Thursday, December 29, 2011

S'More Bombs

Food Arts Magazine provides demos by some of the great chefs, some have recipes you might enjoy for your wedding, rehersal dinner or other special pre-wedding occasion. For photos see Ben Roche at an Buick Discovery + Wine Event.  To read more about Ben Roche and his restaurant Moto go here.  He and his partner are one of the top trendy restaurants using chemistry instead of the food you think you're eating.  They're basically food chemists.

Awhile ago I came across a "I Can't Resist This!" dessert.  It brought together my childhood camp memories of s'mores around the campfire sans mosquitoes with my adult gourmet palate (oh yeah, I'm soooo adult now, and such a gourmet, which is why I adore s'mores ya know?)

One of my favorites (partially because I can actually replicate it at home) is S'More Bombs made by executive pastry chef at Chicago's Moto.  Roche liquefies the milk, graham crackers, dark brown sugar and salt and finds a way (genius that he is) to form them into tiny bombs of flavor by using a 2 part ice cube tray that make spheres (for me this was the hard part--I'm a mess in the kitchen!)  Then he melts the chocolate and cocoa butter and uses lollipop sticks to dip the balls into the chocolate.  You make wicks from cellophane noodles that are deep fat fried--GENIUS!  I'll put the exact directions as published in Food Arts for you to use because you don't want to depend on my 'cook by the seat of your pants' cooking directions!

Recipe From Food Arts Magazine from Executive Chef, Ben Roche

50 Servings

Graham cracker puree:
2 packs (240g) graham crackers
3 cups (700 ml) WHOLE milk
2 T (30 g) dark brown sugar

Graham Cracker Puree:

1. Place all the above into high speed blender, blend 1-2 min. until puree becomes warm so the fat from the graham crackers can emulsify with the milk.
2. Chill puree in an ice bath or covered in the refrigerator.
3. Pour into ice cube trays, preferably a 2 part ice cube tray that makes spheres for the 'bomb' like look.  Freeze overnight.
4. Remove frozen graham spheres from trays.
5. Reserve in freezer.

Chocolate Covering:

6 1/2 T (100 g) cocoa butter
17 1/2 oz (500 g) dark chocolate

1.  Heat cocoa butter and chocolate together in your microwave to approximately 100 degrees F or until completely melted (stir occasionally so cocoa butter doesn't separate from the chocolate.)
2. Press a wooden skewer (I used lollipop sticks but a pointed skewer would probably work better) into each frozen graham cracker ball. 
3. Dip in chocolate coating.  Tap each ball a few times to remover chocolate and get a thinner and crisper chocolate shell.
4.  Place on a plate or try lined with plastic or a non-stick baking mat.
5. Remover skewer when chocolate has set. (a few seconds).  Make sure to leave a hole for the 'wick.'
6.  Reserve in refrigerator a minimum of three hours for the frozen graham crackers to melt back into a liquid state.

Marshmallow "wicks:"

12 Dried cellophane noodles (thicker varieties work best)

1.  Heat oil in medium saucepan over medium low heat to 350-400 degrees. 
2.  Deep fry cellophane noodles until the pull and crisp up (about 10 seconds); remover from oil.
3. Set on paper towels to drain and dry.
4. Break into 1 1/2 to 2 inch long 'wicks' by hand; reserve in a dry place.


1. Insert wick in ball. 
2. Plate a single ball on each plate
3. Light the wick; once it burns out eat the bomb and wick all in one bite!

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Lily Pulitzer, Weddings and Cookies

OK, I know, Lily P, weddings and baking... an odd combo.  But if you stop and think about it, Lily is all about great design and so are designing your cookies and planning your wedding.  These cookies, courtesy of The Sweet Adventure of SugarBelle will knock the socks off your guests.  Perfect for your sweet table or to give as favors, your guests will remember these cookies. 

The design for these cookies is based on Lily Pulitzer's 2011 Optical Confusion design in navy and pink.  Lily weddings are perfect for the preppy bride looking for some bright colors and an up to date look for her wedding.

Ombre Cookies - Easy For The Home Baker

Are you a bride who is loving the ombre look for your wedding day? These ombre cookies, from The Sweet Adventure of SugarBelle one of my go to blogs for great cookie ideas, has a tutorial to show you just how easy it is to make these great looking cookies. 

Sugarbelle's site shows you the easy way to 'airbrush' the cookies using Wilton's Color Mist.  Wilton Master Color Mist Food Color Spray Kit give you a choice of eight different colors. One is sure to fit your palette. It's a super tutorial and I highly recommend heading over to see the ombre cookie tutorial as well as her other great how-to posts, must reads for the serious, and not so serious cookie baker.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Gold Thread Cookies

Amber Spiegel strikes again! And I don't mean strikes out! If you liked her campy Twilight cookies, these gold thread Orange Vanilla Spice Cookies iced in muted colors with "embroidered" royal Icing flowers will blow you away!  The cookies are painted with gold pearl dust that's actually edible! Cookies measure about 3-1/2" in diameter. This set of lacy cookies contains 2 dusty blue, 2 pink and 2 light brown cookies.
Each cookie has zest of orange, cardamom, and vanilla bean with vanilla flavored Royal Icing topping each cookie.  Enjoy this unique flavor combination. 

