Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Easy Tips for Planning a Retirement Party from the Bakery that Knows Best!

You can never have enough ideas for retirement party ideas. A person spends so much of their life working hard for the prize, so it's a worthy time to celebrate and we at Ontario Bakery you want to make sure it's good! 
We are excited to plan with you and are happy to share our easy tips on how to plan the perfect retirement party. 
The first thing you want to do is start with early preparation. Look for ideas everywhere. Talk about your ideas with people who have done retirement parties or have already gone through retirement. They may have insight about what they wish they would have done differently!
Next you want to think about who will attend. Will there be co-workers? Will there be children or extended family? Make sure that everyone who should be there is there. And be careful about things like gag gifts if younger people will be there. 
It's important to also consider the day and location as important keys because it will be a part of determining or limiting party decorations. Parties on a Friday or Saturday night can be quite different than on a week night. Check your calendar for conflicting sports events, holidays and other commitments.
Gifts can be anything from useful to silly or memorable, such as golf clubs, gardening tools, gag gifts or even a group photo or framed letter of appreciation. 
Decide ahead of time, if you'll want to have anyone deliver a speech and decide when in the party you'd like that to happen. Speeches tend to be a good thing to have happen before the cake and drinking really begins.
Speaking of cake, be sure to plan ahead for food and drinks. Check your crowd and age variations to determine whether or not there will be alcohol involved. You could also offer adult drinks after 9pm as an option. For food, keep it simple and party friendly. Finger foods, cookies, fresh fruits and vegetables, cupcakes and giant cake made custom from Ontario Bakery is always great!
From Ontario Bakery to you, we do hope your retirement party is a fun and memorable one. We hope to be apart of it in any way we can! 

Monday, April 6, 2015

All You Need to Plan a Fun Pirate Birthday Party!


Want to have a lot of fun? Here's All You Need to Plan a Fun Pirate Birthday Party!Who doesn't love a pirate themed Birthday Party? At Ontario Bakery, we make a lot of pirate themed cakes, so we know it's hit!  
That got us to thinking, that's we'd love to share some of our favorite pirate themed birthday party fun with you. 

So here, you go. Here's all you need to plan a fun pirate birthday party!


Invitations 

Have fun making your own invitations using a fun font, like Old English and print it out on parchment paper or brown card stock, to get a light and antique feel. Tear each invite into squares for rough edges. You can even roll or crumble it up to give it a really authentic look.  Place them into envelopes with a red stamp or seal on the back. Kids will love opening these up!

Decorate

Make white flags with white skull and cross bones using white fabric and black electrical tape. Place at the entrance and around the backyard.

Make clusters of black and red balloons to add to the pirate feel.

Use black fabric cotton as a tablecloth and sprinkle with gold chocolate coins.

Create a treasure table center piece. Spray paint a small chest, and other treasure items like goblets and vases. 
Place decorative items, gold chocolate coins and costume jewelry in and around the chest.

Drape fishing nets in the main party area and swirls of blue fabric to represent the sea. 
Place starfish, crabs and fish in net -marine bath toys are ideal. Wine barrels, chests and a skeleton would also add to the ambience.

Games!

Walk the plank: Set up a plank or balancing beam for the pirates to walk along. Use pillows or gym mats to break the fall. Award prizes for the pirates who make it across.

Black beard: Choose some brave pirates, who are then blindfolded, and told that a famous pirate is coming to visit. The blindfolded pirates feel the stump of a leg (an adults knee), a whiskery beard (a broom) and then the missing eye (an open tomato). This game is not recommended for guests who are easily scared but it is a whole lot of fun for pirates who like adventure.

Pin the patch on the pirate: Create a pirate face or use a “Pirates of the Caribbean” poster to pin on the missing patch.

Message in a bottle treasure hunt: Create two teams and give them a plastic bottle with a scrolled treasure map inside. Each team follows the clues and map to find the treasure.

Face & body decorating: Apply beards and adhesive tattoos! Or get out the face paints and "tattoo" skulls, parrots and boats on their arms!

Food & Treats
Isn't the food the best part? It's definitely our favorite! 
Call us and we'll make a pirate face birthday cake or pirate ship cake just for you!

Watermelon basket - Cut a watermelon in half and scoop out small balls of watermelon using a fruit scoop. Place watermelon balls into the basket and serve.

"Fish and chips" (or fries!).

Serve up some fruit punch served in plastic wine goblets!

As you can see, there are so many fun ideas to be had! We hope your pirate party is an absolute blast! Don't forget to call Ontario Bakery for all your custom pirate cake needs! 




