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Monday, October 24, 2011

And the winner is....

Finally, the voting is over! I can say I'm going to start planning what to bake when, but I already did the scedule yesterday! Let me tell you, there will be NO REST and NO SLEEP for this week for me! Why? Because I also work full time! But I will manage!

So here are the top 10, voted by the Facebook group Fairy Cakes. (drum roll pleaseee)
1. Has many votes over the rest: Mummy Cupcake

Witch's Punch with Eyeballllllls!!! I'm pretty sure people voted this to see if I can do it, not to buy!

3. Spiderwebs Cake

4. Owl Cupcake

5. Witch Cupcake - Abstract

6. Ghost Cake Pop

7. Cat Cookie

8. Spider Cookie

9. Wacky Jack-o-Lantern Cucpakes

10. Apple Cupcake

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Bake Sale Flyer!

So...I'm not very good with all these computer graphics programs or whatnot so it took me a very short time to picture what I wanted as a flyer, and a very long time to accomplish it!!!

See, after following many many blogs, (ok not too many, like 50 of them) I realized how much I love organizing and planning my parties :) (or any parties but for the moment, my Bake Sale). I spent tons of hours reading blogs on Halloween projects and looking at pictures for inspiration. I saw this particular free "Boo" sign from Anders Ruff and saved it. Then I thought...what a nice sign to use as a Bake Sale Flyer! I adjusted it just a tad ( was were all the graphics stuff started to kick in) and then after loooong hours of trying to print it out in the right size, shape, color and such, I finally got it! I did a set of 2 on each piece of paper... and then ...they weren't centered! HA! So what to do now? I thought to myself "Chara, you must print them, copy them at a copy center, and then cut them yourself. No, you don't have that fancy cutter machine they had at the Design building at Long Beach State, but you have a ruler, an x-acto knife and some DO IT!"

I got to the copy place (not really a copy center..more like a kiosk with a copier) and told the lady I wanted some was so funny! She looked at my flyer and said "You want me to cut these? I can make them look nice." She had one of those fancy cutting things! Oh what a JOY! So she cut my flyers into the perfect rectangle and now they are all the same size and shape and all!!!

Here it is :)

I downloaded some free Halloween fonts, too (there's 2 on here.. but honestly, I downloaded so much stuff that had no reference of where it was from, that now even if I wanted to download it again, I have no idea where to get it!). I posted the event on facebook and invited everyone in my group. Now hopefully, I'll get a good turnout :)

Join me for my Spooktacular Halloween Bake Sale! Muahhahahhahha!!!!!

Monday, October 17, 2011


Well, I couldn't find much on the reason why we see spiders during Halloween, but what I could come up with was that during the fall and winter seasons, spiders can be found in dark corners.
But either way, I found some designs for me to use for my Bake Sale.

Spiderweb Cupcake
Even though this is a very simple design, I really like it. I guess less is more :) There's a chocolate cupcake hiding under there.

Spider Cookie
This I saw on Bakerella. I'm using my own recipe of Chocolate Cookies with Chocolate frosting and I'm just decorating like her. Only I can't find any Trix out here which was her suggestion, so I'm probably using an m & m or a dollop of frosting.

Spider Bites
This I also found on Bakerella. Brownie bits in chocolate candy melt. Candy eyes and licorice legs.

Hairy Spider Cookie
I just bought this spider cookie cutter from my ultimate favorite shop, Sprinkles and Sparkles. I saw on one of the blogs I'm following the "hairy" part for the spider. I added the other elements according to what I have at home :)

Spiderwebs Cake
I found this one at a cooking site. It's a Spice Cake with Frosting. I might use the decorating idea and use my own spice cake recipe.

I was supposed to post this tomottow, but I have to go to work super early in the morning and I won't have time. So it is a half day early but it's betther than late. I have 2 more entries left after this, but I'm stull debating if I'll keep it as 2 or 1 big one. I'm not even halfway done with the designs on those, but because they give me more of a freedom, I have tons... troubling :)
Oh well, enjoy the itsy bitsy spiders and then I'll see how it goes :)

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Bats and Owls

Today I have 2 images related to Halloween that I think link to each other. As the title implies, the first one is bats, and the second one, owls.

Since bats were only seen at night, they were once considered the souls of sleeping individuals. That's why I guess we also relate them to vampires, they only come out at night. Many bat species dwell in caves therefore people considered them to have something to do with the Underworld and death.
In my post Trick or Treat I have noted that Halloween was thought as the beginning of the cruel winter, which was associated with death. So it is logical that an animal related to be of the Underworld also be related with Halloween.

