate and vanilla cake filled with a vanilla Italian Meringue Buttercream. We alternated the layers within each tier to create a vanilla-chocolate-vanilla-chocoalte pattern filled with the white cream. So nostalgic of a time long passed.

Harajuku In The House!

Harajuku in the house!!!! This cake and cupcakes were created for my great niece Penelope who turned 5 this week.

When asked to create the Harajuku cake....I sort of had that deer in headlights look on my face....Didn't know what or who Harajuku was! But I have got to say...once I researched it...I fell in love....just as I guess the kids did and do! I love love love the seemingly unrelated designs come together. Genius fashion concept.

Now just for the record....the blonde Harajuku girl has a black ribbon in her hair. But Penelope was going to wear a blue I took creative license and made the blue ribbon. Turns out that she wore hot pink ribbons!  But that's what it's all about....Taking creative license and making something your own.

Happy Birthday Sweet P!!!! Love you so much!

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Even Raging Street Rivers Can't Prevent the Dynamic Mother/Daughter Duo From Delivering a Bride-To-Be's Shower Cake!

I don't know about you my friends but there is something about lavendar and lace that at least for me evokes a nostalgia for turn of the century grace and feminity. A time when all was well with the world. This lavendar and lace bridal shower cake - was created for a lovely bride - with input from her handsome fiance and very sweet mother-in-law.

When Stacy and her son Steve came for a consultation and asked me to create a cake for Steve's fiance Chrysoula, I must say I was very excited. They showed me pictures of the invitation and of ideas he had for the shower cake. Which by the way, is something I recommend to all my clients. Have something .... anything....for your cake designer - It helps with the inspiration. If's okay...many of us can get the general inspiration through talking.

We had a wonderful consult and then a tasting with the groom's wonderful mom and dad, and our bride's lovely mom and sister.  During tasting I like to let my guests play with their food. I put out different cake flavors and buttercreams and toppings and then just let everyone there is no food fight...just the lovely sound of people bonding and ooing and ahhhing and ...."try this combination" or "you have go to taste this combo!"

For this cake...the family came up with a twist to otherwise standard flavors. We created two flavors for this cake. Tier one and tier four....a Brooklyn Blackout Chocolate Cake filled with Nutella Italian Meringue Buttercream and topped with Ferrero Roche. For tiers two and three...Tres Leches Cake...semi-soaked in Tres Leches....didn't oversoak as the cake structure would be compromised.....but to make up for less leche we filled the cake with a capuccino-tiramisu Italian Meringue Buttercream topped with Dulce de Leche and accented with  intense orange chocolate bar shavings.  Cake flavor pairings to make your eyes roll back in head in sheer delight.

The piping on this cake was all freehand. Which once in the zone flew like a gentle summer breeze.
Too bad that gentle breeze didn't last through to the delivery. But you know what they say...the calm before the storm?

All went well with this  project .... of delivery. Waking up in the morning to stormy skies....remnants of Isaac from the gulf....I held my heart in my hand whispering . Please God...Please....let this delivery go without a hitch. Well God must have been attending to someone else's more important pleads....cuz.....the minute Theodora (my daughter) and I started packing up our emergency cake kit and had just finished putting the cake on our cart - the skies opened up like a water balloon being thrown off a roof. The rain was so heavy and  pelting it created a flowing let me correct that...a raging rain river 3 feet wide and 4 inches deep  in the street right by the back door of my Rav4!

Staring at each other like deer in headlight.....and with the clock was already 11:15 and the shower was at 12...we couldn't wait this one out....we decided to go for it. Now mind you....this cake was at least 60 pounds....I'm not exactly a weight lifter. At least if you dropped the weights the most you would get is a broken toe....This was drop this one...there is no cake and one very upset customer.

