Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Modern Buttercream Piping

I made 200 of these little Coco Cake chocolate and vanilla mini cupcakes for Engine Digital's 7 year anniversary part-ay! I also made 150 handmade flags using my well-loved vintage and designy craft paper collection. So hard not to buy more paper, more, moooorrre! Engine's logo is an orangey red colour, and their accent colour is light blue. I just love the look of these modern colored blobettes, like a pretty candy sitting atop lovely cake.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Jellicle Songs For Jellicle Cats

Rest In Peace to ChubChub, our beloved kitty. 2000-2009

Cats the musical. Ridiculous, right? But still, Grizelda crooning those powerful notes, it can really tug the heart strings.

Sad news in Cat World-- we lost our sweet, chubby kitty Tako last week, passed away to fat cat heaven. Tako, aka ChubChub, was adopted by my then-boyfriend Rich 5 years ago from the SPCA. She appeared to be a bit of a gong show; she was an obese, dandruff-laden (we learned later that she got dandruff within minutes of being stressed out), long-haired black cat with white paws and a white "bib" that Rich always said looked like a tuxedo trying really hard to be tugged closed. She also had been de-clawed on all four paws by her previous owner, and given up to the SPCA. She would still ghost-scratch our couch though, making a pleasant and slightly hilarious "shoosh-shoosh-shoosh" sound as she did it.

She practically filled the whole cage when we went and picked her up that first day from the SPCA, cats meowing everywhere but ChubChub sitting there like, well, a black blob. She had a funny tiny little meow that didn't match the visual fur-and-fat overload of her body shape. She hated plastic bags, loved Tickle Me Ernie's shorts filled with catnip, and loved to eat. ChubChub lived a really good life, loved to pieces by her main man Rich T.

On a more cupcake-related note, I made black cat cupcakes for Jake's girlfriend Liz's surprise birthday party! He sent me pics of Oscar the cat, Oscar is a black cat with yellow green eyes, and apparently was named Oscar for his love of eating garbage!! So yes, cats are amazing and hilarious little fluffers.

We'll remember crazy old ChubChub and her funny little ways. Here's to cats!!


Oscar the black kitty cupcakes, made for Liz's birthday, ordered by her BF Jake!

Cupcakes in box... HAPPY BIRTH


Friday, September 25, 2009

Blim Market! Coco Cake Cupcakes!

coco cake cupcakes at blim!

I had a lovely time at my Coco Cake Cupcakes table, catching up with old art/craft buddies and meeting some awesome new people at last weekend's Blim Community Art Market! Come on out to the next market which will be on October 18th. I will be there once again, with flavours to be announced closer to the date! Please come early though, as I was sold out by 1:30pm. Aiyahh! Not the most flattering Chinese Pumpkin grey cardigan photo of me above, but look at my smile! Yay, meeting blog readers and cupcake fans was lots of fun! Thanks to everyone who stopped by, all of my loyal customers, (especially a little nutbar in a pink party suit-- my niece Kensie!!) and thanks to my BFF Amy and husband Rich for helping me!

Talk to you all soon! Some hilarious Coco Cake times coming up this weekend, stay tuned!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Clown Fish Power: Finding Nemo Cupcakes

I usually don't like to do Disney or typical cartoon stuff-- there are people who do it much better than I, and I prefer to do more vintage-look or strange or different cute stuff. Cause there's a million Finding Nemo stuffies and tshirts and yadda yadda all that... But I gotta admit, this little dude's face is pretttty cute. And what a bummer story. Poor little clownfish loses his mom and all his siblings, then he thinks he's lost his DAD too? It's almost as sad as An American Tail (one of my top favorite movies from when I was a kid!! -- quick aside: I CRIED at my own birthday sleepover watching this song from this movie, because I got so sad that poor Russian Feivel the mouse thought his whole family was gone forever!!)

Um, just watched that clip that I linked to above. Now, at aged 32, Feivel's voice is just a leeeetle bit grating to me... haha! But I FELT his pain when I was 9.

Back to Nemo. Orange clownfish!! Nice Haynes really really wanted Nemo cupcakes for his girlfriend's birthday, so of course I obliged! Actually, I don't think my cupcakes look too much like Nemo. They kind of look like Nemo's nerdy cousin Meemo from Canada who is 5 years behind clownfish fashion trends. And Haynes ordered Coco Cake Snowball flavour. Now that's a cool dude. Happy Birthday Judy, hope you liked your little Nemos!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Coco Cake's Pizza Party Cake! Fo Real!

Zing!! How cool would it be to work at a great local Vancouver design/marketing/programming firm, and get treated to WICKED AWESOME things for your birthday? Man. That's boosting staff morale. I approve, hard. The amazing Engine Digital in Vancouver ordered a hee-larious cake for one of their staff members... a PIZZA CAKE. You may remember Coco Cake partying it up with the hamburger cake in the past... Now here comes pizza! I made it into a tutorial style thing too so you can make your own!!