It looks too spooky, but I'm pretty sure it will be delicious, if voted. I have this recipe for Rum Chocolate Balls that I've made in the past, and always thought that it would taste better with either brandy or cognac instead of rum. So I thought I'd do just that in this case. Dip the chocolate ball in black sprinkles and then make the Chocolate wings. Those will be tricky, but I think I came up with a way. Red eyes, and I thought a little red on the wings, too.

Bat Cookies
Dark Chocolate Cookies so I can get that dark brown color, with white royal icing. I have 2 bat cookie cutters so I can make them in reverse. The big one with the outline of icing and the small one with the filling of the icing.

Just like bats, most owls move around at night. If you've heard an owl, you can imagine what you would feel like listening to that sound in the night, especially for those that didn't know what it was, or how big it was. Many thought it was the sound of a demon or a lost soul. And even if someone did see the owl, that instantaneous twist of the head they do can be scary with those big eyes! I remember when I saw an owl do that to me in the London zoo many years ago, I announced that owls are the Gods of the Birds! I was only 5 :)

Owl Sandwich Pop
Two Chocolate Cookies, smooshing together a marshmallow filling. A stick to make it a lollipop and some sugared details to make the face.

Owl Cupcake
I thought that I would make some big versions of this and some mini ones. Like the mother and the baby. They'll look so cute! Chocolate Cupcake with Chocolate frosting and sugar details.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011


In all cultures there is something perceived as bad luck. Each one of these ideas is based on something that came from the past. During Halloween of past years, a holiday filled with mystery and magic, many supersitions came to life.

I think that this is the most famous one. We avoid crossing paths with a black cat, thinking that if we do, they'll bring us bad luck. This is the original superstition. Others say seeing a black cat in the morning is bad luck. Each culture modifies superstitions to their measures.
This particular one came from believing that witches, to avoid being detected, would turn into black cats to roam the town and it originated in the Middle Ages.

Black Cat Cookie
Sugar cookie with Orange Buttercream and a black stenciled cat. I thought I'd add sprinkles around the cat.

Cat Cupcake
This isn't a black cat, but I figured a chocolate cat would be more delicious to eat ;)

Other supersitions include not walking under ladders. Even though this originated from ancient Egypt, where it was believed that triangles were sacred, we all know it is also unsafe to walk under ladders.
We also avoid breaking mirrors (the famous 7 years of bad luck), stepping on cracks on the road or spilling salt.

A famous Halloween tradition was to help young women identify their future husband and reassure them that they would someday be married.

The most famous version of this, even though not used for the same reason today, is Apple Bobbing. The first successful apple-bobber would be the first down the isle.
Today we use apple-bobbing as a game, where we fill a barrel or bowl with water, and try to catch the apples with our mouth.

Apple-Bobbing Punch
So I saw this a couple of years back, and thought it was a fun idea to play off of. An apple based drink. There is a variety of apples that comes very small. I figured I would peel them and put them in sugar syrup to make them sweet and use them as decoration in the punch.
Another apple version was to toss apples peels over your shoulder, hoping that they would fall in the form of your future husband's initial.

Some more ways of trying to find your future husband included hazelnuts.
A lady would name a hazelnut after each of her suitors and then throw it in the fireplace. The nut that burned to ashes instead of popping, would be the girl's future husband. In some areas, the opposite was true: if the nut burned rather than popped, it meant that the true love would not last.
Another one was making a mixture of walnuts, hazelnuts and nutmeg, and a young woman would eat it before bed to dream of her future husband.

Facts taken from here.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Ghosts! Boo!

We are right in the middle of the voting process. This is the 5th entry for the Bake Sale voting, and then we have 5 more to go.

Today's subject, Ghoooooosts....!!! I must admit, I used to really be afraid of them when I was little.
But what IS a ghost? Certainly it's nothing like Casper. The idea of a ghost is that a person's spirit exists separately from their body and they might continue to exist after that person dies. If that happens, it's because an occurrence related to that ghost might still be pending, or a very strong emotion keeps that ghost from resting. What we usually hear as "that ghost has some unfinished business here." It seems that anger and the feeling of injustice are 2 emotions that are strong enough to keep ghosts from resting.

Other than seeing ghosts appear, other forms of their "existence" are strange noises, lights, odors or breezes, even the displacement of objects, bells that ring spontaneously or musical instruments that seem to play on their own.

The first ghost EVER, that was reported in writing, being seen, was in Athens, Greece, by the Roman author Pliny the Younger.

