Sunday, August 29, 2010

Tuxedo Cake for Dad's 50th!

I believe that every special occasion deserves something fancy - so, what better than a Tuxedo Cake to celebrate my Daddy's 50th birthday!  This cake was very ambitious, and did not turn out "perfect", but it was scrumptious and had a personality of its own.
4 layers of dark chocolate cake, whipped cream frosting, chocolate ganache and buttercreram decorations ... whew!

All lit up and ready for the party!

I found the recipe for this cake here at The Baking Pan.  Because of the complexity of this cake, the only variation I made from this recipe was that I used two 8x3 round pans to make 4 layers instead of the 3 9x2 pans the recipe calls for.  Next time, I may go for the shorter cake, just for convenience. 

Tuxedo Cake

4 cups granulated sugar
1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
4 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup buttermilk
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
1 cup canola or vegetable oil
2 cups water
4 large eggs

Whipped Cream Filling and Frosting:
4 cups chilled whipping (heavy) cream
1¼ cups confectioner's (powdered) sugar

Chocolate Glaze:
4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped into small pieces
½ cup whipping (heavy) cream
¼ cup Lyle’s Golden Syrup ** I could not find any of this syrup in my local Publix.  I subbed 3 parts light Karo Syrup and 1 part Molasses.
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract


1.Preheat oven to 350o degrees F. Prepare three 9-inch round layer cake pans; lightly grease the pans with shortening, line with parchment paper, and then lightly grease the top of the parchment paper and dust with flour.
2.In a large mixing bowl, combine sugar, cocoa, flour, baking soda, and salt; whisk together to mix. Set aside.
3.In a small bowl, combine buttermilk and vanilla. Set aside.
4.In a medium heavy saucepan combine butter, oil, and water. Heat over low heat until the butter is melted, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon or rubber spatula.
5.Pour the butter mixture into the sugar mixture. Using an electric mixer on low speed, or a wire whisk, stir or whisk until combined and smooth. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula so the mixture blends evenly
6.Crack the eggs into a small mixing bowl and whisk with a fork to thoroughly break up the eggs, and then add the eggs to the batter, stirring until thoroughly combined. Add the buttermilk mixture, stir until combined.
7.Pour the batter into the prepared pans. Bake 40 to 45 minutes or until a long toothpick, wooden skewer, or cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove from oven and place pans on a wire cooling rack to cool for 10 to 15 minutes then remove cake from the pans and place the cake on the wire cooling rack to finish cooling. Cool completely before frosting.

Whipped Cream Filling and Frosting:
8.In a large mixing bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the whipping cream until soft mounds form; gradually add the powdered sugar, continue beating until thick and stiff. Tip: the cream will whip easier if the mixing bowl and beaters are first chilled; place in the refrigerator to chill until ready to whip the cream.
9.Place one cake layer on a cake plate. Using an offset spatula thickly spread some of the whipped cream over the top. Top with the remaining cake layers, coating the top of each with the whipped cream, and then covering the sides of the cake. Spread the cream as smooth as possible over the top and sides.
10.Refrigerate the cake at least one hour to stabilize the whipped cream before glazing.

Chocolate Glaze:
11.Place the chopped chocolate in a medium bowl. Set aside.
12.In a small heavy saucepan over medium low heat, heat the cream until it is hot and just beginning to steam. Remove from heat and pour over the chocolate, stirring until the chocolate is completely melted. Add Lyle’s Golden Syrup and vanilla, stirring until completely mixed.
13.Pour the chocolate mixture into a pitcher, or liquid measuring cup with a pouring spout and let chocolate glaze cool for 10 minutes. Do not let the glaze sit longer than 10 minutes because it will thicken and become difficult to pour over the cake.
14.Slowly pour the glaze over the cake. Cover the top of the cake entirely, letting some of the glaze drizzle down the sides, and allowing some of the whipped cream show through the drizzles around the side of the cake.
15.Refrigerate the cake until the glaze is set and the whipped cream frosting is firm, at least one hour. Refrigerate Leftovers.
16.To serve, slice the cake with a long serrated knife, cleaning the knife between each slice.

