April 20, 2013

D.I.Y | Antique Cosmetic Jar Candle

So my Mom has this antique shop with her husband and his family called Union Antiques and there was this set of antique cosmetic jars that I adored. I had always thought they'd be beautiful turned into candles for my vanity area. So here is a quick and clean way to turn any small jar into a candle, without the messy wax.

What You'll Need:
- Glass or Ceramic jar/container (make sure the glass has a good thickness or it's heat resistant)
- Candle (the individual ones or tea lights) the same or less height and width of the container
- Candle, plate or mug warmer
  1. Place candle inside the container, if your jar is short and you have to use tea light candles take off tin that is wrapped around the whole base. It's okay if your candle is a little loose inside the jar, but make sure it isn't too tall, otherwise, wax will spill over. 
  2. Set it on the warmer and keep an eye on it; it took about 10 minutes from placing the jar on the warmer while it heated up before it started to melt.
  3. Once the sides start to melt you can move it around to see if it will fill in the space. If it does then take it off and let it rest. The whole candle doesn't need to be liquid, it can mess up the wix.
  4. After it has hardened again remove any wax that might have spilled or built up on top, then light and use like you would any candle.
This is super easy and you can get the candles for a cheap price at any store. 
Change it up by picking up a scented candle or do a few and give them out as a gift set or party favors :)

April 15, 2013

Recipe | Ombre Cake

Saturday I got together at my BFF Desiree's house to do some baking.  She wanted to make a "thank you" cake for some friends that helped with a water heater in her and her fiance's new house. I always enjoy baking with her because we bounce ideas off each other to create something great. It was actually her fiance that mentioned different colors, though he was talking about the inside we decided we could do an ombre effect with the icing easier instead. She has the cutest KitchenAid mixer in pink and it is perfect for whipping homemade buttercream frosting; this is something I'm putting on my wedding registery. We found the perfect cake recipe on the back of the flour box and it made a soft and fluffy cake. I always think Swiss buttercream is the easiest to make so I whipped some of that up and added some vanilla extract for flavoring. We wanted to do purple, but had food coloring instead of the coloring gel so we couldn't get as an intense purple as we wanted. However, I loved the lavender color we did get and I think it transitioned nicely. I showed her how to do buttercream beading on top and she did a fantastic job doing the same on the bottom. She had some delicious sprinkles that tasted like crushed up rock candy so we filled the top with those. I had to leave before tasting it all together but from tasting the scraps plus the message she sent me; it was a hit!
This week I'll have plenty of cakes to work on in class. Today is wedding cake day, tomorrow is our practical cake and then Wednesday I'm doing my Tardis specialy cake. Out of all of them I think I'm more nervous about the Tardis cake because there is so little to prep and it has to be done all in one day. Well hope everyone has a good Monday and I'll post pictures of the cakes from class once they're all done!

April 1, 2013

Recipes | Chopped Challenge

Today in class we did our Chopped Challenge, where we were given  a "Mystery Basket", or really a note card with our ingredients, and we had to create a dessert. We had to include all items and some form of a foam or sabayon and meringue or fruit chip. Luckily we got first grab on Thursday and got to plan over the weekend. This is what me and my team member came up with:

"Mystery Basket" Items

  • Canned Peaches
  • Figs
  • Balsamic Vinegar
  • Instant Espresso 
  • Cream Cheese

What we created:
  • Cream cheese pound cake layers
  • Peach sabayon folded in whipped cream between layers
  • Fig fruit chips
  • Balsamic reduction with brown sugar
  • Espresso caviar (not really caviar but any puree or juice with some gelatin, dropped into cold oil to make it look like little caviar dots)
  • Topped with quenelle of whipped cream and sugar garnish

I was worried about the balsamic vinegar because it smelled strong but I have heard people roasting strawberries and other sweet fruit with the balsamic, plus adding the brown sugar helped cut the strong vinegar flavor. The cake layers were soaked with the syrup from the canned peaches which helped give the peach sabayon more flavor. The espresso caviar were a little bitter but reminded me of an Americano. Putting everything together tasted awesome because the elements helped each out. The balsamic reduction helped to cut the super sweet cream cheese pound cake, the whipped cream helped with the espresso caviar and the sabayon was just a nice cream accent to the cake. I would totally make this again and I had tons of fun with this challenge.

Have you ever seen the actual Chopped t.v show? What would you all make from these items?


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