The second one was reported to be seen in a farmhouse in Germany, centuries later. This ghost was a poltergeist (a ghost that causes physical disturbances, loud noises, moving objects). It was said that it threw stones to the family living there and started fires. Yikes!!!

A famous ghost that has been reported being seen in more than just one place, is the one of Anne Boleyn, the second wife of King Henry VIII and mother of Queen Elizabeth I. She was executed at the Tower of London in May 1536 after she was accused of using witchcraft. Her ghost has been reported at the Tower of London, at her childhood home in Kent and various other places.

The most famous American ghost is the one of Benjamin Franklin. His ghost has been sighted at the library of the American Philosophical Society in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Some have said that his statue in front of the society comes to life and dances in the streets. What a fun ghost!!!

Abraham Lincoln seems to be the ghost hunting the White House. He is the most sighted ghost in American history.

Haunted places are usually places that had grisly happenings such as places that war battles took place.
The Queen Mary is a famous haunted cruise ship, now sitting in Long Beach, CA (I actually lives for 3 years across the ship...I've been inside, too. I personally never saw a ghost in there...or maybe I did and didn't know it was one!)
New York is a ghost rich city: Peter Stuyvesant, Mark Twain, Dylan Thomas, Aaron Burr are some famous ones.

Al Capone is also known for appearing to disrespectful visitors at his funeral plot in Illinois. Spectral banjo music has also been heard coming from inside his cell in Alcatraz. He didn't play no music for me when I visited! (Thank you Al...I would've shit my pants!!)

Apple Ghost
A Granny Smith Apple rolled in White Candy Melt.

Ghost Cupcake
Vanilla Cupcake. A Ghost made with sugar paste. I have to find something edible to make it stand tall. Probably some candy.

Cookie Ghost
Chocolate Cookie...something dark with royal icing on top.

Meringue Ghost Lollipop
Vanilla meringue, turned into a lollipop :)

Ghost Cake Pop
I've never made cake pops before but how hard could it be? So brownie inside with white candy melt and chocolate details. Or I can even use one of those edible pens.

History points stolen from here.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Trick or Treat

Just a little update on the Bake Sale competition. These are the top 5 for the moment:
1.Witch's Punch, special ingredient, Eyeballs
2.Abstract Witch Cupcake
3.Apple Cupcake
4.Witch's Cauldron
5.Wacky Jack-o-Lantern Cupcakes

And here we go with some more :)

As I have mentioned before, there was a Celtic festival called the Samhain (pronounced Sow-in). This marked the end of the summer and the beginning of the cold and dark winter, which many times meant the death of many people. Since the vail between the realm of the living and the dead was thin, the Celts believed that the ghosts of the dead returned to earth.
So they would share stories of the dead, ghosts, and mischief-making of all kinds. This moved on to the Americas, where people began to dress up in costumes and go from door to door asking for FOOD OR MONEY. Sounds familiar? Today it is known as Trick or Treat.
Trick or treating was a relatively inexpensive way for the whole community to celebrate Halloween. Another reason why families participated was because if you provided the neighborhood children with treats, you prevented pranks from being played on you.
Today, Americans spend an estimated $6.9 BILLION annually on Halloween, making it the second largest commercial holiday.

Since people shared stories of the dead, I came up with some "deadly" designs for my next part of the competition.

Mummy Cupcake
I figured since this is a "dead" cupcake, I would make it with Devil's Food and cover it with sugar paste strips. Dollops of red and black for eyes. Simple, yummy and spooky!

RIP Truffles
Simple: Nutella and Chocolate. I figured I could use Milano cookies as the tombstone, but I can't find any out here, so I would probably have to make the cookie. More challenging...I like:)

Tombstone Pudding
Dark Chocolate Pudding or even maybe mousse, topped with a homemade cookie-tombstone.

Pick Your Grave-Yard Cake
Chocolate goodiness with Oreo crumbs for dirt and maybe m&m's or smarties in green for the grass. The cookies well...I was thinking of either danish cookies that come in both square and round (they have sugar on them so I'd have to take it off to put the crosses and RIPs on) ooooor I can make the cookies myself for tombstones.

Skeleton Cookies
Dark Chocolate Cookies with Icing. A gingerbread people cookie cutter, but instead of cute, I will put icing-bones on there to make it look like a skeleton. To the best of my drawing capabilities. I doesn't have to be anatomy-checked!

Cool Skeleton Cupcakes
Chocolate Cupcake with a Marshmallow head and mini-marshmallow teeth and a chocolate hat. Easy! Oh and m&m's for eyes. I will have to get some edible glue!
Poisoned Cupcakes

Don't eat these!!! They're poisoned! With a Vanilla Cupcake and a black frosting. If I do this, I'm also making orange ones and green ones too. For variety.