The inside
I think Daddy liked it!
This was, by far, the hardest cake I have ever baked, but definitely the tastiest. I am so proud that it turned out well!  A smaller version of this cake is coming soon - it is the perfect balance of chocolate and light whipped cream.

Happy Baking!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Red Velvet - Cupcakes and Kisses!

A few weeks ago, my mother had the most amazing red velvet donut from the Donut Hole in Santa Rosa Beach, FL.  This donut made such a buzz around our office, that Mom and I have been wanting to try to make them ever since!  Mom bought a mini-donut pan and all the  necessary ingredients for the batter, and I was to try and duplicate the magical donut.  We found a recipe at, and decided to go for it after dinner last night.  The final results did not render a perfect red velvet donut, but, rather, a mini-donut pan adventure and some delicious red velvet cupcakes, who knew?!

Red Velvet Kisses and Cupcakes Recipe
(from Devil Donuts)
1 1/2 cups of sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) of butter, room temperature
2 eggs, room temperature
2 1/3 cups of cake flour (2 tbsp. cornstarch to just under 1 cup of all purpose flour)
2 tablespoons of Dutch-processed cocoa powder
1 teaspoon of baking soda
1 teaspoon of baking powder
1/2 teaspoon of salt
1 cup of buttermilk or 1 tbsp. white vinegar added to 1 cup of milk
1 1/2 tablespoons of red food coloring
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
1 teaspoon of distilled white vinegar

This recipe made such a gorgeous batter! I creamed together the butter and sugar, then added the eggs in one at a time.  I mixed together the flour, cocoa, soda, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl. Then, I whisked together the buttermilk, red coloring, vanilla and white vinegar.  I added the dry ingredients into the butter mixture alternately with the wet ingredients - beginning and ending with the dry. 

Now comes the fun part!  For a mini-donut pan, you MUST fill the pan only 2/3 full or you get mushrooms, like this:
They may look funny, but they still taste amazing!
The hubby thought it was pretty hilarious!
I figured out that the best way to fill the pan is with a piping bag, not a spoon - it was much easier to control the amount I added. Once we filled the pan correctly, we got better results:

For the cream cheese frosting, I used my basic recipe:
1 cup Crisco Vegetable Shortening
8oz. softened cream cheese
1 tsp. pure vanilla flavoring
8-10 tsp. milk
3-4 cups powdered sugar
pink of salt.

Simply cream all the ingredients together and add sugar and milk to get the consistency you desire.

I must admit that this is the best red velvet cake I have ever made.  The texture is perfect and the taste is spot-on.  The only thing I may do differently next time is add a little more cocoa to the batter.  The red velvet kisses are going to be perfect for Christmas parties!

Next up - Daring Bakers and Birthday Cake! Happy Baking!

Monday, August 23, 2010

Wilton Class #4 - Final Cake!

Tonight was my last class of the Wilton Decorating Basics Course, and I learned how to write on cakes and the Ribbon Rose (my favorite!).  The writing was a lot easier than I expected, but the roses took some practice and getting used to.  At the request of my husband, I did a very brightly colored cake with lots of orange:
Two layer marble cake with buttercream icing, decorated with a 'bouquet' of
 ribbon roses and a shell border.
For the cake, I wanted something different, so I did Martha Stewart's Marble Cake.  It has a hint of coffee in the chocolate that I love!  Marble cake feels fancy to me (it is what I had at my wedding), but it was surprisingly easy to make. 

Martha Stewart's Marble Cake:
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened, plus more for pans
1 3/4 cups cake flour (not self-rising), plus more for dusting
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup milk, room temperature
1/3 cup heavy cream, room temperature
1 cup sugar
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/3 cup best-quality unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 cup boiling water
2 tablespoons instant espresso powder, for mocha layers
* This recipe makes 3 1/2 cups of batter.  I doubled it and had enough for two 8 inch round pans + 12 cupcakes.