This puppy above is a 14 inch round cake. It's a biggie. It can feed a lot of people!! I did a bit of googling to see how many cups of batter I would need. I did a very scientific comparison (NOT!) and found that I would need to basically make enough batter for 48 cupcakes! I doubled my usual 2 dozen vanilla cupcake recipe for this. Worked perfect! I baked it at 325 degrees for about 60 minutes, watching pretty closely.

I bought some fancy Callebaut white chocolate for the "cheese." Then I grated it into a party pile. I made fondant pepperoni, tomatoes, mushrooms, green pepper and olives too, while humming "pizza party!" Did you know white chocolate really IS chocolate? It's made from the cocoa butter of the cacao bean. But, sometimes you'll find some waxy stuff that pretends it is white chocolate but is just made up of oils. Read those ingredients!

"Rich!!!! Can you go get a slice of pizza from 4 Brothers and ask them if they will give you a box???" --"Yes dear..." It cost 50 cents!!! I soaked my big old cake round with simple syrup, then I frosted it with some tomato-sauce-colored vanilla buttercream! A weird color, methinks. I used red food gel, mixed with a bit of brown.

Fromage time! Sprinkle-dee-doo, I sprinkled my white chocolate all over.

Time to arrange my hilarious toppings! A year ago I bought this awesome mushroom cookie cutter with the intention of making smurf-like mushroom sugar cookies. But I got burnt out on the pain of sugar cookies, so I finally got to use it on my "pizzaz" cake!

A close up. Looks pretty good I think! The pepperoni reminds me of my husband's veggie meat slices, heh heh... (he's a vegetarian. Ex-vegan, even!)

Oh yah, I added the words "Shady" to the cake, by request... but I hid them to make it look like the rest of the green peppers.

Ding, dong, your pizza's here!! Man, I am seriously craving real pizza now... eeks... !!!

Happy Birthday Dane! Hope you liked your pizza cake! If you were these guys you totally would be flippin'!!

Friday, September 18, 2009

Octonauts Themed Birthday For Dakota!

OCTONAUTS themed cake and cupcakes!

Do you know the brilliant illustrators of Meomi? They make the cutest characters, including these soon to be even more famous ones. Monice phoned me a few months ago to request very special themed cupcakes for her daughter Dakota's birthday, Octonauts themed! The Octonauts are a creation of Meomi, and there are storybooks featuring some crazy characters and cool, bonkers undersea adventures. Dakota's fave characters are Tweek the Bunny, Kwazii the Kitten and Barnacles the Bear, so I spent many hours slaving away in creating these adorable little faces out of fondant and edible marker, and also decided to make the pink jellyfish perplexed face too!

The cake was also a labour of love, chocolate with vanilla buttercream, topped with light blue underwater fondant, swaying seaweed, little starfish and mini blue rufflefish, and for a topper, a pink blowfish! I got to meet Dakota, she is so sweet and cute, and absolutely loved the cupcakes... she even said "they smell so good!!" Meeting the recipients of the cakes I work so hard on and seeing their excited reaction really makes me happy.

Apologies for yet again a mega picture explosion... I loved this order so much, and was so grateful that I could add some Meomi-powered sunshine to little Dakota's world.


Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Collage Collage & Coco Cake Cupcakes!

collage collage store collage!

My super powered gal pal Erin Bonnifero launched her incredible new project this past Saturday, September 12: Collage Collage! A shop, look and learn experience, Erin's lovely, bright and welcoming shop features the best (and most stylish!) educational books and toys, and a lovingly curated selection of work by local artists and crafters. Not only is it a great space to pick up a special present or birthday gift for the little minis (or majors!) in your life, but Erin is also teaching art classes for kids, and hosting crafty birthday parties!

I can't wait for my sisters to take their kids there! (They're not quite old enough yet... !) PS... "Where's Brody?" (my nephew) in the above pictures... wearing the adorable shirt Rich and I bought for him in Amsterdam... Brownie's Chicken colours! (Brownie's was our old fave fried chicken place in Burnaby in the 1980s... I couldn't find one darn image of it online though! Boooo! Brownie's chicken had a really cool bear as their mascot, and their colours were yellow and brown)...

I was honoured to be part of the party times, and I was so stoked for Erin that I went insane in the membrane overboard with hundreds of cupcakes in all shapes, sizes, colours and flavours! I even made a cute little cupcake stand just for the party. Seeing all of those cute kids chomping huge bites out of buttercream topped cupcakes made me totally giggle with glee.

Check out Erin's beautiful new store at 619 Kingsway in Vancouver. Congrats on all your hard work Erin! I just know Collage Collage will be a smashing success!