Thursday, August 29, 2013

Snickers fudge and more Father's day ideas

 It's Father's day this weekend around these parts and I needed to make up a batch of treats for the Kindi day stall.

Earlier in the year I made up sweet pink fudge with hearts for mother's day so I thought some peanut caramel fudge would be a great idea for father's day. I had seen some delish looking Snickers fudge on pintrest and it inspired the snickers fudge (recipe below) you see here.

If your looking for some other yummy home made Father's day treats check out these (link to recipe by clicking on the names below picture):

1. Sugar Spice Cranberry Popcorn,
2. Totally Boss Chocolate Malt Macarons,
3. Peppermint Cookie Fudge, 
4. Mini Caramel Cheesecake.

Snickers Fudge makes 1 large tray or about 60 pieces (depending on the size you cut) conversions are approximate. Inspired by Snickers Fudge from Somewhere in the Middle.

Chocolate layers
450 grams milk chocolate (16 oz semi sweet) split into 2 lots of 225g (7oz)
120 grams smooth peanut butter (4 1/2oz) split into 2 lots of 60g (2 1/4oz)

Peanut fudge layer
55 grams unsalted butter (2 oz)
200 grams sugar (7oz)
65 grams evaporated milk (2 1/4oz)
200grams white marshmallows (7oz)
60g (21/4oz) peanut butter
55g (2oz) white chocolate
1 tsp vanilla

200grams (7oz) salted roasted shelled peanuts

Carmel Layer
400 grams hard caramels (14oz) (like pascal columbines)
50 grams cream (1 3/4oz heavy cream)

Prepare a 20cm X 30cm (around 9" X 13") tray by lining with aluminium foil.

Chocolate Layer
Chop 225 g (8oz) chocolate into fine pieces and microwave at medium heat for 2 minutes. Stir or whisk and then heat for another 1 minute at medium heat. The chocolate should be smooth and lump free (if not continue to microwave for 30 second bursts) add 60g (2 1/4oz) the peanut butter and mix until smooth.

Pour into the prepared tray and smooth evenly over bottom of tray with the back of a spoon and place in fridge until set.

Peanut Fudge Layer
Place sugar, evaporated milk, butter and marshmallows into a saucepan and heat on medium low heat until the marshmallows are melted. Heat for 5 minutes stirring continuously without allowing the mixture to boil. Remove from heat and add the peanut butter, white chocolate and vanilla.

Stir until combined and the mixture is smooth. Pour into the prepared tray over the chocolate layer.

Sprinkle the peanuts over the fudge and gently press into place, place in fridge until set.

Caramel Layer*
Place ingredients into microwave safe dish and microwave at high for 1 minute, stir and microwave for further 30 seconds at high. Pour over peanuts and gently spread with knife to make even. Place into fridge to set.

*note the caramel will be very very hot - do not get any on you, use an oven glove or something similar to handle and do not not even think about licking the spoon while it is hot, seriously, no mater how tempting it seems.

Final chocolate layer
Follow instructions for the first chocolate layer as above and pour over the caramel layer, using the back of a spoon to spread evenly in place. Pop into the fridge to set.

Once set turn out of tray onto a cutting board and cut into squares using a sharp knife. For clean cuts run the knife under hot water and dry between each cut.

Linda Vandermeer is a blogger, baker, maker and author of the cookbook ' Sweets on a Stick': More than 150 kid friendly recipes for cakes, candies, cookies and pies on the go!. Published in the US the book is available at most online book stores:

Link to Amazon:

Or at Fishpond (free shipping Australia)
Sweets on a Stick: More Than 150 Kid-Friendly Recipes for Cakes, Candies, Cookies, and Pies on the Go! 

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Naked cake balls

I'm having a pajama day today.

Yup still in my pj's and slippers, although that doesn't mean I haven't done a few loads of washing, cleaned the house and done all that other stuff that needs to be done every day around here.

I'm just being a bit relaxed about it, so to tie in with the relaxed theme I decided to make naked cake balls.

I had a whole stack of cake sitting around that I carved off'a my unicorn cake, so I just scrunched that up and with the ganache that was already layered in the cake I didn't need to add any extra frosting or ganache.

