Last week I had an idea for a dessert table that I just had to bring to life! So I pulled out some of my cake stands (some of my favorite worldly possesions!), looked through my ribbon (another huge love!), and set up a “big girl” version of a play tea party.
I started with some desserts from Donsuemor bakery, pretty little Cute Cakes, Madeleines and French Almond Cakes. I baked up some mini Chocolate Raspberry Tarts (recipe soon), got to work on some pretty food tags, and went shopping for a few more treats to add to the table. Then I called up a friend and asked her to join me for coffee and some desserts after dinner. We sat in the backyard, listening to french music, chatting and enjoying fresh fruit, iced coffee, and lots of pretty desserts.
Above ~ Chocolate and vanilla “cute cakes” from Donsuemor. Accented with homemade ribbon flags.
Above ~ Homemade Chocolate Raspberry Tarts (recipe soon), and Vanilla Macarons (Trader Joes).
I bought some pretty roses (from Costco) and arranged them with some maidenhair fern (from my neighbor’s yard) in a variety of small vases.
In case you’re wondering… yes, I already had the “La Tour Eiffel” sign, and the three metal Eiffel towers on the dessert table (two black and one small gold). I’ve never been to France, but it’s on my “must see before I die” list. Until I can afford to go, I’ll keep collecting a few things to remind me of my “someday” destination.
A few years ago I discovered a photo sharing site, Flickr
. It was there I discovered some of the most talented people on the planet… artists whose medium is sugar! I spent hundreds of hours pouring over photos from ladies like, Kylie
and many others. I studied their work, e-mailed a few questions, and spent lots of money on sugar, flour and butter, working on making treats inspired in part by my new mentors.
This blog has given me the privilege of sharing some of the ideas and techniques that I’ve learned over the years, and many that I am still learning! And I feel greatly humbled to be someone who can now offer a bit of inspiration to other sugar artists.
Recently a few of my readers have sent in photos of their sweet treats, inspired in part by things I’ve done. I wanted to share their beautiful work!
This perfectly sweet dessert table (above) is from Kate in Perth, Western Australia (inspired by my Sweet Strawberry Party
- The patriotic layered Jello cup is from one of my readers, Katherine (inspired by mine HERE
- The fun hamburger cupcakes and cookie “fries” are from my friend Amy
, in El Dorado Hills, California (inspired by THESE
). I love the addition of the flags, which have special Father’s Day messages.
- The utterly delicious looking chocolate cupcakes (with princess rings!) are from Samantha, in West Virginia (using my Chocolate Cream Cheese frosting
- The perfectly decorated and packaged volleyball cookies are again from Amy
in El Dorado Hills, California (inspired by THESE
These incredibly photographed treats (above) are from Ana Hopkins
(a professional photographer) in Spokane, Washington (inspired by THESE
If you’ve been inspired by this blog to make something pretty or yummy, I’d love to see it! Please add the photo to the fan photos on the Glorious Treats Facebook page HERE.
Happy baking everyone!
I’m here today to show you how to decorate hibiscus cookies, like the ones I included in my Luau dessert buffet
last weekend. I received lots of sweet comment regarding these cookies, and I’ll admit I find them pretty special too. The decorating process involves several steps, but none of them are too complicated, and I think that many of you will be able to produce some beautiful cookies as well.
Note: I already have a tutorial on making the pineapple cookies (like above) HERE
First off, I don’t have a hibiscus cookie cutter… so I took a four leaf clover cookie cutter, and used some pliers to shape it into something resembling a hibiscus! =)
Now, you’ll need to prepare some cookie dough (my recipe is HERE
), chill the dough well, bake and then cool.
Prepare some royal icing (I use THIS
recipe). You’ll want to have a bag (or bottle) of icing in a thick consistency and one in a thinned (flood) consistency for each color.
Prepare your work area (HERE
is what mine looks like).
Outline the cookie with a flood consistency icing (this can also be done with the thick consistency icing, but I prefer the seamless look of outlining and flooding in the same icing). You’ll have to experiment a bit to make sure your flood consistency icing is not so runny it just falls right off the cookie.
Fill in cookie with the same flood consistency icing. Use a toothpick to direct the icing into any unfilled areas.
Use a flood consistency icing in a contrasting color to make a starburst shape in the center of the cookie.
Drag a tooth pick from the center of the cookie toward the outside (but not all the way to the edge).
Continue around the cookie until the desired design is achieved.
