Saturday, December 22, 2007

this one's for david

david's nice, and so is kathy. david was my clean up the dishes partner on that flooded sink thanksgiving of 06. he always has a story to tell. interesting stories, mind you. for his birthday, this is what i've created.

holiday basket

Originally uploaded by organic baker
tara organized a holiday cupcake swap for the los angeles cupcake meet up group last sunday, december 16. it was my first time to join such an exciting thing and i must say the event was - sweet.

i paused, thought, and thought some more when i received the instructions about the swap. it mentioned something about having holiday inspired cupcakes - completely apropos for the season. sure, the obligatory decadent chocololate and spice flavors are the way to go (hey, i gave in - i made my all time favorite black forest cupcakes) but somehow, i know that in the back of my head, it was not my holiday cupcake.

i was happy with the black forest idea. if there is anything i look forward to every year during the holidays, it would have to be a box of chocolate covered cherries. i never liked it when i was growing up - too confusing, too gooey, too weird and hmm, not anything like ferrero rocher. but suddenly, december of 2002, i dragged my mom along to search for chocolate covered cherries. i remember she told me that i never liked it, with that i responded - i know, i never liked it, but now i think i'm ready for it. from then on, it was my holiday in a box.

driving home one afternoon last week i figured though black forest is holiday inspired enough, it doesn't really encompass what holiday is for me. then i remembered a cake we would have - not really my top fave, but my mom likes it a lot - then like a calling, i knew it was meant to be.

a special cupcake like this needs respect - and a special place on the table. my regular box will not serve it right, so a basket it is. the effort it took to produce one makes me more than qualified to be a grandma.

a number of people from the swap asked me for the recipe. here are the steps, and if you are patient enough, you are more than welcome to try.

2 dozens vanilla cupcake - use whatever recipe you enjoy
fill the cupcakes with custard.

simmer 5 cups whole milk with 1 cup sugar until reduced to about half the amount. let the mixture. transfer to a double boiler, add 8 egg yolks and cook until thick (about 15 minutes). let the mixture cool, add 3 T butter and 1 t vanilla.

top the custard filled cupcake with meringue, bake at 400 degress until brown - or torch it like crazy.
beat 8 egg whites with 1/4 t cream of tartar and 3/4 cup sugar until stiff.


ps -

check out the following links for the cupcake swap event:

Saturday, December 15, 2007

merry christmas

merry christmas
Originally uploaded by organic baker
for Lil Bit's christmas party, I made vanilla with candy cane cuppies topped by little christmas trees. How merry!

Friday, November 9, 2007

the golden pig

golden pig
Originally uploaded by organic baker
ms. terry requested for a cake with a golden pig motif for mr. mike's 60th birthday party. she didn't think cupcakes were fitting for the occasion so a cake it was. she simply wanted a cake drawn with a golden pig, but i envisioned her pig to be something better.
this cake had given me an exciting journey. i believed i can pull it off.
i believe i did.

notes: 10x2 base layer topped with pig shaped whole wheat organic banana chocolate swirl cake. base layer frosted with chocolate fudge buttercream while the pig was frosted with chocolate ganache. finished with edible gold spray. decorated with milk chocolate gold coins.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

halloween creature 07

i thought i was wanting to make frankentstein for my chocolate peanut butter fudge cupcakes. then roan and i thought it looked more like a dead tree... then we added a smidgen of red icing and it looked terribly sad and guilty of eating something.... uhmm... bloody... so we decided to keep this as our pet... we'll save it and have it as our midnight snack after running errands.

as far as the cupcakes... it had a makeover... into this:

something nice, classically piped, fitting colors for the joyous occasion.

so after delivery, roan and i headed to valencia. we came back home hours and hours and hours later. we found this waiting for us:

i guess it got tired and fell asleep.

patience my child

gotta love em
Originally uploaded by organic baker
this box took the most time, love, patience and care than anything i have ever created before.
jack skellington... as easy as it sounds, requires the steadiest of hands, precise eye-hand coordination and just the right pressure to grab a sprinkle, yes, one little black jimmie with a tweezer (i never thought they were that delicate!) carefully placed on jack's mouth.
love it, love it, love it.

stop looking at me

roan rocks!
Originally uploaded by organic baker
roan came right in time when i needed help. this is her first frosting job ever and she totally rocks! we had so much fun decorating these cupcakes. really really cool.
tropical cupcakes made for a halloween party.

like this photo? more on flickr.

