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Nothing says Irish like Beautiful Lace

Nothing says Irish like Beautiful Lace
Click on photo for Earlene Moore's tutorial for beautiful fondant lace and have fun with your next cake!



Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Key Lime Mini Tarts

Perfect for Summer entertaining!
These rich 2 inch tarts are the perfect ending to any summer or outdoor entertaining. Key Lime filling over a Pecan shortbread cookie, topped with fresh blueberries and strawberries and drizzled with grenadine syrup.

Start by making the pecan shortbread ( I used a mini cheesecake pan with removable bottoms.) After popping the cookies into the oven, make the key lime curd.
After both are cooled, then just mix your filling, pipe it onto the cookie and top with your fresh fruit. Although I used strawberries and blueberries, this tart would be terrific with tart pie cherries, peaches, or raspberries.


Pecan Shortbread
Key Lime Filling
Fresh Fruit
Grenadine, Strawberry or Pomegranate Syrup

Pecan Shortbread

1 stick + 2T. softened butter (10 Tbsp)
1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1/8 tsp Butterscotch Lorann oil (opt)
1-1/4 cups sifted flour
2/3 cup pecans, finely ground

Cream your butter and sugar together with the Lorann oil. Add the flour with the pecans. Chill dough for about 15 minutes for easier handling. Divide into 24 balls and press into the bottom of ungreased pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. Remove from oven and cool completely.

Key Lime Filling

1/2 cup Key lime juice ( I use "Nellie and Joe's")
1 Tbsp cornstarch
6 egg yolks, all albumen removed
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup chilled butter, cut into small pieces
8 oz. softened and whipped cream cheese

Blend Key Lime Juice together with cornstarch. Pour into a sauce pan; and whisk in egg yolks and sugar. Add butter and cook over med-low heat , stirring constantly until translucent and mixture holds its shape when stirred. Press through a sieve, pour into a bowl, cover with plastic wrap, chilling thoroughly. Add cream cheese and mix together well.

Assemble tarts:
Place Key Lime filling in a pastry bag with a fluted tip. Pipe over each cookie, still in pan. Chill well, then lift out of cheesecake pan and remove the pan bottoms. Arrange sliced strawberries and blueberries on the top of each tart, and drizzle with syrup. 

Makes 2 dozen 2" tarts...and don't ask how many calories...you don't want to know!

Links for Products listed in this recipe:

Photography and Instructions by Jacque Benson 2009 all rights reserved
This material may not be republished or reproduced in any manner without the expressed permission of the author.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

How to make a typical Danish sponge cake

In Denmark the sponge cake is the most popular cake for any celebration. Especially for birthdays. It most often consist of 3 vanilla sponge layers sandwiched with pastry cream, jam, fruit and then covered in glaze and whipped cream. Other common fillings are whipped cream mixed with fruit, mousses and bavarois type fillings. The cake I am going to demonstrate here was made for my fathers birthday last weekend. It consists of chocolate sponge layers with an easy strawberry mousse, decorated with glaze and creme chantilly.

The sponge can be a little tricky. It is leavened only by the eggs, which makes it very important to FOLD the ingredients, never stir or beat. Overmixing will flatten your dough. Eggs must be room temperature to hold the largest volume possible. The butter must be cooled, or it will flatten the dough. And always, always sift the flour and cocoa. This will aerate the flour and help making the cake light. The sponge layers are quite dry and thin compared to your typical butter cake. Only ½ inch tall. This type of sponge cake should always be made a day ahead to give the filling time to soak the layers. This is what makes it so delicious.
The cake is very light, so it only serves 12.

Sponge cake
Makes one 8" cake to serve 12

4 large eggs (250 grams egg in total)
165 grams sugar
120 grams flour
30 grams cocoa powder
1 tsp vanilla extract
60 grams melted, cooled butter

Start by melting and cooling the butter. Preheat the oven to 190 C (375 F). Prepare an 8" round pan by brushing it with melted butter. Use a springform with removable bottom. This will help you assemble the cake later on.

Beat eggs and sugar on medium-high speed for several minutes until sugar is completely dissolved and a thick mousse has formed. When you drop a ribbon of batter from the beaters, it should be visible for about 30 seconds. This is very important!
Add the sifted flour and cocoa in 3 parts and gently fold into the eggs. Use a large slotted spoon or a large whisk for this, taking care not to overmix and deflate the batter. Add the butter with the last flour.

Immediatly pour into the pan and bake for about 35 minutes, depending on your oven. Do not open the oven door the first 20 minutes, or your cake might fall. Test with a toothpick to see if its done, and let it cool a bit in the pan before flipping it out on a rack to cool completely.

While it cools, you can make the strawberry mousse.