Sift together cake flour, baking powder, and salt; set aside. Combine milk and cream in a small bowl; set aside. Cream butter and sugar on medium speed in the bowl of an electric mixer until pale and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Add eggs one at a time; mix well after each addition. Mix in vanilla. Add flour mixture in three batches, alternating with the milk mixture and beginning and ending with flour. Combine cocoa and the boiling water in a medium bowl; add espresso powder. Stir 1 cup cake batter into chocolate mixture. Fill prepared pans with spoonfuls of vanilla and chocolate batter to form a checkerboard pattern. Run the tip of a paring knife or a wooden skewer through batter in a figure-eight motion to make swirls. Bake at 350 degrees until tops are golden - about 30 minutes. Let cakes cool completely in pans on wire racks.

The inside of the marble cake.

 The next Wilton course starts in September, and I will be making some much more complicated flowers - I absolutely can not wait!  Next up this week - 2 birthday cakes and my first 'Daring Bakers' challenge.
Happy Baking!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Florida State University Cupcakes!

This weekend marks a very bittersweet occasion for my family - my youngest sister is leaving for college ... talk about feeling old! She is going to FSU, which, thankfully, is only 2 hours from me; not too far for lots of visits =)  I'm super duper proud of her though, and I know she will do just great!  Anyway, I am going to Alabama this weekend to visit family, so I wanted to send her to school with something from me, since I won't be able to help her move in.  Meeting new roomies can be stressful, so what better way to break the ice than delicious cupcakes with a little school spirit, and they just had to be chocolate because chocolate makes everything more fun!

To create these cupcakes, I used gold foil cupcake papers and an adaption of the classic Martha Stewart One-Bowl Chocolate Cupcakes from Martha Stewart's Baking Handbook.  I topped the cupcakes with maroon-colored buttercream icing, sparkly gold sprinkles, and a cute little FSU logo.  I think I achieved the 'garnet and gold' look I was going for.

One-Bowl Chocolate Cupcake Recipe (adapted from Martha Stewart):
1 1/4 cup all purpose flour
1/2 + 1/8 cup cocoa powder
1 1/4 cup sugar
1 1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/2 + 1/8 tsp. baking powder
1/2 + 1/8 tsp. salt
1 tsp. instant espresso powder
1 tsp. meringue powder
1 large egg + 1 egg yolk
1/2 + 1/8 cup milk
1/4 cup + 1 tbsp. unsweetened applesauce
1/2 + 1/8 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1/2 + 1/8 cup warm water

The best part about this recipe is that it is 'one-bowl'!  Simply sift together the flour, cocoa, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt, coffee, and meringue powder.  Add the eggs, milk, applesauce, vanilla, and warm water to the bowl, and beat on low with an electric mixer until the ingredients are just blended (about 2 minutes).  The batter will be very runny and you should see little fizzy bubbles on top.  Fill your prepared baking cups about 2/3 full and bake at 350 degrees for approximately 20 minutes.  TIP: When baking in foil cupcake papers, make sure you spray everything very well with nonstick spray or the liners will stick and the cupcake tops will be ruined!
The cakes baked up perfctly - firm enough to hold the icing, yet they had a light and fluffy texture
Vanilla Buttercream Frosting (from Wilton, medium consistency):
1 cup Crisco vegetable shortening
1/2 tsp. pure vanilla flavoring
1/2 tsp. butter flavoring
1 tsp. vanilla latte coffee creamer
9 tsp. milk or water
1 tbsp. meringue powder
1 lb. powdered sugar

This buttercream recipe uses Crisco because this summer heat tends to melt butter.  The Crisco holds up  much better, and the butter flavoring gives the yummy taste we are all looking for! To make the frosting,  cream together the shortening, flavorings, coffee creamer, and milk with an electric mixer.  Add the meringue powder and powdered sugar and beat until creamy.  I used one small container of  Wilton Christmas Red and 1/2 container of Wilton Burgundy icing colors to create the garnet color. To make the swirl, fill a disposable bag with icing and fit it with the 1M star tip.  Start at the edge of the cupcake and work around in a circle, applying firm pressure.  For these cupcakes, I left a little room around the edge so I could press in the sprinkles.

