One Bubbly Birthday

Hi friends!

It’s been a minute. This is largely due to one of the most debilitating colds/infections/sicknesses I’ve dealt with in a while. While my (imaginary) school of medicine believes that cupcakes and sparkling wine cure everything, my “real” doctor squad (the one I pay co-pays to, the pre-med sister, and the ass-kicking intern best friend) kind of aligned that fluids, rest, and meds were a better route.

Squarely in the middle of this cold season fell my 28th birthday! It was hands down the best birthday I’ve ever had. I say this most years, and I think that’s by design. That my friendships, my work achievements, my hobbies, and my adventures keep getting cooler and cooler is, well–COOL!

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The weekend prior, some of my beautiful lady friends treated me to a delicious supper at ClarkLewis. The week of, I kicked things off by cheering on my Blazers from killer seats. I treated my actual birthday as my floating holiday at work (National Jenna Appreciation Day) and headed to Lincoln City on the Oregon Coast. Historically, I’ve been fairly opposed to gambling, but I guess new, 28-year-old me is a fan–and a big-time winner! I returned home on Sunday relaxed, rejuvenated, and ready to enjoy a steak the size of my head at St. Jack. Bisous, bisous, bisous to everyone who made the celebrations so special.

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I figured it was in everyone’s best interests if I didn’t bake cupcakes while under the weather–but that didn’t stop a certain special someone from gifting me a truly top-notch bubbles gift.

YAY for Dom! This bottle joins another in my collection that will only be consumed when there’s a diamond ring on my finger, when I check off 100% of my professional goals (probably never going to happen), or–heck–when bubbles + sprinkles opens its first brick and mortar store. Hey, you read it here first!

Dom on its own is a sleek and sassy class act. But vintages like this one and my 2004 Limited Edition Gift Box by Jeff Koons are just next level. The box features designs by iconic artists, this one specifically–Michael Riedel. The bottle features a taste profile of licorice (not normally my jam, but they make it WORK), hay, tangerines, and peaches. It invokes some serious summer vibes, which automatically puts me in an amazing mood. (NOTE–even though I’m not opening this special bottle, I have tried this vintage at a recent shindig. Hence, I can speak to yumminess specifics.)

Closing the chapter on year 27, I have but one wish–a speedy recovery to 100% so that I can share “Then and Now: Funfetti Cupcakes.” Stay tuned…

Hope everyone has a wonderful week!

Xo,
Jenna

Happy Valentine’s Day!

I’m a fan of all Hallmark-inspired holidays. They never shy away from the two things that this site focuses on.

But I’m a particularly huge fan of Valentine’s Day. One could even call it the patron holiday of bubs and sprinks. A day when I can rock my pink and red and white. A day when I can justify a perma-sugar coma. A day when everyone should share the love as much as they possibly can!

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In honor of our [brand] new patron holiday, we’re rebooting an old favorite, with a brand new audience. I was hosted by Afternoon Live this week, and I doctored up a batch of Spicy Red Velvet. This was actually the very first recipe I ever made for bubbles+sprinkles. I would like to think today’s turned out a heck of a lot better than 2013’s 🙂 As always, huge thanks to Tre and the show for having me. It was a total blast. You can check out the video and recipe, here. 

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Looking for help with your future sugary treat needs? Feel free to reach out to hello@bubblesandsprinkles.com or take advantage of the form at the top of the page. Remember that all orders this month will benefit Planned Parenthood. I would like to continue contributing profits from this site to charities who could really use it. Have an idea for a group that would really appreciate it? Let me know!

Hope that everyone has a wonderful Valentine’s Day!

Xo,
Jenna

Hazelnut Cupcakes + a Limited Offer

The primary goal of bubbles+sprinkles is to become a master of two rather happy and sparkly things- cupcakes and sparkling wine. But the secondary goal of a hobby that may seem frivolous, is to bring smiles to all that it impacts.

This was a tough, but very important weekend. I am so incredibly proud of any who marched anywhere and stood up for what they believe in. I am very proud to be from a city and state that champion individuality as much as they do. (I mean- our slogan is “Keep Portland Weird”!) This week’s cupcake is for Oregon.

Did you know that the hazelnut is our state nut? We also have a state berry, who will be making her appearance when she’s properly in season beginning this summer. Though I’m not a huge nut fan, this cupcake has pizzazz, and an excellent texture. I chose to bring back Nutella (always a favorite) and integrate to both the cupcake and frosting.

You’ll find the recipe below. And I want to share a limited offer. For the first, er- I mean next 30 days, place any bubbles+sprinkles order, and all proceeds will go to Planned Parenthood. This is not a political stand, but an opportunity to contribute to a resource that many depend on.

