Thank you for visiting our page. Sweet Dreams Bakery runs by pure fun, passion, and enthusiasm for making delectable sweets that pleases the eye and tummy.

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Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Introducing Twinkakes!

My sister, Jennifer, and I were going to bake Twinkies the other night just for the fun of it.  We didn't want to make the Twinkie molds out of foil though, so I suggested we just use regular cupcake pans.  We then decided to call these Twinkakes, a play on word with combining Twinkies and cupcakes!  We are very corny, and have really cheesey humor, and since we also happen to be (super awesome) twins, we felt these are our special little creations (or so we think no one else has made these before...).  So we are happy and excited to introduce to you, Twinkakes, made by twins!!!  Hehe!  These are nice little sweet treats that taste like twinkies, but in the shape of little cupcakes!  Enjoy these twintastic sweets!  For more information on how we made these, feel free to visit my sister's blog HERE!

Happy 30th Wedding Anniversary to my Parents!

Happy 30th Wedding Anniversary Mommy and Daddy!!  My mom doesn't like to eat cake, so I decided to make a fake cake so they can still at least have something to take pictures with to commemorate this special celebration!  The 30th Wedding Anniversary is the Pearl anniversary, so I make pearls that bordered the tiers of the cake.  I lined the top tier with a smaller string of pearls to make it look more delicate than having the larger size pearls.  I made flowers and leaves out of fondant and painted the leaves and pearls in the middle of the larger flowers with pearl luster dust.  I used a floral impression mat to make the texture of the cake as well.  For the lace, I was really excited to use an icing called Sugar Veil.  It allows me to make flexible icing decorations!  I used a lace impression mat for the lace designs as well.  I figured this would make a very elegant and fancy cake that my mom would enjoy, without all the calories! =P  My dad will appreciate the work I put into this as well, so I hope this will wow them!

For the real cake, I made them a flan since its one of my mom's favorite dessert.  I made the flan from scratch and sliced up peaches, kiwi, strawberries, and placed black berries on top in a decorative manor.  I made a test flan last week just to make sure that I was able to make this for the main event, and I was very pleased on how it came out!!  I think the hardest part is melting the sugar to make the caramel.  I think you just have to let the sugar melt on it's own and not stir too much.  Then make sure the caramel is completely cooled before pouring the egg mixture into the dish.  This way the caramel won't crack, and if the caramel isn't spread out evening on the pan, no worries, it will even out when it bakes!  It's like magic!! This flan is quite yummy, special thanks to my friend Katherine's mom for giving me this amazing recipe!

I want to take this time to wish my parents a wonderful happy anniversary!  Without them, I wouldn't be where I am today.  It's a cliché but it's true!  I'm thankful that they raised me the way I am, and that they taught me to always put family first.  I'm so grateful for everything they've done for me, all the sacrifices they've made and all the hard work they've done to make sure Jennifer and I are happy and well.  Happy Anniversary Mommy and Daddy, I wish you another 30+ years of love and happiness!

Christmas Macarons!

Merry Christmas Everyone!  I saw these snowman and penguin macarons online and just had to make them myself for our yearly cousin Secret Santa Exchange!  I was thinking about what other shapes I can make and so I also made gingerbread men macarons as well!  I was a little worried that the gingerbread men wouldn't turn out right because the macaron batter tends to settle a little bit after you pipe them, but once they bake and rose, they turned out quite nicely!  The snowmen and penguins are basic vanilla macarons with swiss meringue filling and the gingerbread men are chocolate macarons with swiss meringue filling.  I used edible ink markers to draw on all the designs, and I had a special crew of helpers for my gingerbread designs (thank you Jennifer, Andrew, and Khoa!).  This time of year is my favorite time because of all the holidays.  The greatest part about the holidays though is having all your friends come together and spend quality time with one another, and just be happy and enjoy each other's company, friendship, and love.  Making cute little tasty treats are also fun as well =).  I wish everyone a wonderful happy holiday, and here's to a fabulously sweet new year!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Congratulations Mr. & Mrs. Andrzejewski!

Congratulations to Alvina and Will on there beautiful wedding on September 22, 2012! Not only did I have the special privilege of making their cupcake tower, cupcakes and cake, but I got to the Matron of Honor for my best friend's wedding!  Alvina and I have been friends since the 3rd grade, that's pretty much 20 years of our life, and we're only 28 years old!  I cannot be more happy for Alvina and for finding her true love, and now starting her new life with him.
I made red velvet cupcakes with whipped cream cheese filling and basic buttercream frosting.  All the seashell decorations on the cupcakes are made of white chocolate and the cake is topped with fresh real flowers and seashells.  The cake is covered in fondant with fondant decorations on the sides.
I am so proud, excited, and happy for my best friend and her new journey in life!  Will makes Alvina a better person, and together they can conquer the world!  Alvina, you are a beautiful, wonderful, smart, and crazy person, but that's why we all love you!!  You deserve all the happiness in the world, and I'm so glad Will will be by you side each day, as you make new memories together.  Here's a recipe just for you!  Congratulations Alvina and Will!!!!

