DECEMBER IS FINALLY HERE! I can not even begin to explain to you all how much I freaking love December. I am not sure why, other than the fact that its my birthday month, December is a month of everything Holiday. I LOVE HOLIDAY EVERYTHING...oh and SANTA. To kick off the holidays I want to share my go to gingerbread cookie recipe because this is a staple in my home and the aroma will put even the grinchy-est person in a jolly a** mood.
I have been tweaking this recipe for some time now and for the past three years I have consistently gone back to this recipe. I love this particular recipe because the cookies DO NOT spread, and if you are going to decorate your cookies then that is a huge deal. Nobody wants to spend all that time cutting out the cookies to only have their gingerbread man looking like the Michelin man when they come out of the oven. NOT CUTE!
I also want to point out that I do not use Crisco for my cookies. A lot of recipes call for Crisco, which is shortening made of 100% vegetable oil. Shortening yields higher, lighter- textured baked good which is sometimes better than butter (so they say). Another difference is that butter naturally has water in it while shortening doesn't, it also has no dairy in it so if that is an issue for you then use shortening. I just don't understand all of that and I like butter so I used butter. If you wanted to use shortening instead, just substitute the same amount of shortening for butter.
These cookies can be made in advanced and stored in your fridge but chilling this dough is a BIG mistake. You can chill this dough if you aren't going to commit to making it right away, so if you do chill it, you must bring it back to room temperature before rolling and cutting.
One of my cousins, near and dear to my heart, Christina, is expecting! She and her husband Allen are some of the greatest people I know, obvi she is my cousin so she is undoubtedly amazing. When I found out she was expecting I almost fell out of my chair in excitement and all I wanted to ask her was if she would grant me the honor of making her a cake for her gender reveal. AND she said YES! I was so over the moon and really blessed to be able to be apart of their journey but in all honesty I was extremely nervous. She sent me a photo of what she wanted, a "Touchdowns or Tutus" theme and I have never everrr made a cake that mimics a picture before. Everything and anything you see on this blog is my own ideas in my brain and with the help of youtube and my husband whom I literally annoy every time I bake, layered cakes become my very own masterpieces. To say that I felt pressured is an understatement. Although I knew they would be grateful and happy no matter what, I really wanted to knock people out the ball park when they saw this cake. Needless to say, the cake turned out looking pretty great and most importantly they were extremely happy and loved the cake which made it all worth while.
I know I know I have been MIA again with my posting but I have made a bunch of new cakes that are so out of my comfort zone so just be prepared. I have finally done the one cake I was most nervous about...a half birthday cake! Is there anything more exciting than seeing a vision in your head and it coming true in cake form? NO! Literally NO! If you have been following this blog than my twin nieces are now 6 months...YAY to that! It happens so that their half birthday was the weekend of Halloween, my most despised holiday by far. Do not get me wrong all you pumpkin spice lovers, I love that part I just hate anything and everything scary; flashing lights, scary movies, masks, clowns, the works. So to say the least I was stumped as to what to make for a Halloween themed party to celebrate their half birthdays so I made it as fun and whimsical as possible.
Happy October! If you live in LA you are finally experiencing some cooler temperatures at night... time to bust out those sweaters! With Fall officially upon us, for my family and I that means birthday after birthday after birthday until the end of the year.
Although I made 3 cakes the past week I never actually took any great pictures of them but this week was my moms birthday. My mom is so into her sweet tooth that she has driven in traffic to get a slice of cake from her favorite bakery (this is very very true). Granted she has never really complained about any of my cakes or other desserts I make I really wanted to wow her with something extra because she's EXTRA (got it from my momma).
Happy September Cake-erellas!
Am I the only one excited about Autumn or what? I feel like everyone is dwelling over the fact that Summer is passing us by but we still have 2 more weeks until Autumn has officially begun (Sept. 22 if your curious) and to be honest I can not wait for this heat to leave us so I can actually straighten my hair without the need to put it back up in a pony tail because I just CAN NOT deal with it being down. Now that I have vented, literally, let's move on.
How are we already in August! Is it just me or did July come and fly right by us? I have been sort of MIA catching up with my family, but have no fear I am BACK! I have people asking me left and right every day (also family who missed cake) when a new blog post is coming on my website and I was pleasantly surprised with the feedback. I just wanted to take a minute to say THANK YOU to everyone who has been reading these and has been so supportive! Let’s get on with it!
Are you going Bananas over this heat?
Los Angeles has been like an inferno these past couple of days making me extremely lazy and not willing to leave my house making Netflix and Chill really mean something different to me, literally. Seeing as how the sun has made its grand entrance into our lives, what is summer without desserts?
This week, by the request of my cousin, I made Chocolate Nutella cake with fresh bananas, but I really wanted to do something different with this one. Banana is such an underrated flavor that we sometimes forget just how light and summery the taste is. Unlike other recipes I found online, I really wanted to try something different. I recently tried English toffee and was inspired from the unique flavor and richness of the toffee.
Because the only thing better than fireworks is DESSERTS!
Happy 4th of July peeps!
How are we already in July though? I feel like July is all about BBQ-ing and swimming and really EATING. Lucky for you, if you are going to go to a 4th BBQ then these red, white, and blue cupcakes filled with American buttercream will scream independence.
This week was my nieces 2 month birthday celebration which gave me a chance to up my creativity. For such a momentous milestone (yes, yes, it IS a big deal in my family) I was contemplating on what kind of cake to make; flavor, frosting, fondant... all these thoughts and ideas totally running miles in my head; so I decided to bake a simple vanilla cake. But wait, there's more! I wanted to do that cool swirly effect on the cake, you know the ones that you see on Pintrest where the cake is cut so you just see this slice of swirls and all your magical dreams are made.... YA THAT! So lets begin.
Hi cake-erellas... This is my first blog post (eeecck)! There is so much to say and there may not be enough time (or in this case, space) but welcome to Chant-elle.com. This whole concept is new to me and hopefully we get to know each other on a more personal level and experience the world of wonder together. Friday Wake & bake is where you are, and you guessed it, we are going to be talking about baking (not the kind we do under our eyes, that's a whole other page). This is where I will be sharing all my recipes, successes, failures, tips, & tricks. Why Fridays you may ask? Fridays are the days I wait for all week while sitting at my 8-5; the day I plan out what I want to bake for the weekend, hence why Fridays are my wake and bake. I want everyone to note that I am in no way a professionally trained baker, so yes, my cake is going to look wonky at times but beauty is in the eye of the beholder! I have learned that when you are baking, you have to be able to accept challenges and failures the same way, fearlessly. I also would like to add that you can create anything and everything that your little hearts desire with ease if you have all the right tools and measurements. Baking is like a science experiment, one extra scoop of powdered sugar and there is no going back! That is why it's important to measure accurately. By the way, when I talk about measuring, I do not mean the way your mom tells you to measure things, with your "eye" or "about a cup"... I mean actually buying a measuring cup and spoon set (FYI: Amazon is my holy-grail and where I buy literally everything). Once you have all the right tools, you will feel more confident and will not be intimidated by baking. Just remember, not every cake is going to be perfectly leveled and not every batch of buttercream is going to be good, so let's get over our fears and let's do this!