Sugar Swings! Serve Some

Friday, June 24, 2016

Harry Potter Butterbeer - 3 ways


After our 2nd trip down to Orlando's Universal Studio's this year I came home dreaming of Butterbeer! So of course I had to make some at home.

There are 2 versions at WWOHP - the regular and the frozen.  I love them both!

I made the regular butterbeer and also a grown up version (made with spiced rum!).  Since I had some leftover I also made a frozen popsicle version.  They should definitely add this to the menu at WWOHP! Awesome on a hot summer day.


In case you haven't been able to make the trip to see Harry Potter land at Universal Studios here are some of my favorites from this trip.

There are now 2 sides to the park.  We had been to the Hogsmeade side before but now you can also take the Hogwarts Express over to the Diagon Alley .  


Me on Hogwarts Express enjoying a fine butter beer!  The experience it pretty cool.  They have some cool scenes from the movies as part of the experience so you feel like you are in one of the cars.  They even have shadows that walk by and talk so it feels like Harry and crew are on the train.


The Knight Bus complete with shrunken head that will ask you questions (or yell at you) 


Diagon Alley - Super cool just to walk around with your mouth wide open in amazement or smiling ear to ear!


Gringotts! The dragon breathes real fire randomly.


Inside Gringotts you can see goblins hard at work while you are waiting for the Escape from Gringott's Ride


And of course enjoying more than one butterbeer!


As you can see the parents may have enjoyed WWOHP more than our kids but it's really so very awesome.  My kiddo *finally* started reading the books a couple weeks ago so I can't wait to go back with him to experience it all again.

And if you like butterbeer too, check out the easy recipes here on sheknows!

You may also like these Harry Potter Butter Beer Cupcakes!


Sunday, June 5, 2016

Piped Buttercream Flower Cupcakes (made with Russian piping tips)


Have you seen the neat new piping tips all over the interwebs lately?? If you search "Russian piping tips" you can find all kinds of examples of them and the pretty flowers they let you make.  Needless to say I had to get some.


Look at these neat and detailed designs built into the tips!


To pipe the flowers, start by adding some frosting to plastic wrap.  Use any color(s) you like.  If you want a different color in the center of the flower, use another color in the middle of the frosting.  


Wrap the plastic wrap up so you have a long "log" of buttercream.

Mix and match colors.  That will give you some really pretty colors in your flowers.


Add your tip to a piping bag - they are pretty large.  Cut off the end of the plastic wrap and icing log then insert that end into the icing tip.  Push the icing down until you see the icing coming out of the tip.


Pipe the flower by adding some pressure and pulling up to form the flower.  After a little practice this gets much easier.


For a final touch add some buttercream green leaves.


And you get some perfect little flower cupcakes.  I can't stop making these little fun flowers.  They are easy to make so you can add them to any cupcakes or brownies to bring to parties.  The reaction is always so great because they look like they are hard to make or that you need some major piping expertise.  In reality they are really very simple with these tips.  Save any leftover icing you have from other projects to make these flowers.  Single color flowers are pretty, but the subtle multi color flowers are my favs so far.  I got my tips on Amazon but they are available a lot of places now too.

If you want to see a video of this technique check out Lindsay Ann Bakes! She's awesome and shows you the step by step how to!


Thursday, May 26, 2016

Little Alien Cupcakes


After making some little eskimo cupcakes over the winter, I wanted to go in a totally different direction with a different kind of little candy people - very different.  Aliens!  

When I make these little people (and I've made them a lot! See below) I use vanilla tootsie rolls as the heads and a Hershey's chocolate bell as the body.  The body is then dipped and decorated with more candy melt and some various sprinkles until I get the right look.  

Well I always end up getting the bag of assorted flavors of tootsie rolls which also has lime, lemon, and orange.  I really wanted to make little guys using these colors too - since they are so bright and colorful and cute little aliens seemed like a perfect way to use the colors.


Tootsie rolls don't come in blue (although I think blue raspberry would be a great addition!) so I used some blue raspberry laffy taffy for that one.  


Microwave the tootsie roll (or laffy taffy) for about 5 seconds or until just soft.  Remove 3 small pieces (for nose and 2 arms) then roll the large piece in your hand into a ball.  Attach it to a Hershey's chocolate candy bell with some melted candy wafers.  Once hardened, dip the body in more melted vanilla candy wafers.  Once hardened, add detail on the body with more melted candy.  Eyes are candy coated sunflower seeds which are attached with - yep, more melted candy wafer.  


