Monday, December 14, 2009

Going to the BLIM Holiday Crafts market...

I am finally done with the Vancouver Baker's Market. What an experience it was. Deprived of sleep baking into the wee hours to make sure everythig was fresh, learned lots, met lots of great people and had a fab time... when I wasn't half asleep that was :O)
I'm still baking like a mad woman at the moment to fulfill all my custom cookie orders, I think my right arm is much bigger than my left now from all that icing.
I'm a bit sad, and a bit relieved at the same time that the Baker's Market is over... I really enjoyed it, but I am also swamped with custom orders which I need to put all my love into for now.

However, I have a one-day Crafts Market to attend this Sunday. I got invited in at the last minute and since its a craft market, it'll be a little different from the Baker's Market I presume, and I am quite excited!!!!

I'm planning to make mini version of my specialty cookies, plus some decorated gingerbread and shortbreads for the holiday season. So if you are free.... do come by and check the market out... I'm sure I'll be buying lots of my Christmas presents from the market as well because I just love all things handmade.


Monday, November 23, 2009

Going to the Vancouver Baker's Market...

I have been super busy lately and therefore had not had the time to update my site. As many of you know, I joined the VANCOUVER BAKER'S MARKET a month ago and have been baking like a mad woman! This would be the very first time I sold my cookies and cakes 'commercially'.
Please visit the market's website at for more details.

My first market day was on a Saturday on November 7th. Boy was I unorganized on the very 1st day. Preparing for a Bake Sale I believe is much harder than opening a restaurant or bar :OP
I think I baked enough goodies to feed an entire village!!! I had no sleep the night before and was tired and wired at the same time, but it was a great experience and I sure learned my lesson fast after that.
The following market days, I was more organized and knew what better to expect, so its been fantabulous ever since.
So far I've met a lot of great people and as long as I get to bake, I've been having a ball!!! Thanks to everyone who had supported me and my cookies and cakes, yes you all know who you are, so I am sending all of you some gigantic big big hugs.
Above are some photos that I managed to take of some of my baking before I ran off to the market.
Next Saturday on 12 December will be my last day at the Baker's Market. Do drop by if you are free, come buy some cookies for the holidays as gifts, house party or just as sticking stuffers. There are lots and lots of variety of yummy goodies too at the market.

Oh yes, I also joined the Christmas Blim Craft Market on Dec 20 at the Cambrian Hall on Main and 17th. For further details go to their website at
Fun Fun Fun! Tell all our friends to come by :O)
Cheers everyone! I'm in a great holiday spirit!
At the moment I am still baking like a mad woman for all the holiday cookie orders but am LOVIN' IT!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

'Tis the season to be jolly...

I like pretty things, so I have been collecting anything and everything that would be great for packaging.
I have been collecting ribbons, and cards, stickers, stamps, glitter, paper, anything decorative and pretty really.... even found some fabulous peacock feathers.

I have been making some gift tags out of recycled wooden veneer cards, which I originally bought to make my business cards with, but I couldn't find anyone to make me an iron stamp with my logo on it :O(
I gift wrapped a box as a sample today for the holiday season, as an option for my customers in case they wanted to buy cookies as a gift for their friends.
Then I ended up eating all the cookies after I took these photos cause they smelt so mmm mmm Good... hehehe... burp!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

The boxes have arrived....

I ordered some clear boxes for my Gingerbread Christmas Trees and they had finally arrived.
They fit perfect!
Well..... they were a bit bigger than I expected so I had to make a couple of new bigger trees for it.
But since I really like making these trees, I didn't mind one bit.
Love 'em!
They're the cutest gifts for the holiday season!!!!

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Going to the Vancouver's Bakers market

I'm heading off to join the Vancouver's Bakers Market this November and December.
Am very excited indeed.
Have been looking forward to this all week long and preparing everything to perfection.
Going to head off to the market with my Cookies and Baby Bundt Cakes y'all!!!!
Come join me at the market and sample some of my cookies and cakes :O)
Check out the link. There are many other goodies at the market too...yummmmmmm........

Market dates: Nov 7, 14, 21, Dec 5, 12
Times: 11am -3pm
118-408 East Kent Avenue South, Vancouver, BC

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Holidays are drawing near.....

