Thursday, April 30, 2009

Go Canucks Go Cake And Cupcakes!

I've written before about how NUTS my family is about the Vancouver Canucks. My mom is also nuts about BC LIONS FOOTBALL. I'm nuts about BC Lions football team colors: brown and orange. I LOVE brown and orange together! So 1970s!

For Canucks fan and birthday boy Tyler, I made a chocolate ganache filled chocolate cake covered in chocolate buttercream and blue fondant, and 1 dozen Canucks "players"! My husband Rich had the grand idea of making all the cupcakes with the numbers of Canucks top players, making them look like little hockey jerseys. Rich helped me, of course, to write down the numbers of these players, though a few months ago Rich challenged me to name five Canucks hockey players and I could name five!

Happy Birthday Tyler! Welcome to the double digits!!

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Beautiful Blim Art Market

Coco Cake Vanilla Bean with Vanilla Buttercream cupcakes!

Party time display! Coco Cake Cupcakes

My friend and one of many Coco Cake mascots, Party Panda:
"Please, take a card!"

Coco Cake fave Chocolate with Chocolate Buttercream... !

Lisa's beautiful jewelry display! Love those hands.

Yuriko is the coolest. Her style is out of control bonkers awesome... and the work she does for Vancouver is beyond nuts. She's a local treasure and Vancouver is lucky to have her magical-ness. Not to mention she has the CUTEST KID!!! You know who else is really cool?? Lisa, the other woman who puts on the Blim Art Market! She was so nice to let me trade tables with her so my cupcakes wouldn't get bonked and it would be easier for me to replenish my display. What a city! So yes, I am referring to the monthly Blim Art Market... held this past Sunday!

So Coco Cake had a bit of a literal EXPLOSION... my oven blew up!!! It was 1:30am in the morning on Saturday night and I was humming along making some coconut cupcakes to be frosted with creamcheese frosting and freshly toasted coconut... when this crazy LAZER BRIGHT WHITE BLUE Poltergeist-y light and crazy flashing sound exploded inside my oven-- I screamed of course and my husband came running out of bed in his underwear, frantically going for the fire extinguisher!! The flames fizzled out on itself and I was left with my 1961 brown oven, and four dozen coconut cupcakes, in ruins.

So... I welcome myself to... Convection World!! I haven't gotten my new oven yet but I am looking forward to not having to flip my pans every few minutes!! Wheeee! Rest In Peace Brownie The Oven. You served me sooo well for a long, long time. 1961-2009.

Above: pics of my cupcakes on display at the Blim Art Market, as well as Lisa's amazing display of vintage jewelry... my Auntie bought me a beautiful silver bracelet from her, and I bought a gorgeous bronze bracelet from Lisa too... ! Kellarissa also played beautifully, I always love seeing her play her music.

A real blast, the Blim Art Market... !

See you soon!

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Insane Totoro Cupcakes!

Insane because I went a little insane making these crazy guys. They were a bit on the labour-intensive side but I just love love loved how they turned out!!! And the sweetest thing in the world happened... Tina, the awesome woman who ordered them for her sister's birthday, gave me a PRESENT... a vintage porcelain lamb and baby carriage... because she knows how much I love vintage stuff! Isn't that the NICEST? I thought that was so thoughtful and super cool.

Anyway back to Totoro-- hee hee! Two dozen fondant designed regular Totoro, blue Totoro, black dustball and pretty leaves. Lemon Love cupcakes with creamcheese frosting... a real favorite amongst Coco Cake customers! I worked hard on these little guys and I was happy with how they turned out. I kept thinking of my little nephew Brody going "Toto??" whenever he sees something that looks remotely like Totoro... KAWAII!

Heehee. I just love Totoro, and Miyazaki films!! They are always slightly tragic, with sad things happening to children but then wonderful things happening--these are the kinds of movies that always stayed with me when I was a kid. Like the original Little Mermaid which we used to watch at my Auntie Lorraine's house on VHS. It is the Japanese version, and it was so sad... and I remember it to this day, 23 odd years later! Marina, the little mermaid, gives up her entire life for the Prince... only to have him fall in love with the girl he thinks saved him (but no, it was Marina who saved him!!!). I need to get my hands on a copy of this film and watch it again... with lots of Kleenex...!

Saturday, April 25, 2009

The Universe Is Trying To Tell Coco Cake Something

Okay super weird cosmic times this week. I got a phone call to make three dozen Coco Cake cupcakes for a young girl turning 13, to deliver to BUCKINGHAM ELEMENTARY SCHOOL. Which just so happens to be my old elementary school where I went from Kindergarten to grade 7!! Then, the same evening, I was driving home from my friend Helen's art show when I turned on the radio... and the song I did a LIP SYNCH to at Buckingham in the school lip synch contest was playing!! (okay, it was from the Dirty Dancing soundtrack... I say no more!)

So here are the cosmic vanilla with vanilla buttercream and raspberry jam-filled vanilla with pink vanilla buttercream birthday cupcakes for a lucky girl!

Also, the last pic: I chomped one of the extras. Heehee!

Friday, April 24, 2009

Extra-Crafty Coco Cake Cupcakes!

I love arts and crafts! I especially love the beautiful wave of arts and crafts that has been happening in the world and especially buzzing around in our cool city of Vancouver-- amazing women and men making crazy cool stuff, tired of spending their dollars at the mall buying mass produced and crappily made things, and wanting to offer their beautiful handcrafted goods to others to buy and enjoy. Got Craft is part of the coolness, and I was happy to be hired by Matchbox Creative to create a thank-you gift of chocolate with vanilla buttercream specialty-designed Coco Cake cupcakes for the Got Craft peeps!