I sprayed the bodies with some silver Color Mist to give them a neat metallic look.  Add tiny arms and your alien army is complete.  Use them as is for your favorite little outer space fanatics or pop them on some cupcakes.  Edible "space rocks" aka candy coated chocolate rocks finished off the look.


You can see the basic how to make edible candy people (without fondant) here.  

Like these little Eskimos


or these Woodland Gnomes


or these Pilgrims






Or Witches


Or Santa




Or girl and boy Gnomes






I told you I make a lot of these little people.  I may have a little problem!

Have an awesome weekend!


Thursday, May 5, 2016

Churro Doughnuts - Happy Cinco de Mayo!


So after failing terribly at making choux pastry, I decided to try another dough.  

Churros for Cinco de Mayo

And then I made them into doughnuts.  Yep, Churro Doughnuts! 

And they were pretty awesome.  Some were coated in the traditional cinnamon sugar but some were also dipped in vanilla and chocolate glaze with added sprinkles.  Of course sprinkles!


Pipe the dough into a line then shape into a circle before adding to the oil.  PS the dough is super hard to pipe because it's pretty dense.  I broke though 2 plastic piping bags trying to pipe one batch!  Pipe the dough while still warm, that may make it a little easier.  I let mine cool before piping it.


I don't normally fry stuff so this is new territory for me.  It takes only a couple minutes.  Flip once while frying until the churros are nice and golden in color.


When done let drain and cool on a paper towel.


Then dip!


I always thought churros were crispy all the way through.  THEY ARE NOT! Crispy on the outside and moist and soft on the inside.  So delish.  Traditional churros are coated in cinnamon sugar.  These were hands down rated #1 by everyone who taste tested them.


But the glazed were a very close runner up.  Not to mention they look so pretty!  Can food be pretty? I think so.


These churro donuts tasted a bit like a cruller but with a crispier outer shell.


Happy Cinco de Mayo! We are off to Orlando for a long weekend.  You may see posts of us enjoying a butterbeer or 2 from WWOHP!

Churro recipe can be found here.

For the vanilla glaze:
1 cup of powdered sugar mixed with 1 teaspoonful of water

For chocolate glaze:
1 cup of powdered sugar mixed with 1 tablespoonful of chocolate syrup 

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Star Wars Marshmallows for May the Fourth be with You


So this week it's every Star Wars fan's favorite day - Star Wars Day or May the Fourth be With You!

Well actually our favorite day is whenever the next Star Wars movie comes out - but May the Fourth be With You aka May 4th comes in a close 2nd.  Fans across the world (and galaxy) wish each other a happy one across the interwebs.  Hopefully it's pretty self explanatory of why it's Star Wars day - but just in case, it's a play on words for May the Force be With You.  Get it??!

Anywho, for this Star Wars Day I made some marshmallows.  Star Wars themed marshmallows.  But I'm playing my Woman Card (thanks Donald Trump!) and only making the women of Star Wars.

The ladies of Star Wars in marshmallow form!


I actually did Princess Leia marshmallows before when I did a countdown to the new movie last year.  I loved how they came out so much that I needed to do the other ladies of the movies.  There are just some really cool female characters from Jedi to slaves to bounty hunters to princesses and more.


You can see all of the 12 days of Star Wars here!

Start by dip dyeing marshmallows.  The Decorated Cookie has shared how to do this fun technique a few times.  The colors are very subtle but very light and pretty.


I did these in steps.  Dye the marshmallows and let them dry then cut out more marshmallow as detail or use items like mini heart sprinkles for the lips.  Jelly beans cut in half made great eyes for Asajj Ventress or goggles for Rey.  Leia's iconic hair is made from a Hershey's Kiss with the tips cut off.  Melted candy wafers were used to add other detail.


An edible food writer was used to add black dots for eyes.


I tried to make most of the more recognizable female characters either from the movies or other media.


Plop them in a bowl and enjoy on Star Wars Day - or any day for that matter!


Or you can wrap them up as gifts for your fav Star Wars fans and if you did you'd be the bestest friend eva.  Seriously you would.


And an early May the Fourth be With You! Thanks so much for stopping by!