My intentions of this blog are to of course showcase my talents but also to encourage others to bake! I want to show people that you do not have to attend a culinary arts school (if you do, that is obviously great!) to be successful in the baking business. You do not need super expensive equipment or a large oven to get wonderful and professional looking results. I have been in this business for a few years and I have learned so much without taking one class! And I want to share with you what I have learned.

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Saturday, December 29, 2012

A Very Merry Christmas

I am back and I hope that everyone enjoyed their Christmas holidays, I know that I did and of course I did some baking, lots of it!! I made some cupcakes, cheesecake bites and a regular cheesecake. I wanted to do some cookies but was just too tired this season :( My little sister's birthday is December 25th and she always makes a special request and this year she asked for a cheesecake, unfortunately I did not get a picture of it before she devoured! So, without further a due, here is my holiday work!!

I made up these 2 cupcake boxes for my co-workers. I used pretty simple materials, peppermint and Christmas themed sprinkles. I love those reefs; I used a star tip to make them and added some little jimmy balls and a buttercream ribbon. I had some extra candy cane around so I just crushed it up and added it to the buttercream.

I made 2 of these trays for Christmas dessert. There are a few cupcakes; Santa hat, Poinsettia flower and another reef. The rest are little cheesecake bites; some with strawberries and others with Christmas jimmies. I had a ton of cheesecake mix left over from the cheesecake that I made so I just put the rest into some cupcake cups, some have graham cracker crusts...yum!

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Princess Assortment Cupcakes

 I made these cupcakes for a 5 year old girl's birthday party. Her theme was obviously princess and her mom gave me a few ideas of cupcakes that she wanted. I made 3 different flavors for her, which I will describe below.

 1. Strawberry Buttercups
     These are vanilla cupcakes baked with   
      strawberry pieces inside of them. The cupcakes
      have vanilla buttercream icing topped with fresh
      strawberry pieces and cute little tiaras.

2. Oh! Oreo Cupcakes
   Chocolate cupcakes baked with Oreo pieces
   inside topped with Oreo buttercream icing and an
   Oreo cookie on top. I added pink and purple
   sprinkles for the princess emphasis. 

3. Strawberry Lemonade Cupcakes
    These were lemon cupcakes, with extra yellow I added fresh blended strawberry puree to some buttercream for the icing and topped it off with a fresh strawberry, lemon and a pink straw! So much fun!!

Ladybug Cake & Worm Cupcakes

My little sister recently turned one in November, I know my mom is nuts!!!lol. So my other little sister and I were pretty much in charge of the party. My mom ordered tons of ladybug decorations and we thought of some games and entertainment. And of course I was on cake
My other little sister, who is 19, wanted to challenge me to a cake off for the party at first but then decided that she wanted to make the cupcakes instead (after she was done she said she's never doing anything like this So I made the cake and she made the cupcakes (I just added the dirt to them).
The cake is vanilla pound with buttercream icing. All of the decorations are made of fondant, the little and giant ladybugs, leaf, flowers and spots. My sister made double chocolate cupcakes with Oreos, Gummy Worms and Oreo "dirt" on top of them! Everyone loved them especially my sister!

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Welcome the Fall Cupcakes!

So, it is now NOVEMBER!!! This year has seemed to zoom by and I am sooo happy that I have had a chance to improve my baking skills greatly this year. I love the oranges and browns that accompany the fall season and I of course made some cupcakes to represent those colors and this wonderful season! I love those adorable little pumpkins and my leaf sprinkles. Wait to see what I'll be making for Thanksgiving :)

Halloween Cupcakes!

So, I know that I am a little late but I wanted to post these anyway. Halloween was a little disrupted, thanks to to Hurricane Sandy, but I gave out candy and made cupcakes anyway! I actually made 2 different sets of cupcakes, a simple set and a more elaborate (time consuming) 
 These are my simple and quick Halloween cupcakes. I purchased a large Halloween varied sprinkles jar for 1/2 off at Wal-Mart ($2.00) and used those to decorate these cupcakes. I really like the candy corned colored cupcake.
These are my FUN Halloween cupcakes! These were totally a hit in my house and I had such a good time making them. All of the designs were done using buttercream icing and a few sprinkles.I really love the MUMMY!!!