Strawberry mousse
500 grams strawberries (frozen, thawed strawberries are best)
100 grams sugar
½ vanilla bean
4 gelatin sheets

250 ml heavy cream

Heat the strawberries, the sugar and the vanilla bean gently in a saucepan. Let it simmer until the berries are mushy, about 10 minutes. Remove the vanilla bean, split it and scrape the seeds into the pan. With an immersion blender, puree the strawberries. Remove from heat.
Soak the gelatin sheets for around 10 minutes and shake off excess water. Melt the sheets in the warm strawberry puree. Stir until they have melted completely and let the puree cool to room temp. Put it in the fridge for faster cooling, but be careful that it doesn't set.
Whip the cream to stiff peaks and fold into the strawberries. The mousse is ready to fill into the cake now.

With a large serrated knife, split the sponge into 3 thin layers (about ½ inch). Put the bottom layer into the springform. The cake will be assembled upside down. Spread half the strawberry filling on top of the cake. Add another layer and spread the other half of the filling on top of it. Top with the third and last layer. Make sure the cake is level. Wrap everything in plastic wrap and refridgerate overnight or at least 5 hours. The gelatin will set and make the cake stable.

Take the cake out of the fridge and remove the plastic wrap. Run a spatula along the edge to loosen the cake from the springform. Place a cake board on top and flip the whole thing over. Don't worry, this cake is light as a feather. Remove the springform and you now have a perfect sponge cake. Unfortunately the filling smeared a bit and is hiding the middle layer on the photo, but if you look closely you can see it's there.

For the glaze mix 1 eggwhite with as much powdered sugar as it takes to make a thick glaze. It should be runny enough to flatten in about 10 seconds, but not so runny that you can see the cake through it. Thin with water if needed.
If you have a favorite cookie glaze, by all means use it. It's the same thing.
Take a few tablespoons of the glaze and tint it red. Put it in a piping bag with a #3 tip. Spread the white glaze over the top of the cake. With the red glaze, pipe a spiral on top. It should flatten out and "merge" with the white glaze if you have the right consistency.
To make the spiderweb pattern: Mark 10 or 12 points on the cake. Draw lines with a knife from the edge to the middle. Between these lines, drag the knife from the middle to the edge. Easy!

Beat 100 ml heavy cream with 2 tbsp powdered sugar and a bit of vanilla to make creme chantilly. Put it in a piping bag with a 1M star tip and pipe large rosettes all the way around the edge. Place a rosette in the middle. The cake is now ready to eat.
It is highly perishable and must be kept in the fridge, where it will last 2 days max.

*note-Gourmet Sleuth has a great grams conversion calculator.

Source for gelatine sheets

("Silver" grade clear leaf gelatin sheets from Germany. approximately 3" x 8". 3-4 sheets are equivalent to 1 envelope of Knox brand gelatin. --source-Gourmet Sleuth)

Tutorial and Photography by Sif Jensen- all rights reserved 2009
Tutorial or photos cannot be reproduced in any form without permission from

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

2 Dimensional Fondant Flowers

2 Dimensional Fondant Flowers


Take two shades of pink fondant, roll into sausages and twist together,
and mash together slightly.

Roll out thinly, and cut three petals with a rose petal cutter.

Cut a small V, using the v shaped end of your rose cutter,
on one petal ( as shown)

Creating the center of the tulip.
Press into an impression mat, then apply the center petal on the end of your
Piped or fondant green stem.

Press the other two petals into the impression mat and
place on each side of Tulip center. (as shown)

Trumpet flower

Take a small ball of lilac or pink fondant.
Press between thumb and forefinger as shown.

Using your ball tool, flatten end
of gumpaste and thin edges.

Roll pinched end of flower into a long funnel,
fold sides to back and roll the thinned
Edge over the front, creating a trumpet flower.

Apply on greenery on Cake.

Repeat the process in a lighter shade of pink or lilac and
Place on top of the first trumpet flower.

Photography and Tutorial by Jacque Benson
All rights reserved 2009.
Material in this tutorial cannot be reproduced for commercial purposes without
Permission from author.

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A Very Sweet Tutorial by Bobbie Noto

A Very Sweet Tutorial by Bobbie Noto
I was instantly in love when Bobbie Noto shared this cookie with SugarTeachers! She is an amazing talent. For instructions on how to create this adorable cookie, click on the photo and don't forget to subscribe to Bobbie's website!

Pillow Cake Tutorial by Toni Brancatisano

Pillow Cake Tutorial by Toni Brancatisano
How beautiful! A great tutorial shared byToni Brancatisano. Click on photo to see the tutorial!

Pistachio-Cardamom Cake

Pistachio-Cardamom Cake
Click on link for Edna De La Cruz's dee-lish cake recipe.

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