We quickly wrapped the four tiered cake in plastic...put the cake on our cart....wheeled it to the door....and then....and then....that look of now what? How do we get the cake to the car? Quickly assessing the very stormy situation...we knew that even with the plastic covering and umbrella shield did we have to get the cake INTO the truck. without one drop touching the cake...we had to wade through the river! Not an easy feat with Tory Burch sandals and BCBG leather flats! Biting the bullet....we managed our way through the rain to the river...when all of a suddent Theodora says...."Mom...stop! My sandal came off it's flowing down the road!" "Don't worry about it", I said..."What are you kidding? They're Tory Burch!" So we stopped....with cake in hand....she caught her sandal....flipped it onto the sidewalk and then foot the water which was quickly rising another inch and placed the cake in the truck. In the shoes were dress was dragging in the water....and by this time....had soaked up to my behind....Theodora's denim pants....soaked to her knees. We still had the emergency kit and the top tier and extra flowers to bring to the car....I started to slip and slide and so decided to do the rest of the delivery barefoot. It was now...11:38! Party in 22 minutes!  Crap!

We get into car...raining cats and dogs now...even more than before...the rain pelting on our windshield with a vengence...I'm in the back seat holding onto the cake....Oh by the way cake people....I'm sure you've already discovered this....even though my internal structures are very sound....I'm still very paranoid with multiple tiered cakes....I extend the center stabilizing dowel about one or two inches and hold onto it as we make our turns....and in this weather....especially....because there might be a short stop or two....which we had....or someone possibly rear fender bending you....Just my paranoia as I said.

Time? 11:45 just as we turned the corner on Northern and Searington Road...e oila!!!! LIMANI!!! The venue! We get to the parking lot of the venue....and the valet....after letting us back up into the handicap space directly in front of the restaurant....called the head waiter who promptly brought out 5 other waiters to help bring this cake in! They must have felt sorry for us...We (Theodora and I) were still dripping!!!!  We had 10 minutes to spare by the time we  finally got the cake to where it was set up....and placed the top tier  and final deco's and a couple of photos.  I said my good byes...checked to see if I had left a puddle....and swiftly ran to my car. The minute Theodora turned on the engine....the rain stopped....almost as if someone had turned off the faucet and the sun....albeit...briefly....came out!!!!!!!!  Mama said there would be days like this!

In the end...the cake....made it to the venue unscathed...On the other hand...we ...Theodora and I are still assessing and regrouping...and redesigning our delivery strategies on days such as the one we had yesterday....Oh and looking into less expensive shoes to wear just in case there is a river we have to go through. You want real cake challenges like on the cake shows you see on cable tv...which are trumped  and edited for drama....ask a cake designer what it's really like on some delivery days.

All in all....the cake was indeed delivered ....without a scratch or a water drop...and with memories we will laugh about over a glass or two of mavrodaphne!

Many many showers of happiness to the bride and groom to be...Steve and Chrysoula. May every day you spend together be strewn with flowers of love...happiness and health and prosperity.


Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Battle of the Bartenders at TGI Friday's

What a fab evening! Jack Daniels Burgers and Cocktails and all for a good cause....Island Harvest Charity.

You know how people say that everything is meant to be? Nothing is by chance...all is written. Well I didn't ascribe to that .... well not fully ....until this event!

Theodora, my daughter and I were having dinner one evening at TGIF, and "by chance" Theodora picked up a sugar packet. On the back of the packette was a trivia question..."What famous actor was trained by TGI Friday's bartenders for the movie "Cocktail". Not telling you all until the end...but most I'm sure know the answer. Anyway...being who I am...I thought it would share this info with our server. Of course she knew the answer....that's not the point...the point is that within our conversation...she told me that TGIF was having a charity fundraiser for Island Harvest soon. Ding Ding Ding...Lightbulb over my head....Why don't I donate something for the event! The server....thought it was a great idea....and called over the assistant manager...who took my card! Well....the very next day...Christopher, the store's manager called me and we set up a meeting to  discuss what would be appropriate for the event.

Met with Christopher and Tiffany, one of the servers and planner for the event, and we came up with the idea of making a huge hamburger cake to represent their famous Jack Daniels Burger. Brilliant!

