Monday, April 20, 2009

He is Risen!

Another reason to celebrate Easter with a yummy cake! Boy, I was quite busy this past weekend :) Here I have made an ivory colored fondant cake for my friend Candyce. The cake is in the shape of a Greek Orthodox Cross. The cake is an almond white cake filled bittersweet chocolate ganache filling.

Below is my Almond Cake recipe below for my loyal blog followers :)

Almond White Cake

Makes (2) – 9” x 2 - Round Cakes Or (1) 12 x 2 Round Cake

Dry Ingredients:

2 ½ cups Cake Flour

3 tbsp. Potato Starch

1 tbsp. baking powder

4 tbsp. Instant vanilla mix

1 tsp. salt

Liquid Ingredients:

¾ cup. egg whites (about 6 – 7 egg whites)

¾ cup. – whole milk

1/3 cup. – half and half

1 ½ tsp. – Almond Extract

1 tbsp. - Amaretto Liqueur

Creaming Ingredients:

1 ¾ sticks - Unsalted Butter

2 ¼ c. granulated sugar or extra fine sugar

Preheat oven at 350 degrees.

  • Line the bottom of the plans with parchment paper.
  • In separate bowl sift the flour and whisk all the dry ingredients together for about 15 seconds.
  • Measure the liquid ingredients into a separate bowl and whisk to combine; whisking the egg whites will require more effort than usual to incorporate.
  • Measure the butter and sugar into separate bowls and set aside.

In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and the sugar until creamy and fluffy for 3 - 5 minutes.

Add the dry ingredients mixture alternating with the liquid mixture in 3 -5 additions each, beginning and ending with the dry mixture. Don’t wait for the dry or liquid ingredients to be fully incorporated before adding the next. This step should take a total of about 60 seconds.

Stop the mixer and scrape the sides of the bowl all the way down. Don’t miss the clumps in the bottom middle of the bowl. Now mix on medium speed for 20 – 30 seconds to develop the batter’s structure.

Prepare the pans. Deposit the batter in 3 separate sections of the pan and smooth out with the rubber spatula or an offset spatula. The pans should be half full. Drop the pan on the counter a couple of times to settle the air bubbles in the batter.

Bake for 35 minutes and transfer for to rack to cool. The 9-inch round cakes should cool from about 25 – 30 minutes before removing from the pans. Invert each pan onto a flat surface and remove the layers. Remove the parchment from the bottom of each cake and wrap the cake tightly in plastic wrap.

*TIP* - Assembling a layer of cake is easier if the cake is cold; refrigerate the layers overnight or up to 5 days before frosting.

Here I have carved out the cake out of an 11 X 15 sheet pan.
  • I calculated the measurements for the cake, on a sheet of paper measured at 11 X 15 inches.
  • I cut out the cross width of 3 inches diameter in the center of the 11 X 15 sheet of paper. Then I cut out the cross I made out of paper. After I had measured and cut the actual cross shape. I knew I would have 4 pieces of cake and I would be able to cut out a total of six (6) - 3 inch diameter circles for a total of 12 semi-circles with the left over corners of the cake. I apply 3 semi-circles on each side for each cross point.

This was a very carefully calculated cake :) I always knew my mathematics skills would come in handy one day :)

Once I completed covering the entire cake with a coat of buttercream I proceeded to covered the cake with the Ivory colored fondant and trimmed off the excess to the shape of the cake. This was the most complicated shaped fondant cakeI have made so far. Circle cakes are easiest and I have that down to a tee! But I always enjoy the opportunity to broaden my techniques.

The cake was stenciled with this nice swirl design and piped with delicate leaves. I had originally planned to paint acanthus leaves but the royal icing wasn't cooperating with me so this was the best I could do without messing up Candyce's Easter cake!