Then I grabbed some mini macarons I had left over, some raspberries, whipped up some chocolate ganache sauce and I had an instant dessert.

I made a video tutorial as well, yup sadly in my pajamas and I haven't combed my hair since yesterday morning, anyhoo I know you guys won't mind, just focus on the cake balls :)

Click here for the video of me making the naked cake balls

To make naked cake balls you need a cake and some frosting. Any type you like it can be home made, packed mix or store bought. Like I said I used chocolate mud cake and chocolate ganache.

(these ones in the picture are the actual cake balls I made up in the you tube video and popped on the plate, I just added a couple of extra raspberries and some flowers)

Place the cake into a large bowl and scrunch it up with your hands until it's crumbly, then add the frosting about 1/4 cup at a time until the cake becomes moist and will hold together into a ball shape.Scrunch or roll the mixture into ball shapes.

You can serve immediately or store in an airtight container in the fridge. If the cake is fresh it should last for 3 days. Otherwise you can freeze the cake balls wrapped in plastic wrap and in an airtight container for a couple of months, just defrost in the fridge and then bring to room temperature before serving.

To make up chocolate ganache melt around 120 g with 60 g cream  (or around 4oz chocolate to 2 oz cream) in a microwave on high for 1 minute.

If you like you can serve naked cake balls with peanut butter, nutella, cream, fruit and pretty much anything you like. They're kinda easy and kinda yummy and use up any extra cake you have sitting around

Linda Vandermeer is a blogger, baker, maker and author of the cookbook ' Sweets on a Stick': More than 150 kid friendly recipes for cakes, candies, cookies and pies on the go!. Published in the US the book is available at most online book stores:

Link to Amazon:

Or at Fishpond (free shipping Australia)
Sweets on a Stick: More Than 150 Kid-Friendly Recipes for Cakes, Candies, Cookies, and Pies on the Go! 

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Mounted Unicorn Head Cake - sneak peek

Here is a quick sneak peek of the mounted unicorn head cake that Sweet had at her birthday party on the weekend.

Yes this is the cake,

and it's mounted on a wall and it's really kinda fabulous.

Watch this blog space ;) There are lots of ways to follow me on the right hand side.

I'll have all the pictures of the party which is even MORE fabulous and more about the cake here on the Bubble and Sweet blog when I get more photos.

Edit update 25/2/14 I have uploaded a you tube video of me making the cake

Edit update 2/9/13 we have had the party CLICK HERE for more pictures of the I believe in magic Unicorn Party

Mounted Unicorn Head Cake by Linda Vandermeer @ Bubble and Sweet
Photography by Terri Vandermeer
Special thanks to Andrew McCubbin

Linda Vandermeer is a blogger, baker, maker and author of the cookbook ' Sweets on a Stick': More than 150 kid friendly recipes for cakes, candies, cookies and pies on the go!. Published in the US the book is available at most online book stores:

Link to Amazon:

Or at Fishpond (free shipping Australia)
Sweets on a Stick: More Than 150 Kid-Friendly Recipes for Cakes, Candies, Cookies, and Pies on the Go! 

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Chocolate Mousse in a jar Betty Crocker Irresistibles range

OK I have no self control. I admit it and it seems the packaging was right, this Chocolate Mousse cake is irresistible :)

I was going to wait until the end of the Sunbeam mixer competition to whip up one of the new Irresistibles cake mixes that Betty Crocker sent me, and start off with what y'all voted to be your favorite.

Anyhoo that just didn't work out for me, it wasn't really fair to expect me to wait a whole month.

Umm...Irresistible remember.

In fact once my resolve was broken, I didn't have to wait long at all as it literally took me a few minutes of mixing and they were ready to eat (plus baking time but I never count that).

We used all that extra time I saved cooking and cleaning to pop down to the park for some family time. I packed up the Chocolate Mousse Jar Cakes and we had a sweet picnic with the cakes and some left over pink lemonade.

The kids ate, and twirled and pulled some gunky stuff out of the pond and I enjoyed watching the kids having fun, took some deep breaths and a few pictures.

