Thursday, March 15, 2012

Rainbows or unicorns?

Remember how I mentioned that Stephanie Sparkles of Bliss Cakes, winner of the first all-vegan episode of "Cupcake Wars," might do a Q&A on my blog? Well, she did find the time to answer my questions (she's a popular lady at the moment; looks like Maria Shriver got to her first), so I'll share them with you today.

First of all, I want to point out that all of the photos in today's post were lovingly borrowed (yes, I know "borrow" tends to mean that I plan on returning them, but my word choice was influenced by the book Jacob is reading, "The Borrowers") from Stephanie's site, as I wanted to share her beautiful works of cupcake art with you. I especially like the photo I snagged for the top of this post. Figs are my favorite!

But, enough about me. Let's find out a little more about her :-)

Q: Have you always loved cupcakes? How and why did you start your cupcake business?

A: "Yes! I've always loved cupcakes. They bring smiles & celebrations!"

Q: Where did you learn to bake? Did you go to culinary school or are you a "natural" when it comes to baking?

A: "I'm self taught. I spread loved through cupcakes, making them for friends and family. I love to explore and experiment with new flavor combinations. I'm a connoisseur of sweets and love cute, delectable desserts."

Q: What inspires your cupcake flavors and which one is your favorite?

A: "I love nature, our planet Earth. I use fresh ingredients that are all natural, nothing artificial. I use fresh fruits, herbs, veggies, flowers, superfoods; ingredients that are in season. All my bliss cakes are so exotic. My top favorites are the matcha raspberry green tea, tangerine dream, wild jungle peanut butter, acai jungleberry bliss and mayan chocolate spice."

Q: With a name like Stephanie Sparkles, I assume your cupcakes are baked with love and positive vibes. Do you have anything special you do while baking to keep it fun, like listening to music and dancing in your kitchen?

A: "Yes, my cupcakes are made with love! He he, I'm pretty zen in the kitchen and focuses. I do listen to music, all different types. I love funk music, raggae, world music, downtempo electronic, as well as jazz."

Q: Tell us about your experience on the first all-vegan episode of "Cupcake Wars" (congrats again on winning, BTW). Are there any secrets you can reveal? I've always wondered in any of the drama is ever staged or if it's that intense.

A: "All of it is real! I am shy and not used to being filmed, so that was the biggest challenge. I was confident my cupcakes were going to woo the judges with all their fresh exotic ingredients."

Q: What can we expect in the future from you? Cupcakes available coast to coast?

A: "I have a recipe e-book you can purchase on my website. It has 15 of my favorite superfood vegan recipes with sparklets of how they nourish your body. I'm also finishing my fabulous apron line. I'm working on my product line to be sold in grocery stores. Right now, I'm not shipping cupcakes. Maybe in the near future, I will make cupcakes to ship or cupcakes in a jar to ship. Mine are so delicate to ship."

Q: Oh, if you had to pick just one, rainbows or unicorns? It's a hard decision, I know. My daughter Hayden couldn't decide either :-)

A: "Impossible decision. Luckily I do not have to choose; they go together ;*)


Thanks so much Stephanie for taking the time to answer my questions and for spreading the cupcake love. Baked or unbaked, you have some amazing cupcake flavors and designs.

I've really enjoyed both baking the cupcakes (yes, I sometimes bake in my oven, and no, the cupcakes in this picture are not mine; they're Stephanie's) from her e-book and putting my own Rawdorable spin on them. I highly recommend this book to those who bake and those who unbake (the flavor combinations and photos are great inspiration, too). She even tells you how to make the baked versions gluten-free. There certainly is something for everyone.

I know my little lady is happy that I purchased this e-book, as she loves all things cupcakes, much like her mommy. Here she is with some flowers from Trader Joe's that were labeled "Cupcake." Does anyone know if that is actually the name of these flowers. If so, I'm going back to get some :-)