Friday, October 5, 2012

Casio Inspired Birthday Cake

My mom's birthday was last week and of course I had to make her a birthday cake! She absolutely loves making trips to the casino and when she's not there or working, she plays her casino games on facebook. Yes, I know, she has a So I wanted to incorporate that into her cake somehow and since I waited until the day of I had to some up with something quick! And here is what I did...
I decided to make a simple 8 inch round pound cake covered in yellow buttercream icing. I incorporated the slot machine to the front of the cake, as you can see. And simply wrote happy birthday mom withe some red roses on the top. I added some yellow fondant circles as those coins you get at the machine and put a few on top of the cupcakes. She was really excited when she saw the cake and loved the taste even more!! I have to admit, this really was one of my best tasting cakes. I honestly ate about 1/3 of the cake

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Paul Frank Birthday Cake & Cupcakes

My godson's 1st birthday was this past August and i was of course on sweet treat duty! His mom decided to go with a Paul Frank theme and frankly, I was a bit nervous at first. I had never heard of Paul Frank before and was unsure what to do. But me being the person that I am, I of course pulled it together! His mom wanted a the cake to be the shape of Paul Frank's face and needed it for a count of 30 people. I went a big overboard and created and enormously heavy cake. What I did.....
1. I baked one full sheet (double layered cake) and a 1/2 sheet cake (double layered as well)
2. Since I can sketch well, I drew the shape of the monkey's face and then cut them out and covered them with masking tape to use as tracing reference (you can print the outline out as well).
3. I actually separated  the face; cut the ears, top half of the face and the mouth apart from each other to make it easier to trace them.
4. I then placed each shape on top of the stacked cakes and cut them with a knife.
5. Once all of the cutting was complete, I filled the layers with buttercream and then began putting the face back together.
6.The monkey's face is covered completely in brown and ivory fondant (Satin Ice brand...delicious!). And his giant red mouth is painted on.

 I also made 30 cupcakes as well. I baked vanilla, chocolate and banana nut (in honor of Paul Frank) cupcakes! Half of the cupcakes had Paul Frank faces and the other half were decorated with rainbow sprinkles and cherry ball candies on top. The Paul Frank faces were created completely with fondant, using a knife and round fondant cutters. These were very fun to make and they tasted great!!!

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Cupcake Cakes!!!

Whoa, I haven't posted a blog in over a month maybe (I'm not sure) so please forgive me! I've been working, going to weddings and working on my own wedding plans (which is in 5 months). But anyways, today I am blogging about my newly found love, Cupcake Cakes! This is something that I picked up interest in within these past summer months and I love it. Having a cake that you don't have to cut slices of at a birthday party is pretty awesome, less messy and it just looks really cool. So far I've done 2 designs and I am going to explain them to you below. I am going to create a new post with instructions for these types of projects.
 I did this Scary Snake Cupcake Cake for a young man's 8th birthday. I was told that he wanted a snake and that he wanted it to look scary so this is what I came up with. This is constructed of 40 vanilla and chocolate mini cupcakes with buttercream icing. I decided to add teeth and a tongue made of fondant for a more realistic and scarier look!
This was also for an 8th birthday. I made this for my little cousin. I decided to do a poodle because she purchased a walking poodle toy for her birthday and it was all that she could talk about at the moment. This is constructed of about 24 regular sized vanilla cupcakes and also has buttercream icing.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Giraffe Print Birthday Cake

This is a Giraffe print cake that I made for my 22nd birthday his year. I love animal prints and I know a ton of other people do as well! They are pretty cool and they look really neat on cakes and cupcakes. I have done a few different animal prints in the past and I find them to be fairly easy to make, specifically cheetah and zebra print cupcakes.

I like giraffe print and thought it would be pretty cool to put it on a cake, so I did. This 8 inch round cake is covered in buttercream icing that I tinted yellow. I then purchased some Wilton's pre-made brown fondant and cut it into different sized pieces, to match the print of a giraffe and placed them all over the cake, leaving some of the yellow showing.

I used a small amount of buttercream to create a dot border around the cake and write "Happy Birthday....". I then used some red fondant to make a pretty red bow, there are tons of videos tutorials on facebook for this. And there you have it. A Giraffe Print Birthday Cake!