Monday, March 30, 2015

How to Make the Perfect Salted Caramel Sauce at Home:

How to Make the Perfect Salted Caramel Sauce at Home:
Wouldn't you love to always have the perfect caramel sauce on hand at home? Many people avoid making their own, because they're intimidated. At Ontario Bakery, we know our sweets and this is one we really enjoy and believe you should too! The truth is, it's really not that hard.  Not having the sugar become a grainy mess is your second biggest-challenge when making caramel. The first is getting it to just the right color; no more, no less. Perfect caramel should be cooked until it’s dark, reddish-brown. Thankfully, the Brown Eyed Baker had a great recipe to pass on to you and we've got it right here! 
How to Make the Perfect Salted Caramel Sauce at Home:
Caramel can be intimidating, but the more you make it, the more you will get a feel for the look and the smell, and it will become second-nature. For those just starting out, here are a few tips:
  • Stir the sugar initially to help it to melt evenly, but stop once it has completely melted to keep it from seizing.
  • If you’re new to caramel-making, you may find a thermometer will help to guide you. The caramel should reach 350 degrees F on an instant-read or candy thermometer. If you aren’t able to obtain a thermometer, you can use visual cues for doneness. The caramel should be a deep amber color and should have just started to smoke. The line is very fine here. If you don’t cook it long enough it will be too sweet with little depth of flavor, but cook it too long and it will be burnt and unusable. Once you’ve done it a few times and see the color and can experience the smell when the thermometer hits 350 degrees, you will have a better idea of how to eyeball it when you don’t have a thermometer.
  • Be sure to use a saucepan that is larger than you think you might need. When you add the butter and the cream, the caramel will bubble up violently.
It's that simple!  Once your caramel has reached it's peak flavor and consistency, generously pour into a mason jar or similar container. 

Now, you have a fantastic homemade caramel sauce that you can dip apples into, drizzle over brownies or even flavor your coffee with! 

How to Make the Perfect Salted Caramel Sauce at Home:At Ontario Bakery, we love caramel and get excited over the opportunities to use it. But we get excited about everything we make! Our cake and buttercream recipes are the original scratch recipes since the beginning. A cake from Ontario Bakery says it all to the customer: quality, uniqueness, and a true desire for a good tasting cake to serve your guests. 

Our creative staff can bake the perfect Cake for your Birthday, anniversary, bachelor/bachelorette party, corporate event, etc. No celebration is complete without a delicious cake from Ontario Bakery! 
Our goal is to provide the highest quality cakes and baked goods with personalized service to every customer on every visit. Our moist cake with filling of your choice has created delicious memories for generations. Don't take our word for it. We offer our customers a free sample from our large selection of cakes and fillings. Just give us a call and set up an appointment with one of our cake consultants, no obligations.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Mouth Watering, Quick Tips for Better Brownies to Ease Any Chocolate Craving

Mouth Watering, Quick Tips for Better Brownies to Ease Any Chocolate CravingI love brownies. The way they melt in your mouth and spread pure joy throughout your body is incredible.

Chocolate has been long since loved and adored and for good reason too! It's symbolic for love, celebration and has even been known for health benefits when eaten in more pure form. 

Of course, at Ontario Bakery, we are 100% behind the goodness of chocolate and love to share it whenever we can; whether that be wedding cakes, pies, cake pops or cookies. We LOVE chocolate.

We believe you deserve to have chocolate whenever you want; especially brownies. 

For those craving days, here are some quick tips for better brownies, from Michelle Bobora at sheknows.com.

Baking tips for better brownies

Brownie making is certainly not rocket science, but knowing the pastry chef's secrets for extraordinary chocolate-dense bars will ensure your brownie eating experience is well beyond bliss. Here are Goldman's baking tips for the best brownies.

1. Choose quality chocolate

Goldman suggests high-quality semisweet or bittersweet chocolate and cocoa. Her favorites are Scharrfen Berger chocolate and cocoa as well as Saco Chunks and Saco Premium. "I also have tested and like Ghirardelli, Droste, and Callebut chocolates," she adds.

2. Sift the cocoa

To avoid lumps of cocoa powder in the midst of a finished brownie, scoop cocoa with a metal measuring spoon or cup, then sift or whisk gently with the flour.

3. Pick the right brownie pan

Pan size and shape are important in any recipe, says Goldman, but especially with brownies because the depth of the batter affects taste and texture. Shallow pans make chewy brownies while deeper pans make denser, cake-like bars. She recommends a 7x11-inch brownie pan made of aluminum, nonstick aluminum, or tin pans.

