Monthly Archives: August 2011
Simon is 35 on Tuesday but due to our busy schedules (dahhhhhhhhlings) we had birthday cake today!
As we had a lot on this weekend Si let us off the hook as we originally were making a Necronomicon cake for him. He decided on a forêt noire to save us some time; save us some time!! Don’t think so!
We used the recipe from The Fundamental Techniques of Classic Pastry Arts which involved making:
- Génoise sponge
- Creme d’Or
- Kirsch syrup
- Cherry compote
- Creme Chantilly
- Tempered chocolate
Now let’s rewind back a day to the many hours of whisking, screaming, stamping and bowl licking that made us miss the Manchester Pride Parade! (the licking did help ease the pain)
Let’s come back to the hazy present (please imagine swirly sounds and smoke machine) and finishing the cake with a big fat hangover. This is why the finished product doesn’t really do justice to the work involved…I cracked the chocolate cup so lost interest, made a shitty pattern with chocolate shards so ended up literally throwing chocolate pieces at it.
Note to self: Always plan final design and don’t scratch your ass with a hand covered in melted chocolate.
So not the prettiest of the cakes we’ve made but it tasted real, real, reeeeeal good!!! (Oh GOD! The carbs! All the carbs!!!! *shouted through face full of cake*)
Annoyingly, I couldn’t get a good shot of the inside layering, in the one shot I did someone has obviously been indulging in cherries outside their slice zone!
RESPECT THE SLICE ZONE!!!
Happy Birthday Simon from all at The Wondercat Bakery!!
Really need to stop with the cakey puns…they are so not even close to funny.
Let’s try a Shakespearian cake quote instead (cheers Google University!):
Dost thou think because thou art virtuous there shall be no more cakes and ale? (Huh? Say what Billy?)
So, this week end the boys are off to Stratford to see the RSC perform “A Midsummer Nights Dream“. They are very excited as last year the theatre was being refurbished…shiny newness this year!
In honour of the bard, we thought we’d bake something with a literary theme. So books, bit obvious, but you think of something better! 😉
Also, it’s Simon’s birthday later this month and we are planning to bake him the Necronomicon with Cthulhu tentacles wiggling around it. Book practising is therefore required…why does that word always hint toward the obvious Freudian slip? Let’s just say it out loud and get it over with: necrophilia (wah wah :$)
So, a book, just a rectangle right? Erm, NO! It got all a bit tricky and there has been screaming, crying and stamping of feet in the Wondercat Bakery…
- Making a cake look crisp and rectangular: annoying
- Making a piece of icing look like leather: difficult
- Binding cake book in icing leather: pass the smelling salts
- Blue Book= pale blue base, dry brush with royal blue, shadow with navy.
- Brown Book= khaki base, dry brush with caramel, shadow with dark brown.
I think I’m going to sit by myself with cake whilst the boys are away (they won’t be on a row boat this year after Mykie called Simon “incompetent” (he did steer them into the river bank)) and totally pretend I’m brushing up on my Shakespeare…
We have been trying to turn around a disaster wrapped in a crisis tied up in a catastrophe this evening…
So, we found this recipe for a Sally Lunn flavoured with cardamom. A Sally Lunn loaf is some sort of fragrant, sweet bread thing from Bath (thank you Wikipedia) that seemed easy to throw together, just a bit of proving time required.
My friend Janis from who “the Janis” is dedicated is the only other person I know who really likes cardamom so, I thought I’d make her a loaf!
Obstacle the first: to grind cardamom you need to first shell the little blighters! Manicure=ruined
After much shelling and smooshing we got ground cardamom and the baking could continue. All went well there was stirring and proving and greasing and singing and dancing and running and jumping (I went and worked out in the basement whilst the loaf was rising; by “worked out” I mean “had a private disco to Lady Gaga”). So about to pop it in the oven final instruction…sprinkle with sugar and cardamom.
I’d worked so hard getting the ground cardamom I wanted to make the most of it…sprinkle was replaced by chuck a load on. The weight of the sugar and cardamom on top of the floaty light dough made what can be compared to a big ass groove in a leather sofa; we watched in horror as the poor loaf deflated!
Anyways, in the oven it went and our over zealous use of the sugar/cardamom caused another problem: caramelisation and over browning!!! NOOOOO! Why didn’t I sprinkle?! Why didn’t I just put the little remaining cardamom in a nice cup of coffee?!
So out comes the loaf too dark, too crisp with an invisible fat little hobbit sat in the middle of it.
The only solution, turn it upside down (oh, nice and flat and not too brown at all!) and get jiggy with some icing to glam it up a bit.
We originally went with a striped pink and green sugar motif but it looked so bad it got spatula-d off and thrown straight in the trash (fine, some reached my mouth, happy now?).
I don’t know why we went with an Asian theme for a quintessentially English bread but things had got so messed up already why the hell not?
So, I think it may be a little too dense, a little too crispy, a little too cardamomy (cardamomy, I like that) but I can’t taste it as it is for Jan!
Let’s hope it doesn’t taste too bad…we’ll have to bake her a better one!
Baking lesson for today:
You can’t polish a turd, but you can roll it in glitter.
OMG! OMG! Look look look!
Oh Mason Cash, I can’t wait to get my hands all moist and sticky in your Jubilee range!!!
Now to wait the 5 days delivery…tick tock tick tock…bored.
We have been designing a logo for new blog The Vanilla Duck!
Really cute site with recipes and ideas for gluten/dairy/other stuff free baking.
They have an amazing understanding of the properties of different flours and alternative ingredients which makes it a must for any cake lover with food intolerances!
We may bake some duck cookies as a gift for them! Have a lovely week folks!
Well that is enough with the 1970’s slang…I had to google it, some of it seems quite recent…think we’re getting like so totally old man(?)!
So, Wondercat was asked to make a Ruby wedding anniversary cake; congratulations Sue and John!!!!
The brief was something ruby and white with text and models of the couple in their wedding ensembles!
Check out that wedding outfit!!! A-MAZE-ZING!!! I have totally fallen in love with how iconically 70’s it is! It is a skirt and jacket combo; check out the lines and the structure; check the floral head band…dreamy! I would sooooooo wear this everyday (I wonder if they do it in kitty sizes with a tail hole) and be living the dream!
We were given free reign for the design work which after leaving a rose motif on the drawing board we went for a cascade of blossom, hearts and rubies. Not to blow our own trumpet (parp) but we are really quite pleased with it.
The figurines were tough. Such teeny tiny pieces of paste to model. Very happy with the bride, her bouquet in particular; but, I think the groom isn’t up to the same level…
As it was a ruby wedding we were going to use a pink butter cream but with white icing (well the palest ivory to make to brides white outfit pop (yes we used the term “pop”(checkout the quotation marks inside brackets inside brackets, how very Inception of us (mind blown)))) it may have shown through like a black bra under a white dress…seriously, do people do this intentionally? Do they leave the house thinking “yes, underwear visible, good to go!”. You may as well just put the bra over the dress and have done with it.
Sorry, where were we? Oh yes, pink icing…we decided to use plain creamy butter icing but SURPRISE! Pink sponge! An almond/vanilla twist on red velvet! We also used our Granny Dot’s home-made blackcurrant jam as the fruit in it looked like dark little rubies (it’s all about the details…no fur coat with out knickers here!)