For the toppers, I cut out little FSU logos and taped them to toothpicks - super easy!

I just can't wait for my sister to taste and share these cakes - GO SEMINOLES! And, of course, Happy Baking!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Wilton Class #3 - Flowers!

Last night was my third Wilton decorating class, and we learned a few different kinds of flowers as well as how to properly ice a cupcake.  I used my basic vanilla butter cake recipe; while preparing the batter, a certain little boy distracted me and I put a tablespoon of baking power in the batter instead of teaspoon, SO these cupcakes were extra fluffy =) It's good to know that a little extra baking power doesn't effect the taste! My favorite flowers are the drop flowers, but the shaggy mums are really fun to make.  I think the most useful thing I learned is the proper 'swirl' for the top of the cupcake - so pretty! Here are a few pictures!
Pom Pom Flower and Shaggy Mum
The petal flower my teacher showed me
Drop Flowers

Shaggy Mum and Pom Pom Flower
All the cupcakes sittin' pretty on the cake stand.  They made it home in one piece!
Next week we make our final cake with writing!  We also learn the Ribbon Rose, which is my favorite (in pictures, anyway).  Next up in the baking order is a special surprise for a very special someone - watch for the blog tomorrow or Thursday.  Happy Baking!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Glazed Spice Muffins

After assessing the number of baked goods I have consumed in the past month, I decided it would be in my better interest to come up with some healthier alternatives to the traditional recipes I have been baking. I researched and read a lot, and decided to try a "doughnut" muffin, made my way.  While this muffin is not 100% healthy, it does have some healthy substitutions and was a successful first attempt at healthful baking (and quite delicious, too!). While in the kitchen working this batter, the muffin turned into more of a spice cake, so I decided to go with that!  This recipe produced the absolute prettiest muffin top I have ever baked myself.  My sister and husband both approved, and I believe this muffin may make more appearances at breakfast time!

The middle:

Glazed Spice Muffins:
1/4 cup butter, cubed
1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
1/2 cup honey
1/3 cup brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 to 1 ¼ teaspoons ground nutmeg, to taste (I used 1)
1 teaspoon cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 2/3 cups all-purpose flour, spooned and leveled.
2/3 + 1/8 cup milk, approximately. (My fellow facebookers out there know why this is approximate)
For the Glaze:
3 tablespoons butter; melted
1 cup confectioners’ sugar; sifted
3/4 teaspoon vanilla
2 tablespoons hot water

- Cream together butter, applesauce, honey and sugar until smooth.  Add in eggs one at a time.  Stir in baking powder, soda, nutmeg, cinnamon, salt, and vanilla.  Fold in flour and milk alternately, ending in flower.  Fill muffin liners almost full and bake for approximately 16 minutes at 425 degrees.  To prevent sticking, lightly mist the muffin liners with cooking spray before filling. Let muffins cool for 10 minutes and then glaze. -

Happy Baking!

Monday, August 9, 2010

Wilton Class #2!

Tonight was my second Wilton Decorating Class, and we did a 'cupcake cake'!  Here is the final result:

And from the side:

Earlier today, I searched and searched for a good yellow cake recipe, and I could not find one I was 100% satisfied with.  SO, I took the Wilton Butter Cake recipe and modified it to suit what I wanted (a nice firm texture, but still light, fluffy and buttery):
3/4 cups butter, room temperature
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
2 eggs
1 Tbsp. meringue powder
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/8 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup milk
3 Tbsp. unsweetened applesauce
- Cream together butter and sugar until fluffy; Add eggs one at a time; add meringue powder; add vanilla and applesauce; mix together dry ingredients and add in alternately with milk.  Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 35 Minutes (until toothpick comes out clean).  This recipe makes enough batter for one 8x2 round pan. -

The first thing we did in class was level, tort and fill our cakes.  This was my first time using a cake leveler, and I loved it!  I filled my cake with chocolate pudding =) 

The hardest part, by far, was getting the base layer of icing smooth.  My teacher helped me tremendously with this - I have to practice, practice, practice!