Recipe (makes 12):

Cake:

  • 2 cups white flour
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 cup melted butter
  • 1/2 cup hazelnuts (chopped)
  • 1 cup Nutella
  • 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream

Frosting:

  • 16 oz confectioners sugar
  • 1 cup Nutella
  • 1/2 cup hazelnut coffee creamer

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Pre-heat oven to 350 and line cupcake tin. Combine cake ingredients and fold in hazelnuts. Fill cupcake liners and bake for 15 minutes. While cupcakes bake and then cool, mix frosting ingredients. Garnish with additional hazelnuts and enjoy!

Hope that you all have a wonderful week!

Xo,
Jenna

Checking Out HelpWith

It has been a couple of eventful weeks! I can’t say the most entirely positive things about all of this snow. It served as the catalyst for a fender bender, ensured no safe passage to work for multiple days, and generally exhausted any rose-colored glasses that I had previously about snow days.

That being said, Mother Nature did afford me some time to think long and hard about bubbles+sprinkles. What do I want to accomplish this year? What are the audiences that I’d like to share this blog with? How can I best reach customers, and what skills can I continue to finesse over 2017? I was able to put thought and answers around each of the above questions, and that left me feeling more and more excited about the coming months.

Part of my personal ethos, is a huge passion for local businesses. I truly love Portland, its people, and all that it stands for. So when HelpWith reached out, it seemed like a very natural partnership. The goal of HelpWith, is to partner those who are experienced in their fields, with those that want to learn. The goal of bubbles+sprinkles, is to educate readers and valued customers on how to make the yummiest cupcakes and feel totally educated sipping the most fantastic bubbly wine. Noticing some similarities? They call HelpWith the Knowledge Market, and you can really search for help with anything– yoga, baking, SEO, digital marketing– skills offered run the whole gamut.

I’m jumping in with both feet, so if you know anyone that would like a personal lesson in baking, in wine appreciation, in event planning (more skills to follow…), then they should check me out on HelpWith! Here’s my profile. If you’re looking for a yuuuuuuge (nope, nope, not a political joke) variety of other instructors, then you should totally use this link, and check out HelpWith: https://www.helpwith.co/a/jennalevy

Disclaimer: bubbles+sprinkles will receive financial compensation for those that sign up for HelpWith using the above link. Questions? Comments? Please let me know. I’d love to hear from you!

Hope that everyone has a wonderful week.

Xo,
Jenna

Champagne Cupcakes to Sweetly Send off 2016

Happy New Years! May 2017 be exponentially better than its predecessor. As I catalogued my reflections and chose my resolutions for the coming year, I was able to find solace in many wonderful things that happened to me to this year. bubbles+sprinkles is taking on a life of its own, which is honestly the biggest blessing of all. Besides that, standouts included- running my first marathon, building houses in Guatemala for a week, helping to raise $50,047.80 for the Doernbecher Childhood Cancer Survivorship Program, setting personal record times for my 5k, 10k and half marathons, building and caring for the BEST friendships in the world, and pushing myself professionally at work. When you look at it like that, the positivity pebbles are present.

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The cherry on the sundae — err, cupcake, so to speak, was a second appearance on KATU’s Afternoon Live, this week. The request? Champagne Cupcakes to celebrate New Years Eve. Whether these came in handy for planned dinner parties, or because it truly was a year where you just needed to sit at home and eat 12, there is zero judgement on my end. Thank you Afternoon Live, SO much for having me, back on the show. I had a total blast. You can find the video and the full recipe for the cupcakes, here.  They’re yummy and boozy and DISCLAIMER- NOT meant for children.  

img_1368I do love me a good New Years Eve celebration. It’s kind of the unofficial holiday for my darling bubbles. This year, I chose to indulge in a delicious bottle of Perrier-Jouët Grand Brut. It was like an extra Chanukah/Christmas present to myself because it came in such a beautiful box! I’m a total minimalist and like to recycle whatever I possibly can, but this may be an exception 😉

Your Perrier-Jouët fun facts:

  • The company is more than 200 years old.
  • It was first made in Epernay.
  • A joyous union between Pierre Nicolas Marie Perrier and his wife Adèle Jouët are the power couple that developed this bubbler.
  • This stuff flew off the shelves in France, but wasn’t shipped to the US until 1837.
  • The iconic flowers that you see on the bottle (Cuvée Belle Epoque in France, Fleur de Champagne in the US of A) made their first debut at Paris at Maxim’s and Fauchon.
  • Perrier-Jouët owns almost 250 acres in Aÿ and Dizy in Vallée de la Marne; Verzenay and Mailly in Montagne de Reims; and Avize and Cramant in Côte des Blancs.

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Alright, nerd alert done. 

Jenna’s take:  It had spiraling bubbles down the side of the flute, (one more fun fact– that’s a good indicator that your chosen sparkling wine is ACTUALLY a Champagne) and a beautiful melange of apple, pear and citrus on the palate. You’ll get a little bit of butter on the finish, which is a great juxtaposition to the jolt of tartness on the first sip. It’s so crisp, and so light, and by golly- it was gone far too quickly.

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Hipster proof that I was very proud of this bottle, and very pleased with the evening that followed.

I hope that everyone has a wonderful start to 2017!

Xo,
Jenna