milk&honey cafe

Sunday, August 09, 2009

Easy Hard Work

an august affair

Hard: Making 155 cupcakes.
Easy: Using a new super duper kitchenaid mixer.

Hard: Making 155 tasty and beautiful cupcakes.
Easy: Using simple decorations like silver dragees and simple recipes.

Hard: Making 155 tasty and beautiful cupcakes and assembling all the boxes for them to go into.
Easy: Using your wonderful and hard-working boyfriend.

Hard: Making 155 tasty and beautiful cupcakes and assembling all the boxes for them to go into and delivering it at 6am for a wedding located "up north".
Easy: Using a GPS and your wonderful and hard-working boyfriend.

an august affair

Yes everyone. I have done it. I have completed my first wedding order! And let me tell you.. it was a lot of hard work. But easy hard work. Because of wonderful people around me who's helped me! After all that box assembling (over 15 hours!) and ribbon cutting (and tying) and not having enough buttercream and so making it again (twice!) I have learned lots so all in all it was a good experience. But for sure, nothing beats finishing it all and delivering in the morning and seeing very excited faces and hearing "Oh, the brides is very pleased."

an august affair

Ah anyways. I couldn't do all this without my sweet mommy and grandma who helped me out and of course, my wonder man. Hahaha! Cmon I know it's cheesy but I need to give him his due credit. He worked his back off for me! :D Plus, it was the birthday gift that he gave me that allowed me to do this all so easily in the first place, aka New Professional 600 6-Qt Kitchenaid Mixer. Do I hear screaming? YES!!! Does he spoil me to my bones? YES!!! But in all honesty, I told him that it was way too much of a gift and that he was indeed spoiling me sick. But what can I say, it is simply gorgeousness. ;)

omg my new kitchenaid mixer

Right. So these cupcakes. They were fabulous. I took leftovers to work and they loved it as well! The recipe was great because they were both so simple and tasty. That's all ya need. I used new recipes for the butter creams and they were both keepers for sure!! Not too sweet but great hold for those beautiful swirls. Enjoy everyone, happy baking. :)

an august affair
an august affair
an august affair

VaVaVanilla! Cupcakes

adapted from a few different places
makes 30 cupcakes



1 3/4 cups cake flour, not self-rising
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 3/4 cups sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into 1-inch cubes
4 large eggs
1 cup whole buttermilk
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


1. Preheat oven to 325F. Line cupcake pans with paper liners; set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine flours, sugar, baking powder, and salt; mix on low speed until combined. Add butter, mixing until just coated with flour.
2. In a large glass measuring cup, whisk together eggs, milk, and vanilla. With mixer on medium speed, add wet ingredients in 3 parts, scraping down sides of bowl before each addition; beat until ingredients are incorporated but do not overbeat.
3. Divide batter evenly among liners, filling about 2/3 full. Bake, rotating pan halfway through, until a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean, 17 to 20 minutes.
4. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.



1 1/2 cup (3 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
3 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
1/8 tsp. salt
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp heavy cream
1 tbsp meringue powder (optional)


In a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat butter at medium-high speed until smooth, about 20 seconds. Add half the confectioners’ sugar salt, and meringue powder; beat at medium-low speed until most of the sugar is moistened, about 45 seconds. Scrape down the bowl and beat at medium speed until mixture is fully combined, about 15 seconds. Add the rest of the sugar and mix again. Scrape bowl, add vanilla and heavy cream, and beat at medium speed until incorporated, about 10 seconds. Then increase the speed to medium-high and beat until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes, scraping down bowl once or twice.

an august affair
an august affair

Easy Chocolate Buttercream

adapted from G-ma's Bakery

makes 24 cupcakes


1 cup cocoa powder
2 cup confectioner’s sugar
1/4 cup milk
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temp
1 tsp vanilla extract
pinch salt


In a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat butter at medium-high speed until smooth. Add the cocoa powder and confectioners’ sugar, and salt; beat at medium-low speed until most of the sugar is moistened. Scrape bowl, add vanilla and milk, and beat at medium speed until incorporated, about 10 seconds. Then increase the speed to medium-high and beat until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes, scraping down bowl once or twice.
I sorta did this by my own instinct (as it says in the original recipe). This is the kind of recipe where I didn't really follow exactly the numbers, and I would add accordingly. If it's not chocolatey enough, I added more cocoa powder. If it was too dry and heavy, I added more sugar or milk. You should experiment too! But make sure you don't do TOO much at a time or you'll end up with 5 batches of frosting... not to say that's such a horrible thing...