I set about creating this cake...chocolate cake with cookies and cream filling....complete with fondant fries...chocolate dulce de leche sauce to represent the Jack Daniels Sauce on a board decorated to look like the TGIF tablecloths!

The reaction of the patrons and the TGIF staff was incredible!

The evening at the TGI Friday's in Manhasset was a huge success. The the bartenders exhibited awesome fancy bartending skills, and the drinks along with other goodies were auctioned off. Our burger cake was auctioned off as well at the end of the evening. A very very generous patron won the auction and then had it served to everyone at the bar! Wow!!!

All in I had a fabulous time. Theodora and I met some wonderful people...and to top it off, we met people there we hadn't seen in a while. And the best part of it all! TGI Friday's raised quite a bit of "green" for a very worthy charity...Island Harvest. 

Oh...before I forget...the answer to the question....Tom Cruise of course!

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Oreo Cookie Cake and Keyboard for Josh Dodes' 39th!

What better way to celebrate your 39th Birthday but with an Oreo Cookie Cake and your best friend Annette Artani!

When Annette Artani called me to create this cake for her best friend Josh, I was thrilled! Just imagine creating a cake for a friend...but also in the shape of yes....I have to admit favorite cookie in the whole world....Oreos!!!! Not only was the cake in the shape of a double stuffed no less Oreo was made with Blackout Brooklyn Chocolate Cake and Cookies and Cream! Something about cookies and cream that just does it for me and for a lot of other people I might gladly say....Very very popular lately. Why this weekend...I've had three orders with the same fillings! hmmmmmm!

Of course no delivery of mine is without a little story. Well almost no delivery....This one was easy peezy....I only had to combat one traffic light and three stop signs! It goes on record as the brainer deliveries of all time! Except that...even though I knew the neighborhood I still got a little lost....How the heck do numbers on houses go from say....63 - 57- something.....on the same block!!!!  Only in Queens my dear friends...only in Queens...But then was before noon. I don't do well before noon. LOL!

Well...just got word that Josh was shocked and surprised and loved the cake! Just take a look at the pic Annette sent and posted on FB! Picture tells a thousand words. That said...enough words from me...just enjoy the pic....Got Milk anyone!

Happy Birthday Josh!

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Three Adorable Little Boys Celebrate Their Birthdays With A Legoland Themed Cake

Vincenzo's, Giacomo's and Pasquale's Legoland Cake

When asked to create a Lego themed cake for these three little boys, Vincenzo, Giacomo and Pasquale, I thought, what better way to get inspiration but by looking at the California Legoland website....well....second best...I would have preferred to go to California for a first hand experience....but the website was a decent alternative. The first thing I saw was the Lego structure of their 10th Anniversary Cake. Aha! There it is...why not make a real cake inspired by this Lego structure.
                                             Decorating Process
Each tier was first covered in white fondant, and then....painstakenly, one by one, strips of fondant were placed over the base coat of fondant, to similate the Lego rods. Then, another layer of fondant was added to make the cakes looks like they were dripping in icing. Each letter in the boys' name was freehanded, and placed on a black background. Lego blocks were handcrafted as were the Lego men. No molds here baby!!!!

The cakes were, top tier....Mojito Pound Cake filled with rum Italian Meringue Buttercream, (something special for the adults). Middle tier was a moist vanilla butter cake filled with fresh sugared strawberries and Rum Italian Meringue Buttercream, infused with a strawberry, rum simple syrup. The bottom tier, was a Brooklyn Blackout Cake....Go Brooklyn!....Filled with a pumped up Nutella Italian Meringue Buttercream, garnished with real Baci Hazelnut/Chocolate candy. Num...num.....nummmmmm!

                      How Many People Will a Cake This Size Serve?

Party slices in general are: 1 1/2" x 2" by 4 - 5".

6" Round Cake Serves: 10 - 12
8" Round Cake Serves: 28 - 30
10" Round Cake Serves: 38 - 45

                                 The Joy in Creating Cakes?

