Sunday, February 27, 2011

Two Great Tastes...

that go great together.  Or sometimes three.

Tomorrow is Food Day at my husband's work so he requested my chocolate cupcakes.  This recipe is cake meets brownie meets awesome!  No problem whipping up 2 dozen of these. 

But there was a little bit of batter left over.  I have been dying to try a Chocolate Irish Cream cupcake.  So I made some mini cupcakes to try. 

I love mini cupcakes.  Just a bite size (well, two bites in my case) bit of yumminess.  I had a little whipped cream in the fridge and that was just to perfect way to top off this flavorable little nibble.

While we were on a roll, we decided it was time for our nod to Elvis.  My husband got the Elvis tunes going and we whipped up peanut butter cupcakes, then banana frosting and bacon for the top.  The peanut butter cupcakes were moist and rich, the the banana frosting had a lot of punch.  You have to take a balanced bite or one with overcome the other.  I, as of now, have not been brave enough to try the bacon topping.

We tried two versions of the bacon, just bacon and then candied bacon.  The candied bacon didn't really work this time.  It was chewy in a not good way, so we chucked it.

I also wish I would have had some silver or gold cupcakes papers.  Plain white just doesn't do Elvis the justice he deserves. 

My son really got into the rock star thing today as well.  He was rocking out with his back scratcher guitar and dancing a bunch today.  May have been attitude, may have been the sugar high from licking the beaters.  He really wanted stars on his peanut butter cupcakes, so he and his Daddy worked on that.

It may take things a little longer to get done, and may be a little messier...but there's nothing better than the whole family baking together.  Even in our tiny little galley kitchen.

And then, lo and behold, there was peanut butter batter left.  Well what else could I do but add chocolate to it.  Cause I'm not sure there is much better the chocolate and peanut butter together.  Again, just a little whipped cream on these bite-size delights.

If you are looking for treats for an upcoming occasion (even if you have to create an occasion, look at the success Hallmark has had with that), all four of these are options for ordering. 

Now I've just realized that even though the rest of the family has gone to bed, NickJr is still on TV in the living room.  Not a big Go, Diego, Go fan unless the child is making me.  Time to find something with real people on TV, and relax for a little while. 

Thursday, February 24, 2011

My Husband's Sticky Buns

Y'all went there didn't you? 


Now what I'm actually talking about is my husband's chocolate sticky buns.

I don't know if that helped the picture in your head.

They are delicious!

Okay, time for real pictures of his chocolate sticky buns!


Waiting for them to rise...

The chocolate sticky part with pecans....

Ready to go in the oven...

While these were baking the house smelled heavenly.  There are still cinnamon in these, then the chocolate both in the swirls and the sticky glaze....yum....!

Out of the oven...

Then flipped...all that gooey deliciousness....
Initially when my husband talked about baking, I thought he would be going more savory in his choices.  After tasting these, I'm good with him coming to the sweet side periodically. 

Sunday, February 20, 2011

How Seussian...

"Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter, and those who matter don't mind."
      -Dr Seuss

Love that quote.

Today was delivery of baby shower #2's treats.  Dr Seuss themed cake and cupcakes.  The cake was an obvious choice...the Cat's Hat.

I didn't want to do a straight up/down hat, cause the Cat's hat is jauntier than that.  And I wanted it semi tall, so started looking at how to stabilize so it wouldn't topple over sideways or slide.  Thank you for help with that.  It is, however, hard to really gauge how tall your dowel needs to be for that stabilization.  I didn't want it too short, then have to unbuild and perhaps make the cakes themselves less stable...but I overestimated by about 4 inches. 

So I welcomed a new baking tool into the arsenal.

It was kind of awesome. 

I did wash it up well and covered the cake before clipping off those extra couple of inches of dowel rod.

I am pushing a little on this with it's jauntiness, and a small portion of the top did not survive the trip to the shower.  I was crushed!  The hostess and mommy-to-be just twirled it and hid the gap and were so gracious.  Again, thankful for good friend who are helping me through my learning curve and being so supportive. 

The cupcakes, however, I loved and they did not have any damage during the trip!

I did mostly 2D cupcake toppers inspired by Dr. Seuss stories. 

So, try new yourself.....check....clean up after yourself and save the planet..........getting to the cleaning up after myself....after all this, I'm pooped!

Big congrats to Eric and Jami!

Friday, February 18, 2011

It's a Boy!

I found that out about 4 1/2 years ago.  I could tell before the ultrasound tech because one leg was up beside his head and his boys parts were right there. I was so relieved to find out.  I'm not one for mystery, I want to know now!

The first baby shower order for this week is for a Mom-To-Be having a little boy, so of had to be light blue.  And teddy bears.

My son wanted to keep the teddy bears, but we did manage to get them to the person that ordered them without any missing. 

Congratulations and enjoy to the Mom-to-be!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Sweets for the Sweet!

Today was delivery day for the cupcake bouquets, and the weather was ideal!  What a fun day driving around and delivering sweet treats!