Monday, July 23, 2012

Computers, Superheros & PlayStation Cupcakes

So here is a picture of the group that the Superhero cupcakes belong to. The recipient of the cupcakes is a fan of computers, games and superheros. So I combined the three together and this is what I cam up with! All of the cupcakes are chocolate with chocolate icing. Below is a short description of the materials used to create these cupcakes.
Computer Cupcakes - I decided to make a laptop and to also make two I Phone app icons. They were all made out of fondant.
Superhero Cupcakes - These were also made from fondant. The Superman icon is made strictly of red, yellow and blue fondant. The Batman and Spiderman icons are made of both colored fondant and black icing.
PlayStation Cupcakes - These three cupcakes were also made of fondant. I decided to do cupcakes designed as the game controllers and the PlayStation logo.

Superhero Cupcakes

With the new Spiderman and Batman movies that just hit theaters and the new Superman movie coming early next year I was so excited to make these cupcakes. They were actually apart of a larger group of cupcakes (which I will post) but I wanted to show these separately. The customer gave me a few ideas on how to design the cupcakes, the person they were getting the cupcakes for is a fan of games, superheros and computers, so I just came up with some designs. These are double chocolate cupcakes with fondant and icing decorations on top. These cupcakes were a ton of fun to make and they turned out great!

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Beach/Luau Cupcakes

Aloha! It is summertime, the best time of the year! Everybody is visiting the beach and/or throwing pool parties with a Luau theme and how appropriate. So, I made some cupcakes to go along with that. These were actually for a little girl's 1st birthday. I made a total of 24 but only have 7 pictured here (the others were the same, some just have different colors). These were pretty simple to make, it just took me a little time to figure out what designs I would do. To make these cupcakes, here are some of the things that I did.

1. The sand is made of crunched graham cracker.  You can also use brown sugar to make sand but I must warn you that it will be very sweet.
2. I colored some icing blue for the 2 toned shoreline look on some of the cupcakes.
3. I used different color beach umbrellas, found at the dollar store.
4. The sea shell is actually a kiddie ring, I used 2 other types of shell rings, that I purchased at a cupcake shop.
5. Both the flip flops and palm trees are cupcakes picks purchased at a cupcake shop.
6. The lei is made of flower shaped jimmies that I actually purchased from the supermarket.
7. And I of course wrote the words "Aloha" on some of the cupcakes with icing and added some flowers.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

4th of July Cupcakes!!!

So Independence Day has rolled around again and it's one of my favorite holidays! That's partly because my birthday follows 6 days after the holiday AND no city celebrates Independence Day like my city does, Philadelphia!!! So of course I made some cupcakes to celebrate and here they are!
 These cupcakes were super simple and fun to make (no fondant!!!) I used some left over buttercream that I had in the fridge and colored small cups of it red and blue, the rest was left white. I purchased those cute liners and the star sprinkles to go with them at Fante's kitchen. I just let my creative juices flow with these and they turned out great!
 I posted a picture of these cupcakes separately because I wanted to discuss the technique that I used to make these. It's called Lining and it's pretty cool! What I did was take a parchment bag and painted 4 long stripes, 2 red and 2 blue, inside of the bag. I then filled the bag with white icing and when squeezed out, the gel coloring lightly mixes with the icing for this effect. It's so cool and easy to do and gives a wonderful looking product. I am going to try other colors for other holidays and I know that it will turn out great!
  And I just thought that my firework and American flag were pretty damn cute :). Have a Happy 4th of July and make sure you eat all of the cupcakes you can!

Monday, July 2, 2012

Football Themed Graduation Cake

So I have another little cousin, yeah I have a few of them, who graduated from middle school last month and asked me to make him a cake. He did not have a specific design in mind so I had to come up with one on my own. Well, what does he like??? He loves football and playing Madden on the X-Box. So my first thought was to make a cake shaped like a game controller or a replica of an X-Box but I really didn't feel like doing all of So I found out what his favorite football team is, The Jets, and came up with the idea of making a football field cake and adding a graduation cap to the cake.
This cake is a half sheet cake and it's one of those thin cakes, I really didn't feel like making a thick cake (don't worry, I would have done it for I iced it in green buttercream and made the yard lines of white fondant. I made the Jets logo with green and white fondant and white buttercream icing. In the two touchdown areas I wrote "Congrats Keon" and "Class of 2012". I also had to mark the yard lines and found that cute little grad cap and diploma to add to the cake. My little sister thought it would be a cute idea to add field goals to the cake so I let her make some out of straws and add them to the We all liked it and enjoyed eating it too.