Jar Cake Instructions, made with Betty Crocker Chocolate Mousse Irresistibles, ingredients recommended on the package and extra raspberries

Spoon the made up chocolate cake mixture into some clean recycled glass jars*. Mine were various sizes that I had sitting around and I found that it worked out best if I filled the jars around a third full.

Place the filled jars onto a sturdy oven tray and bake in a preheated oven (as per packet directions) for 25 minutes.You'll know that the cakes are done when a skewer inserted into the cakes comes out clean.

Once the cakes cool down you can mix up the chocolate mousse mixture and spoon onto the top. I added some fresh raspberries, but you can leave as is or add any fresh fruit you like.

I made up 10 chocolate mousse jar cakes from 1 box of Irresistibles Chocolate Mousse cake mix.

* make sure the jars are clean, have no cracks or chips and have only previously been used for food safe ingredients.

Hmmmm wonder how long I will be able to hold out before I try out the Molten Lava Cakes and the Chocolate Mud Cake.

Linda Vandermeer is a blogger, baker, maker and author of the cookbook ' Sweets on a Stick': More than 150 kid friendly recipes for cakes, candies, cookies and pies on the go!. Published in the US the book is available at most online book stores:

Disclosure: the ideas, words and opinions in this post are my own however this post was sponsored by General Mills.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Memories are made of Pink Lemonade Recipe

Looking for a delicious drink that will not have the kids running around like crazy because of food colours and additives.

Ok well I can't promise the sugar won't have them running around ;) But this drink is naturally coloured and flavoured plus it's super fun to make.

  For YouTube instructions on how I made the paper rosette's to decorate the cups CLICK HERE

Plus my kids made it themselves (mostly). Yup we didn't just make lemonade we made memories and had a great time doing it.

We whipped up a big batch for Lilli's birthday party and it was a bit of a huge hit. I'm not sure if the fact we popped it into a drink dispenser had anything to do with the fun factor but I do know there was a constant line up of kids patiently waiting their turn until it pretty much ran out.

The drink dispenser fun at Lilli's 9th birthday - CLICK HERE for pictures of the full party and candy table

Memories are made of Pink Lemonade recipe For US conversion use your regular cups and substitute quarts for litres for a similar result. This makes up a huge batch of over 5 litres (about 5.5 quarts). If you like you can substitute around half the water for store bought lemonade (US - that means clear soda like sprite). If you add store bought product it is probable that the drink will then have additives.

2 cups sugar
2 cups water
2 cups lemon juice
1 1/2 cups strained rasbperries (we strained frozen as it's way more economical that way here)
4 Litres (4 quarts) cold water (or to taste)
Optional - Ice, sliced lemon and raspberry to serve

Heat the sugar and water over low heat until the sugar is dissolved and cool to room temperature.

Mix in the lemon juice and raspberry juice and pop in the fridge until cold. Can be stored in the fridge for 2 days in an airtight container.

When ready to serve add the cold water (or lemonade/ clear soda).

* Recipe can be halved. The juice/ sugar syrup mixture can be frozen prior to adding the water in ice cube trays and stored in airtight ziplock bags in the freezer and then defrosted in fridge when ready to use.

Lilli's 9th birthday party was a pretty pink and green party. For more pictures and details on how I stuck to a budget and still managed to make it look good check out my post CLICK HERE:

We also had cupcake decorating as the party activity CLICK HERE for how to host a cupcake decorating paryt details:

Linda Vandermeer is a blogger, baker, maker and author of the cookbook ' Sweets on a Stick': More than 150 kid friendly recipes for cakes, candies, cookies and pies on the go!. Published in the US the book is available at most online book stores:

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Pretty pastel party - Lilli's 9th Birthday Party pink and green ruffles and rosette on a budget

Lilli's pretty pink and mint green ruffle rosette party table.

Sometimes I see awesome catchy titles like 'best budgeting tips ever, see how this person paid off their house in 3 years' and I have to click over. I'm always disappointed. One of the top tips is inevitably to stop buying coffee. I'm not sure they fully understand my goal is to magically save money so I can constantly do the types of frivolous things the post is advising against.