Sampling the cake, and watching my husbands face, was the best part =) I am loving this baking and decorating adventure more and more every day!

I am so proud of how the cake turned out, and so, very very, excited to decorate cupcakes in class next week - we get to make flowers! 

Happy Baking!

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Who doesn't love a s'more? Oh, and a strawberry muffin, too!

One of my most favorite flavor combinations, ever, is toasty graham cracker, chocolate, and marshmallow - yep, S'MORES!  This is the first cupcake I really made into my own creation, and I am super proud of how they turned out.

To create a cool, layered effect, I combined a few different recipes.
Here is what the cupcake looks like cut in half:

For the graham cracker crust:
1/4 cup melted butter
1 cup graham cracker crumbs
- Mix together and press, firmly, into the bottom of cupcake paper -

For the chocolate cake, I used a recipe adapted from Martha Stewart's One-Bowl Chocolate Cupcakes:
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
3/4 cup warm water
3/4 cup 2% milk
3 tablespoons unsweetened applesauce
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- Fill each cupcake paper 2/3 full, on top of graham cracker crust, and bake at 350 degrees for approximately 18 minutes. -

For the homemade marshmallow frosting, I used Martha Stewart's Marshmallow Frosting recipe, cut in half.  It is a rather difficult frosting to make, with the double boiler and all, but totally worth it.  I may never buy marshmallows in a store again! For the tops, I filled a disposable frosting bag with the marshmallow and fit the bag with the 1M star tip, and simply swirled the frosting on top.  I finished them with a sprinkle of crumbled graham crackers.  I will be using this frosting on SO many more baked goodies - it was perfectly sweet, fluffy and delicious.

I sent 8 cupcakes to my parent's house (I couldn't have all that tempting yumminess laying around my house!), and had to get thrifty and creative in my packing.  I made foil rings and stuffed around the edges with wax paper.  My mom reported a perfect trip and arrival! My husband said these were his favorite cupcakes, ever, and I just had to agree!  I am definitely keeping this recipe for future baking!

On Friday morning, I decided to try and redeem the fallen blueberry muffins with a more "healthy" strawberry muffin with the same streusel topping.  The goal was for these muffins not to fall.  I succeeded!

I used a recipe adapted from Here:
1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flower
1/4 cup white sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/3 cup unsweeted apple sauce
1 egg
1/3 cup milk
1 cup fresh chopped strawberries
-Mix all dry ingredients together.  In a separate bown. mix wet ingredients.  Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and stir until just combined.  Fold in strawberries.  Fill muffins papers all the way to the top. -
Streusel topping:
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup butter, cubed
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- Mix all ingredients together in a small bowl.  DO NOT MELT THE BUTTER.  Sprinkle a healthy tablespoon on top of each muffin. -

I baked these muffins at 400 degrees for about 18 minutes.  If you remove them from the pan while they are still warm, the muffin top will pull away easily and not stick.  My Daddy and husband both said they they preferred the taste of the blueberry muffins, but they enjoyed the strawberry a lot.  These have a more hearty feel and pretty brown color from the whole wheat flour and brown sugar - definitely a keeper.

Happy Baking!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Fallen Blueberry Muffins

This morning, I thought I would be a sweet wife (and daughter) and make homemade blueberry muffins for my husband and daddy before they left for work.  I found this basic recipe here, and followed it pretty much to the T ... I neglected to pay attention to the tips on how to make the streusel topping =(  Instead of crumbling the butter, I melted the butter and poured on the topping - 1/2 my muffins FELL in the middle!  This has never happened to me before! Definitely a lesson learned. Here is what they looked like:

Thankfully, the other half turned out like this:

The insides baked up perfectly, and the blueberries didn't sink to the bottom, like this:

Paul was very interested in Daddy's muffin

And, eventually, all the muffins ended up like this:

I think I will be making strawberry ones next, using this same base muffin recipe.  This muffin recipe (with the streusel made correctly) is my new favorite muffin, ever. So fluffy and delicious that everyone forgave the sunken middles! 

