Baby Shower Treats

This weekend I made some blue and brown sweets for a friend’s baby shower.  Pretty cookies and cupcakes to help celebrate the baby boy to come.  I made sugar cookies (recipe) decorated with royal icing (how-to’s HERE) and cupcakes to match.  The cupcakes were chocolate cake (recipe) with vanilla cream cheese frosting (recipe) and decorated with fondant accents made by me (how-to coming…eventually).
I love the classic blue and brown color scheme, and I’ll look forward to someone having a girl, so I can play with pink and brown. 

Snowflake Ballerina Party {A look back}

Last December I planned and put together a really magical birthday party for a good friend’s little girl.  The birthday girl loves ballet, and since her birthday is in December we created a winter twist on a ballet theme… a Snowflake Ballerina Party.  I posted the photos in one of my very first blog posts (in March of this year), and since I’ve gained a few readers since then (actually more than a few… thank you all!!), I thought I would post a little reminder to go enjoy the photos of the party if you haven’t already.  
Please enjoy,
Bailey’s Snowflake Ballerina Party 

All of the details, recipes, etc. are in the original post, HERE

Rolo Pretzel Bites {Easy and Delicious!}

I’m a big fan of fancy desserts.

BUT… there are times when you just need something quick, easy and still delicious!

That’s the kind of recipe I have for you today.

In fact, I have a hard time even calling it a “recipe”, when it only has three ingredients…

Rolo (store bought chocolate/caramel candies), pretzels and pecan halves.

Bottom line, if you just threw those three things in a bowl it would be pretty yummy!

For these tasty treats, all you have to do is lay the pretzels on a baking sheet (I used these cute square ones, but the mini twists would work too).  Top each pretzel with an unwrapped Rolo candy.

Bake in the oven at 250*F for 4-5 minutes (no longer).

When you remove them from the oven, the Rolo will still be in the same shape as when it went in the oven. Place a pecan half on top of the Rolo and press down a bit.

Top each of the Rolo with one pecan half.

Place the entire baking sheet in the freezer for about 5-7 minutes to allow the Rolo to cool.

Remove from freezer and enjoy! Or place in a container to enjoy later.  These will last several days- probably more, but they’ve never lasted that long in our house!

These are so delicious!  A great sweet-salty combo.

Enjoy!

Recipe source-  I recently discovered these when a friend made some for Scrapbooking night, but I think it’s an old recipe.  I imagine it’s from Rolo  =)

Adorable Cupcake Ornaments {Giveaway!!}

After Halloween, you may not be in the mood for more sweets, but I have the perfect solution for you!  How about some adorable cupcakes that look good enough to eat… but are actually “sweet” little ornaments? 
Let me introduce you to Amy Miller, the artist behind Amy Miller Designs.  Amy has a passion for all things CUTE, and boy do her handmade cupcake ornaments fit that description! 
I just received my order of three of her sweet creations.  I can’t wait to hang my new cupcake ornaments on the Christmas tree, but they look equally adorable just sitting on a shelf.  Amy’s line includes cupcakes with cute polka-dot liners, and also a new line just in time for Christmas, with extra festive designs. 
When I first came across Amy’s cupcakes several months ago I instantly knew two things… I wanted some, and I wanted some to share!  And Amy was sweet enough to agree! 
Amy Miller Designs is going to send two lucky Glorious Treats readers their choice of two of her sweet ornaments.  You can keep one for yourself and give one to a friend… or keep them both, I wont tell! 
Do you need some extra cuteness in your life? 
Here’s how to enter…
Just head over to Amy Miller Designs and take a look at all of the adorable cupcakes.  Then come back here and leave a comment telling me your favorite cupcake from her shop.
For an additional entry, hop over to Facebook and “like” Amy Miller Designs, and Glorious Treats too (of course)!  Come back here and leave a comment that you have “liked” both pages.  If you have a moment, be sure to say “hi” to Amy on her Amy Miller Designs Facebook page.
A maximum of two entries per person.  The giveaway is open to U.S. residents only.  The winners will be chosen using Random.org.  The giveaway will end Saturday, November 6th at 10:00pm Pacific time.
~ Givaway Closed ~

