Monday, March 28, 2011

Iron Cupcake Breakfast Challenge Results!

It was a tough challenge tonight! With so many fantastic flavors and creative combinations FingerSweets entry, Almond Fruit Crumb, had a lot to stand up to. Unfortunately, they didn’t place this month but that doesn’t stop the designing and creating of new flavors and participating with these developments.

Thanks to all my taste testers these Almond Fruit Crumb minis will still be making their way to the FingerSweets menu.

Next SF Iron Cupcake Challenge is Citrus.  
Think unique. Think innovative. Think out of the box.
What do you suggest as the next challenge flavor combination for FingerSweets? 

Saturday, March 26, 2011

At the Onset!

July 2010, a good friend of mine asked me to bake cupcakes for her birthday celebration.  They were a hit! To my surprise people thought they could sell.  I never gave this any thought and especially since I am set on continuing my career in landscape architecture.  Though in the meantime, I was eager to keep furthering my creativity and needed to find a way to have unbiased people critique my developments.    

Birthday Celebration Cupcakes
Thus, I found the Iron Cucpake San Francisco Challenge.  This is a meet up group of local bakers, friends and cupcake enthusiasts who join to face off each month.  Every month a new challenge ingredient or theme is presented and all cupcake engineers devise their interpretation of the ingredient into 48 mini cupcakes.  Both bakers and engineer supporters join in on the judging with awards to 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place based on taste and appearance, one prize for most creative, and one prize for baker’s choice. I grew to develop a variety of mini cupcakes based on the size, quantity and challenge criteria from Iron Cupcake.  It’s their challenges that offer me inspiration to research and test new flavors. 

Now specializing in mini cupcakes, I participate in the challenges on a monthly basis and low and behold I have actually won a few!  Here’s a list of my winning flavors to date:

February 2011 Filled Challenge
1st Place Winner: Mallow Chocolate Graham
December 2010 Bake Off
4th Place Winner: Bergamot Orange Spice
November 2010 Nuts Challenge
3rd Place Winner: Saffron Lemon Pistachio
September 2010 Tea Challenge
1st Place Winner: Bergamot Orange Spice
August 2010 Coconut Challenge
3rd Place Winner: Coconut Rum

Not every flavor has won an Iron Cupcake challenge but many have won high marks amongst my group of taste testers.  The Iron Cupcake and feedback from my taste testers has given me the motivation and inspiration to continue producing these mini delights to everyone I can.  Stay tuned for what happens at the March Breakfast Challenge this Monday!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

A Foundation to Draw From!

My mom, a culinary specialist in the 80s/90s, began Susan’s Culinary Specialties, a catering business and eventually a little storefront known to the family as ‘The Shop’. As a self-taught baker she created these amazing desserts.  One in particular were her FingerSweet baskets; a variety of ‘cookies’ known as FingerSweets, placed in a baking cup (much like a mini cupcake), and assembled into small to large wicker baskets.  A true hit for private parties!

Fingersweets was inspired from childhood memories, bringing my current design skills, creativity, and innovation to these mini delights.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Welcome to FingerSweets!

I am a landscape architect seeking full time employment in San Francisco BUT in the meantime and in between contract work and furthering my landscape career, I bake!

Gourmet Mini Cupcakes

A parallel to my design career, instant gratification, and happiness shared amongst family, friends, and now you. I have started this blog as a way to share these mini delights with the public and spread the word about FingerSweets.