There is nothing...but nothing like the look of children's faces when they first see their cake! My only regret was that my camera phone was having issues! However, their faces will forever be in my mind. It was awesome.'s wishing, all three boys a very Happy Birthday! Hope they had fun on their special Lego Day!!!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Melina Maria's Christening Cake

Photo of Melina's Christening cake sent to me by Joanna.

This elegant Christening Cake was created for baby Melina Maria, who was Christened on June 30th.

The flowers were a mixture of fushia gumpaste magnolias studded with crystals. The middle floaters were  created with crystals which were individually placed all around them. Realized later on....after the fact that I could have purchased crystals on a strip! 
Since the cake was a four tiered cake, with floaters, we decided to assemble the top tier at the venue.

Melina Maria's reception was held at Il Bacco in Little Neck, New York. A really very lovely restaurant with the friendliest of staff and delicious food!

I had so much fun working on this cake's concept with Joanna, Melina's lovely mom. During our consultations it was decided to create a sleek, elegant cake with the colors of the flowers to compliment the fresh verdena roses her florist was to bring to the reception. It's always a good idea when creating any cake with sugarpaste flowers that the designer ask the color scheme and type of flowers will be at the reception.
As we were leaving...Joanna's florist was arriving....Oila!!!! the verdena roses were a complete match!!! We had nailed it! Left smiling!

 If you're wondering what flavors we created for this was a moist, brandy vanilla butter cake, filled with a pumped up Pistachio Italian Meringue Buttercram, infused with just the slightest hint of almond. num num!!!!  From what I heard....everyone loved the cake! Best compliment ever...."The cake was phenomenal! It tasted as great as it looked!" and "Why didn't you leave cards!!!" LOL That's something I simply have to learn how to do. I guess I just get caught up in the set up at delivery...that I forget.

Wishing Joanna and George - kaloriziko to onoma! And may all their dreams and wishes for their little Melina Maria come true.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Playstation3' and Panda's Weekend!

Playstation3 and Battlefield

Panda Cake for Paul
Twas a busy weekend this past weekend with two cakes ranging from techy to cutsie....Our cake to the right was a cake for a lucky young man who's girlfriend Mercedes had this cake made for him to celebrate their one year of being together. He loves his Battlefield Game. Happy One Year! 

The cake to the right is a cake for a gentleman who wanted a cake with a Panda wearing a Met's hat. Can't see the hat with this pic...but it's me. The birthday celebration took place at Jimmy Hays in Island Park, New York.
Happy Birthday Paul!

Sunday, March 25, 2012


Gillian's Surprise Hamburger Groom's Cake for Marty

Hamburger with all the Fixings - Lettuce - Onions - Pickels and Ketchup with a Side of Potato Chips

Fixings Anyone?
Tale of Hamburger Groom's Cake

Doing research for a hamburger groom's cake is a no brainer! So, when Diane (mother of the bride) and Gillian (bride) asked me to create a surprise groom's cake for Marty, I was only too thrilled (ahh all the possibilities!) to start the research. What research you ask? It's a hamburger after all! Ahh....not so my dear frients! There are so many to choose from! Skinny patties, Double patties, rounded buns, flat bums, tall buns, oversized buns! How does one create the "just right one" Well.....culinary research!!! Of course!!!
So, in the name of "inspiration" I not too reluctantly made my way to several of my favorite food establishments and finally decided - 10 pounds later - on the thickest patty with the tallest bun with sesame seeds on top on a checkerboard red tablecloth! Mustn't forget the side fixings of tomatoes, pickles and onions dripping in ketchup and for extra crunch...potato chips on the side.
Alas, however, it didn't taste like a hamburger - BUT - instead, the cake was a yellow butter cake filled with passion fruit IMBC and topped with crushed pineapple infused with a pineapple simple syrup.