Basketball Cupcakes

Check these out! I have a little cousin who turned 11 in June and wanted to make him some special cupcakes. His mom told me that he is really into basketball and she named off a few teams. But in a matter of hours I forgot who the heck she said (I know much to nothing about sports by the way). So I said "Shoot, what can I make that's basketball related and awesome for a pre-teen?". And here was my solution.
 Pretty simple right? Yeah, and don't forget to mention awesome!! I made 9 cupcakes and put giant icing swirls on top, which I then dipped in black crystal icing. It really helped that I had some neon colored orange and white fondant in my cabinet so I took my circle cutters and cut out 9 large circles and 3 mini ones. Next I took the end of my thin brush handle and pressed holes in the orange circles to create that basketball effect. I used edible gel coloring to physically draw on the basketball lines, the "Air Jordan" figurines and the happy birthday writing. These took me about 15-20 minutes to decorate with less than 10 supplies and it turned out so cute and he loved them!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

I Finally Went to a Baking Class.

As a graduation gift my little sister signed me up for cake decorating classes at a kitchenware and bake ware shop called Fante's Kitchen, located in South Philly smack dab in the mist of the Italian Market. I was signed up for the intermediate course but was told that I had to switch to beginners. Needless to say, I was a bit annoyed by that but was excited about going anyway. As you may know, I have taken a class at all and everything that I know I've learned via the internet and practice.

The class runs for three consecutive Saturdays in June with three hour class sessions. I needed a ton of supplies but my sis gave me a handy dandy gift certificate so I only ended up paying about $3.00 :). The first class was spent working on borders for cake, specifically shells and backward shell borders. We also learned to make stars and rosettes using royal icing.

The second class was a bit more advanced. We had to bring an iced cake to class along with a batch of stiff buttercream, medium buttercream and thin buttercream. And let me tell you, consistency is EVERYTHING!!! All of my consistencies were off which made it difficult to practice a first (this is something that can be fixed by powdered sugar). During this class we decorated our cakes with stems, leaves, rosebuds, sweet pea flowers and bows, along with adding a shell border. We also worked on writing as well but my cake has no writing. Here is a pic...

The last class is this coming week and I'm excited. We will be working on full roses as well as making borders and learning how to make standing characters for cakes (mine will be clowns). Not sure what else we will learn. I think that I will sign up for intermediate classes so I will be ready to make my wedding cake in February! I will definitely post an update on my 3rd class.

And here is an update from the 3rd class, two weeks It was awesome! I made a clown cake, which I decided to ice with a coral colored buttercream icing. I made some cute little clowns and added some balloons, borders and awesome garland. I learned soooooo much in this class and even got a little certificate to prove it. Thanks Fante's Kitchen! I think I will be visiting again in the fall for the intermediate class :)

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Cupcakes & Cupcake Stands!

I have had the chance to create two cupcake stands in the past and I love them. You can be as creative as you want to with these to match a theme for a party, wedding, baby shower, etc.  You can really show you creativity with these by decorating then with various ribbons, stickers, figurines, etc. I use the Wilton cupcake stands which are like $5.99 at A.C. Moore o Michaels. They take about 5-10 minutes to assemble but make sure if you have tape if you are using these please.

 I made a stand for my 21st birthday cupcakes last year. I decided to have a BBQ and found these cute Zebra Print & Pink invitations and paper goods to match in Target. I love animal print, giraffe print the best but they didn't have any of that in the store, so I purchased it all. I ordered these cute "21" birthday picks from some website and found some animal print candles (they're not in the pic) along with some cupcake liners to match the theme as well. I made 24 pink and zebra print cupcakes using pink dyed icing and black and white fondant, which were pretty neat. So it would only be right for the stand to match the theme. I found some pink and zebra print ribbon at the craft store and simply wrapped each layer. I put the zebra print on 1st since it was thicker and then the thin strip of pink and secured it all with tape. Oh how easy this was to put together and everyone loved the presentation and the cupcakes.