So what kind of crafty cute little cupcakes would I make for the Got Crafters themselves? I decided to roll with super bright primary-ish colors to signify that sense of do-anything attitude we all had as kids; also the colors that are the building blocks of so many other colors, colors that inspire us to create! Also, how much do I love scallops? Tons and tons! (Not really the seafood type scallops, which one out of every four times will give me HIVES). Scallops, bright colors and super cute cupcake liners... and also some handy craftiness by yours truly: party flags made from old maps.

So everyone out there: Support your local art scene, and artisan craft scene! Yay!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Going Green: Green Tea Chocolate Cupcakes!

Do you love green tea flavoured things as much as I do? As a Chinese Canadian family growing up in Vancouver, we were always surrounded by loads of multicultural food and people-- we would often go out for Japanese food, which is probably where I first had green tea ice cream! I just love it, and I know I'm not alone. But I do know that there's the OPPOSITE camp, where people HATE green tea ice cream! To all the haters: "I ain't m'ad'atcha!" (Haha. See? Matcha? Me funny...??)

So introducing Coco Cake's latest flavour sensation... it's not a new flavour in the world of desserts or anything but I was happy to introduce it to my kitchen, and now to you: Green Tea Buttercream topped Chocolate Cupcakes! They are very pretty, no? I used my fancy matcha green tea powder from Muzi and it turned out nice and subtley matcha-y.

Yum yum yum. Green tea ice cream. Yum yum yum. Green tea chocolate cupcakes. Yum yum yum!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

April Blim Art Market!

Coco Cake Cupcakes will once again be at the wonderful Blim Art Market, the last Sunday of every month at Cambrian Hall in Vancouver, E.17th Ave and Main Street. April 26, Sunday! Come on down to cupcake party town!

The Blim Art Mart has tons of fun stuff: vintage clothing, records, art, craft items, Japanese food, Blim's own awesome screenprinted clothing line, antique jewelry, local designer clothing... so much to do and see! This month will have the super awesome chanteuse Kellarissa performing too!

This month's yummy Coco Cake cupcake flavours:

Coco Chocolate Buttercream: chocolate cake with chocolate buttercream!
Lemon Love: luscious lemon cake with lemon creamcheese frosting!
Coconut Dream: coconut cake with creamcheese frosting and toasted coconut
Vegan Chocolate Raspberry: raspberry jam filled chocolate cake covered with ganache!
Vanilla Bean: yummy vanilla bean cake topped with vanilla buttercream
Chocolate Green Tea Buttercream: chocolate cake with green tea buttercream

Come early to avoid disappointment!

Order your COCO CAKE PARTY MIX BOX of 1 dozen of a mixture of the above flavours, for $36! Pre-order up until Saturday, April 25 at noon, for pick up at the market anytime between 11-5pm. Email me at to order.

Hope to see you there...!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Chirpin' It Up!

Yellow canaries singing in my ear, made of vanilla cupcakes, vanilla buttercream and fondant. "Chirp! Chirp!" Vanilla buttercream rose-topped cupcakes too... Cindy Mochizuki is my crazy awesome fellow Asian Canadian friend who is a prolific Vancouver artist/animator/illustrator. She requested yellow canary cupcakes for her dad's birthday! Too cool! The little guy at the top is named "Go" which is the number 5 in Japanese, because this little character hatched fifth place on the day he was born. He is Cindy's parents' canary and this bird is too cool. He can sing on command, stop singing on command, fly around and return to his cage on command too. He's a real cool canary!

Blue 1980s Abstract Birthday Cake

So you know how whenever I make a cake it looks like it's for an 8 year old child? This cake is for a 28 year old man. Am I getting a bit better with the age-appropriate thing?? Of course I personally would love it if someone gave me a cake with a giant kawaii cat face or hilarious little panda bear cupcakes etc etc... and I'm 32... !!

My beautiful friend ShiShi requested a birthday cake for her man Scott's bday-- chocolate cake with yummy chocolate hazelnut filling, covered in fondant, with some sort of blue theme-- so I went with a kind of 1980s Max Headroom graphical vibe! Even though my instinct was to turn it into a blue whale face, heehee! Or a Pac Man ghost. I guess I'm on some weird 1980s nostalgia vibe lately... The top pic is the cake before it was covered in fondant. A cool trick to frosting a cake without getting buttercream all over your cake board is to tuck pieces of wax paper or parchment paper under your cake (which you can see in the pic), frost, then gently pull out the paper once you've frosted it and voila! Clean board! Ah, the little tricks that can help so much.

The pics of the cake after it's been sliced are from ShiShi!

Back to baking now!

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Hot Pink Cupcakes For A Hot Lady

One of my growing gang of loyal customers, Charlene, had a specific request for a friend's birthday: "Coconut cupcakes, hot pink icing with white and red hearts decoration!". I am thinking this is one hot lady who got to receive these adorable cupcakes! Aren't those dark brown cupcake liners hot-to-trot too? I love cupcake liners so much... just ask my husband Rich... I had to do an intervention on myself because I was stockpiling them so hard.

I also took this opportunity to take some snaps of my brand new, sparklingly gorgeous, 6 tiered, white, round plated cupcake stand!! Yay! It can be adjusted to any height and fits a whole lot of cupcakes. This is now available for rental for your wedding and party needs along with your dazzling and delicious Coco Cake cupcakes! Contact me for details!

Crazy old Pinky the Pup (the vintage dog toy) had to sneak into the pictures too of course, as he (yep, Pinky's a "he!") is perfectly coordinated to match the cupcakes. Also pictured on the bottom photograph: my awesome sis Leanne's beautiful letterpressed gift tag! Leanne will be launching her announcement card design business soon so stay tuned! For now check out her super cute blog dedicated to her love of letterpress.

Love, love lovin' the hot fuschia pink, and took many pics... As you can see... More to come as the Coco Cake weekend unfolds...