4. Spread with a spatula

Small metal spatulas are an essential utensil for spreading brownie batter and icing. Goldman suggests dipping spatulas in hot water before using to keep brownie batter from sticking.

5. Prevent over browning

Though you may enjoy the crusty corners or edges of just overdone brownies, having a pan full of hardened, dry bars is the ruin of an afternoon set aside for baking. Place brownie pans on baking sheets lined with parchment paper; this will keep the bottoms of the brownies from scorching before the tops are set.

6. Get to know your recipe

The key to perfectly baked brownies may be practice, practice, practice. Goldman says, "It is hard to ascertain when brownies are done, so it is generally better to go by baking times in recipes…or experience with the same recipe and your own oven to reach perfection." Remember that brownies tend to firm up as they cool so, if you must err, do so on the underdone side. "[They] can be chilled for dense, fudgy squares that are equally as good," Goldman adds. (for the how-to, click here!)

Part of the beauty of chocolate gratification is how fast the craving can be satisfied. What if you could order the most amazing chocolate treats to find your mouth? What if you could customize that order to your visual and sensorial needs!

Well, you can, with Ontario Bakery. We know that while baking is fun - it's often best to leave it to the experts. We ARE those experts. Foresee that craving, the need for a celebration piece, or simply for the fun of it all and call us today to place your own, customized delicious order. 

Thursday, March 19, 2015

The Surprising Health Benefits of Cinnamon You Definitely Want to Know About

The Surprising Health Benefits of Cinnamon You Definitely Want to Know AboutCinnamon is a highly delicious spice. It has been prized for its medicinal properties for thousands of years. Modern science has now confirmed what people have instinctively known for ages.
Cinnamon is quite the medicinal gift. 
It has been used as an ingredient throughout history, dating back as far as Ancient Egypt. It used to be rare and valuable, and was regarded as a gift fit for kings.
Cinnamon is loaded with anti-oxidants!
Antioxidants protect the body from oxidative damage caused by free radicals. In a study that compared the antioxidant activity of 26 spices, cinnamon wound up as the clear winner, even outranking “superfoods” like garlic and oregano.
In fact, cinnamon is so powerful that it can be used as a natural food preservative as well. (and we LOVE cinnamon in our food!... Snickerdoodles anyone?) 
Cinnamon also helps regulate insulin levels! That's great news for people with diabetic struggles!  Cinnamon can also dramatically reduce insulin resistance, helping this incredibly important hormone to do its job. 
Ready to sink your teeth into some delicious cinnamon treats? ... We thought you would be.
To take advantage of cinnamon’s potential benefits, incorporate it into more meals. One of the things I love about this spice is how versatile it is. I use it in both sweet and savory dishes, and I feel like I’m always finding new ways to add it to meals, snacks, and beverages. Here are 10 easy ideas:
  • Sprinkle cinnamon into your coffee, or add it to your coffee grounds before brewing.
  • Add a dash or two of cinnamon to hot oatmeal, overnight oats, or cold whole grain cereal.
  • Fold cinnamon into yogurt, along with cooked, chilled quinoa, fresh cut fruit, and nuts or seeds.
  • Freeze cinnamon in ice cubes to add zest and aroma to water or cocktails.
  • Season roasted or grilled fruit with a sprinkle of cinnamon.
  • Stir cinnamon into almond butter, or any nut or seed butter, and use as a dip for fresh apple or pear wedges or a filling for celery.
  • Add a pinch of cinnamon to lentil or black bean soup, or vegetarian chili.
  • Season roasted cauliflower, sweet potatoes, spaghetti, and butternut squash with a pinch of cinnamon.
  • Sprinkle a little cinnamon onto popped popcorn.
  • Stir a little cinnamon into melted dark chocolate and drizzle over whole nuts to make spicy ‘bark’ or use as a dip or coating for fresh fruit.
Really, your options are endless. Cinnamon has been used for thousands of years to heal the body and enhance tastes.  At Ontario Bakery, we love being apart of lasting memories in your families and would love to be a part of more.  Please let us know what we can do to make the last of your 2014 have a sweet end!  Call us today for your custom baked cakes and more!

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Make the Best of Strawberry Season With These Unique and Delicious New Recipe Ideas!

Make the Best of Strawberry Season With These Unique and Delicious New Recipe Ideas!Strawberries are coming soon, but do you know what to do with them? Sure, they're delicious the way they are, but how would you like to have a few more creative ways to enjoy them? 

At Ontario Bakery, we love to use strawberries in our icings, cakes and pies, custom made just for you! But we know you love those last minute indulgences and these ideas will leave you wanting more! 