The Delivery

The ride out to the Bourne Mansion in Oakdale, New York on the St. John's University Campus was a beautiful hour long ride with my friend Peggy, who often comes with me on deliveries "just for the ride". I usually don't drive on deliveries as I like to sit in the back of my SUV facing backwards checking on my creations. However, this time, my daughter, was in the City and I had to drive...making Peggy the designated cake watcher. "It's not doing the shimmy shake" or "still standin!" or "no Irish Jig here" were often the comments coming from the back seat!!!
We arrived at the Bourne Mansion only after getting lost for just a couple of minutes...and after a couple of ("controlled frantic) calls to Steve....the maitre d'...Remember...I was driving!!!
As we pulled onto the grounds of this glorious turn of the century mansion...we saw a beautiful bride and her hubby.....having their photos taken!  Oh my!!! It was Gillian and Marty! Peggy and I looked at each other with "Now What!" in our eyes!!! This is a surprise cake! How on earth do I get this cake inside the venue while the bride and groom are in front of the mansion!!! 
We could either go back out of the circular drive or just sit there waiting for them to go to another part of the grounds (thank God for tinted car windows)....or go into the campus!
So...after yet another phone call to Steve...and telling him of our situation, he instructed me to the east side of the building. There I would see a stoop and to go up the stoop. From there follow the hallway to the kitchen. that point...east - west - north - south was a post doctoral dissertation for me!
And a stoop!!!! A stoop!!!!! With a cake???
Okay...maybe it's just one or two steps!  OMG! (This is a flashback to when I was on "Iced With Sylvia Weinstock" - delivering a cake to Cipriani's - When the servers there told us there was no elevator!!!) LOL had to have been at least 7 steps! One step with a cake is like going rock climbing with a cake in one hand and the other on the ropes! lol
Going up 7 steps - with a cake in hand - especially when you are not 25 and physically fit is not an easy feat!( I've got to get myself to the gym!) by one -Peggy and I got up those steps - into an area that did not resemble the kitchen. I left Peggy there....guarding the cake with her life....and the promise of a strawberry farm hunt down some assistance.
After making my way through the kitchen (I really do love exploring!) (not kidding!) (I was actually thinking of The Lion - The Witch and the Wardrobe, half wishfully expecting to find a wardrobe and a magical land!) (Yah...I'm still a teacher at heart!)   and into the mansion itself...which by the way is Gorgeous!!! I mean simply splendid!!! It has sooooo much character! I think I was born in the wrong century! - Sorry for the digretion...back to the delivery.  I found a very helpful young server - Bob, who joyfully helped me find an appropriate and SAFE place to hide Martys cake - He assured me it would be fine where we put long as we put a sign on it asking people not to touch....Asking??? Nope....I said - commanding! So - using my food coloring pen....and a piece of paper....I gingerly wrote...
Gillian and Marty
Groom's Cake
Thank You!
With that....and after securing a couple of stray potato chips and sesame seeds with some royal icing from my emergency cake kit....and saying a silent blessing over the cake that it be a complete success and that Gillian's surprise for Marty was all that she hoped for - I took the long way home - in search for a strawberry farm stand - we were out east afterall!


Sunday, February 26, 2012

Audrey's Baby Shower Cake at Dee's in Forest Hills

Audrey's Baby Shower Cake at Venue - Dee's on Metropolitan Avenue in Forest Hills.
Don't you just love love love the pillows in the background! I sooo want to find a couple of them for my house!
Baby Block Hanging Wall Letters

Mommy and Baby Pram Topper All Completely Edible with Exception of the Pram Handles.

Full View of Cake
This baby shower cake was inspired by Vanessa and the invitation she sent me for Audrey's Baby Shower which was held at Dee's Restaurant on Metropolitan Avenue in Forest Hills, New York.
Cake flavor you ask? mmmmmmmmm! Yellow Buttercake filled with a scrumptious Mocha Italian Buttercream! I can just see this cake as being one of my most popular designs, with variations of course to match the personality of the different mommies, and themes of the showers.

I want to thank Vanessa for placing this cake commission with me and to Stella for referring me to Vanessa.   
To we say in Greek...."Kali Eleftheria".

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Michael Turns 50!!