Monday, August 2, 2010

Wilton Decorating Basics Class #1 ... and a Mad Men Inspired Tiramisu

Tonight was my very first Wilton decorating class!  I learned so much about torting and icing a cake - ya know, those things you thought you knew, but, really, you didn't?  These classes are definitely going to be a great learning experience.  We learned how to fill icing bags the easy way and how to pipe stars.  I will post pictures of our projects as I do them in class.  Tonight we mostly watched and learned, and, after all the watching, I decided I must have a Wilton Trim N Turn Plus Cake Turntable and 10" Cake Leveler - how have I ever done anything without these tools!

The instruction sheet for this week's class called for 6 sugar cookies to decorate in class.  So, after much internal debate about whether or not to buy said cookies at Publix, I decided to make them.  I have always had a hard time making "cookie cutter cookies"; my cookies always look a bit more "rustic" ;-)  So, today, I searched the web high and low and finally found an amazing recipe that I altered just a bit by adding more sugar and vanilla.  You can find the recipe here.  Instead of rolling out these cookies, I formed them into perfectly round balls, rolled the balls in sugar, and then smashed them with my palms onto prepared wax paper - this is A LOT easier than a rolling pin (and a lot cleaner), and your cookies turn out thick, fluffy, and sparkly! I'll take delicious over perfectly flat any ole' day! Here are some pictures I took after piping stars onto my cookies in class (we ran out of time and only had 15 minutes, so we did not get to color the icing):

As most of you know, AMC's Mad Men shows on Sunday nights.  In honor of this glorious show, my husband and I always make a special dinner and have a nice wine or cocktail while watching.  Yesterday, we decided to go Italian (surprise!) and make a copycat of Macaroni Grill's Penne Rustica (recipe here), and what goes better with Penne Rustica than, you guessed it, tiramisu!  Since the new rule in my home is "no more store bought desserts", of course, I had to attempt to make the said tiramisu.  In my normal fashion, I scoured the Internet and found a basic recipe here.  I sent my sweet husband after the ingredients, and, wouldn't ya know it, Publix did not have any marscapone cheese .... NONE!  So, I subbed in 8oz. of cream cheese, 1/4 cup sour cream, and 2 tbsp whipping cream, and it worked beautifully.  I must admit that it was quite nice to not have to bake anything - I just chilled it in the fridge until it set up!  It is not the prettiest tiramisu I've ever seen, but it sure did taste great =)  Here are some pictures:

Next up ... Wilton class #2 and a picture transfer cake!

Sunday, August 1, 2010

I just love getting things in the mail!

My Wilton Decorating Basics Student Kit came in the mail along with my Wilton Decorating Basics Lesson Plan! Amazon told me it wouldn't be here until the 4th, so I was very worried about it being here on time, and I was very pleasantly surprised when it got here early! Looking through the booklet and inspecting all the various gadgets is a lot of fun, and I just can not wait for my first class tomorrow.  I have to make plain butter or sugar cookies tonight for the class - I will post pictures once they are decorated. 

I have decided that I am never, ever making brownies from a box again.  Tuesday night, while hanging out with my best friend and my husband, we had a mega chocolate craving.  I didn't have a box of brownies, so I decided to experiment and make them from scratch.  Oh my goodness, they were unlike any box brownies I have ever had ... so rich and decadent!  The recipe was pretty easy, too; you can find it here.  I only modified it by adding about 1oz. more chocolate (of course) and a 1/8 tsp. more vanilla and coffee.  There are no pictures of these brownies, well, because the cookie-cutter idea failed =(  I think next time I will bake them up cupcake-style and ice them that way. 

So, I'm going to need to start baking things for other people to take away from my house.  All this baking is leaving a lot of delicious things sitting on my counters for me to eat!  I think I have probably gained 5 lbs - all in the name of good baking!

Here is a funny picture of Paulie eating his daddy's delicious spaghetti.  Sometimes, savory meals are just as yummy as baked treats! Enjoy!