Pimp your party treats – no fuss ideas to elevate your party table. That’s exactly what I needed recently.
It was my Birthday a few weeks ago and each year my Mum and I like to create something a bit special for the cake. This year to give us a break, we decided to ask a bakery to make it. Initially I felt a little disappointed because for me the making and decorating is a way to flex those creative muscles and put a bit of your personality on display. Then I thought, well if the big-ticket item is already taken care of I can concentrate on all the other supporting stars that make the birthday memorable – a bit of a challenge to see if the rest of the party treats could stand up to the megastar of a cake we ordered.
I didn’t want to kill myself prepping and baking for days as that would kinda defeat the objective. I wanted to find treats that would be simple to make, dabbling in a bit of creative tinkering as opposed to baking, and achieving something that was playful and vibrant and completely over the top when it all came together. If theatricality can’t have a place on your birthday table, when can it?
My plan, use the colours and design of the cake as a guide and then create a cornucopia of colour to go alongside. To save time I raided the supermarket for any type of sugary treats (yes, eaten all together I’m sure would have induced some kind of sugar coma), and then planned to elevate them and make them look even more irresistible.
There aren’t really recipes here as such, instead principles and techniques to follow. The first of which is; if it isn’t already coated in chocolate, get melting.
Pimp your party treats. Putting together a party platter. Multicoloured chocolate coated biscuits
I used both regular and blonde oreos and pink wafers for this. Felt they’d be excellent dunkers.
After melting white chocolate in the microwave, I divided it into bowls and added a different food colouring to each, rippling it throughout, to create a marbled effect. Then I dipped each biscuit into the chocolate and after placing on parchment decorated with all sorts of sprinkles. Sometimes more is just more and that’s a wonderful thing.
To save time, I did this the night before but if I did it again I’d make this a few hours before the party and serve. The chocolate can make the biscuits lose their crunch, but not their style.
Tips on tempering
I do have a sugar thermometer and I have seen TV chefs temper chocolate but with all the best intentions I’m just a bit lazy and overly excited to get to the decorating to follow the rules, although I’m sure when you get the hang of them are okay. Instead, I used an easy method which worked for me.
I put about ¾ of the chocolate in the microwave for 30 sec bursts, until the it was just melted, then added the remainder of the chocolate and stirred through. From what I understand you don’t want to the chocolate to get too hot, so melting in this way helps achieve that and avoids a grey-ish dull look you can get with chocolate that hasn’t been tempered.
Similarly, to the biscuits, I melted white chocolate, rippled different colours together, added sprinkles and came up with these beauties.
Unlike the biscuits you can do this a day or so in advance as the chocolate doesn’t affect the texture of the marshmallow, already squishy to begin with. One thing I would do next time though is invest in a Styrofoam block or something similar so I could add the marshmallows to the sticks straight away and leave to dry when coated in chocolate, as opposed to adding the sticks afterwards, which cracks the chocolate slightly. Saying that it wasn’t the end of the world and they turned out brilliantly, so not a deal breaker if you don’t have it.
Pimp your party table. A touch of healthy, edible bling. Fruit kebabs
After a gander on Pinterest for inspiration I found all sorts of beautiful fruit kebab displays and as, in my experience, you really have to sell fruit for it to be a contender against mighty sugar at a party, I thought these would be perfect. I loved how playful they are and they did make me go back for more. Success.
Pimp your party treats. Adorning your table
With the goodies sorted it became all about the setting. I’ve started saving old jam jars recently and used some as vases, dotting flowers all around and others became happy houses for all your favourite sweeties. I found some fab looking coloured confetti online too and generously dusted the table with them, which just made everything come together and say ‘yes, this is most definitely a party table, get ready to indulge.’
(Just be sure to keep your flower jars separate from your food jars, for future use).
I hope this has sparked some ideas for how to prepare playful creations that are low effort and high impact and most importantly treats that bring a smile to your face. I should add, we don’t have any little ones in the family yet, but this was the stuff of dreams for the young at heart as well, especially those with the sweetest of a sweet tooth.
On the look out for simple DIY decoration ideas? Cute DIY projects has some great ideas.