I think the next holiday is St. Patricks day?  Maybe four leaf clover cupcakes in beer mugs?  Whose in?

Saturday, February 12, 2011

The Puppy and the Princess

It's so odd how you can be working on two cakes for one party and how one can go so smoothly...and the other....not so much.

Now part of that is that one was for an adult and a more simple design.  The customer said to have something dog related.  I actually was inspired by my own high school graduation cake.  No the cake did not have puppies on it.  It wa actually more of a cat issue. My mom had just brought the cake in, set it down...and one of our cats went tiptoeing across it.  Luckily it was still in the box, but it did get a little smooshed.  Mom did her best to fix it up, she was so upset, we hadn't even had a chance to take a picture of it yet.

Now the next cake was for this individuals niece who was turning 3.  I had so many epic ideas!  And it felt like everything I tried turned out...odd.  I try to keep in mind that a person is their own worst critic and that I still have a learning curve, but I wanted to make this so cool.

Now the pictures are not actually what left my house.  When I was shopping I saw pink cotton candy and thought that could be something cool and fun for the cake.  What I learned was that when you leave it sit for a ends up looking like matted clown hair. 

Not so festive.

So imagine where you see fluffy cotton roses.

Now some of the things I liked...I loved how the turrets turned out!  They were so sparkly and pretty.  And I like the pearl candies (the cat enjoyed them too, several pinged to the floor and she was chasing them like a kitten).  And I suspect the tiara, which lights up, will be a hit with the birthday girl. 

I'm really hoping to get another chance at a castle cake when I'm in a good groove.  I would not say this is a bad cake, but there is so much potential if I had more time. 

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Cupcake Bouquet

I have my first prototype of my cupcake bouquet.  These can be individualized by color and concept.  This one is a little more 'adult', but fabric can be fun hearts and more valentine's like.  Sky's the limit.  I am pondering putting some small cookie hearts (on a stick) to fill in some space, but that would not affect the $25 price.

A cookie bouquet will be posted tomorrow.  The sugar cookie dough needs to chill for quite a while before it's easy to work with.  Again, so many option.  Hearts, xoxoxox, love bugs (butterflies and then ladybugs made from a heart cookie cutter), flowers...and again, any color or style you would like. 

Then delivered to you or your valentine...your choice. 

And I will guarantee I will do no singing telegram one needs their valentine's day ruined by my singing.  The true temptation was to dress my blonde little 4 year old boy like cupid and have him deliver...but it's too cold for that.  Sorry!  (Plus he may do some damage if I gave him a little bow and arrow.)

Please let me know if you have additional questions or requests.  Email me at , post to comments, or contact me through Facebook.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Valentine's Day is Coming!

And flowers die.  (But honey, I still like flowers.)

Cookies and cupcakes taste good, really good! 

So 6 sugar cookies, decorated or 6 miniature cupcakes (chocolate, vanilla or red velvet) frosted to look like roses, in a delightful pot for an opening special of $25.  I'll even deliver if you are in the Cedar Rapids area. 

Let me know which you would prefer.  You can reach me at, or on Facebook through my Sugar Rush page, or at 319-270-5607.

I'll post pics as they are completed so you can see examples.  Let me know if there are special colors, or a specific concept you would like. 

I'll accept orders through Thursday morning if you want them for this weekend.  Let me know if you have any questions!

Sunday, February 6, 2011

The Kindness of Friends and Family

I have talented and generous and caring friends.  I couldn't feel more blessed and thankful.

Today I visited with friends who are supporting my baking...and apparently especially the frosting, and giving me lot's of advice and support on marketing what's turning into a baking business.

A friend as work was the one that gave me the idea for the name.

And another friend, and wonderful graphic designer, created me an awesome logo.

I am so excited to see where this goes.  I have friend's and family I know are pulling for me, and the support is profound.

Thank you all! 

Saturday, February 5, 2011


I got a call from a friend of mine in Dubuque.  Her boyfriend had the stars align perfectly that his team, the Green Bay Packers are going to the SuperBowl on, of all days, his birthday.  Being the good girlfriend she wanted to do something special.

A cheesecake, but not that kind of cheesecake...a cheese of velvet to be exact.

Now that's some Wisconsin chedda'...

This was so much fun!  I'm really looking forward to hearing how he liked it. 

Now my husband's family is about 1/2 Packer and 1/2 Vikings.  My brother is a huge Steelers fan. 

Who am I cheering for.....?  The commercials.

Melting Marshmallow Scouts

As I mentioned in a previous post, I was working on a cake for the Boy Scout Pancake Breakfast.  Here's the finished product to go on the silent auction...

I initally wanted to the the little scouts in cake ball, but it was not working the way I hoped, so homemade marshmallow fondant it is.  I hope the breakfast goers are tempted by the little marshmallow guys, and the s'more cake they are camping on. 

Thursday, February 3, 2011

So much little counter space...