Which brings me to today's post, this year instead of trying to top all the previous year's party and be even more over the top I went the other way and did the party on a budget (disclaimer I acknowledge in advance sometimes my understanding of budget may not be the same as yours, or more relevantly Mr Sweet's, but there are some real and sensible cost saving tips scattered in the post).

And it still looked good. I pretty much decorated this party with 5 pieces of scrapbook paper, a few pieces of ribbon and twine and a piece of material I had left over from something else.

Ok I admit - there is lots of other stuff on the table but I already had those things and this is my magical budgeting fantasy. It's the story I told Mr Sweet and I'm sticking to it.

Of course I made all the cakes and treats myself as well, plus I was also the entertainment as the party was a cupcake decorating party. Oh my goodness it sounds like I'm a super mum, but we all know that is far from true, y'all have seen my most embarrassing ever messy creative space before shots.

Anyhoo as well as doing all the stuff for the party I managed to whip up a couple of you tube video's to show how I made the decorations. Most of it is pretty easy stuff, but feel free to click through and check me out crafting to save money because it's too much fun not to ;) umm craft that is not watch me on youtube....

See me make DIY Easy cheap Paper Bunting you tube video:

Super cute rag ribbon bunting cake topper tutorial:

Make your own Paper rosette's:


Decorating the party table on a Budget 

My brief to myself for this party was to use what I already had, thus the pink and green colour scheme, as I seems to already have a lot of stuff in those colours sitting around.


Drinking Jars - I used recycled jars that my friend gave me after one of her parties, which makes them re-recycled. Cute huh! They are decorated with some washi tape I had sitting around and the paper rosette's (see the you tube tutorial link) that I pretty much stuck on everything.

Straw flags - I already had these pink and white polkadot straws left over from a previous party, I added a little bit of green and pink shabby chic floral washi tape from Greengate to the tops and popped them in another tall re-recycled jar decorated the same as the drinking jars.

Bunting - I had been thinking of doing a pretty rag ribbon bunting behind the table but then I would have had to buy fabric - and I was budgeting remember. So I made this paper bunting myself from Tilda and Martha Stewart scrapbook paper I already had sitting around, it was easy, it was cheap, it was really fast to make and it gave the effect I was looking for. It used 3 pieces of scrapbook paper and I saved the offcuts for mini bunting and rosette's. I stuck it to the wall over a piece of ribbon using double sided tape.I did a quick video tutorial on how I made it/

Risers - (these are to give height to the table mostly for visual purposes) this is a bathroom storage box from the dollar store, it was about $9. I painted it pink (with paint I already had sitting around), and then added Tilda scrapbooking paper offcuts saved from the wall bunting above. I used double sided tape to stick on some pink and white twine, added the mini bunting using more double sided tape and finished off with a couple of those paper rosette's. Then in a complete turn around from the famous style tip to finish something and take one thing away - I added a paper doily, adhering it with a little double sided tape. When your decorating with me - 'More is more'.

Tablecloth - this was a piece of Tilda fabric off cut left over from other decorating in my house, it has big chunks cut out the back - but you can't see behind the table so I didn't care - remember I'm on a budget. I cut another strip off (behind the table) to use on the cake bunting. If your fancy you could no doubt finish off the edges with some pretty trim, I'm not that fancy and I always try to avoid sewing. Seriously there was a drink dispenser and candy/ lollies, like the kids were checking out if my tablecloth was finished.

Rag fabric bunting cake topper - Using more of the pink and white twine I tied strips of the tablecloth fabric and a little bit of excess lace trimmed from the bottom of the lace I used on the cake. Note - ok you guys are thinking at this stage I am going overboard using little scraps of left over lace, but there is a method to this madness. By using the little offcuts I am ensuring consistency, it simply matches better. (Link to you tube tutorial)

Hanging lamp frames - Hmmm what can I say, I saw a picture of a naked lamp HERE that I loved and PINNED it inspired these lamps. But remember I was on a budget, I tried checking out some of the second hand stores to find lamps to use but when I had no luck I took my old bedside lamp that I hadn't used for years and made what you see in the picture above. I loved the look but needed another......and I stole Mr Sweet's which unfortunately he still uses. I've been wanting to get overhead wall lamps for a while now so I guess it will be happening soon, and he wasn't upset at all, well not too upset ;)

Pink floral 2 tiered stands - I already had one of these that I  had picked up a while back at the dollar store for around $14. When I went back there was only 1 left and it was wonky, they sold it to me for $11 and I bent it back into shape. I was using the other one to hand sugar flowers off each layer to dry so it is totally multi functional and worth it - *double bargin *.

