Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Scary Blue Container

The other day I was at Daiso (a shop where all items are priced at RM5), one of my favourite places to browse around, when I came across this pretty blue plastic container.

I tried to open the cover but couldn't although I twisted and pulled at it. So I had to read the instructions pasted at the side of the container. Turns out that there is a release mechanism on the top of the cover that I had to press with a finger which would loosen the cover with a loud 'pop'.

I've read all kinds of instructions in very poor English which usually accompanies products made in some Asian countries, but this one had me almost rolling on the floor with laughter...

In case it's too small to read, it says:
"When you remove the cover, remove it quietly.
What is inside may jump out of it."

Go figure!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Themed Birthday Party

Tinkerbell on the birthday girl's party dress

A close friend of mine celebrated her daughter's 6th birthday with a fairy themed party, so everything was matched to the Tinkerbell colours of lilac and apple green. She asked me to bake her some cupcakes with that theme in mind and a few weeks before the party we looked around the bakeries and cupcake kiosks for ideas.

I could make fondant flowers on a carpet of green icing grass but I just couldn't find a Tinkerbell figurine to place on the cupcake even though I looked in toy shops and searched the baking/party supplies shops all over. The closest I could find were the Princess ones, but princesses were not fairies even though I contemplated on adding little fondant wings to them.

So I decided to make my own. I found a picture of Tinkerbell on the internet, downsized, printed and then laminated it. Yes, we have a home laminating machine because my gadget-loving hubby thought that it might come in handy :)

I used the red velvet cake recipe minus the red colouring, since I don't think a large amount of red colouring is good for kids, even though it's food grade colouring. Here's how they turned out with the help of my daughter, SweetTeen, who patiently made the little flowers while I did the icing.

See Tinkerbell sitting on the cupcake?
I made her small because she's a tiny little 
fairy in the Peter Pan story.
60 cupcakes, all good to go!
Purple and green cutlery, but no purple
food although there was green honeydew!
The birthday girl enjoying herself, dancing to
the beat of Oppa Gangnam Style with her
friend. Her dad said that it became 'Fairy Style'!
It was a small cosy party with kids who came with their parents. Everyone had a good time and I was glad I could make a little girl happy on her birthday.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Red Velvet Mini Cakes

I have read a lot about the famous Red Velvet cakes but never tasted them until I went to the US earlier this year. It's a moist buttermilk cake in a dramatic red colour topped with cream cheese frosting. Since then I have been looking around the internet for the recipe so that I could try baking it myself.

I adapted a recipe from Bakerella and used square paper cups instead. 



I gave a piece to hubby and a few minutes later....

Verdict? YUMMY!


2            large eggs, room temperature
1½ cups   corn oil
2    Tbs    liquid red food colouring 

1    tsp    vanilla essence
1    cup    buttermilk (to substitute: add 1 Tbs lemon juice to 1 cup milk)
1    Tbs    apple cider vinegar

2½ cups   multipurpose flour
2   Tbs     cocoa powder
1½ tsp    baking soda
1½ cups   sugar
1    tsp    salt


500g   cream cheese, softened
1 cup  unsalted butter, softened
2 tsp  vanilla essence
4 cups icing sugar, sifted


1) Lightly stir eggs in a medium bowl with a wire whisk. Add remaining liquid ingredients and whisk until blended. Set aside. 

2) Sift flour, cocoa powder and baking soda into the bowl of an electric mixer. Add sugar and salt. Mix until combined. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix on medium-high until completely combined, about 1 to 2 minutes.

3) Scoop batter into cupcake paper-cups about ¾ full and bake at 175 degrees Celsius or until the top of a cupcake springs back when lightly pressed with a finger.

4) When done, remove from the oven and cover all the cupcakes with a large film of clingwrap while cooling to keep the moisture in.

5) To make frosting: Beat cream cheese and butter with a mixer on medium-high speed until fluffy, about 2 to 3 minutes. Add vanilla. Reduce speed to low. Add sugar, 1 cup at a time and mix until smooth.

6) Remove paper from cupcakes, cut each cupcake into half horizontally. Place frosting in between the 2 halves, assemble, and frost the top as well.