Friday, October 26, 2007

for vicky

for vicky
Originally uploaded by organic baker
vicky turned 5 on the 2nd week of october. to celebrate this event, they had a party at the park. with these cupcakes, i want to be 5 all over again.
they had a box of banana chocolate, chocolate peanut butter, coconut and tropical.

it's a girl!

baby shower
Originally uploaded by organic baker
a baby shower is always a fun thing, as long as it's not for me, i says. this event stirred me like crazy as the parents-to-be wanted a jungle theme. to my relief, i discovered that the jungle theme was for the nursery, not necessarily for the food... whew! marissa likes the banana strawberry cake, so that's what she had. while chitchatting with the party goers, i was delighted to learn that dorothy has never had a piece of cake from the showers that she's been to mostly because she doesn't stay until the party is over. this event, according to her, is her first shower cake (of course she left early). hurray to dorothy for making a great and valid point!

Sunday, September 30, 2007

pear and lavender cupcake with white chocolate ganache

nope, this is not a box order by anyone. nor is this something for sale. with all the steps this entailed, my golly gnu this might as well be something for the thanksgiving feast!

i believe in making sure that all components of a dish should be good on its own. the pear was amazingly fresh. the bottle of Gewurztraminer was great on its own. combine it together and add a teaspoon of lavender... amazingly wonderful poached pear.

good enough? sure! what goes with poached pear? ice cream.

but i dont have an ice cream maker. just not YET. so let's make something ridiculously parallel to it... a whipped white chocolate ganache! yep. totally organic! *did i say i infused the white chocolate with lavender?*

now those two are good enough on its own. but i believe in pushing things to its limit. let's turn it into a cupcake! after all, that's what this blog is all about!

pear. white chocolate. lavender. yum.

(check out for other unbelievably good sweets!)

Saturday, September 29, 2007

boxful of choco cranberry

boxful of choco cranberry
Originally uploaded by organic baker
jim, lisa, austin and gavin came to town about a month ago before heading for a weeklong vacation in kauai. to celebrate their arrival, here we have a beautiful box of chocolate cranberry cupcakes with cream cheese frosting. austin finished his dinner just to have cupcake! now isn't that neat!

box of coco butterscotch

box of coco butterscotch
Originally uploaded by organic baker
cupcake is a crowd pleaser wherever it goes. however, the amount of icing on the cupcake is always the big debate. amazing how one cupcake and it's icing can be too much for one and too little for another. here goes my box of coco butterscotch with chocolate fudge frosting. to solve that icing question... i did myself and the rest of the room a favor. half of the box had more fudge, while half was topped with just the right amount of frosting. everyone happy!

Siobhan's Pink cupcakes

There's something with the color pink that can make any girl smile. For Siobhan's birthday, she got 4 boxes of chocolate cupcakes with fluffy 7 minute icing tinted in pink and 4 boxes of vanilla cupcakes topped with pink vanilla buttercream. all the girls in camp went crazy for the pink. oh well boys, better luck next time!

mary's 0 cholesterol

my friend mary was thrilled to learn about wholesome cakes. she was all the more thrilled to learn that aside from regular cupcakes, i also make vegan ones. this vegan number was a pleasant surprise for everyone. most of the people in the meeting never had a vegan cupcake before and all those who tried liked it... a lot.

she made me so happy when she got the box. i saw her like a proud momma of a new born child, the box in her arms showing it off to everyone she sees! isn't that special!