I also made one this year for someone's senior prom. Her colors were black and white so I made a stand using black and white ribbon and black and white rose cupcakes to match. I used black and white polka dot ribbon on the top and bottom rows and a sheer white for the middle row adorned with a black and white polka dot ribbon. I actually made 2 identical stands to fit 48 cupcakes. I wish that the ribbon was a bit more elegant but this is ribbon that I had lying around the house so I didn't have to purchase any extra! But they turned out beautiful anyway.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Homeade Ice Cream Cake

So here is an ice cream cake that I made for my little sister for her 19th birthday last year (2011). She is sooo special because she is a Christmas baby, born on Christmas Day! This was my first time ever attempting to make an ice cream cake and it was beyond successful in my eyes. She absolutely loved the design and loved the taste even better! I had to work pretty quickly in order to avoid melting.
 I did a layer of vanilla pound cake at the bottom and then a layer of cookies and cream ice cream and then vanilla icing on top of that. I used 9 inch pans for both the cake and ice cream. I lined one of the pans with plastic wrap and filled it with the ice cream. I froze this for about 5 hours, until it was pretty solid. While the ice cream was freezing I baked the layer of cake and allowed it to cool off. Once it was cool I placed the ice cream layer on top and quickly iced the cake and threw it back in the freezer until I decided how I would decorate the cake. My writing is a bit sloppy but is now much better. This was a really good 1st try I believe.

Elmo & Sesame Street Friends Cake & Cupcakes

 So I have sooooo many pictures of past things that I baked and wanted to share so I My god daughter turned 2 in September 2011 and her mother, my close friend, decided to throw her a Sesame Street BBQ birthday party, because she loves Elmo so much! As her god mommy and a baker, I volunteered my services and made her birthday cake and cupcakes to go along with it. I was so excited to do it, especially the Elmo cake since I had never done a character cake before. All of the adults in her life (mommy, daddy, grandparents, had to wear character t-shirts and I was assigned to be Oscar the Grouch :( even though i am far from a grouch. It was a fantastic party and I think that my cake and cupcakes helped with that!

 I used an Elmo face pan for the cake so it wasn't really hard to make. I sprayed the pan down with some baking spray and added a little flour to make sure that it wouldn't stick, threw it in the oven and Voila! there was Elmo as happy as could be! To color him I dyed some buttercream icing red and orange and used some of Wilton's pre-made black decorator icing. I used a star tip to decorate his face which was cool because it gave off that hair effect to his face.
  Next up were the cupcakes. I made these cupcakes for fun and they turned out AWESOME so I started getting orders for them, including this birthday party. I grew up on Sesame Street, as many people did, so this was really fun for me. All of the characters faces are colored crystals (they are an absolute favorite of mine if you have not noticed by now). All of their eyes are white and dark chocolate, which I melted in the microwave. Elmo and Oscar's mouths are also dark chocolate. I of course had to stick a cookie in Cookie Monster's mouth, he wouldn't be the monster that he is without Elmo's cute little nose is a red ball of candy covered in orange icing ( I replaced this with a jell bean the 2nd time around, much easier). And big birds mouth is made of banana and strawberry laffy taffy! You get and extra treat with each cupcake! There are plenty of ways to make these cupcakes but this is my way! And everyone enjoyed my treats, and the party!
There I am with the green shirt on and there is the birthday girl with the two puff balls being held by her mommy!

Yo Gabba Gabba Cupcakes!

 So if you have any kiddies or live with kiddies and you do not know what Yo Gabba Gabba is then you need to get with the program!!! Yo Gabba Gabba is only the coolest kids show on television! They have a cool host DJ Lance Rock and 5 main characters; Muno, Foofa, Plex, Toodee and Brobee that sing and dance while teaching little kiddies valuable life lessons like veggies like to go to the party in your tummy along with chicken and juice, it's not okay to bite our friends and germs make you sick so wash your hands and don't eat things that fall on the ground (whew, having a 7 month old in your house will teach you a lot about this I love this show so it was only right for me to create some cupcake in honor of the show, I want to do a cake too. Well here are the 5 main characters and I didn't do DJ Lance Rock yet :( I posted this to my facebook page and quickly got an order to make 30 of them and I was so excited!!! I made Plex a little more interesting by adding a mouth and ears and the rest looked the same as they do in this picture ( a bit Faces are done in colored crystals and their eyes, etc are either fondant and icing!