Recipe For A Happy Marriage Poem

4 cups of Love
2 cups of Loyalty
Dash of Faith
3 cups of Kindness
4 cups of Understanding
1 cup of Friendship
5 spoonfuls of Hope
1 barrel of Laughter

Pinch of Forgiveness (no substitutions)
Dash of Thoughtfulness (not optional)
Take love and loyalty and mix thoroughly with faith.
Blend in kindness and understanding, add friendship and hope.
Sprinkle abundantly with laughter. Garnish with forgiveness and thoughtfulness.
Bake with sunshine.
Serve daily with generous helpings.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Happy 1 Month Nathan!

Happy 1 month birthday celebration Nathan!!  This is the baby boy version of my dragon cake I made earlier this year for our baby shower! This is a mixed berry cake from Givral, with yellow piping, and I used gold luster dust to paint the piping to make it look like gold.  There's real ivory and mini yellow roses on the cake and a light blue ribbon border as well.  The dragon is egg shell is made out of fondant!  I painted a little bit of gold luster dust on the egg shell and dragon to make it look more magical!  A baby's 1 month celebration in the Vietnamese culture is so special and important, and I'm glad I was able to help make the celebration that much more special!  Happy 1 month birthday Nathan!

Friday, December 7, 2012

Peppermint Truffle Brownies

'Tis the season for yummy sweets! I saw this recipe online, and I just had to try it! I never made brownies before, but these are one step better than brownies, they're Peppermint Truffle Brownies!! These are brownies that are made from scratch, and I used melted chocolate and butter instead of cocoa powder, and it has a layer of chocolate ganache onto top with crushed peppermint candy on top! These are really rich and dense and tastes super yummy!  It'll satisfy any sweet tooth out there!  My husband, Khoa, doesn't even like sweets and he couldn't get enough of these!  1 batch makes quite a lot so these are great to hand out as special homemade treats for all your loved ones!  Happy Holidays everyone!

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Apple Pie Pops!

My friend, Sarah, introduced to these cute little desserts called Pie Pops, and when I first heard about them, I was like "Wait, it's pie on a stick???...That's GENUIS!!!" I wish I thought of it, but in the spirit of Thanksgiving, I'm so thankful for whoever did come up with this brilliant concept! Once I heard about this, I just knew I had to try it! Since it's Thanksgiving time, I thought about doing pumpkin pie pops, but I wanted to do Apple Pie since that's my favorite! I never made a pie before, so I gather a couple recipes and put together the recipe I used for these, and I must say it tastes rather tasty!

I read some notes from people who's made pie pops in the past and they said that the pie crust to pie filling ratio was off and that there was too much crust. So I rolled out the pie crust thinner instead of cutting out the shapes from the existing pre-made pie crust, and tried to stuff my pops more, and came up with a perfect ratio! I decided to dress these up a bit too by adding little hearts in the middle of them as well. Cute right? Anyways, I hope everyone had a pie-tastic Thanksgiving holiday! I know I have soooo much to be thankful for this year.  I am thankful for all those creative people out there who inspire me and allow me to continuously go on new baking and decorating adventures.  I am also thankful for my hardworking, wonderful, caring and loving husband, loving and supportive friends and family, and most of all, my beautiful precious happy baby girl, Lily!!! Happy thanksgiving everyone!!

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Happy Halloween 2012

Happy Halloween! I decided to Make some festive Halloween cake pops because I got inspired with all the cool fun images online. Cake pops have always been difficult to make for me in the sense that it's hard for me to control their outcome. So I figured it's always good to practice!! These are ginger pumpkin cake pops (usually I'd go with a plain flavor cake but I wanted to try out a new recipe). The monster eyes and ears, Frankenstien's hair, bolts, and eyebrows, the witch's hat and hair, and the pumpkin stump are made of fondant. The spider body is an m&m's and the legs are chocolate sprinkles. I find it easier to use black food coloring and paint on the designs instead of using an edible marker because the waxy texture of the chocolate seems to not allow the marker to write on smoothly. These cake pops were a lot of fun to make and they sure are spookily tasty! I hope everyone has a safe and Happy Halloween!

Halloween Humor:
- What do skeletons always order at a restaurant? Spare ribs!
- What do skeletons say before they begin dining? Bone appetite!
- What did the vampire say to the Invisible Man? 'Long time, no see!'
- Why is Dracula so unpopular? Because he's a pain in the neck!
- What do the birds sing on Halloween? Twick or tweet.
- What do you call a witch at the beach? A sandwich.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Happy 28th Birthday Bi-Ying!

