Thursday, April 30, 2009

One Lump or Two?


With Mothers' Day approaching I want to share a couple of my traditional gift ideas.


Tea cups are one of my favorite gifts to give as well as receive
along with a specialty tea.
I like to include something in my gift that adds a personal touch.



So grab your sugar cause we're going to make Sucre Moule and Decorated Sugar Cubes.
I adore this molded sugar bowl from* home sweet home*
It's next on my "try to do list."





Sucre Moule (Molded Sugar)

Ingredients

* 2 cups of one of the following- granulated sugar, raw sugar, brown sugar (for a caramel color).
* 1-2 teaspoon hot water
* 1-2 drops food coloring liquid or paste

Directions

1. Combine food coloring and sugar. Mix thoroughly. Gradually add water.
2. Make sure the sugar isn't so wet that it's dissolving, but wet enough to
hold its shape.
3. Press the sugar into the mold. Turn it over and tap out.
4. Let the shapes dry until hard (about 30 minutes to an hour depending on humidity). I was too impatient. So, I put mine in the oven at 325 for a few minutes.
5. Voila! Your own unique Sucre Moule .




Pink roses for tea




Caramel colored hearts for coffee



Royal Icing Sugar Cubes
I find using meringue powder an easy alternative to whipping up royal icing.
To create the flower, pipe a V-shape with the green icing forming the leaf and stem.
Add a tiny dollop of pink to form the rose bud.


Petite cherries


Sprinkles

Wilton Sprinkles were fun and simple to apply.
Melt (Nestle's) white chocolate chips. Pipe a dot on the sugar cube, and attach the heart or daisy.
I've tried using almond bark, candy melts and have found Nestle's white chocolate chips sets much quicker.





Let the daisy sprinkles set before piping the white chocolate center dot.

Wouldn't these be a nice embellishment on a tablescape or as a pretty party favor for a shower?


Whichever you choose, Sucre Moule or Decorated Sugar Cubes, they're sure to add a personal touch to your gift.




Hat Boxes aren't...



just for hats.



Here's my collection of fabric hat boxes....


I create ...

and give them as gifts.


This year I decided to embellish a hat box with my original paper flowers and crepe ruffle designs.
I enclose a sweet confection in each box.



Home baked pound cake with a bouquet tucked in the center
Unless your flowers are certified organic (pesticide free) you will need to place a protection where the the flowers touch the cake.
Insert 2-3 round paper doilies or plastic wrap in the center of the cake before adding the flowers.
Make sure the flowers are touching the paper doilies or plastic wrap not the cake.




Here are the minis.

Baked in a mini fluted bundt cake pan.
Hollow out the center with an apple corer. A paring knife will work just as well.
I purchased wooden, hinged boxes that were the perfect size for my petite cakes.

The hat box will be opened to reveal the cake inside.

Did you know pound cake originated sometime in the first half of the 18th century and is so named because the original recipe consisted of one pound each of butter, sugar, flour and eggs?
So we can dispel all rumors that the "pound" is in reference to the consequences from eating it.
Hmmmmm... or maybe there's a little truth to the rumor after all.


Quatre-Quarts (Pound Cake)

Ingredients

* 4 cubes/1lb. (softened) butter
* 3 C sugar
* 6 eggs
* 3 C cake flour
* 1 tsp. almond or vanilla extract
Bake at 325 for 25-30 mins. or until an inserted toothpick comes out dry.



I hope you'll enjoy creating these for someone special on Mothers' Day.

71 comments:

Lisa said...

The sugars are beautiful! I might try and make those! I love your hat boxes! They're so pretty. I know your friends and customers are thrilled with them.

Marydon said...

OMG!!! I love LOVE!! the sugars. Going to try them. TY fo sharing this. TTFN ~ Marydon

Judy said...

The sugars are so beautiful. I might have to try these for a gift. I love tea cups too, giving and receiving. Your hat boxes are divine. Anyone receiving them would be so thrilled.

Helen said...

My oh my! What a lovely post .. lots of ideas for wedding treats ~ a huge thank you for the sweet comment about Carl and Joanne ... Happy week, Sara!!!

Saucy said...

The sugar cubes are especially wonderful. My aunt made them for her daughter's wedding... hundreds of them. What work! Yours seem a tad easier but just as charming.

laurie @ bargain hunting said...

Oh, I love the sugar cubes! I want to make these. I've never done this. Do you have to have a special mould for them? This was such a pretty post and filled with so much inspiration. laurie

The Bloom Girls said...

I love this post! I am definitely going to make the sugars. I was thinking today about having a tea and they would be perfect. So many great ideas....thank you!