I prepared some holiday cookie design samples this year to cater for the holiday season. I sat down one week and sketched a whole bunch of designs. I selected the themes that I really liked and worked out sets for them as I went along. This of course gave me a chance to go and shop for more cookie cutters to add to my little collection, but trying to buy holiday themed cookie cutters in late summer deemed to be quite the challenge. However, I did managed to find some, but lately have seen a lot more Christmas cookie cutters at the stores now. Guess I will just have to go shopping again... awww... such hard work but someone's got to do it :O)

Besides the 3D Gingerbread Christmas Trees, I made a set of Wreaths, a set of Red & Green Christmas cookies, a set of Elegant White Series, a set of Red & White series, Set of Baby Blue & White and a set of Hanukkah Star of David series.
Each set comes in a Dozen of cookies decorated with lots of details and full of Love.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

The Rebirth of the Classic Oatmeal cookie....

I grew up in Australia, and in Australia we call an Oatmeal cookie an 'Anzac' cookie, and besides my tub of 2.5kg of Vegemite, my house is always stocked up with homemade Anzac cookies. How I wished that I also had a stash of Caramel Koalas at home too.... mmmmmmmmmmm.... Caramel Koalas.......mmm...

Everyone who has tried it loves this oatmeal cookie, and Sally calls it the 'Best Ever Oatmeal Cookie'....why.... Thanks Sal.
There is just something about it that is very satisfying, like a mug of hot chocolate. Especially when the oatmeal cookie is sticky, gooey and chewy with a little golden crunch on the edges, scrumptious!

These oatmeal cookies are usually just made with rolled oats and coconut, which are simple yet delicious. To add more umph! to the oatmeal cookie, I toasted some almond slivers for extra depth of flavour and added some dried apricots for a little extra sweetness and a touch of tartness. I guess that might qualify turning a plain Oatmeal cookie into a perfect Breakfast cookie :O)

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Double stacked of cuteness...

I made my very first Iced Shortbread cookie for little Emma's 6th birthday party.
They wanted something different as party favours and asked if I could come up with something like the iced sugar cookies.
This project started my new hobby of hunting down and collecting cookie cutters, Yay! for me, but not so much for my little house that is already jammed packed with full of 'stuff' :OP
I'd love to try making my own too, if only I knew how to, but that will have to be added onto my long list of 'things to try'.
My cookie cutter hunt lead me to the idea of a double layer cookie, and I found a fab set of cutters to do just that. It was a set of one large 5" flower for the base and little individual petals and a bumble bee for the top layer. All in all, it was a total of 9 cookies in one. Quite the assembly job it was, but well worth the end result.

Anyway..... I don't know about you, but a sugar cookie tastes like sugared cardboard to me, more like a biscuit, and I'm not a big fan of biscuits.
I love cookies! So I could not make myself bake any biscuit-like sugar cookies. I just couldn't do it! I need to love what I make so I had to find a recipe that I loved to suit this very purpose. After spending a week of trying out recipes of different sugar cookies, I just dropped the whole idea of it and started from scratch.

What did I love? Well, I do love the melt in your mouth Shortbread cookie, so that was what I started with. I had to adjust my Shortbread recipe to make it suitable for cutting and icing, and still kept all the elements of a delicious buttery rich melt in your mouth Shortbread cookie.

A week and 8 attempts later, I got a recipe that I was truly happy with. It held its shape well, was buttery, with a hint of lemon n vanilla, wasn't dry, and tasted perfect! By this time however, everyone who lived near me was over loaded with shortbread cookies :OP

The assembly line for this cookie was long.... and although it was only an order for 15 cookies, it took forever! Let me put it this way, I had to individually cut, bake, ice and stack each of the 15 big flowers + 15 bumble bees + 105 petals = a lot of cookies!
After a lot more practice, thank God I work a lot faster these days, because those cookies took what felt like an eternity.
But it was FUN! Loved every second of it and I especially loved the Bumble Bees! I even made some extra bumble bees for the fun of it because they were just too cute :O)

So here's my Lemon Vanilla Shortbread Iced cookies

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Obcessed with the Gingerbread tree...

