The Hobbyholic

I can quit any time.

Billowing cake April 25, 2012

Filed under: Cake Decorating — thehobbyholic @ 12:25 am

I discovered a technique in cake decorating called billowing. It reminds me of fabric, so naturally I had to give it a go. I also tried out a new gum paste flower. Loved the final results.


Granola April 21, 2012

Filed under: Baking — thehobbyholic @ 4:10 pm

A few years ago a friend gave me a granola recipe she loves. I loved it, but never made it until about a year ago. Now I can’t stop making it. I go through phases of how much I eat at a time, but I always have it on hand. And now I have my mom hooked too.

Very simple recipe from Alton Brown. I usually double it and use all almonds (it’s what I have on hand) instead of a mix of nuts. Extra bonus: It is a fun one to include the daughter in. Lots of measuring and dumping. All things she loves about baking.

You can sub out different nuts and dried fruits too. Enjoy!


Alton Brown’s Granola Recipe

3 cups rolled oats
1 cup slivered almonds
1 cup cashews
3/4 cup shredded sweet coconut
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons maple syrup
1/4 cup vegetable oil
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup raisins


Preheat oven to 250 degrees F.

In a large bowl, combine the oats, nuts, coconut, and brown sugar.

In a separate bowl, combine maple syrup, oil, and salt. Combine both mixtures and pour onto 2 sheet pans. Cook for 1 hour and 15 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes to achieve an even color.

Remove from oven and transfer into a large bowl. Add raisins and mix until evenly distributed.


My Husband Rocks Friday April 20, 2012

Filed under: My Husband Rocks Friday — thehobbyholic @ 4:22 pm

My husband is a hard worker. He works long hours to provide for our family and rarely, if ever, complains. Me on the other hand, I hate his long hours and I have a hard time hiding it.

The last show he worked on (he is a Post Production Supervisor for reality TV) ended about 4 weeks ago. He has been looking for another show and hasn’t stopped. Phone calls, interviews, meetings, consulting work, etc. He has another interview today and I am hopeful all goes well.

My Husband Rocks!


Cinnamon Roll Cake April 19, 2012

Filed under: Baking — thehobbyholic @ 3:46 pm

I found this recipe on Pinterest. And it turned out wonderful. But of course I forgot to take a before picture. The after picture is just as telling though.



  • 3 cups Flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon Salt
  • 1 cup Sugar
  • 4 teaspoons Baking Powder
  • 1 1/2 cups Milk
  • 2 Eggs
  • 2 teaspoons Vanilla
  • 1/2 cup ( 1 stick)  Butter, melted


  • 1 cup ( 2 sticks) Butter, softened
  • 1 cup Brown Sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons Flour
  • 1 Tablespoon Cinnamon


  • 2 cups Powdered Sugar
  • 5 Tablespoons Milk
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9×13 glass baking pan with cooking spray. Set aside.

In an electric or stand mixer add the flour, salt, sugar, baking powder, milk, eggs, and vanilla. Once combined well , slowly stir in the melted butter. Pour into the prepared 9×13 baking pan.

For topping, In a large bowl mix the 2 sticks of butter, brown sugar, flour and cinnamon together until well combined and creamy. Drop evenly over the batter by the tablespoonfuls and use a knife to marble/swirl through the cake.

Bake at 350 for 35-40 minutes or when a toothpick inserted near the center comes out nearly clean.

FOR GLAZE:  In a medium bowl, mix the powdered sugar, milk and vanilla together with a whisk. Drizzle evenly over the warm cake. Serve warm or at room temperature.


Flourless Chocolate Cake April 13, 2012

Filed under: Baking — thehobbyholic @ 11:44 pm

I made a flourless chocolate cake for Easter and it was AMAZING!

Rich and decadent and yet, just the right amount. I’ll definitely be making this one again. (forgot to take a picture – mine didn’t look nearly as pretty as this one).

Flourless Chocolate Cake

  • 1 cup semisweet or bittersweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons espresso powder, optional
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, optional
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, Dutch-process cocoa preferred


  • 1 cup semisweet or bittersweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream

1) Preheat the oven to 375°F. Lightly grease an 8″ round cake pan; cut a piece of parchment or waxed paper to fit, grease it, and lay it in the bottom of the pan.

2) To make the cake: Put the chocolate and butter in a microwave-safe bowl, and heat until the butter is melted and the chips are soft. Stir until the chips melt, reheating briefly if necessary. You can also do this over a burner set at very low heat. Transfer the melted chocolate/butter to a mixing bowl.

3) Stir in the sugar, salt, espresso powder, and vanilla. Espresso enhances chocolate’s flavor much as vanilla does; using 1 teaspoon will simply enhance the flavor, while 2 teaspoons will lend a hint of mocha to the cake.

4) Add the eggs, beating briefly until smooth. Add the cocoa powder, and mix just to combine.

5) Spoon the batter into the prepared pan.

6) Bake the cake for 25 minutes; the top will have formed a thin crust, and it should register at least 200°F on an instant-read thermometer inserted into its center.

7) Remove it from the oven, and cool it in the pan for 5 minutes.

8) Loosen the edges of the pan with a table knife or nylon spreader, and turn it out onto a serving plate. The top will now be on the bottom; that’s fine. Also, the edges will crumble a bit, which is also fine. Allow the cake to cool completely before glazing.

9) To make the glaze: Combine the chocolate and cream in a microwave-safe bowl, and heat until the cream is very hot, but not simmering. Remove from the microwave, and stir until the chocolate melts and the mixture is completely smooth.

10) Spoon the glaze over the cake, spreading it to drip over the sides a bit. Allow the glaze to set for several hours before serving the cake.

Yield: 8″ cake, 8 to 12 servings.



Recipe and photo from:


Spring Cupcakes

Filed under: Baking — thehobbyholic @ 8:34 pm

I am teaching another cake decorating class tomorrow. This time, cupcakes. Sample below.

Horrible picture, but you get the idea.


Rose by any other name… April 12, 2012

Filed under: Cake Decorating — thehobbyholic @ 10:45 pm

Keeping with the cake theme, I have continued working on gum paste flowers. This time something a little more realistic. I made this one a few days ago.



Chocolate Chocolate Cake April 11, 2012

Filed under: Cake Decorating — thehobbyholic @ 10:44 pm

This last weekend I made a chocolate cake with chocolate buttercream frosting and chocolate shards surrounding the cake. I had seen a tutorial on how to make the chocolate shards from transfer sheets and thought I’d give it a go.

It was a great success. I learned a few things that I’ll have to improve on for the next time but there will definitely be a next time!


Gum Paste April 5, 2012

Filed under: Cake Decorating — thehobbyholic @ 4:57 pm

I have been dabbling in fondant and gum paste more. This is my first gumpaste flower. I’m not head over heals about it, but I have to start somewhere. I found a tutorial online that I followed.

The second one was better

So I got adventurous and hand cut a sunflower.

This was my favorite by far. I think I’ll make a few more and make a cake to go with.


Baby Shower Gift March 20, 2012

Filed under: Quilts — thehobbyholic @ 10:44 pm

The baby shower I attended and made a cake for last week – I also made a quilt for the new baby.