Characature of Michael Sitting on His Espresso Cake

Michael and His Cake

Michael and Rosa

The Ruggiero Family
Michael's Cake

I love love love coffee! So for this coffee lover, creating a cake for the owner of Caffe Sacco was as the kids would say..."The Bomb!"
Rosa...Michael's lovely wife asked me to create this cake for her hubby Michael who turned 50, for his surprise party held at The Inn at New Hyde Park.
She told me a little about Michael....and her vision for his cake, and right away we knew what to do.
I searched his website for Caffe Sacco  to get a feel for his style...It's a beautiful website by the way. There was a poster pic of an espresso cup with coffee beans and from there I got inspiration to create this cake.
Rosa mentioned that Michael had just opened an Italian Restaurant...Mr. Joe's, and would it be possible to represent that on his cake. This again...was not a prob! The pic on the menu on the cake is actually their logo. Very dapper don't you think!  I will most definitely be visiting their new restaurant!

Wishing Michael a Most Happy 50th!

Deeana's Louboutin

Characature of Deeana and her Martini Glass Sitting on Top of Her Louboutin Shoe Box

Deeana Before Her Party with Her Louboutin Cake and an Artist's Rendering of the Signature Black Louboutin Pump

Louboutin Cake Center Stage

Turning 21 and getting a pair of Christian Louboutin's! Sweet!!! Pun intended!
I have been creating cakes for various members of Deeana's family for the past couple of years now. Every's an exciting project. This latest one, a black signature pump with the red sole was a great project.
This is what I love about being a cake designer....every project is different and I get to meet great people!!!!! AND IT'S ALL HAPPY!!!!


Gianna's Surprise Juicy Couture

Juicy Couture Handbag with Side Bow

Heart Key Chain Charms Handcrafted by Theodora
Talk about success surprises! Gianna's mom called me several weeks before Gianna's 13th Birthday to order a surprise cake for Gianna. Of course as with all consultations we talked about Gianna's favorite things....and Juicy Couture is one of her all time favorite designers. I have to tell you...the bags are really pretty!
Lisa didn't want Gianna to get a whiff of this surprise cake in any way, shape or form.
So we made arrangements for the cake to be dropped off at her neighbor's house....who by the way happened to be my daughter, which made it even easier.
On the day of delivery...which was to be before 12pm...I received a text from my daughter...."Are you on your way?" I was on the LIE!
Plans had changed...I was NOT to bring the cake to Maria's house...BUT to meet Lisa in the parking lot of the Apple Store at the Americana Manhasset Mall.  She was driving a black Cadillac SUV.  Okay...I'm thinking to myself...this is an espionage delivery.
No sooner do I pull into the lot...there she was...Lisa...with her trunk door open....the cake just had to get into the trunk...a.s.a.p. She didn't want to take any chances of Gianna seeing the cake!
"It's really hard trying to surprise Gianna!" daughter Theodora and I handed over the cake to Lisa. 
She had Stefano...her youngest son sit in the back to watch the seen on those tv shows...He jumped at the opportunity...What kid wouldn't? Wish I had taken a pic of Stefano and the cake.  And after kiss/kiss/hug/ I went back to Queens....and back to her sister-in-laws house went Lisa.
The surprise party was a success from what I heard...Gianna was very surprised with the party and her Juicy Couture Cake!
Momma Lisa!!! You did GREAT!
I have to say....this was the most fun delivery I've had to date!

Sunday, February 5, 2012

My Melina Turns 11!

Paint Splash Topper Cake for Melina (Splat's inspired by Anne Heap)

Melina's Paint Palette Cupcakes

What a fabulous time had by all at Melina's 11th Birthday Party yesterday held at Stay and Clay in Port Washington! wonderful granddaughter turned 11! Of course Yiayia Malia simply could not let a birthday go without making something special!
...A vanilla butter cake/cupcakes  infused with a strawberry simple syrup and  filled with the freshest and most  scrumptious strawberries and passion fruit Italian Meringue Buttercream. Now you would think that an 11 year old would want American Buttercream....but not Melina! She asked specifically that her cake be filled with IMBC cuz "Yiayia! you make it so light and fluffy!!!" Gotta love it! the way is a very talented and artsy young lady! Not that she's my granddaughter mind you...but she is pretty good with a brush and paint AND plays clarinet! Seems like it runs in the family....All of my grandbabies are into the arts in some way. Katie plays piano...and bakes, Costa plays trombone and loves to dabble in cakes as well!!

