Friday, 25 April 2014

"White Roses"

These cupcakes order was commissioned by Raja Jesrina, who recently tied the knot on 16th April 2014. She had a specific idea on what she wanted for her akad nikah (Muslim marriage solemnisation ceremony) gift box. Her ideas were of course great but I realised that it was quite a lot of hardwork and I needed to start early so that I don't get too stressed at the last minute. 
To date, this order is one of my biggest projects this year. Although there were only 150 pcs  of cupcake gift boxes to make, each box of cupcake is very tedious work. I started off this project by sourcing all the materials needed from different suppliers. There were many materials needed for each box - the clear PVC box, the lace cupcake wrapper, pearl beads in 2 sizes, ribbon, name tags and so on. Researching and compiling the prices are very important as Jess has set her budget and I must try to adhere to her budget.
Lace cupcake wrappers

The first thing I did was to order these lace cupcake wrappers as I wanted the cupcakes to look classy and elegant. Since the custom order takes about 3 weeks, I had these ordered in early March as I didn't want to take any chances on the wrappers not arriving on time.

The clear PVC gift boxes

I had the clear PVC boxes ready with the lace wrappers and pearl beads prior to inserting the cupcakes into the boxes. Each of the box needed to have the same amount of pearl beads. So, I had the beads weighed before putting them into the boxes. I actually stuck the lace wrapper to the box first before putting in the beads.
The name tags for the gift box

Jess had given me the pdf file format for her monogram and she wanted the tags to be printed on pearl white cards with the fonts in silver hot stamping. I managed to get my trusted company printer to get these cards printed for me at a very good price. However, Jess was not too happy with the size and wanted them smaller. So, I had them modified to the smaller size and punched a hole at the side instead of in the middle.
The organza ribbons were cut in advance prior to making the cupcakes. Oh, and I also had to handpaint each of the roses with silver accents as Jess doesn't want them to be too white.
Hand painting the roses

The roses were airbrushed in pearl white and I also hand painted them with silver edible paint. This process took me 4 days to complete as I only had the nights to start my work! If you've read my earlier entries, you would also know that I recently (February) had a carpal tunnel release surgery on my right hand, thus my painting pace was a bit slower then before. I also had these precious gumpaste roses handmade in the Philippines and they were flown into KL by my husband's colleagues, who happened to have a meeting in KL around the same time. Thank goodness for me on the timing! At any other time, I would probably make my own roses, but my hands are just not at their optimum best at the moment. 
This is how the gift box looks like up close

The cupcakes had two flavours, vanilla bean and orange spice. The baking process and getting the cupcakes assembled was quite easy, it was putting them all together that took a long time! I was so exhausted by the time I was done but at the same time I was very satisfied with what I have produced.
The cupcake in the box without the final touches

The cupcake gift box with the silver organza ribbon and name tag

Aerial view with the name tag

The cupcakes ready to be collected
All in all, I am so glad that I managed to complete the above order with only asisstance from my maid (who happened to have a very bad tooth ache at that time!). Congratulations again to Jess and I hope she was happy with the cupcake gift boxes.
Thank you again for the order, Jess!!


Tuesday, 8 April 2014

"Mini Chocolate Tarts"

Last weekend my children's school had organised a Spring Charity Bazaar to collect funds as donations towards helping the less privileged. The mums is my daughter's class decided to open a stall and sell some sweet treats, snacks and drinks. On top of that, the girls have voluntereed to open a braiding salon together with us. Each mum had to contribute and one of my contribution was making mini chocolate tarts.
Truthfully, I haven't actually made them before and I had googled a few recipes beforehand. I chose this recipe by Amy Wisniewski from as the reviews were fantastic. The recipe was also quite easy. Since am in a middle of preparing for a big wedding cupcakes order, I'd decided to buy the pre-baked tart shells from my baking supply store. I re-baked the tart shells for the extra colouring as the shells came in quite pale.
I then proceeded to follow the filling recipe from below.
RECIPE FOR CHOCOLATE TARTS courtesy of Amy Wisniewski (

For the crust:

  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter (1 stick), melted
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 vanilla bean, halved, seeds scraped, bean reserved
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine salt
  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

For the filling:

  • 8 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • 4 ounces semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter (1/2 stick), cut into small pieces
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine salt
For the crust:
  1. Heat the oven to 350°F and arrange a rack in the middle.
  2. Combine butter, sugar, vanilla seeds, and salt in a large bowl and stir until evenly incorporated. Add flour and stir until just combined and a soft dough forms.
  3. Sprinkle dough over the bottom of a 9-inch tart pan with a removable bottom. Using a measuring cup or your fingers, evenly press the dough into the bottom and up the sides of the pan (flour the cup occasionally to prevent sticking).
  4. Cover the tart shell with plastic wrap and let it rest in the refrigerator for 30 minutes. Once chilled, prick it all over with a fork and bake until golden brown, about 20 to 25 minutes.
  5. Remove from the oven and cool completely on a wire rack.
For the filling:
  1. Place chocolate and butter in a medium bowl; set aside.
  2. Combine cream, sugar, and salt in a small saucepan over medium heat and stir until sugar dissolves and liquid is just at a simmer, about 4 minutes.
  3. Pour cream mixture over chocolate and butter and let sit until melted, about 4 minutes. Gently stir until smooth.
  4. Pour ganache into the cooled tart shell and transfer to the refrigerator. Chill until set, about 1 1/2 to 2 hours.
And these are how my tarts looked like after refrigeration.
I shaved some dark chocolate and sprinkled cocoa powder on the tarts
for that extra flavour

Up close

I was very happy with the outcome and I sold these mini tarts for RM 1. Unfortunately for me, the kids didn't really go for this bittersweet tarts as they much preferred the candy floss we sold!! Now, that candy floss and wedges sales made up most of our gross sales that day!!
I loved the tarts though and was happy that I had a few leftovers for us to eat at home!
All in all, it was a very good day of sales for us and were happy that we managed to raise RM 1 K for charity!