Happy September: Cosplay and the Perfect Buttercream Frosting

Eeeesh. So I apparently abandoned my blog for the summer. It’s not that I haven’t wanted to write… honest. And to make up for it I will share a wonderful recipe for the perfect chocolate buttercream that I found recently on Averie Cooks. But that will come later, fist I have a few fun and exciting updates.  First, I’m not sure how avid my fan base is, but those of you who follow me often enough will know that over the last year or so I’ve been slowly turning this baking blog into an everything blog. The next few months will be no different, because as my blog has grown, so have my interests, and I’ve moved everywhere from baking and cooking, to cake decorating, to DIY and arts and crafts, and now I’ve developed a love for Cosplay and Costume Making.  Last Halloween I made a fantastic Minion Costume and this year, I’m going all out with some badass Skyrim Cosplay! Here’s my progress thus far:

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I don’t know how much of a detailed tutorial I’ll post, but I’ll try to post more photos when I start adding more to my helmet.  I constructed this out of soft cardboard that I pulled from empty cereal and granola bar boxes. I cut out a few long strips, measured them around my head and then taped them together using electrical tape to make a large circle. I cut up the various shapes I needed and affixed them to the circle. I used foam paper to fill in the rest. I layered it with two full layers of foam.  I plan on using paper mâché to create the rest of the helmet, and then painting it a combination of black, silver, and bronze. I can’t wait! I’ll be completing the rest of my armor with a similar approach.

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In the end, it should look somewhat like this:

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I’ve also started a little vlogging here and there, and been having a lot of fun doing it. You can find my channel here. It’s all about Life as Kelsey Bakes, and I’ll be sharing all of it on here. 

Remember to please like and share my videos and subscribe to my channel!! Now… for that recipe I promised.

I make these bad boys for an end of summer work barbecue at my boss’s house. This has to be the best chocolate buttercream I’ve ever made. I don’t know why, but it was just better than anything I’ve ever made before, from it’s consistency, to it’s taste.  You can find the full recipe here along with a recipe for some yellow cupcakes.  We were celebrating a kind of end of summer-going away party-kelsey’s birthday party…thing.

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Perfect Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

Makes enough frosting for 12 – 15 cupcakes

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter (1 stick), softenend
  • 1/2 heaping cup unsweetened natural cocoa powder, sifted
  • 2 1/2 to 3 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp. cream or milk

Directions

  1.  Add the butter to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Beat on medium-high until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes.  Scrape down the sides as needed.
  2. Add the cocoa, confectioners’ sugar and vanilla, and beat on medium-high speed until fluffy, another 5 minutes. Scrape down the sides as needed.
  3. Add the cream and continue to beat until well combined. Note that it may not be necessary to add the cream, and you can omit it if you’ve reached the desired consistency. I had to add some, as my frosting was chunky and much too thick.
  4. Transfer frosting to a piping bag and using a Wilton 1M tip (for the standard cupcake swirl) frost the cooled cupcakes.

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So there you have it! This is a great recipe because it gives you the perfect consistency for frosting cupcakes. Of course, if frosting a cake i’f add a lot more cream to thin it out for the full crumb coat/coat. It was also my birthday a few weeks ago. I got spoiled, as usual.

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You can see one of the super duper fun gifts I got below. Have an excellent day! Happy baking!

World AIDS Orphan Day: Baking for a Cause

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Last week I made a huge batch of cupcakes to raise money for the Golder Trust for Orphans, a charity that the company I work for created.  My office will often have events or sell things within our office in an effort to raise money for the Trust.  May 7th was World AIDS Orphan Day, and I made… get this.. 72 cupcakes.. yikes! It took a lot of work.  A lot of baking and cooling really.  But I managed, and came out with 72 cupcakes, decorated with fondant and gum paste blossoms and daisies, sugar pearls and chocolate chips.  The cupcakes were red velvet, vanilla and chocolate, and were topped with swirls of green and orange buttercream.  They turned out great.  Thanks to everyone in the office, we raised $315.00!!!!  I’ve posted all the pictures below.  If you are interested in contributing to the Golder Trust for Orphans, please visit their website at http://goldertrust.org/donate/

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On another note, I hope everyone enjoyed their mother’s day weekend! I have some cakes coming up after the long weekend that I am so super excited to share, including another baby cake and an angry birds cake.  I found a fantastic tutorial that demonstrated how to make fondant baby shoes, and I will post it with my comments after I have made the cake.  Happy Baking!!