Decorating Sugar Cookies… From Start to Finish- Part 2

Yesterday I posted “Part 1” of a detailed tutorial my good friend (and cookie decorator extraordinaire!) Callye of Sweet Sugar Belle put together exclusively for Glorious Treats readers.  Today I’m back with all the photo how-to’s for the decorating stage. 
You’ll need to prepare a batch of Royal Icing.
Royal Icing
4 Tablespoons Meringue Powder (I use Wilton Brand)
4 cups (about 1 pound) powdered sugar
6 Tablespoons warm water
Beat all ingredients until stiff peaks form. 
*Make sure all bowls and utensils are totally grease-free or your icing will never reach proper consistency.
Spoon some of the thick white icing into individual bowls and add coloring (Callye and I use
For each color of icing, you will want a piping bag (or squeeze bottle) of thick icing and one in the same color of thinned icing.  Once you color a bowl of icing, scoop about 1/2 of it into a piping bag (fitted with a size 2 tip- or other desired size), and then thin the remaining icing in that bowl to create a thinned version of the exact same color.  To thin icing add 1 teaspoon of water at a time and stir, continue adding water by 1/2 teaspoons until desired consistency is reached. 
I will use the terms “thick icing“, this is the consistency before adding extra water, and should be about the consistency of toothpaste.   When I say “thinned icing“, it should be icing that has been thinned to about the consistency of thick syrup (like corn syrup).
Once you have your icing colored, and in piping bags (and/or squeeze bottles) you’re ready to get started. 
Below is a photo I posted in a previous post, but I thought would be a nice reminder.  The more organized your work space is the more efficient you will be.
Candy Corn Cookies
~Candy Corn Cookies Directions~
Step 1.  Pipe thick black icing around the edge of the cookie.   Let that outline dry for at least 1/2 hour before continuing. (You can work on other cookies and then come back).
Steps 2.-5.  Fill in with thinned icing in white, then yellow, then orange.
Step 6.  When icing is completely dry (after several hours) use a black edible marker to add eyes and mouth.
Candy
~Candy Directions~
Steps 1.-2.  Use thick black icing to outline the cookie.
Step 3.  Fill in (as shown) with thinned black icing.
Step 4.  Fill in the appropriate areas with thinned orange icing.
Step 5.  Fill in with thinned white.
Step 6.  Once the cookie is dry (after at least 1 hour), add a small accent of white (as shown). 
Heart Pumpkin
~Heart Pumpkin Directions~
Steps 1.-3.  Use thick black icing to outline the heart shape and outline parts of the face.
Step 4.  Fill in the face parts with thinned black icing.  Then create a stem with thinned green icing.
Step 5.  Fill in the pumpkin with thinned orange.
Step 6.  Use a toothpick as necessary to move the icing where it needs to be. 
Optional final step (not shown above, but shown on finished cookies at the top of the post), accent the green stem (when totally dry) with a green edible marker.
Peace Bat
~Peace Bat Directions~
Steps 1.-3.  Create the peace sign shaped using thinned black icing.
Step 4.-6.  Lay the cookie on a paper plate or tray, and sprinkle with black sanding sugar.  Allow to “rest” for a few minutes.
Steps 7.-8.  Gently turn cookie upside down and shake off excess sugar (do not worry about the excess sugar in the center of the design for now).  As needed, use a clean, dry paintbrush to brush off excess sugar.
Steps 9.-10.  Outline the bat wings with thick black icing, then fill in with thinned black icing. 
Step 11. Once the cookie is dry (after several hours), brush off any excess sugar from the center of the peace sign. 
Step 12.  Add eyes, using white icing first, and then a black dot.
Finally…
With some luck, and several hours of work (or fun, depending on how you look at it!) you may have something that resembles these…
A few final notes for beginners
It would be near impossible to include every detail of how to decorate cookies in one post.  The way Callye and I have developed most of our skills is through trial and error, and lots and LOTS of practice!  We are both still learning new tricks all the time.  Before you e-mail me with questions, please make sure you have read through the several posts I have on this blog on the topic of cookie decorating (see categories at the top of the right side bar).  There are also many resources available by simply doing internet searches on the topic you are interested in, as well as lots of great YouTube videos that show various tips and tricks.  Decorating cookies can be a very rewarding hobby, but it would be unrealistic to think you will be able to sit down and make 300 beautiful wedding favor cookies on your first try.  Maybe that could be a project for your second try! =)
Happy Decorating!
Please note as well… Callye has been very generous to us with her time and knowledge, but her time is not unlimited.  Please feel free to contact her to say “hi” and “thanks”, but she is quite busy raising three young children and can not answer your cookie questions, or make cookies for you at this time. 
All of the important links…
Part 1 of this tutorial- The design inspiration, cookie recipe, and cutting the dough.
Callye’s Facebook page, SugarBelle’s
Flickr page, Sweet Sugar Belle
Thanks again Callye!!