Archive | September, 2009

Free Wedding Cake

30 Sep

Are you having a wedding or event this weekend, October 3 or 4? Need a cake? Well, you can have one for free! I’m entered in the Ithaca Cake Competition this week and I am making a 5 tier cake. It is going to be covered in white fondant and gold decorations. The problem is that once the competition is over at 6:00 PM on Saturday I have no need for a cake that could feed 200 plus people. Though, I don’t put it past me and Dan eating the whole thing, I’d just rather not go there. If you want the cake for an event on Saturday night or Sunday, let me know. First come first serve.

P.S. Please go to the Ithaca Mall on Saturday and vote for my cake!!!!


Not So Red Velvet Cake

28 Sep

We were having some friends over for dinner last night so I decided to make a red velvet cake with whipped cream cheese frosting. Though this cake ended up tasting great, nothing went right from step one. First the “secret” ingredient in red velvet cake is red food coloring. If you feel completely deceived and let down, you’re not alone. All along I thought it was magical reaction the ingredients had that made the cake red, but alas it is just food coloring. Which leads me to my next question, why red? Why not blue, or purple or orange. So I’m sure in the future you will see some interestingly colored velvet cakes from me. Blue suede cake anyone? To make matters worse you need an exorbitant amount of red food coloring. I only had about half of what the recipe called for. So we got not so red velvet cake.

The frosting turned out very delicate and light. It spread on the cake like whipped cream. Problem, it never harden and the proteins from the dairy ate through the fondant. I had decorated the cake the night before and 24 hours later when we went to eat it, it was a sticky mess. But underneath the gooey fondant the frosting remained light and the cake (despite the lack of red food coloring) tasted delicious.

Even before I put the fondant on the cake I wasn’t terribly happy with the way the colors turned out. It was suppose to be an impressionistic rose garden, but it just looked like tie dye. I was basing the design off a famous design by Colette Peters (the master of everything cake). It turned out nothing like hers! Everything was a bit too dark and not shaped right. I got the fondant really thin, but it bunched and ripped at the bottom. So I put an obnoxiously large border on that just didn’t look like it fit. So I’m going to try this design again in the future and hopefully I’ll get it right. I was so disappointed with it, I almost didn’t take any pictures never the less post them. But of course the inner photographer got the best of me.

Mark Your Calendars!

23 Sep

Ithaca is hosting its first ever cake decorating competition!!! I am so excited!
It is October 3 at the Shops at Ithaca Mall from 10:00 AM – 6:00 PM. The theme is fall harvest. I’m still working on a design.
If you are in the area PLEASE stop by a vote for my cake. The judges will be picking a winner from each category, but then there is also an audience favorite. I’d love your support by voting that day!
Thanks!!! I’ll keep everyone posted on the details of the design.
Cake Contest

Day Off

21 Sep

I didn’t have to work today, so made a cake to take a break from studying and writing my application essays. The design of this cake was kind of an after thought. I was more concerned with the flavor. I was trying to re-create a childhood favorite, The Funny Bone. So this cake is chocolate fudge cake, with peanut butter filling and milk chocolate buttercream frosting. It taste amazing!!! I’m going to bring it to work tomorrow.

Cincinnati Cake

21 Sep

This cake was for a woman’s 75th surprise birthday party! It was so much fun to make. She grew up in Cincinnati and her daughter drew a design of things from her childhood. I did my best to incorporate them on the cake. I was really happy with the finished product and I learned a lot making this cake. I also learned that I miss my SUV. I don’t miss filling the gas tank, but I do miss having the storage space. Currently I have a Jetta and there is no way I could get a cake like this in the trunk, so there is no flat place to transport it. Cakes and bucket seats don’t mix well! It makes for a very nervous 20 minutes in the car.

The cake is chocolate with buttercream filling and covered in fondant. Let me know what you think.
Click on the photos to enlarge them!

Birthday by Chocolate

13 Sep

Before you look at the pictures, read the description of the cake. This cake is a triple threat of chocolate! It was for my birthday and Dan helped make it. Well, Dan gave a hand here and there and cleaned the dishes as I went (which is invaluable!).

Anyway, the cake as three chocolate components. The cake itself is a chocolate cake but not your average butter cake. It is made with mostly eggs with chocolate and little sugar and flour. So the cake alone is not sweet at all and has a very dense, full, natural chocolate taste. I actually have nothing to compare the texture of this cake to but I can tell you what it is not like cake, brownie, fudge, or quiche. Not being very sweet, before it was frosted, I covered it in a homemade amaretto syrup. Then the cake is filled and frosted with a bitter-sweet ganache. Again, on its own, not overly sweet but very creamy. Finally the outside is wrapped in homemade chocolate praline sheets. To make these I toasted hazelnuts, and covered them with a sugar mixture. Then food processed them into a powder and mixed that with melted chocolate. I then rolled it into sheets to cool. Wrapping them around the cake was a challenge and they kind of did their own thing. I was happy with the way they looked though. I completed it with a dusting of red edible glitter. The cake has a wonderful chocolate taste, without being artificially sweet. If you’re a true choc-o-holic, you’ll love it!

Pies For Dinner!

10 Sep

Not a sweet pie but a traditional British Meat Pie. When I set out to create Sweetie Cakes and Pies, I intended for the “pie” component to be made up mostly of dinner pies. I’ve been working on developing my own recipes. Since the photos of meat pies aren’t nearly as impressive as decorated cakes, I’ll share the recipe with you. I hope you can warm your family this coming winter with this hearty dinner.

You Need
1 pound of cubed beef
1 bottle of your favorite dark beer
2 sprigs of fresh rosemary
2 sprigs of fresh marjoram
dash of salt
dash of pepper
1 jar of beef gravy
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
3 cloves of garlic minced
1/4 cup flour
1 mix of pastry crust (either homemade or a box).

24 hours in advance put the beef in a container that can be sealed. Add beer, salt, pepper and pull apart the the rosemary and marjoram (I like the chunks of spices but if you want a finer taste, with a few drops of olive oil put the the rosemary and marjoram in a food processor for about 30 seconds) and poor over beef. Refrigerate for 24 hours.

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare either homemade, or box mix pastry and set aside. In large pan heat the olive oil. Add the finely chopped onion and garlic. Saute until the onion begins to become transparent. Add the beef and set the reserve the marinade mixture aside. Brown the beef for about five minutes. When outsides are browned add the marinade mixture and the jar of gravy. Mix and let simmer on low for about ten minutes. If it looks too watery add 1 to 2 table spoon of flour.

While the meat is simmering prepare the pastry dishes. You can make one big pie for all to share or several small ones in individual casserole dishes. Grease the bottom of the dish with either cooking spray or shortening. Roll out the pastry about 1/4 inch think and press in place in the bottom of the dish, coming all the way up the sides. Roll out and cut out the shape of the dish for the top. Using a cookie cutter or knife create a shape in the middle of the top piece to vent.

Fill the dish with the meat mixture that is simmering. There will most likely be extra liquid which you can reserve for gravy for potatoes, just make sure all the meat makes it into the pie dishes. Cover the top of the pie dish with the prepared piece of pastry and work it down the sides of the dish so there is a slight over lap. Place in the oven for 35-40 minutes (it is a good idea to place a cookie sheet or foil on the rack under the pies in case they boil over). The crust will be a golden brown with darker brown spots on the higher parts when finished. Let cool for ten minutes and serve. I like to serve with mashed potatoes and steamed carrots with cinnamon glaze (as opposed to mushy peas).

Not terribly pretty, but very tasty!

Not terribly pretty, but very tasty!

If you try the recipe please leave comments on how it turned out!

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