Saturday, November 21, 2009

Iphone Cake

It was my husbands birthday earlier this month and had a dinner party for him at home. And since i had been taking cake decorating classes, i wanted to make a cake that wasn't filled with flowers but also something fun. I started looking around and came across a few IPhone cakes. Now for those of you who know my husband Jigar, he's always on his iPhone, or on the computer or taking pictures!!

I said to myself with a big smile, "I can totally make this!!" A week before the dinner party, i started making the applications for the phone. A day later, i re made all the applications over again because the 1st set wasn't good enough for me. I am so glad i redid them. This cake was one layer butter cake and one layer Chocolate cake with Blackberry Swiss meringue filling. All made from scratch!! i wish i had taken a picture of the cake sliced. I would have hoped the black fondant on the cake would have been a little smoother. I had rolled out the fondant and placed it on the cake, only to realize that i had to move it over. And that caused the surface to get a little bumpy :( . Writing on the cake after the applications were put on wasn't easy either! I made some royal icing for writing and using colored piping gel for some of the application. I was super stressed and didn't want anything to go wrong. The party was just 3 hrs away!!

When i completed the cake and packed it away in a cake box, i had a sense of relieve. It was a good relieve and huge smile. I was so proud of myself for actually doing it!. It felt even better when my husband looked at the cake and gave me a big hug . All our friends stood there looking at the cake with their iPhone in their hands. After which, they all took a picture of my cake:).

This is just the beginning. I have my daughter's 2nd birthday coming up in April and i am already planning her cake. Hopefully some day, I'll be able to get in orders for cakes and cupcakes because i just love baking and decorating!

Course 3 Cakes

Course 3!!! It was wedding tiered cakes and fondant. This course, we got to make 2 cakes. The first one was a present cake. We learned how to cover a cake with fondant and make other fun stuff like the ribbons and bows. I remember feeling frustrated while covering my cake with the fondant. It wasn't easy at all but practice makes perfect. Know you know why bakeries charge so much for cakes!! It's a lot of time and effort and not forgetting Patience!! For the cake, it was a yellow cake with raspberry jelly.

Here's the final cake! I decided not to do wedding cake only because my husband was going to take this cake to work. Instead, i wanted to do something more fun and went with this. i pre made the flowers at home since they needed to be cut out and placed in flower formers to curl up. The cake turned out good but i my fondant tore a little while i was covering the cake. i covered most of it up with the flowers so it wasn't to bad. Like i said, practice makes perfect and i have gotten better at covering my cake:) The top tier of this cake was a butter cake with blackberry jelly and the bottom tier was chocolate with blackberry jelly.

Up next, Fondant and Gum paste. And for that, you'll have to wait till next week. Not sure yet what I'm going to do with my final cake but I'm sure I'll figure something out soon!

Course 2 cake

Here's my cake from course 2. Unfortunately, we only got to put together one cake for this course. So what did we do for the rest of the class? Well, all the bright and lovely flowers that are on my cake is what we made every week. Pansies, Daisies, Violets, Roses, Daffodils and Apple Blossoms. The flowers were made of royal icing so they harden up. We made a different one each week and placed them in flower formers to dry up. Week 4 rolled along and we brought all the flowers we had made and place them on an iced cake and completing the cake with a rope border and a basket weave. I love bright colors and so i made my flowers bright. Everyone else chose to keep it subtle with pastel colors. For the cake, i made a Sponge cake and filled it with blackberry jelly.

At this point, i figured I've done 2 courses, what's 2 more!! So i signed up for course 3 and had even more fun! More cakes from course 3 coming up in the next blog:)

Course 1 Cakes

I've been taking cake decorating class at my neighborhood Michael's and it's just been an amazing experience. Wilton has 4 courses to offer and they each are 4 weeks long. I've always known i love baking but have now realized that i enjoy decorating cupcakes and cakes as well. The joy and sense of accomplishment i get is just wonderful. So here are the pictures of the cakes I've made in course 1. The above picture is my first cake. I made a devil's food cake and filled it with Raspberry Jelly. For a first timer, i was pretty pleased with the final decorated cake:)

For the second cake, we were allowed to do cupcakes and so i decided to make Red Velvet cupcakes. This specific class was about figure pipping and some flowers. i would have done more if i had more time at class. It was still fun.
Here is my final cake for course 1. We had to make roses and place them on the cake. When i started making my roses, i was worried i wouldn't have any roses to place on my cake! But as the evening went by, i was making roses after roses. For this cake, i made a yellow cake and filled it with chocolate filling. I completed course 1 and went home wanting more. So i signed up for course 2! Check out my next blog for pictures from course 2:)

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Marble cupcakes with Halloween decoration

I know I'm a little behind on my blogs and Halloween is long gone. But better late then never! With my daughter going to day care now, i got to sign up for something to bring for their class party. Of course there had to be cupcakes, and no one had signed up for them! I did and this is what i came up with. They had to be Halloween themed, but i also wanted to keep them fun for the kids. So i made pumpkins with some orange colored fondant, and drew in the faces with edible markers. How cute are they?? Super easy to make them and great for decorating cakes and other food. As for the frosting, i used Class Butter cream icing and kept it at a medium consistency and pipped some grass using the grass tip. I have to say, i had a great time putting these together and the kids loved it. Now to the cupcakes. They were marble cupcakes from Martha Stewart's 175 cupcakes recipe book. Really easy to make them and they were just delicious. Which kid doesn't like cupcakes with both vanilla and chocolate!

Cupcakes can just be so much fun. They are easy to eat, and you can be as creative as you want and personalize them in your own way. Here's the recipe for the cupcakes and butter cream:)

Marble Cupcakes
Makes 16 cupcakes

1 3/4 cups cake flour (not self-rising), sifted
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup milk, room temperature
1/3 cup heavy cream, room temperature
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
3 large eggs, room temperature
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/3 cup unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
1/4 cup boiling water
Confectioners’ sugar, for dusting

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line standard muffin tins with paper liners. Stir together cake flour, baking powder, and salt. Combine milk and cream.

2. With an electric mixer on medium-high speed, cream butter and granulated sugar until pale and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating until each is incorporated, scraping down sides of bowl as needed. Beat in vanilla. Add flour mixture in three batches, alternating with two additions of milk mixture, and beating until combined.

3. To make chocolate batter, measure out 1 cup batter, and transfer to another bowl. Combine cocoa and the boiling water in a bowl. Stir into reserved 1 cup batter.

4. Fill prepared cups with alternating spoonfuls of vanilla and chocolate batter, filling each three-quarters full. Run the tip of a paring knife or wooden skewer through batter in a figure-eight motion to make swirls. Bake, rotating tins halfway through, until tops are golden and a cake tester (i.e. toothpick) inserted in centers comes out clean, about 20 minutes. Transfer tins to wire racks to cool completely before removing cupcakes. Cupcakes can be stored overnight at room temperature, or frozen up to 2 months, in airtight containers.

5. To finish dust with confectioners’ sugar just before serving. Or personalize in your own way!

Class Butter cream

4 cups confectioner's sugar sifted
1 tablespoon meringue powder
1 cup shortening
2 table water
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
a pinch of salt

Using a whisk attachment, whip together the shortening and liquids. Add the sugar and meringue powder and whip until ingredients come together. Whip on medium speed for 1 min. This recipe makes thick consistency so you have to thin it out to a medium consistency after it's whipped up. Color frosting as needed. Frosting can be refrigerated up to 2 weeks in an air tight container.