What can I say, I'm a lucky gal!!

an august affair


  1. N'aw. It's great when you can sent them to work! ;P

  2. The cupcakes look beautiful. Nicely done!

  3. How do you avoid the cakes getting smushed in the boxes? That must be great box engineering! They look so lush and very uniform too! xxx

  4. hi sarah, new to ur blog...cupcakes look beautiful...can we have the recipe please...thanx!

  5. Simply Beautiful Cupcakes! Where do you get your boxes?


  6. wow your a super baker! x toria

  7. Just stumbled across your blog. What beautiful cupcakes. I too just did my first wedding order, nothing like as impressive or stylish as yours, but with a great bloke also doing lots of hard work for me!

    Looking forward to reading your blog often.

  8. hey sis! soo-go hess! I heard all the stories from mom... can't wait to catch up again on friday! ooh and I started a blog by the way... nolluwah~

  9. Congratulations! They are picture perfect. (So is the hard working boyfriend! :)

  10. thanks for the recipe. i will definitely be making these some time this week!

    where do you usually buy your meringue powder?

  11. They look amazing. Congratulations on your first wedding order! I photographed my first wedding not long ago and that was a lot more hardwork than I expected it to be. I'm doing it all over again in a week and a half too so I did enjoy it :D.

  12. Your cupcakes are gorgeous! I love the silver beads on top.

  13. hi! i've been stalking your blog from time to time now... i know it's kinda creepy.. but a lot my friends know you! (lisa hong is one) and so i've heard about your fantastic baking skills! (i also love some of the photos you take - esp the kids) so i was wondering... (random question) can u bake a wedding cake? (and how much?) and if it's privacy issues,
    u can email me here ( sorry for not emailing you. i got lazy. :S

    ps: congrats on your intern position! it's kinda hard to get a full time job related to design/art right away esp at the moment... coincidently, i'm interning at a studio too!

  14. omggggg

    the cupcakes are BEAUTIFUL sarah! the packaging is BEAUTIFUL! and ... omg .. the MIXER! the MIXER! a new MIXER??? in a sexy chrome colour too... wow wow and wow. you're sooo lucky! haha
    congrats on it all!!
    miss u girl

  15. Oh boy! Beautiful work of art. Your cupcakes look so delicious and elegant. Thanks so much for posting the recipes. Keep on smiling and thanks also to your superman!

  16. Hi Sarah, your cupcakes are so gorgeous! I was just wondering because I've never mix my cupcakes the way you did. Not creaming the butter and sugar first. You did it with dry ingredients first then the butter and then the wet ingredients. But it worked for you. I'm just afraid that I might overbeat the ingredients. Is there a reason why you did it that way?

  17. woohooo im glad everyone likes these cupcakes! i hope they got the same reception with the wedding guests too!

    Regarding the unusual mix method -- this is actually from Billy's Bakery recipe. I followed mainly his recipe and method for this vanilla cake, and after watching him on Martha Stewart, I was convinced. Apparently, this way actually prevents you from over-beating! You just need to make sure you follow the recipe carefully, since it lets you know how you should be mixing it! I find that this recipe really works! I hope it works for you too. :)

  18. First thing first, marry the guy! That's what he is waiting for...

    Second, great job, perfect. Most wonderful cupcakes, I wish I could hire you!!!!

    Great future for you,


  19. May I inquire as to where you got the beautiful boxes for the cupcakes?

  20. Those pearls look so exquisite on your perfect cupcakes. If I ever become an event planner (hope so!), I'll definitely think of you for desserts!!!

  21. this is awesome! Can you please tell me where you buy all these wonderful boxes from? i can't seem to find anything other than what's at Macall's/.
    loove the purple accent!

  22. Wow they look great! I love the way the icing looks.. I cant get mine to look like that :( I was wondering which piping tip do you use?

  23. Those look gorgeous and amazing. I'm also wondering where you got the fabulous boxes. Would love recommendation!

  24. Oh wow. I am SO adding you to my blogroll (with your permission of course:) Just found you via Tastespotting and your photos are to die for! How fabulous that you get PAID to do what you love (and you're very good at it!) Those little cupcake holders are genius. Yeah...I bet she was one happy bride and had LOTS of happy guests!!