Happy 28th Birthday Bi-Ying!!! One of the awesome things about my friend Bi-Ying is that she's into super nerdy board games just like me! Part of her birthday celebration this year must insist of these nerdy board games, one of which is Settlers of Catan! I just got a new edible ink printer for this special occasion, because I wanted to make the decorations just perfect for her! I found out that you can print on wafer paper, which is much cheaper than frosting sheets, but you have to handle them with care because sometimes they can crack and curl up when they are dry. What I would to be useful is that instead of using water or corn syrup to adhere the wafer paper onto the fondant or frosting on the cake, I just stick the wafer paper directly onto my fondant directly using nothing but the natural moistness of the fondant. When you work the fondant into the shape you want or roll it flat, it's still a little moist, so that's what I use, so you have to act quick. It's really easy and it doesn't give the wafer paper a chance to curl or crack! The other game pieces (the robber, settlement, city, roads, and die are made of fondant.)

These cupcakes are tres leches (3 milk - condensed milk, evaporated milk, and coconut milk instead of heavy cream) cupcakes with whipped cream on top. She's never had tres leches before so I made these just for her! This is Bi-Ying's first birthday in California in several years, so I wanted to make sure this is a special one that she can always remember! Happy birthday Bi-Ying, I wish you many many many more years of joy and happiness and I hope all your wishes come true!!!!

It's been awhile since I had some fun humor at the end of my posts and I know how much Bi-Ying loved my corny jokes, or so I think she did, so here they are!!
- What do you give 900-pound gorilla for his birthday? I don't know but you better hope he likes it!
- Why do we put candles on top of a birthday cake? Because it's too hard to put them on the bottom!
- Does a pink candle burn longer than a blue one? No they both burn shorter!
- Where do you find a birthday present for a cat? In a cat-alogue!
- What does a clam do on his birthday? He shell-abrates!
- The secret of staying young is to live honestly, eat slowly, and lie about your age! - Lucille Ball

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Congrats Mr. & Mrs. Wada!

Congratulations to my colleagues, from UCLA, Jennifer Huynh and Christopher Wada on their upcoming wedding in two days (October 13, 2012).  I was so excited when Jenn emailed me asking me to surprise Chris with these Mario Bros cupcakes!  Jenn gave me an image of these designs, so I recreated them for her!  These are French Vanilla cupcakes with basic buttercream frosting!  All the decorations are made out of fondant.  I wish you two all the love and happiness in the world.  I'm so glad you guys are going to be starting this new chapter in your life together!  Congratulations!!

Friday, September 14, 2012

Daddy's 60th Birthday!

My dad is having his milestone 60th birthday next week on September 18, and we are having an early birthday dinner for him!  Since he doesn't like sweets much, I decided to make a carrot cake that had all the fixing, raising, crushed pineapples, chopped walnuts, and coconut flakes!  Plus, he had my carrot cake before and loved it!  He is a water dragon, the same exact dragon that my baby Lily is, and this only happens every 60 years!  So this birthday is a double whammy special one for my dad because not only is he turning sixty, but he is also a new grandpa!

I look up to my dad in so many ways, and not just because he's taller than me (hehe).  He is an amazing father, and a wonderful grandfather!  He always puts everyone else front of himself, and he'll sacrifice anything for the happiness of his loved ones.  He works so hard (2 jobs) to support our family) and he never complains about it!  He inspires me to be a great person, help others, work hard, and to appreciate life.  He is the most selfless person I know, and he is the best dad anyone can ask for.  My dad really is the best!  He has a great silly sense of humor, he always has a smile on his face, and he just exudes joy and happiness.  Anyone who's met him or has been around him loves him, and would tell you the same thing.  I love you daddy, happy 60th birthday!!!  He's a picture of my dad with my daughter, his granddaughter (big dragon and little dragon, double dragon!).

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Alvina's Bridal Shower

My best friend, Alvina, is getting married in September and I get the special honor of being Matron of Honor!  I hosted her bridal shower today and one of the things I made for her shower are her favorite Red Velvet cupcakes with Whipped-Cream Cream Cheese filling and buttercream frosting.  The decorations are all wedding related (the ring, "I Do", garter, and wedding dress) and then some Gerber daisies since she loves bright colors and happy flowers!  All the decorations are made out of fondant, and the ring has metallic pearls on top.  The Gerber daisies have some gold luster dust for some fancy pizazz.

The shower was tons of fun and it was simply wonderful to see the joy on Alvina's face!  I had a lot of fun making these sweet treats just for her, and I am glad I was able to give her a party that she will always remember!  She truly deserves to be so happy and I'm glad all her gal pals got to get together to shower her with our love!  Stay tuned in September to see part of my wedding gift to her, the Coastal theme cupcakes, cake and cupcake tower!