I have made many cakes and cupcakes since my last post, but some stand out more than others.
This client requested a superhero cake, mostly Spiderman, for a large birthday party. This is the design that came out ! It was a 4 layer red velvet cake with Swiss meringue vanilla frosting.
Happy Birthday Leo !
I am currently working on a “cheese” cake and I can NOT wait to show it to you guys !
It’s “Teachers appreciation week”. We certainly do NOT have one of those in France, we have secretary day, grandmothers day but no teacher’s day…
I donated a cake to my daughter’s school for the teachers luncheon. It was the opportunity for me to test some of the new skills I learnt at the prestigious cake studio I now work at one day a week. My cake was three layers, very high (5 inches) and stood quite straight, a big improvement compared to my earlier cakes so there is some progress !
And to all the teachers out there : we do realize that you have a huge influence on our kids lives and really appreciate your work !
This week I got to work on a very special cake : my own daughter’s birthday cake !
This is what she requested : princess castle, glitter, pink, purple and flowers…She wasn’t disappointed with about three hundred flowers…and a fairy tale castle. It was very fun for me because i stepped out of my comfort zone when my air brush died and had to use a lot of new techniques to make up for it, like royal icing piping, brick impressions etc…
When I cut the cake, kids gathered around me and made requests “can i have a window?” “can I have a flower”…It was a lot of fun !
4 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup unsalted butter (1 stick)
1 cup sugar
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup natural cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoons fine salt
Put the unsweetened and semisweet chocolates and butter in a medium microwave-safe bowl; heat at 75 percent power until softened, about 2 minutes. Stir, and continue to microwave until completely melted, about 2 minutes more.
Whisk the sugar, eggs and vanilla into the chocolate mixture until smooth.
Sift the flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt into another bowl. Gradually whisk the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until moistened. Switch to a rubber spatula and finish folding the batter together; take care not to over-mix.
Use a small cookie scoop or spoon to drop a heaping tablespoon of batter onto the prepared pan, spacing them about 1-inch apart. Bake until the cookies spring back when lightly touched, about 7 minutes.
Christmas is almost here, I must admit the days leading up to Christmas are my favorite time of the year.
I have been baking Christmas cookies non stop for three days. Making on container at a time for friends, school bus drivers, teachers… This year we have the tallest tree we have ever owned, my husband’s pride. Kids have been enjoying hiding the pickle ornament so much that they broke it…but have attached another plastic toy on a string to make up for it. They have prepared their list for Santa, and my 2 year old daughter is expecting a live horse on Christmas night. Hopefully the little pink plastic poney Santa actually got her will make her forget all about the horse idea.
We waited in line to have their pics taken with Santa, the same Santa as last year…My husband called me a Christmaszilla because i insisted on waiting for the same guy. I think over the years my kids will come to really cherish those Santa pics.
This year I made several kind of Christmas cookies (or Bredeles – that’s how we call them in Alsace)…Tomorrow is Christmas eve and i have already ran out…I’ll have to make even more next year !
My son picked some nice containers for his teachers and we gave them as presents. It has almost became a tradition now, and the second time i post about it.
To all my friends and readers : Have a Merry Christmas and Joyeux Noel !
I wanted to create a cake for my mother-in-law who is a fervent supporter of mine, always leaving encouraging comments on my blog. Ellen is obsessed with caramel apples so i decided to create a cake that would replicate those flavors and feels like Fall (Ellen’s favorite season).
I started by making homemade Apple sauce, I think the trick to bring out the apple flavor is to use cider.
Homemade Applesauce :
- 4 organic Fuji apples, peeled, cored and quartered
- 4 Golden Delicious apples, peeled, cored and quartered
- 1 cup of apple cider
- 2 tablespoons of Cognac
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1 tablespoon dark brown sugar
- 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
In a medium saucepan, combine all ingredients, and stir to combine. Cover the saucepan, and cook over medium heat for 15 to 20 minutes, or until apples are soft. Allow to cool, then blend. Chill sauce to room temperature before adding to cake batter (see recipe below).
The Apple Cake (makes 3 8-inch layers)
- 4 cups all-purpose organic flour
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) unsalted organic butter, cut into 1-inch cubes, at room temperature
- 2 1/2 cups sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 4 cups homemade applesauce (see recipe above)
Add the flour mixture to the mixer bowl in three parts, alternating with the applesauce, beginning and ending with the flour mixture. Scrape down the bowl, then mix on low speed for a few more seconds.
Divide the batter among the prepared pans and smooth the tops. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes, rotating the pans halfway through the baking time, until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. Transfer the pans to a wire rack and cool for 20 minutes. Turn the cakes out onto the rack, remove the parchment, and let cool completely.
For The Caramel Sauce
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 1/4 cup corn syrup
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) of butter, softened, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
- 1 ½ cups heavy cream
In a medium saucepan with high sides, combine the sugar and corn syrup with 1/2 cup water. Stir the mixture gently so you don’t slosh any of it up the sides of the pan. Turn the heat to medium-high and continue stirring until the sugar dissolves. Increase heat to high, stop stirring, and allow the mixture to boil. Once it begins to turn a rich caramel color (if you don’t want to eyeball it, take the caramel to 300 degrees F on a candy thermometer), remove it from the heat, add the butter and cream, and stir until combined.
You can save the caramel sauce, tightly covered, in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. Let it come to room temperature before using it on cakes, ice creams, or quick breads.
If you want a warm topping, heat the caramel sauce in short bursts in the microwave or in the top of a double boiler.
For The Caramel Buttercream
- 1½ cups sugar
- 1⁄3 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 cups whole milk
- 1⁄3 cup heavy cream
- 1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, soft but cool, cut into small pieces
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1⁄3 cup plus 2 tablespoons Classic Caramel Sauce (see recipe above), at room temperature
I can’t believe Thanksgiving has already passed…Now I have to start planning Christmas cakes, Gingerbread houses (i’ll have a couple helpers for that one !), Christmas cookies…
Recently, I also had a ton of fun making a tiered cake for a first birthday party. The client asked me to reproduce the kid’s favorite stuffed toy and sent me this picture to build a cake on…
This is what the cake looked like in the end :
The Client were very happy and sent me this lovely email :
Just wanted to thank you again for the cake. It was a huge hit, and everyone said it was SO good. i’ve never seen so much cake get eaten at a party! and of course the design was great. Really appreciate your efforts!”
I really get huge satisfaction when people like my cakes ! That email made me happy for the rest of the weekend !