Don't forget that I only come up with some of these. I google images most of the time and see many beautiful creations. Some I mix and match, others I use for inspiration and others I simply copy with my own recipes.

My history points I stole from here.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Jack o' Lantern

Today I have more of a story to tell. It's about Stingy Jack.

Stingy Jack invited the Devil to have a drink with him. Since he was stingy and didn't want to pay for his drink, he told the Devil to turn himself into a coin so Jack can pay for the drinks. The Devil obeyed, and Jack decided to keep the money. Jack put the coin in his pocket, next to a silver cross, so the Devil couldn't change back to his original form. Eventually Jack freed the Devil, under the condition that he wouldn't bother him for a whole year, and if he died, the Devil wouldn't claim his soul.

The next year, Jack tricked the Devil (...again!) to climb a tree to pick some fruit. While the Devil was up there, Jack carved a Cross on the bark of the tree so that the Devil couldn't come down. This time, Jack had a plan. In order to free the Devil, he would have to promise him not to bother him for another 10 years, and if he died, the Devil wouldn't claim his soul.

Well, Jack died before the 10 years were up! But God couldn't allow such a person to enter Heaven. The Devil on the other hand, kept his promise not to take his soul (he was upset with Jack for tricking him-it's unlike the Devil to keep his word!). What the Devil did instead, he sent Jack into the dark night, with only a burning coal to light his way. Jack put the coal in a carved out turnip (he didn't want to burn his hands I guess) and has been roaming the Earth ever since. See, turnips, beets and potatoes were carved waaaay before pumpkins. The Irish were refering to this as "The Jack of the Lantern" and as we know it today, "Jack O' Lantern."

People in Ireland and Scotland started to make their own versions of Jack-o'-Lanterns and put them near windows or doors to scare Stingy Jack and other evil spirits away. In England, they carved beets.
When people immigrated to the Americas they found pumpkins more easily, and the tradition was kept as we know it today.

This is the story of the Jack-o'-Lantern. And that's how I came up with these:
Jack-o-Lantern Cookies
I decided to make these 6 designs as 1 vote since they are technically the same cookie :) I want to make these Pumpkin Spice Cookies, but that's only if I can find pumpkins to make pumpkin Puree. If not, these are going to be either Sugar Cookies, or something else I might find more interesting. The top is going to be frosting and the decorations most likely Chocolate Candy Melt.

Wacky Jack-o-Lantern Cupcakes
Same concept as the cookies. I am probably going to use sugar paste with these and use the smoother to make them even instead of 3D. I might even add some sparkles on the black part to make it more interesting. Chocolate Cupcake base.

Pumpkin Cupcakes
Yes, these are 2 different ones. On the first one you can see the half top of the pumpkin and on the other one wou can see the whole pumpkin. The first one will have a domed top whereas the other one will only have frosting to make the design. The darker orange area I think I will score and add orange sparkles to make it look interesting.

P.S. I decided that I have to add the entries more frequently so I can be done a week before Halloween. The reason is that I'm going to hold a Bake Sale on the 30th of October with the 10 most voted ideas. So I want to be able to get my supplies on time :)

I took my information from here.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Where did Halloween come from? Part 2

As I promised, today I am posting all the things I came up with for Candy Corn.
Candy Corn Chocolate Cake
This will be a Chocolate Cake with  Frosting in 3 colors: The original (white), Yellow and Orange.

Candy Corn Chocolate Cookie
This is a chocolate cookie, and I'm debating if I should use royal icing to cover it, ot sugar paste. Maybe add some sparkles to it ? If this one gets voted, I'll ask what everyone wants.

Candy Corn Meringue
This will be a Double Vanilla Bean Meringue in the original color (white), Yellow and Orange. I think that I'll have to use 3 piping bags for this and do each meringue, 1 by 1. We'll see.

Candy Corn Truffles
I would love to make these. One of those "looks so simple, tastes delicious." Or at least I think so :) Dark Chocolate with Orange (I love the combo) with a Candy Corn on top. The thing is, in Cyprus where I live, we don't have candy corn. So I either have to make it with a recipe I have, or pretend it with some sugar paste.

Candy Corn Ghost
This I took from the SugarBaby. She posted this on the post of her book, and the acrual recipe for the candy corn is in the book. Inside hides a chocolate cupcake. BOO! I think people will vote for this one since it has a wow factor to it (even though my drawing doesn't do it justice!)

Next set of drawings: Tuesday, Oct 4th.