Cookies are wrapped individually and heat sealed for freshness in a cellophane.  Cookies will be shipped to you in a beautifully packaged gift box and your cookies will stay fresh for up to three weeks.  Order today!  These are a little bit pricey but well worth it when you hear all those oohs and ahs from your guests! 
Keep an eye on SweetAmbs for more great cookies for weddings and other special occasions.  If you love the design on these cookies she currently has some with a leaf design as well.  Other designs include monograms, crowns, hearts, cameos, teapots, apples and hearts.



Cookies For Twi-Hards

Twi-hards will love these cookies by Amber Spiegel.  Amber sells these through her store on Sweet Ambs.  Twilight theme weddings are all the rage so Amber wisely chose to cash in on it by creating her own Twilight design cookies

Whether you're Team Edward or Team Jacob these cookies have something for everyone. 

Choose the iconic chess pieces or the apples, both are equally represented in her collection.  Serve these at your Twilight theme wedding, its so good that the movies have all been spread out, giving fans a chance to become addicted to the brand and to gain the type of following that legends are made of. So have a Twilight wedding.  Just lend Grandma the book first or you'll spend all night explaining why you're serving hearts dripping with blood at your wedding!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Madeleine Topiary Sculpture

Love this photo of madeleines sculpted into the shape of a pineapple (or is it an artichoke? Choose your own interpretation of which it is!) This is actually meant to be a pineapple (noted symbol of friendship).  The structure of the pineapple was made by covering a foam shape in rolled fondant. 

I know when I first started baking I thought these tiny tender cakes baked in the special shell shaped pan were cookies, but they are actually buttery spongy cakes. The first time I tried them I had some wonderful almond flavored madeleines, but later found they also come flavored in lemon or orange.

The tiny cakes are later attached to the fondant covered form with thin wooden skewers.  (I buy mine in the grocery store, if you can't find them just ask, they tend to be in 'odd places' in the grocery store. Last time I bought mine they were with the shoelaces and shoe polish--go figure!) 

This gorgeous fondant and madeleine topiary makes a great accent on your sweet table.  I like my madeleines 'natural' colors but I've seen this project done in greens or pink, just add some food coloring to your batter. If you're coloring your batter I'd color my fondant the same color.  Enjoy creating these beautiful cakes and wow your guests with this great presentation.  Photo courtesy of Martha Stewart Weddings.

Monday, October 24, 2011

'They Look Just Like You' Cookies

A great idea for personalizing cookies for your wedding!  Parker's Crazy Cookies makes you wedding cookies that look just like you and your groom.  So cool!  Great for a wedding favor or for a fun addition to your sweet table.  I admit, I've never seen these before, hope you enjoy. 

These are pretty basic cookies. They’re just plain old sugar cookies. No glitz, no glitter, no frosting, no sprinkles.  In fact they look like giant animal crackers (or in your case, bride and groom crackers).  These cookies are true art--they capture your smallest unique features in cookie form. 

You need a photo of the bride and groom, an email account and you must order 150 You Cookies.  Once the owner gets your photos he'll start designing your caricature in dough. 

In two or three weeks you'll have a small army of cookies made in your image (how scary is that?) They'll arrive divided into regiments of six.  Your job, divide them into pairs of bride and groom.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Wedding Cookies -- With The Look of Stained Glass

Martha Stewart Weddings posted this great recipe for Stained Glass Cookies.   Not only are these stained glass cookies visually appealing and perfect to give as wedding favors or display on your sweet table, they aren't hard to make. You will need a candy thermometer for the 'stained glass' part so keep that in mind before you get involved in the project and have to run out in the middle of your project to grab one. 

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Decorate Your Cookies With Fresh Flowers

Martha Stewart Weddings shows these pretty cookies perfect for a sweet table or for wedding favors.  Head to her site to find out how to make these cookies that look like your baker or caterer made them but that you can make at home.  But where do you get the edible flowers?  Try Sid Wainer and Son.  They have mixed pansies and mixed blossoms to let you choose which you prefer.  You can also add these blooms to your salads or use them to garnish your plates.  I love a plate that when it's served is a feast for my eyes and my palate.

Monday, July 11, 2011

The Perfect Cookies for Your Beach Wedding

Diamonds for Dessert has a great recipe for these DIY sand dollar cookies.  What would be  a better choice of cookies to serve guests at your beach wedding than these light and crispy sand dollars? Visit Diamonds for Dessert for the recipe for these great cookies as well as other great recipes to add to your recipe box of recipes to make again and again.  What's the secret ingredient in these cookies? Two actually--coconut milk and tapioca starch--head to Diamonds for Dessert blog for where to find the starch for these incredible cookies.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Happy Memorial Day!