Drink dispenser - I already had the drink dispenser, although it did take me many hours to find it, you may wonder how something that large can get lost, and I would agree with you. Anyhoo I decorated it with paper rosette's to continue my theme. See reverse styling note above, when in doubt add an extra paper doily - it works for me.

Cake Plates and Jars - I already had all of these sitting around. Beg, borrow or failing that hire some. Discount stores also have these types of things available for quite reasonable prices at the moment, but remember you will have to store them afterwards.

Party Food

Pink Lemonade - The kids made up the pink lemonade the day before the party, they thought it was awesome fun of course, were super proud of themselves and I only had to help out a little. It was win win. Plus there is no artificial colour in this baby - it's hand strained (frozen) raspberry :) Note according to the kids - drink dispensers rock. It was the biggest hit of the party after the cupcake decorating.

Ruffle Rosette Cake - The cake was pink and green layers with piped buttercream. Raspberry layer cake and a new pineapple flavour I was trying out - verdict. We won't be trying out that pineapple cake again, but the raspberry layer was delicious. The buttercream was Italian Meringue Buttercream flavoured with real raspberry so once again no food colour. I'm hoping to share how I made this one on the blog soon. Continuing on with my rosette theme I popped a few fondant rosette's all over the cake. The bottom layer was fake styrofoam covered in fondant - we really didn't need that much cake but I liked the extra height.

Macarons - green french almond macaron shells with raspberry white chocolate ganache to tie in with the colour theme.

Cake Pops - White candy chocolate dipped decorated with fondant rosettes in pink and green.

Decorated Cookies - Ruffled buttercream with fondant rosette, still carrying through that rosette theme. And fondant and royal icing decorated sugar cookies.

Candy / Lolly Green apple bon bons, white milk bottle and 'teeth' mix and pink/white swirl marshmallow.

Party Activities

We had a fun decorate your own cupcake party as the main focus of the party. There is a separate detailed How to Host a Cupcake Party Post CLICK HERE

We also had pass the parcel as that is the party girl's favorite party game. The prizes were mostly baking related ie. fondant plungers and cookie cutter sets.

Party favor's consisted of a pink and white bag from the discount store ($2 pack of 10) filled with some cupcake decorating treats like pretty cupcake cases, sugar pearls and a fondant flower or butterfly plunger plus a box of Betty Crocker vanilla cupcake mix.

Where to get stuff or make your own

How to make a paper bunting
How to make rag ribbon cake topper
How to make paper rosette's
Apple Bon Bon's - The Professor'
Other candy - Big W discount department store
Photography by Terri Vandermeer any especially blurry shot's might be by me :)
Fabric for Tablecloth and rag ribbon bunting - Tilda Rosalie Pink
Scrap paper - Tilda I picked mine up at Sewco in Brisbane
All cakes, cookies and macarons - Bubble and Sweet
How to Host a Cupcake Party Blog
Cupcakes at cupcake party and packet mix used for party favours - Betty Crocker
Cake stand's, plates and drink dispenser's bought minimum of one year ago so stockist details are probably out of date sorry. The Cake Stand is Clara French, the Drink dispenser was from Sharnel Dollar Designs (no longer sells to public now party styling services and commercial styling), the white flat plates from Freedom Furniture, the

Linda Vandermeer is a blogger, baker, maker and author of the cookbook ' Sweets on a Stick': More than 150 kid friendly recipes for cakes, candies, cookies and pies on the go!. Published in the US the book is available at most online book stores:

This post is not sponsored. Affiliate links may result in earnings, however will not cost you any more :)