Thanks also for your kind comment. I now know why it is tradional for tamale making to be done by a group of women. They are time consuming and how much fun it'll be to share the process as a group. My son mentioned this evening that he wants to have some friends over for latin night and prepare tamales. I can't wait!

tam said...

Oh my goodness what a beautiful post! I loved it- all of it! Gorgeous hat boxes that you make, and the sugar cubes and cakes-sooo pretty! What great ideas-I will have to file that away in the files of my lil brain to use in the future. Thank You for sharing that!
I looked up the distance between Vancouver WA. and Burlington, WA. it is 229 miles and take about 3.5 hours driving without stops. My hubby says there is a train that goes from your neck of the woods straight there-but that would take longer then driving. Thanks for the nice comments on my blog! Happy Mother's Day!!!~Smiles~Tam!

Justine/Justiney/Tiney said...

SARA!!!!!!!!!!! You MADE all of these things yourself? Holy crap woman, they're amazing!!!!!!!!!!!! I sat here with my jaw on the keyboard the whole time I was reading and looking. OMG, I'm totally floored here.

And the hat boxes are so incredibly beautiful!!!!!!!!! And to open one to cake????? What could be better?

Girl, you need to have a giveaway with some of these beautiful things. And rig it so I win. LOL

Oh! And btw... i'm not a tea person, and I don't collect, but that white tea pot is amazingly gorgeous.

Justine :o )

Barb said...

Those sugar cube ideas all look great, but waaay too much work for me. =0))

Blessings on all the Mom's out there!! Every day should be your special day.

Barbara Jean

parTea lady said...

Gorgeous post. I love the decorated sugar cubes. The hat boxes and cakes are wonderful too. I think I'll try making some little teapot molded sugar with my Longaberger candy mold. Your photos are great.

puddin07 said...

Sara, I want to thank you for the sweet comments you made about our sunroom. You were concerned about the cost. I read your comment to my Hubs, and he said to build a shed roof. somehow the sunroom is built over the roof of the house, and it cost us about $12,000 for the main room. After we built it, we had the deck enlarged, and covered it for about $11,000, so it really doesn't take Bill Gates' money to do it! LOL On the outside the roof looks like a saltbox house, we use this more than any other area of our home! I hope this helps! Thanks again! Connie

bj said...

OMGoodness, Sara...all of these are simply STUNNING...those sugars are so beautiful. I know, without a doubt, I could NEVER do this...but I love seeing yours.
The hat boxes are such a great gift..along with a beautiful tea cup and luscious teas.
Great ideas and thanks so much for letting me know about this post. You know how big Blogland is...sometimes, I get lost.
xo bj

Candy said...

Never knew you could do so much with a sugar cube.
Ultra sweet post!

Candy

Marie Reed said...

I have NEVER EVER thought about embellishing sugar cubes! What a darling idea!

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

I adore hat boxes. Those sugars are truly art.

2 Stews said...

I bought some sugar shaped like roses a few years ago...never knew how to make them..thanks! Love the hatboxes and cakes, too. What fun!
Diane

Joyce said...

Hope you get lots of strawberries this year. Thanks for peaking at my recipe. Your post is so pretty. All the things I love to go with Tea in this post. I collect tea pots but no cups. I am running out of room for a new collection and besides I like to collect shoes and purses:) Happy Mother's day to you.
Joyce

The Stylish House said...

Sara,
I am thrilled you dropped by so I could discover this gem! Love everything and I can't wait to try these ideas out! Thank you for sharing and love the photos.
Cathy

Terrie's Lil' Piece of Serenity said...

Just beautiful! I love your blog!

~CC Catherine said...

Sara, Thanks so much for inviting me over to see this post. How "sweet" it is! ;) Seriously, it's very informative and fun! Love it! ~CC Catherine ;)

Lisa said...

Hi friend! I got both the Romantic Home and Where Women Create at Barnes and Noble. You can subscribe to both if they are hard to find in your area. I highly recommend both(: Have a wonderful Mother's Day!

robinrane said...

These sugars are deeelightful! A bunch of tiny works of art I tell ya!
Robin
All Things Heart and Home
ps...We aren't sure about sweet Reba...we're making progress with her, she'll let us pet her for about 2 seconds. We've got to get her to the vet when she trusts us...any suggestions?

Buzzings of a Queen Bee! said...

Such beautiful work! I can't wait for my daughter to be a little older so we can do stuff like this together. Thanks for such great ideas! :)
Carrie

wendy said...

YOU have the absolute - ABSOLUTE - most gorgeous things on your blog. I can't imagine what your house is like and how you probably set a table. (no paper plates and left over napkins from Dominoes at your place) I love hat boxes and those were amazing.

FrenchGardenHouse said...

Before FGH, I had so much fun making these for all the parties and teas we had around here!{I had way more time then} They make every occasion special.:) Great post...everything is so lovely, you are so sweet to share all of this with us.
Lidy

Julie said...