Just wanted to wish all my readers a Happy Memorial Day! Enjoy your cookouts or beach trips or the day at the pool. See you tomorrow! Nancy&Bill

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Black and White Floral Cookies

Black & White Floral Wafer Paper lets you make fancy wedding cookies without piping a lot of icing! To decorate cookies, simply trace the shape of the cookie you wish to decorate with a cookie cutter. These edible, sugar free printed wafer paper designs come in a variety of designs many of which are wedding appropriate.  Add a 3 dimensional effect by using small sugar pearls, dragees, sugar decorations and/or edible glitter. Adhere using a small dot of clear piping gel. Voila! Perfect wedding favors or cookies for a your sweet table.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Biscuits You Can't Wait to Bite Into

Pretty cookies from the UK

With everyone around the world looking forward to a royal wedding in Great Britain The Bicuiteers
 have created some wedding cookies that will knock your socks off! Enjoy these beautiful cookies for your wedding day as well (and consider serving them with a nice cuppa tea!)


Sunday, January 30, 2011

Idle Hand Bars

Recipe and Photo courtesy of Eliazbeth at
Now that you've fallen in love with the photo, here's the easy to follow recipe for these to die for bar desserts.  Perfect for your sweet table or to give as favors for your guests.  To quote Elizabeth at Guilty Kitchen as to why they are called Idle Hands Bars "idle hands are the Devil’s playground and the Devil definitely made me make these, because they are sinful. Eat your boring, chocolate heart out, Devil’s Food Cake!"  So chocolate and peanut butter lovers you owe Elizabeth a huge debt of gratitude for your new favorite dessert!

Idle Hand Bars

Base Layer

1/2 cup unsalted butter

1/4 cup sugar

5 Tbsp. Cocoa

1 egg, beaten

1 1/4 cups graham cracker crumbs

3/4 cup coarsely crushed pretzels

1. In double boiler (or a bowl resting over a pot of lightly simmering water), melt the first three ingredients.

2. While still over water, add egg and beat to combine (will thicken quite a bit here). Remove from heat and add crumbs and pretzels.

3. Press into an 8 x 8 cake pan. Set aside.

Middle Layer

1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly.

2/3 cup powdered sugar

1 cup smooth, natural peanut butter (no salt added, reduce salt accordingly if using salted)

1/2 tsp salt

1 tsp vanilla

1. Add peanut butter and butter together in small bowl.

2. Mix in sugar, salt and vanilla to form a thick paste.

3. Dump onto base layer and smooth over, patting down to make a flat, even layer.

Top (final) Layer

5 oz. Semi Sweet Choclate chips (or other fine chocolate)

1 Tbsp unsalted butter

Pink Himalayan salt (or other fine sea salt)

1. In double boiler (or microwave), melt butter and chocolate chips together. Stir until complete dissolved and smooth.

2. Pour over peanut butter layer and spread out evenly.

3. Cool in fridge for about 5 minutes (should still be slightly soft on top but not warm).

4. Sprinkle, lightly, with Himalayan salt. Return to fridge (or freezer, if you’re in a hurry like I was), and let cool completely to become hard.

5. Cut into small squares and don’t say I didn’t warn you….these things are addictive.

You can freeze these too, might make them last longer and would let your make them ahead of time for a wedding.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Considering DIY, Read This

I was browsing bridal sites thinking "of course I CAN DO something myself" when I can across a blog post on Indie Bride ( where the editor details her attempts at making cake pops (which btw, don't LOOK that hard!) Her pics detail just WHY I don't do it MYSELF, because I am just plain BAD at it.  Anything I did would come out looking like a project the local nursery school kids made.  So don't beat yourself up if you just aren't a DIY'er, some of us have other talents.  But just to prove it, I'm going to try to make those cake pops just to see if it's as bad as it sounds, I have a feeling it will be, but at least if I'm only doing it as an experiment failure won't mean a ruined wedding!  For those of your brave enough to try the dreaded cake pops by Bakerella, post and let me know how you do, it's always good to have feedback! 

Love Is In The Air -- And On Cookies

Photos from: From BeesKneesCreative on

Bees Knees Creative on offers you ways to say "I love you" with cookies.  They make these conversation heart cookies in a variety of colors and messages.  Available in their favorite sugar cookie recipe. 

These conversation pops are also from Bees Knees Creative.  Flavors available: double fudge brownie, vanilla cream, red velvet cake, cookies and cream, strawberry delight, double peanut butter, carrot cake and cream cheese, egg-free chocolate chip, and banana chocolate chip. These cookies are fun for your sweetheart on Valentines Day or to use as wedding or shower favors.

Bees Knees offers an assortment of cookies for every occasion.