Well darlin!!!


I hope you had a fabulous day!

Oh lest I forget to give credit where credit is due...The topper cake for Melina's Paint Palette Cupcake Tower was inspired by Anne Heap, of New Jersey. She had done a three tiered paint splat cake...which was totally cool. Thank you for the inspiration Anne.

Justin Bieber and Cinderella Come to Port

Joanna and Her Justin Bieber Cake

Princess Cake for Carmela

Princess Carmela and her Princess Cake

So...what a busy weekend this baking mama has had! It was such a pleasure creating these cakes for sisters...Joanna who turned 13 and Carmela who turned 5!!!

Joanna our new teen...celebrated her 13th birthday with a Justin Bieber Cake. Joanna is such a sweet young lady. So so eloquent and polite and all the good things a teen can be! Her favorite colors are purple and lavender and so I created a cake in lavender with a 2-d standup of Justin singing. I guess it's the next best thing to having him be at her party.
Happy Birthday Joanna!!!!

Now as for our little princess Carmela...well she wanted a Princess Cake! And so...I set out to make a cake with a crown filled with royal icing pearls. A crown fit for a princess.
Carmela is adorable!!!! I wish when I was teaching to have had a classroom filled with Carmelas. 
Carmela's favorite color is pink.

  From what I heard...there was going to be a special visitor the Princess Carmela's guessed it....Cinderella of course!
Here is hoping that both Joanna's and Carmela's party were hugely fun!!!!

Their cakes were respectively....chocolate blackout cake filled with a chocolate mousse, and yellow buttercake filled with fresh sugared strawberries and Italian Meringue buttercream.




Bridal Shower Cake for Christina at Il Bacco

 Gumpaste shoe with ribbon and ribbon rose and some bling on top of purse cake.
 Purse Cake and gumpaste shoe. This was inspired by the invitation for Christina's Shower.
 Gift Box made to accompany the purse and shoe display.
 Gift Box Cake and Shoe on Purse Cake for Christina's Shower. Don't know if you can see the board but it was stenciled with a damask royal icing technique.
Cupcakes for Christina's Shower. Chocolate Blackout Cake topped with a Passionfruit Italian Meringue Buttercream

I so love wedding and shower cakes! Alexandra a friend and former teaching collegue called me to create a cake for her sister-in-law to be Christina's Bridal Shower. I can't tell you how happy and honored I was! Alexandra  is soooo sweet!
She had a vision for the shower, and I must say it was lovely. When I saw the invitation I knew exactly where to go with the cake.

The fun part of making the shoe was when I bought a pair of spiked heels and tore them apart to get just the right pitch for the sole. (Thank you Anne Heap for the great tutorial on gumpaste shoe making!) You should have seen the look on hubby's face when I sat there tearing the shoe apart!!! lol

Little tip for all my cake designer/decorator friends..something I'm sure you all know....but I thought I share anyway....Make as many of the decorations as you can well in advance of assembling your cakes....Makes for an easier and faster assembly on "building" day!

Now back to THE cake. It was a moist...yellow butter cake...filled with sugared fresh strawberries and passion fruit Italian Meringue buttercream. To get the buttercream really light an fluffy...I beat it on low-medium after I've added my flavorings for a couple more minutes. mmmmmmmm!

By the way...the venue...Il Bacco on Northern Blvd in Little Neck, NY is amazing. The venue for the shower was beautiful. I can't wait to go to dinner there one evening in their restaurant.