It should look something like this…
Now before this next step you need to let the icing dry for several hours or overnight. The reason is, in a couple steps we’ll be adding some sprinkles to the stamen (the thing that sticks out from the center of the flower). If your base coat is not dry, the sprinkles will stick all over the cookie, and not just on the stamen where they belong. If you are really pressed for time (or just impatient) you could just let the cookie dry an hour or so, and then continue with the stamen, but not include sprinkles on the stamen at all.
Note: The parts that stick out of the center of the hibiscus actually include the stigma and the stamen, but I’ll just use the word stamen for simplicity.
When base icing on the cookie is dry (or mostly dry if you’re not adding sprinkles), pipe a line of thick consistency icing (using a #2 tip) to form the stamen (as shown below).
With the same icing, add some thickness to the end of the stamen, and then pipe some small dots around the end (as shown). I also added some white dots on top of the thicker end of the stamen (optional).
While the line and dots are still wet, hold the cookie over a paper plate (to catch the excess) and sprinkle some yellow non pareils sprinkles on the end of the stamen.
Finish the cookie by outlining in a thick consistency icing.
Once they are completely dry, these can make a gorgeous addition to any luau party.
Oh what fun it is to have friends who love to party!
My family has been so blessed by the friendship of a wonderful husband and wife (the Langes) for about 7 years. When we met them we had no idea that friendship with Langes also means being on the invite list for several wonderful parties throughout the year. One of the yearly parties the Langes host is a huge, summer luau party. The party includes about 80 guests, a DJ, lots of yummy food, drinks from their very own slushy machine, and luau decorations galore inside and out. The party makes use of an incredibly beautiful yard that that Langes have created on their hill-side lot. The past couple years I’ve had the joy of creating desserts for the party. Here are the desserts I made and set up for the Lange Luau 2010!
Chocolate Cupcakes (recipe HERE) with Vanilla Frosting (recipe HERE)
Vanilla Cupcakes with Vanilla Frosting (recipe HERE)
Pina Colada Cupcakes (recipe HERE)
Hawaiian Snowballs (recipe HERE)
Several styles of hand decorated sugar cookies (recipe HERE, decorating tips HERE and HERE)
I also made two custom flower arrangements for the display. I always enjoy any opportunity use my ”old” floral design skills (I worked as a floral designer for 8 years).
I contacted Littlebeane Boutique to get some custom printables for the party. I was so pleased with the beautiful food labels (in two styles) and cupcake toppers (in three styles).
I even used the design from one of the styles of cupcake toppers (above) for my cookies (below).
More yummy food with beautiful labels by Littlebeane Boutique.
To add height to the table, I used some boxes (that I’ve used several times before) covered in wrapping paper, with plates on top. To add an additional Luau detail, I tied bear grass in a knot and wrapped in around the boxes.
As I mentioned at the beginning of the post, the Langes have an incredibly gorgeous yard. Their yard was professionally photographed recently by Rob Vomond. He has graciously given his permission for me to share a few of his images.
(Above) The beautiful outdoor bar, notice the slushy machine behind the bar!
~All the details~
Desserts, flower arrangements and photos of desserts by me (Glory Albin/ Glorious Treats)
Beautiful yard photos by Rob Vomund.
Party printables (food labels and cupacke toppers) by Littlebeane Boutique.
Paper lanterns (hanging above the dessert table) from Luna Bazaar.
Scallopped “Aloha” cookie at the top of the post was made with a beautiful cookie cutter from Copper Gifts.
I’ve never been to Italy, but if, I mean when I visit, I’d like to go here…
Ok, so maybe there is no such place, but in the world of artist Janet Hill
Of course, if I lived in Janet Hill’s
world, my house might look like this…
…and then I may never want to leave!
I would spend my days in my perfectly quaint kitchen…
…arranging flowers and baking cakes!
Ok, back to reality for a moment… but just a moment!
I came across the works of Canadian artist Janet Hill
a couple years ago and have been following her work ever since. Her paintings are like food for the soul! Light, colorful, and often filled with sweets… oh how I often wish to be transported into one of her beautiful paintings! There is something about her paintings of kitchens, cafes, and sweets that remind me of every good feeling I have on a perfect day of baking. Those days when I get to create something beautiful merely because I enjoy it!
If these gorgeous paintings aren’t enough to make you fall in love with Janet’s work
… do you like shoes? How about pretty dresses? Oh yes, this talented woman
paints all of the things dreams are made of… beautiful interiors, gorgeous sweets… and shoes!!
Follow Janet Hill’s work on her blog, HERE
And you can get your hands on her beautiful paintings and prints in her Etsy store, HERE
P.S. Feel free to add me to your Christmas list, you already know what I want… one of Janet’s
(All images in this post belong to Janet Hill
, and were used with permission)