So I have piped the cake border with a beaded pearl border...but I kept looking at the cake and I felt like something was missing....the cake didnt stand out as much as I was hoping. At this point, I made an executive decision to pipe a top edge pearl border and I loved the results! It makes the cake stand out soo much better! I hope Candyce is pleased with this cake. I always get nervous because I never know if my friends are pleased with my cakes until they eat it, but I hope they are happy with their cakes! :D

Another crafty cake under the belt. Continue to check back to my blog for more cakes to come ^_~

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Coral Wedding Cake

As the wedding season begins, Spring is a lovely time to have vibrant colors for your wedding! Here is a cake that I created using coral colors. This cake was more modern in design with tiers that were different shapes. The top tier is a 6-inch square, then the middle tier is a 10-inch round and then bottom tier is a 12-inch square cake! Its not your traditional design... I loved this design a lot!

Here are some shots of my pearl border piping and a picture of the cake after I have completed stacking it.

This past weekend I delivered a wedding cake to Fredericksburg, VA. I have to admit that the drive was horrible. It took my brother and I, an hour and 45 minutes to get there when it was only suppose to take 54 minutes. I was very nervous because of the traffic and I was suppose to be a the reception by 1:30 but I didnt get there till 2 pm! Talk about being stressed.... I had about 45 minutes to get the flowers ready on the cake. Thats not so bad since the reception was suppose to start at 3 pm.

With the floral arrangement to create and I was provided a bundle of flowers and a topper. When I got there, I put my brother to work, making him cut me single stems of each flower so that I can pick them up and bundle it together and wrap it with floral tape. It was a good thing that I was prepared for all this floral work... puahaha :)I always recommend that bakers bring floral tape, scissors, floral wire and all other equipment like piping bags, extra frosting, extra tips, and spatulas.

Joe and Wendy's cake were accented with coral colored roses and carnations with purple and yellow greenery. The cake was decorated with swiss dots on all the layers and the border was beaded. The cake flavors were Red Velvet cake with cream cheese buttercream and Butter Yellow with strawberry buttercream. I think the cake looks lovely...hooray! I hope you enjoyed another episode of my wedding cake adventures :)

Friday, April 10, 2009

Topsy Turvy Chik Cake!

Happy Birthday to P. Chik!
In celebration I made this mini 3 tiered topsy turvy cake for my best friend and her last name is the little chickies! I love the turquiose color! For
fondant recipe, check out my other post.

Here I am making the fondant from scratch! To add color in the fondant recipe, it just add small toothpick amounts of food color into your gelatin mixture after you have blended together your gelatin and corn syrup. Then proceed by adding this mixture to the powder sugar to get this above results. Then scrap out the Fondant onto a powerdered sugared surface and knead until smooth. Add powder sugar a continue to knead if the fondant is too moist.

Here I am laying down the fondant on the cakes and doing a preliminary cut on the edges to smooth down the fondant.

Here are 2 of the 3 cake layers ready for stacking! When you stack make sure to adhere each layer with a little bit of royal icing or decorators frosting to stick.

Here are all the layers stacked and I also made a gumpaste pearl border...

I used a really pretty mini rose silicone mold to make tiny gumpaste flowers and then applied it to the cake in random order... I think a went a little crazy with the mini : You can get these types of molds from Global Sugar Art.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Cakebee Cupcakes for Sale!

Latest buzzzz this past weekend, I did a trial sale of cupcakes at my friend Toan's Viet Noodle soup restaurant. I've been really busy so I haven't been able to update the blog as often but please do continue to check back for the latest baking update! I can't help it, I'm a one woman show...for now :)

I enlisted the help of my friend Sandy to cut out the special Toan Soup red bowl logos made out of fondant. She also help me decorate the containers while I baked and frosted all the cupcakes ^_^
Here are 50 cupcakes with 10 different flavors all packed up ready for delivery to Toan's place :)

Thanks to all those lovely customers who supported my cupcakes sales at Toan's Restaurant! I really appreciate it. I know that Viet noodle soup and cupcakes may not seem like the best combination. But I really appreciate an outlet to be able to sell my cupcakes :)

I am really happy that I was able to feature my special Bumblebee Cupcake! Yay! Its a moist vanilla bean cupcake dipped in rich chocolate ganache with a caramel swirl topped with a sugar bee! :D

I'll do another cupcake sale for the last weekend of April from Thursday- Saturday. Please support my cupcake sales in Silver Spring, MD at Toan's restaurant, help support the dreams of a struggling bakist (baker +artist)!

As for now... eat sweets and bee merry :)