OK, so I'm obsessed with making this Gingerbread tree, and what do I find at the store one day on sale? A Wilton Gingerbread Christmas tree cookie cutter set for a Large tree, on SALE!

So I wasn't the only person who thought of making a 3d Gingerbread Christmas tree. Now if I had thought of it much much earlier and sold the idea to Wilton...hmmmm.

The assembled tree is nearly 12" high by 10" in diameter. AWESOME!
I went on an icing craze with this tree. It took me 3 whole days from start to finish.
First, I iced the base layer of leaves on the tree which were a darker green. Round and round I went for hours till it was covered from top to bottom. Next, two more layers of lighter green leaves were applied and then it was left to dry for the night. While waiting for the leaves to dry, I made a tray of little red poinsettias with yellow centers and leaves. This would be the first time I had made icing flowers, lots of fun! I will have to remember to make it a point to do more projects that include different flowers in the future for practice, and yes.... for FUN!

The Snow was next, and round and round the tree I went again. Oh yes, I forgot to mention: this tree is Big, and, being so big, it took 3 Gingerbread Cookie recipes to make and half a day to bake all the parts, which meant, a whole lot of wonderful delicious and intoxicating smells concentrated into one gigantic cookie. It was Christmas in mid summer for 3 whole days.

To complete the tree, I attached the pre-made poinsettias along with little silver sugar balls. Round and round I went again trying to get a good balance for the placement of all the flowers and silver balls, and it sure made me dizzy at times :OP

All that was left to do was to top off the tree. I made a smaller star, iced it in yellow on both sides and sprinkled some sugar sparkles over it, then I added some silver sugar balls for some extra bling, and attached it on top of the tree.

Ta Da!!!
The foot high Large Gingerbread Christmas Tree was completed.
That was FUN! And it was even followed by a week of back massages too :O)

Monday, October 12, 2009

Gingerbread Christmas Tree craze....

Recently, since I decided to set up my Home-baked Cookie business, and with my icing skills a tad better, I wanted to give my small 5 1/2 inches Gingerbread Tree a little make over.
Equipped with proper icing tools this time round, I managed to decorate the tree in more detail.
However, more detail meant more time, plus a sore neck, back and eyes.
But it was surely worth every minute and all the effort as it turned out to be absolutely adorable, don't you think?

Development of my Gingerbread cookie...

Last winter was unbelievable. How beautiful can a white winter be? Very! It was peaceful, silent, and everything seemed to glow.
We had a record breaking snow fall and it was the most beautiful sight I had ever seen from my bedroom window.
There are several large pine trees outside my house and they were covered in snow, gorgeous!
That gave me an idea to make my Gingerbread cookie gifts a little different that year.

I ruffled through my box of cookie cutters and found a few varied sizes of Star shaped cutters. I was going to assemble a forest of little Gingerbread Trees. In my happy holiday mood, I baked the star shaped gingerbread cookies in all sizes, gathered them into sets and started to ice and assemble them one by one.
By the end of the night, I had a forest of Gingerbread Trees in my living room that filled the air with spice and everything nice. Nothing better to set the holiday spirit at home.

A new discovery....

Did I mention I love Art too? Yep... love to draw and paint just as much as I love baking.
So, two Christmases ago, along with my brand new oven, I made my first Gingerbread-man cookies. It was my first attempt at icing a cookie and it was just like art on a cookie. Can't remember ever having so much fun!

I was never a real fan of the gingerbread cookie. Most of the ginger bread cookies that I have tasted were dry, and over spiced. But I had just bought some really cute cookie cutters that I wanted to try out. What else was one to do? Do some research, test some recipes, and put together the parts that I liked and tweeked it 'til I was happy.
The result: a ginger bread cookie that was moist, yet held its shape well, smelled like heaven, and tasted fabulous. Since then, I've made gingerbread cookies all year round, drizzled with white chocolate and topped with candied ginger. Delish!
Icing the cookies was tricky, as I had never tried it before. All I had was a plastic icing syringe from the dollar store :O)
The icing on the cookies turned out pretty good for a 1st timer I guess. I even made some ornaments for my Christmas tree and gave some as gifts to my friends. All in all, I was pretty happy with them.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Mad about Macadamias...