As strawberries begin to make their way into the year, get creative and enjoy them with these delicious creative ideas!

with chocolate
Get out those delicious berries and dip them in some slightly softened chocolate ice cream! If you'd like to avoid the mess, just scoop some into a bowl, add the strawberries and some chopped nuts to the mix.  That's an easy pleaser!

drizzled fresh
Slice those red beauties along with thin slices of cucumbers, drizzled with honey and garnished with chopped mint.  Place in the freezer for a gentle freeze and take out after about 30 min. You'll have a wonderfully refreshing desert that's healthy too!

spread over
Keep it simple.  Spread nutella on the strawberries and pop them into your mouth. Or, go a little further and place both the berries and nutella on a slice of toast!  Great mid-day pick me up!

whipped and stirred
This is one of my favorites and a spin off of strawberry shortcake. Place some bananas in the freezer for about 20 minutes; just enough to chill them.  Chop some strawberry chunks and add to the bananas- wither whole or sliced.  Last, add whipped cream and indulge!! SO delicious!

hot on top
Why not start your day with strawberries too? Just make some quick oats, rice farina or whatever grain based porridge you prefer.  Chop cashews, hazelnuts and strawberries, drizzle some maple syrup and stir.  Enjoy a tasty start to your day! 

smooth and sweet

Smoothies are all the rage these days and for good reasons!  Grab some frozen bananas and throw in those delicious strawberries for a simple smoothie. For more health benefits, add kale, spinach, and even raw honey for sweetening! 


Ontario Bakery is the place to find exciting treats and delicious cakes for all occasions. We love to celebrate with you and look forward to making your special day even sweeter.

Enjoy your strawberries!! 

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Impress Your Friends this Weekend with These Fun Facts About St. Patrick's Day!

Impress Your Friends  this Weekend with These Fun Facts About St. Patrick's Day!Whatever your plans are this weekend, from games and treats to parties - be the one will
the fun and unusual facts! You'll wow them with your spontaneous intelligence and bring more fun to an already exciting holiday! 

Whether you celebrate because you're Irish, Catholic, love green or just love a reason to have fun, make it all that it can be! Play games and treat yourself to delicious green and holiday friendly deserts! At Ontario Bakery, we love any reason to celebrate because that's what we do best!

*Ready? Impress Your Friends this Weekend with These Fun Facts About St. Patrick's Day!

    Impress Your Friends  this Weekend with These Fun Facts About St. Patrick's Day!
  • St. Patrick’s Day is observed on March 17 because that is the feast day of St. Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland. It is believed that he died on March 17 in the year 461 AD. It is also a worldwide celebration of Irish culture and history. St. Patrick’s Day is a national holiday in Ireland, and a provincial holiday in the Canadian province of Newfoundland and Labrador.
  • The actual color of St. Patrick is blue. Green became associated with St. Patrick's Day during the 19th century. Green, in Irish legends, was worn by fairies and immortals, and also by people to encourage their crops to grow.
  • St. Patrick did not actually drive snakes out of Ireland; the snakes represent the pagans that he converted to Christianity.
  • The very first St. Patrick's Day parade was not in Ireland. It was in Boston in 1737.
  • In Chicago, on St. Patrick's Day, the rivers are dyed green. Mayor Daley is also of Irish descent.
  • In Seattle, there is a ceremony where a green stripe is painted down the roads.
  • Most Catholics attend mass in the morning and then attend the St. Patrick's Day parade.
  • Shamrocks are worn on the lapel on this day.
  • In Ireland on St. Patrick’s Day, people traditionally wear a small bunch of shamrocks on their jackets or caps. Children wear orange, white and green badges, and women and girls wear green ribbons in their hair
  • Many young people dye their hair green for the special day.
  • Many people wear green on this holiday to avoid being pinched.
  • The phrase, "Drowning The Shamrock" is from the custom of floating the shamrock on the top of whiskey before drinking it. The Irish believe that if you keep the custom, then you will have a prosperous year.
  • Many bars in the United States, and abroad, serve green beer to celebrate St. Patty's Day.
  • Lucky Charms, a favorite cereal brand among many, young and old, was created in 1963, with its popular mascot, Lucky the Leprechaun. Its jig is a memorable tune for many, including the young at heart:           * (source)
Hearts, Stars, and Horseshoes
Clovers and Blue moons
Pots of gold and rainbows,
And the red balloon
That’s the luck of me lucky charms! 
Their magically delicious!

There you have it! No matter your reason for celebrating, St. Patrick's Day is one to enjoy and experience. Let Ontario Bakery be part of your fun with custom made cookies, cupcakes, cakepops and more!