I said yesterday I would tell you about what I had in the oven...

Graham cracker cake! 

I'm going to make a s'more inspired cake for the Boy Scout Troop 5200 Pancake Breakfast.  Can't think of Boy Scouts without thinking of camping, and can't think of camping without thinking of s'mores.

Today I torted the graham cracker cake (which means to cut it in 1/2 the long way so you can layer it), then made chocolate ganache.  The marshmallow will be homemade marshmallow fondant, and then of course, I'll cute it up a bit.  This cake I'm discussing was attempt 2.  Attempt 1, which was far to crumbly, will become cake balls. 

I love the concept of cake balls.  You don't have to waste anything and it's a bonus for everyone.  They are easy and so delicious. 

Now that doesn't sound so bad counterspace-wise, until I add that I started making another cake today for a friend's boyfriend's birthday.  He is a Packer Backer, so it's Green Bay inspired. 

My husband, who is a long-time Minnesota Vikings fan, was horrified!  I did mention this was a paying customer.  So now I'm also a sell out.  He was laughing the whole time he was teasing me about it, then proceeded to actually come up with the design idea.  Love that my hubby is supporting me on this.  He's got good ideas.  He, however, has not agreed to clean up after me.  I'll have to  work on that....

If you are interested in supporting a great cause here is the information about the Boy Scout Pancake Breakfast fundraiser:

Sunday, February 6 · 8:00am - 1:00pm
Christ Church Presbyterian
2000 1st Ave NW Cedar Rapids, IA 52405

Pancake breakfast, silent auction and bake sale.
Serving pancakes, sausage, eggs, fruit, juice, milk and coffee.
$5.00 adults, $4.00 kids 10 and under.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011


At least it was for my husband, being unemployed at the moment, every day is a snow day for me.  Eastern Iowa got dumped on!  And with typically epic timing...the snowblower decided it did not want to help today.  Urg.

So my husband and I went out and started making a dent in the drifted snow in the driveway.  I was dreading the end of the driveway...glad the street got plowed, but that stuff is always rough to get through.  Thankfully we are blessed with an awesome neighbor with a big (and working) snowblower.  He had helped the neighbor across the street, then came over and helped us.  And therefore it was an absolute necessity that I make chocolate chip cookies.  What good neighbor with a baking addiction wouldn't? 

Later we were watching Food Network and my husband asked me if I had considered making my own bread.  Heck yeah!  But it was farther down on my list.  But now he had fresh baked bread on the I handed him some of my cookbooks.  He's a great cook, so now he could bake as well.  Very well!  He made a round cheese bread, and it was so good!

And because I'm nice, here's the recipe for you:

1 1/2 cups Bisquik
1 cup Mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 tsp dried Oregano
1/2 cup milk
1 beaten egg
2 tbls melted butter

Mix all ingredients except the melted butter together into a thick batter.  Spoon into a greased 9in round pan.  Drizzle the butter over the top, then sprinkle with additional parmesan cheese.

Oven should be pre-heated to 400 degrees.  Bake for 20-25 minutes.  Let sit for 10 minutes before cutting.

Tomorrow I'll tell you about what I have in the oven now, and the good cause I'm donating it to. 

Who likes frosting?

When I made the cookies for the baby shower, my son wanted me to let him help frost cookies.  I did pull some cookies out for him to frost and shared the frosting...

which he used...

...a lot of.......

So if you like cookie with your frosting...I can certainly put you in contact with my son.  I'm sure he can hook you up.  Talk about a sugar rush! 

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Gimme some sugar!

Sugar cookies that is.  A former co-worker had told her group, which was having a baby shower for one of their co-workers, she would bring some decorated sugar cookies.  Unfortunately she got pink eye, so gave me a call.  I suspect her co-workers, and especially the mother-to-be, were appreciative of that.

My friend had asked for little cookies with pastel frosting.  I could have just done some little round cookies and smacked some frosting on them and been done...but what's the fun of that?  And that would barely make a mess!  So I made these instead.

Now if you are interested in learning about decorating sugar cookies, recipes for batter or frosting, or just see what kind of skills people have, I highly recommend  There are people of all level and skill sets that are so happy to help and share ideas and expertise on this board.  Some of the things these people can do are amazing! 

It was fun to go into 'work' and see people.  Last Thursday I was laid off my job of almost 17 years, so I was glad to go in and assure people I was doing well and share something I love doing.  As typical, I don't so much miss the job, but do miss my friends there.  The support and kind words have been overwhelming and I couldn't be more appreciative.  But hopefully I can turn the frown upside down and do something I really feel passionate about and make a living at it.  We'll certainly see.  The initial purpose of starting this blog was to get people interested, then slowly add items to sell.  Not suprisingly, that process will be speeding up now. 

But now I'm off to play...cause it's really hard to type with a 4 year old in my lap and a 70 pound dog attempting to supplant him and take his spot.  Many days I feel like I'm playing king of the hill....except I'm the hill......