I have to be honest. I have never tried a Macadamia White chocolate cookie till this year. And its GOOD! So it was immediately added onto my Cookie list.
I hunted down as many Macadamia White Chocolate cookies as I could to better understand it... by eating them. Yes, I do work extremely hard on the relationships with all my cookies :O)

I didn't just want a good cookie, I wanted a Great chunky rich decadent cookie that was loaded with satisfying goodies and bursting with flavour.

First I toasted some raw macadamia nuts and then glazed it with some honey.
Next I prepared some brown butter to get that rich nutty flavour to compliment the macadamia nuts. For that extra texture and flavour I added some shredded coconut and white chocolate chunks. When the cookies came out of the oven, they were finished off with some white chocolate swirls. They turned out to be just plain YUMMY! so said all my very kind and helpful guinea pigs whom I force all my baking on... thank you guys :O*

So here it is... my very own Macadamia Brown Butter White Chocolate Cookie

And the baking continues...

After weeks and weeks of research I came up with a special list of cookies I wanted to bake and sell. Being extremely happy with the final Chocolate Chip cookie recipe, I attacked the next cookie on my list: another classic, the PEANUT BUTTER COOKIE.

I started with a very basic recipe, primarily peanut butter and nothing else. It was good, but it definitely needed more character. More depth. More attitude. More class.

The key to a good peanut butter cookie is in the peanut butter itself. It has to be extra smooth and creamy, and of very high quality. The kind that is just plain Mmm-Mmm-peanut-buttery-goodness. When I open the lid, the aroma should burst out and fill the entire room until I want to dive into the jar myself. Perfect!

To give the cookie more depth, I first incorporated my trusty Brown Butter into the recipe. And, since everyone loves a little chocolate here and there, I added enough chocolate chunks to create some depth without stealing the limelight from the peanut butter. The result was a marbling of melted chocolate and peanut butter dough. It looked so pretty I could have stopped right there, but a balance of texture was needed for the creamy peanut butter, so freshly toasted whole Peanuts were added to the cookie. Finally, I drizzled some delicious melted Caramel for extra character and VIOLA!

Here's the Chunky Rich Peanut Butter Chocolate Marbled Caramel cookie.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

The Experiment begins.....

The Ultimate Chocolate Chip Cookie.

There is an endless stream of variations on the Chocolate Chip Cookie: large, small, crunchy, chewy. You name it. Everybody has their own twist on this timeless classic, and I've just about tried them all.
I even had a go-to recipe that I baked with for many years, but since I am starting my own cookie business, I had to refine it and try to find the perfect balance in order to achieve perfection!

How do I define a perfect chocolate chip cookie?


1. It needs to be chunky, chewy, and chocolatey.

2. The flavour of the cookie component must stand on it's own.

3. The overall product must smell and taste fantabulous!

So after experimenting with batch after batch of Chocolate chip cookies, I finally uncovered my Ultimate Chocolate Chip cookie.

Tha Da!
Here it is,
the Chunky Chewy Brown Butter Chocolate Chip cookie.


I had an epiphany: I LOVE baking. I like to cook, but I LOVE baking.

I remember the first time I ever baked. It was a fruit flan. I remember how thrilled I was when it came out of the oven. Back then, at 13, it was beautiful. Mind you, the flan was lop-sided and the glaze over-flowed.

Yet, I was so excited sitting on the floor, simply watching the flan rise in the oven while the sweet aroma filled the air. I still get that feeling every time I bake.

When you bake, you never know the outcome 'til the end. Unlike most cooking, you can't taste as you go, you're forced to wait until it comes out of the oven before the final product is revealed.

Somewhere along the line 'life' happened and baking took a back seat while I searched for what direction my career would take; and, BAM! It hit me. It was there all along... I find pure joy in baking.

These last few years, I've been baking almost every other day.
Did I mention how much I LOVE baking? Especially Cookies and Cupcakes.

My life long dream has always been to own and operate my own cafe serving my own creations. I've managed and set-up enough restaurants, cafes and bars for other people, and my time is near. So I have decided.... I'm going to begin by doing what I love most, baking Cookies and Cupcakes.
This blog will document my journey from creating my own cookies, cakes and desserts recipes, to starting a home based cookie business, and if all goes as planned, opening my own cafe.