Thursday, August 23, 2007

homegirl's box

black and white
Originally uploaded by organic baker
i finally saw grace today... after 8 long months!!! nothing can make me happier than to send her home an all chocolate box. here we have a caramel filled chocolate cupcake with whipped cream topping and sacher torte cuppies. her better half rudy loves sweets a lot... i hope this box gets 2 thumbs up so i can get to see grace more often. oh how i missed grace!

gouda's box

goudas box
Originally uploaded by organic baker
here's a box specially made for brandon (his wine shop rocks!). an assortment of 6 different flavors - this box is pretty hard to beat. here we have (from left to right, top two rows) strawberry banana swirl, banana chocolate swirl, blueberry cheesecake, tropical, (bottom row) lemon and caramel apple cupcakes.
best served with moscato!

daphne's box

daphne's box
Originally uploaded by organic baker
being a true fiesta that she is, chocolate is always at the top of her agenda. here is a trio of chocolate cupcakes known as her power of three. first we have the delectable chocolate cupcake with chocolate chips topped with a creamy organic peanut butter frosting. next to it is a black forest cupcake, filled with cherries and topped with whipped cream and dark chocolate shaving. last but definitely not the least, we have an espresso chocolate cupcake with an espresso buttercream frosting. chocolate overload!

for kathy

choco and coco
Originally uploaded by organic baker
t'was Kathy's birthday last aug. 11 and i made something special for her. she always says that coconut with lemon filling frosted with 7 minute icing is her childhood favorite. i know i can never top mabel's cakes, but from her favorite, i decided to make a whole wheat coconut cake then filled it with a tangy homemade lemon curd then topped it with meringue (torching made me VERY happy). knowing that she is a chocolate lover like me, i made her a rich whole wheat chocolate cupcake topped with whipped cream frosting then covered with chocolate ganache. as Kathy would say... yummy!!!

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Oliver's Assorted Box

My grade school friend Oliver wanted to bring some little cakes to work for July 20. Early that week, i had to make a batch for a health food store and he took a box with him to work as well. This box was an assortment of coconut, banana chocolate swirls and mocha. He said his work friends loved it.

Dyle and Kathy got the same box too for an engagement dinner over at their place. Everyone thought the mocha was 'spot on'. Happy happy happy...

martha's box

martha's box
Originally uploaded by organic baker
Martha wanted a box of chocolate cupcakes with peanut butter frosting to call her own. She wanted her daughter's teacher to try them since she's all about eating organic. Yummy yummy yummy!

vero's birthday cupcake

My friend Veronica's biggest addiction in life is anything chocolate with nuts. I conived with her daughter Griz and agreed to meet up for lunch over at Tarantino's in Pasadena on Friday the 13th! Little does Vero know that it was a surprise lunch for her! Martha joined our Italian feast. Too bad Alicia was having a wonderful time in Virginia with Jazzie and totally missed the fun. I made her a nice batch of in your face chocolate cupcakes with creamy peanut butter frosting (freshly ground pure peanuts from LA farmer's market). Also in her box (but not in picture) was my first batch of black forest cupcakes. It was a 'girl thaang' according to Griz. We were full and happy.

mocha platter

sea of mocha
Originally uploaded by organic baker
it's daisy's boss' birthday. daisy wanted me to make a 'tooth' cupcake. idea was great and more than fitting (he's a dentist) but it wasn't really sold to the idea of bunching up the cupcakes together then slathering it with white frosting on top. so here we have the mocha platter surrounded by strawberry cupcakes. all's well that ends well. they loved it.

Event date: June 30, 2007

coconut cake

coconut cake
Originally uploaded by organic baker
I managed to win Mrs. Adam's sweet tooth when I first brought this to school. Actually, it was her idea for me to bake instead of teach little ones. So here goes one for Luke's birthday. This features a rich coconut cake with coconut cream frosting with raw coconut chips inside and out! Talk about coconut overload! Charlie Chaplin would have loved this!

Luke's birthday train

Originally uploaded by organic baker
I made a birthday cake for Luke, my friend Veronica's most favorite son. The cute little boy that he is, I wanted to make something special for him. Aside from making a coconut cake, I decided to throw in this train cake. Though not exactly Thomas the train, at least i gave him a whole train set. What makes this cake special? It's an all organic blueberry cake that is accentuated by using raw organic honey from Canada.

event date: June 30, 2007