Next you'll be wanting to make sugar eggs. Grammy had some 30 year old ones...maybe they're in your garage someplace! ;)

Carrie said...

Beautiful sugars!! The hat boxes are beautiful.

Mid-Atlantic Martha said...

Goodness your post is just filled with lovliness! Those sugars are too pretty to eat!

"Blossom" said...

These are without a doubt the cuties little sugar pretties that I have ever seen. I'll have a bunch of lumps.

bj said...

Happy Foodie Friday...

Gollum said...

This is the most fabulous post I have seen in my life! I'm awestruck by these darling sugar cubes. And the edible flowers--what a great idea to make a bouquet. Thank you so much for this delightful post! Have a wonderful weekend!

justabeachkat said...

Hi Sara!

Thanks for your visit this afternoon and your very sweet comment. I hope you'll visit me again...you're always welcome. I've sure enjoyed my visit here to your beautiful blog. Oh.My.Word! So many wonderful ideas.

Hugs!
Kat

Mimi Sue said...

Great ideas! Love the sugar cubes. Enjoy your mother's day. Mimi

Lorna ~ Lace and Ivy Cottage said...

My sister and I are eager to make some sugar molds. I love giving tea parties and will try the decorated sugar as an added touch to my next one. Thank you so much for the ideas. I also love your hat box gifts!

A Bite of Country Cupcakes said...

Oh Girl you atr too much!
How many awesome girly frou frou things can you think of ,make and do!????
Just gorgeous,Love the pictures ,love the ideas!

Dragana said...

Fabulous post! I have never seen sugar cubes as pretty as these! And the pound cakes...too pretty to eat! Thanks for the fantastic ideas.

The Raggedy Girl said...

Thanks for stopping by...

The Raggedy Girl

Kathleen Ellis said...

FABULOUS ideas! Everything is soooo pretty! Thank you for sharing how to make the molded sugars...what a beautiful idea!
Your hat boxes are splendid!

Happy Mother's Day!
;-D

Leigh of Bloggeritaville said...

Great and clever post! LOVEd this!

The Vintage Kitten said...

I love visiting your blog, its always a feast for the eyes, Everything always looks so yummy and beautiful! I will come back to you on the cocktail recipes, (probably tomorrow). I definately have a favourite using that liquer so I will send the recipe with any others I can find X

Florence said...

Your site is beautiful. Thank you for checking mine out. I just posted some beautiful soaps you'll have to check out.

Tracie~MyPetiteMaison said...

Love the hat boxes and all the pretty sugar cubes, Sara.

Happy Mother's Day!
xo~Tracie

The Vintage Kitten said...

Hiya Sara, here are a few recipes using Disaranno.
Disaranno Martini...
1 Shot Hendricks Gin
1 Shot Disaronno Amaretto
Mix together with ice in a cocktail shaker. Stir (do not shake) and strain into a chilled martini glass. Garnish with a twist of orange rind......

My favourite is a Disaranno Sour
2 Dashes Angostura Bitters
2 Shots Disaronno Amaretto
1 Shot Lemon Juice
Shake with cubed ice and and strain into an ice filled tumbler glass.....

Disaranno Darkness
0.5 Shot Cognac
0.5 Shot Disaronno Amaretto
Top up Strong Black Coffee
1 Pinch Cocoa Powder
1 Teaspoon Sugar
Cream to pour
Pour the Disaronno Amaretto and Cognac into the glass. Add the coffee and sugar and stir. Dust the surface with the bitter cocoa powder and finish by pouring the cream over the back of a spoon to create a layer.

If you want to 'knock your socks off' then try an Alabama Slammer
1 Shot Southern Comfort
0.5 Shot Jack Daniels
0.5 Shot Disaronno Amaretto
1 Shot Lemon Juice
Shake in a shaker filled with ice then strain into a glass over fresh ice

Im not sure what a shot measure is for you, but I use 1 shot equals 25ml. I think in Europe 1 shot is 35ml

I hope these are to your taste, there are just so many. If you look at the cocktail lounge label on the right hand side of my blog it will bring up all the cocktails I have done and there is a couple where Ive used Disaronno or just put in a word search on the top left hand corner of my blog and it will just bring up the cocktails where Ive used the D to save you going through them all.

You mentioned your English friend. I would have a look on the Harrods website as there are some typically english items there or is there any English sweets (candy) you maybe cant get where you are that you would like to try? I also love Cath Kidston.co.uk she sells lovely pretty household items full of roses and plenty of pink (ooh) there are lots of pretty accessories that wouldnt take up too much room in a suitcase X

The Vintage Kitten said...

Me again. I forgot to say that Harrods sell English teas etc so would be perfect for your lovely teacups X

Debbie said...