Friday, June 8, 2012

Wedding Bells!!

So, my wedding is 8 months and 8 days away from today and I have not done much of anything yet! We found a reception venue and that is about it. I've decided, on account of my budget, that I am going to be a DIY Bride!!!! Am I excited, yes, but I am nervous as heck too. I have been making these inspiration boards for the past couple of months. My wedding will be in February and has a Valentine's Day theme, which matches perfectly with my favorite color RED!!!!
So why am I putting this on here?? Well, I need to document this journey SOMEWHERE! And being as though I am a baker that means that I will be baking MY OWN WEDDING CAKE!!! That in itself will be a huge challenge along with the stresses of planning the wedding. So I will be making several posts pertaining to my wedding (mostly about the treats that I will serve). And within this 8 months, I will be doing several trial cakes so wish me luck!

Mickey Mouse and Friends

  I decided to do a very interpretive view of Mickey Mouse and his wonderful gang (Minnie, Goofy, Donald & Daisy....I didn't do Pluto, sorry). When I say interpretive I mean that they don't have any faces, mainly ears, hats and hair I used fondant to create all of the pieces and added some colored crystals, edible spray paint and beads. There were many other ways that I could have created these characters, especially Minnie and Daisy but I think they are pretty darn cute and were pretty easy to make as well!
Goofy, Mickey Mouse & Donald Duck
Minne Mouse & Daisy Duck

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Pink & Purple 1st Birthday Cupcakes

Check out these cute 1st birthday cupcakes that I made this weekend. The little girl had a "Cupcake" themed birthday party (how awesome!) and the colors were for the most part pink and purple.So my cupcakes obviously needed to match those colors. I am not really sure where my inspiration came from for these. I just wanted them to be really girly and represent her 1st birthday! Lots of pink and purple swirls and + flowers = Very Girly!

The Baking Essentials Part 1: Cupcake Liners!

Sorry for the wait. This post should have gone up days ago but for some reason it has taken me a while to get it together. But none the less, I am posting now :) I have decided to start off the series discussing cupcake liners (the little cup things that you bake cupcakes This definitely a must purchase for baking a cupcake! I love cupcakes because they add some much variety and uniqueness to a cupcake without me even touching the cupcake, as far as designing goes.
So I'm going to start off really simple and discuss the basics. Cupcake liners, sometimes called baking cups, come in 3 different sizes; mini, regular and jumbo. Mini and regular sizes are the easiest to locate. They can be found at your local grocery store, craft stores (A.C. Moore & Michaels are my favs.), Wal-Mart, Target, K-Mart, Party City and so on. The jumbo liners are not so easy to come by and if you do find them, they are usually only white, not as pretty as other cupcake liners.

Jumbo Size
Mini Size
Regular Size

As I stated above cupcake liners come in sooooo many colors and designs it's insane! What you don't find in stores you can easily find online. I have made purchases both ways using many different sites. My favorite in-store spot to shop for cupcake liners is Michaels and A.C. Moore sometimes too. The liners usually come anywhere between 35 and 50 baking cups in a pack, you might find a package of 75 or 100 if you're lucky! They usually run about $1.99 a package but you can often catch them on sale. I have attached a few pictures of the cupcake liner designs that I have in my cabinet at the moment, just to show the variety that I have. I absolutely love animal print so i had to make sure that I had those. I have a ton of polka dot colored liners in many different colors as you can see. I have liners for many different holidays, I see now that I am missing a few. The next time a holiday comes around I'll run to the store and grab some. I have a picture of some Tinkerbell & Hannah Montana liners at the bottom. There are tons of character liners but I usually do not buy them unless someone requests certain character cupcakes so I do not have a bunch of liners that I may not use. That's one important thing about buying cupcake liners. Purchase neutral colors and designs so you can use the liners until they run out. Do not purchase some off the wall design that you may only use once. You want to get your money's worth!

So there you have it, Part 1: Cupcake Liners! A pretty simple and common sense topic but I had to include it because it is an essential of baking! I hope that people do take something away from this.
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