  25. Wow - what a lucky bride! Those are beauutiful, and I'm sure the guests loved them :)

  26. Your cupcakes look amazing! And thank you so much for linking to my post! I'm glad that you liked my Grammy's recipe. She will be thrilled that her famous chocolate buttercream icing is making the rounds. I don't think she knows what a blog is...but she will be pleased. Ha.

  27. Hello! I just bumped into your blog and I just wanted to say how gorgeous it is! Those cupcakes look soooooooo good! Would it be ok to link to you from my blog?? Rosy

  28. everything you bake makes me hungry! love your blog :]

  29. your cupcakes are beautiful! i was wondering what icing tip you use for them.

  30. hello everbody!! sorry i haven't replied to your questions in a while.. but here goes!

    the boxes are from they are based in the Philippines but they also ship from the States so the shipping isn't crazy expensive. the boxes are truly beautiful and showcases your cupcakes so nicely, but beware -- these boxes are a PAIN to assemble. it took me SOOO long to make them (they are shipped to you flat), hence the slavery of the boyfriend. if you think it's worth it, go for it!!

    i use two main icing tips for my cupcakes. both are star tips. i use the Wilton 1M and Ateco #855. the wilton ones are easier to get your hands on. if you don't have one you better get one! you get perfect swirls. i had to get the ateco one shipped from an online baker supply store from the US but i love this one cuz its a HUGE star tip and it gives you billowy soft-serve ice cream swirls. hehe. i know you like that. ;)

    and lastly, please please add me to your blogroll! of course you can add me. it is entirely me pleasure. :D

    thanks for coming by everyone!

  31. these are absolutely gorgeous! where did you find those cute little boxes to hold the cupcakes?

  32. I love those little violets! Where did you get them, so adorable!

  33. Your cupcakes are beautiful.

    How did you go about ordering the boxes from the website?

  34. they look so yummy!
    I was browsing through your cupcake entries and saw some boxes that you used to package your cupcakes in the sunny and the rainclouds entry with the red velvet cupcakes monday january 12th. Anyways, where did you get the boxes?

  35. hi!
    have you any idea how many grams is one stick butter? i'd like to know :)

    thank you!

  36. hi sarah! I'm planning on making a batch of your buttercream recipe and was wondering, do you add the meringue powder to your icing? I've read it gives it a weird flavor.
    Thanks :)

  37. HI!
    I'm here to answer your questions!

    -I actually made the violets myself with royal sugar icing! It's realllly easy. Just add confectioner's sugar, tiny bit of water, meringue powder and food colouring, until right consistency.

    -The clear individual boxes are from I just emailed them to inquire about ordering them outside of the Phillipines. They will relay you to their US-based shop.

    -I got the brown cupcake boxes at

    -1 stick of butter = 113 grams (you can in fact search online for all sorts of measurements and conversions! :D)

    -I've never found my buttercream to taste funny because of the meringue powder. I use Wilton's Meringue Powder and they are tasteless! :)

  38. i have a question....where did you find your stand? also have you ever had any problems with the cakes coming off of the liners?

    your minis are super cute, they seem larger than than the ones i have seen, what size are they? thank you!

    beautiful work!!!

  39. Hello Anonymous!
    I found the stand at a rental place called gervais rentals. You can check out their website at

    I've never had problems with cakes coming off the liners.. hmm I wonder how that happens?

    And these aren't minis!! I don't think I've ever mentioned that they're minis – they're just regular sized cupcakes. :P


  40. thank you for your reply, the liners coming off only happens with the minis and it is huge problem so many people are experiencing from what i have read on a ton of blogs and yet there are so many ideas as to why so i was wondering if you had ever experienced that problem :) what camera are you using the pictures are beautiful!?

  41. Hi~~ my name is Devon..
    and I'm Korean..
    I want buy some Dragee in Korea..
    But it's very expensive. T.T
    How can I get some Dragee in Korea..
    If it's goods
    I will buy Dragee so much..
    Or could you tell me how to make it.
    please send mail to me..
    I can't speak English well.. It's my E-mail address.. ^^
    Have a nice day.. ^^

  42. Beautiful cupcakes!
    I am inspired :)

    Do you have a recipe for the chocolate ones? x

  43. Just wondering if you refrigerate your frosting that contains dairy products (like the butter and especially the heavy cream)?? I use the Wilton Buttercream recipe that only contains shortening, sugar, meringue powder, extracts...
    How long does this frosting keep? Refrigerated or not? I can't wait to try it either way...