Those sugars are too pretty to use!

Stephanie said...

OMG, what an amazing and beautiful post. Your hat boxes and tea pots are incredible, I drooled all the way through your pictures!!

Gabrielle Eden said...

Sweet Sara - your photos are amazing! Your sugars are just awesome! Your hat boxes are wonderful! My eyes are thanking you for the beauty!!!!!!

Yellow Rose Arbor said...

What a delightful blog you have! I love the sugar ideas you shared with us, I have never tried that, maybe I'll get brave and try some of them, they are so pretty! Once I put soft butter in rose shaped molds and served those at a tea party.

The hat boxes are absolutely gorgeous! I love to use hat boxes for storage (and I store a lot of stuff!) I can hardly bear to throw away a special sentimental greeting card, so I keep them in hat boxes!

I'm going to bookmark your blog, I shall return! I also want to explore your archives when I get a chance (we are leaving on vacation tomorrow.)

And, I love your nice long comments to me on my blog!

Katherine

Sandy Michelle said...

Girl this is an awesome Mother's Day post! I LOVE the fabric boxes and cake! I never even knew different sugar cubes existed! Have a fabulous Mother's Day! Thanks for the communion congrats :)

Sandy xox

SavoringTime in the Kitchen said...

I love your molded sugars! So pretty!

imjacobsmom said...

I think this is the coolest post by far today! I so am saving this post because I am doing this for my springtime tea party. Thank you for sharing this. I have the heart molds and I have the roses and I even have little gumpaste flower buds. Cool. ~ Robyn

Mrs. B. Silly said...

I love those sugar cubes! If I weren't 'off' sugar, I'd be playing with the jar of sugar right now. How fun!
Your hat boxes are beautiful and I enjoyed the history of Pound Cake. Pound cake reminds me of my mom, she use to make it a lot when we were kids, maybe that's why I have a sweet tooth.
When you find a recipe for Splenda cubes, let me know. LOL
Hugs, Bridget
p.s. Happy almost 27th to you too my fellow spring chicken!

Betzie said...

Hi Sara,
Love your blogs! I adore these cubes!!! Too too cute...and your paper flowers are so inspiring...have to try those one day as I love hat boxes too! Hope you enjoy your soaps! xo betzie

Happy To Be said...

Oh Sara this was indeed a wonderful post my friend...just loved it...May you have a wonderful Mother's day...hugs and smiles Gl♥ria

Blissful Melissa said...

I'm SO glad you showed me how to make those sugar cubes and molds! How sweet!

I am still drooling over that fabulous tea pot and cake plate!!!
I'd LOVE to know where you picked it up.

You are on my bloglist...

thanks again for the BEAUTIFUL post and recipes!

Melissa

Mama said...

Hello Sara, what a delightful post, I love EVERYTHING, the teacups, the sugar, the hearts, the teapots, the hat boxes and the cake. you are one talented lady, thank you for all the recipes and tips and I have to say those teapots and teacups are divine. Kathy.

Rue said...

Hi Sara :)

Gorgeous!! Thank you so much for the pound cake recipe :)

Happy Mother's Day to you!!

xoxo,
rue

prof en retraite said...

Oh wow! These are beautiful! My French friend makes quatre-quarts...yum! And the hat box idea is terrific! Thanks for sharing them all! Happy Mothers Day!!...Debbie

Shelia said...

Morning, Sara! The sugars are so lovely and the hat boxes so adorable. You're very good at this, sweet friend! I know I would be thrilled to have one!
Be a sweetie,
Shelia :)

rochambeau said...

Hello Sweet Sara!
Thank you for your lump sugar "how~to"! They look magnificent, also your adorned hat box is very nice. Happy to find you here in Bloglandia!

Constance

Linda Crispell said...

You know I love making sugar cubes in decorative molds!

Sheri said...

I LOVE the molded sugar cubes...what a great idea! I had no idea they were so easy! Your hat boxes are GORGEOUS! What a "sweet" post! :)

vivian said...

those sugar cubes are soo awesome! You make me want to have a tea party! What a "sweet" post!!
and love the hat boxes too.
have a great weekend!
hugs
vivian

Tootsie said...

I think I would love to have a tea party at your house!!! no murals!!! NO MURALS>>>>>you are right!!! why do men have such silly ideas? lol....have fun with the vines...tomorrow's post has more photos etc that will help convince hubby!

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Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Jeanan said...

how can i order sugar and other stuff taht you carry

Jeanan said...

how can i order

Cora said...

I'm so going to try the Sucre Moule! A great gifty idea!

{Bellamere Cottage} said...

Oh my goodness.......sooooo cute. I'll be tryin' those cute little molded sugar cubes!

Warm hugs,
Spencer