Congratulations to Chistina. As we say in Greek...Sta Stefana. Literally translated... And to the crowning.
Alexandra...what a lovely lovely job  you did organizing the shower! Everything was done so beautifully...and was ohhhhh so chic!!!! Brava!!!

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Sweet 16 Cowgirl Boots for Noelle

Brown and Turquoise Cowgirl Boots Cake
Edna M. and Daughter Noelle

I love country music and anything associated with it. So you can imagine how pleased I was to have received the phone call from Edna asking for a cowgirl boots cake for her lovely daughter Noelle who celebrated her  Sweet 16 today

Mom Edna shared with me that for Noelle's birthday, they were taking her to the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville, and could I please construct a pair of cowgirl boots cake for Noelle. dear friends...of course I said yes! Now mind you...this challenge was a first for me. As you all know...I have created car cakes, character cakes, a Cartier watch cake, designer purses, and designer shoes...but boots?  How hard could it be? At was a daunting project...but...not being one to back down from a cake challenge I forged forward.

First order of business was to talk about the style of boot cake Noelle might like.
 Remember on the Next Great Baker...when Buddy presented the bakers  with a challenge to create a cake for Miss USA? Well the one thing he said that rang true was "listen to your customer". I always try to listen to all of my wonderful clients, and then of course, I research to get inspiration and talk some more.  For Noelle's cake we decided on a cake that wasn't juvenille, no pinks or purples. I viewed several photos that Edna had sent...and from them I could see that the boots were playful...yet sophisticated. Perfect for a young lady. What caught my eye especially was a pair of boots that had turquoise in them...and so I ran with the turquoise and brown with a hint of silver beads.

I loved speaking with Edna, she is so lovely....and a cake decorator as well!!! read correctly...Edna M. is a cake decorator...and amazingly talented!  No pressure there to create a cake that would not only make the birthday girl happy but's being delivered to a cake decorator! make a very long story short....the cake was created...and turned out to be a "piece of cake" and a lot of fun to create and deliver! I'm still in awe at how easy it was to deliver. You know how stressful deliveries can be!

And...what made it even more special was finally meeting Edna and her beautiful family in person.
Edna...if you're reading this...the offer still stands for that Cake Playdate in Port!
Happy Sweet 16 Noelle.

Hints for Ease of Applying Fondant to A Cake Boot

1. Roll out your fondant between two sheets of plastic to the size you will need to cover the area in sections on the cake.
2. Open up the plastic and place a piece of parchment to cover the fondant and immediately flip it over.
3. If you are cutting out a pattern place your template over the exposed fondant and using your hobby knife proceed to cut out your pattern.
4. Transfer the fondant still attached to the parchment onto a cookie sheet and place in freezer for about 15 minutes.
5. After 15 minutes or so...remove from freezer. Peel off the parchment and apply fondant  to cake (smooth side up)...allowing the warmth of your hands to thaw the fondant, as you go along forming the fondant to the cake.

This method is really great as the fondant won't stretch and know that awful distortion that happens when you try to apply fondant to irregular shapes.

I also use this method to cut out intricate stencils. Saves so much time and aggravation!

Monday, January 16, 2012

Cupcakes and Cookies for Shirin

I had so much fun creating these cupcakes and Cookies for the cookie tree for Shirin....a beautiful mommy to be! Shirin is a clothing designer/owner of Shirin NYC. Her wonderful Aunt Sandra and I sat together to brainstorm the concept Sandra had for the cupcakes and cookies.
Since Shirin owns this cothing company, Sandra  thought it would be a great idea to make cookies with the prints of designs found on Shirin's onsie's and little tops in the colors of the adorable outfits Shirin creates.
The cupcakes were inspired by applique designs of little birds and owls, but also fall into the theme of the cookie designs.
Sandra created the tree stand for the the cookies. How creative is that!

Cookies were a lemon/vanilla sugar cookie...and the cupcakes were a blackout chocolate cake filled with cookies and cream topped with Vanilla Italian Meringue Buttercream.

Here is wishing Shirin good luck.