Which flavor cake do you prefer?

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Sunday/Monday Activities

No baking involved today…
I just wanted to say that my television blew.  I went out and bought a new one and although I wasn’t happy with the unexpected burden to my budget I am very happy with my television.  I bought an LG 42 inch television which has some really cool options such as screen darkening at night and can also connect with my computer and internet.  Anyway since I was buying a television I also purchased a DVD player and Zumba for WII.
The Zumba for Wii was suggested by my best friend and that is what I really wanted to talk about.  I am a huge Zumba fan and take it every Monday at The New York Sports Club.  I have to say that Ashley and I played it on Monday (Yes I zumba’d twice on Monday) and it was amazingly accurate, fun and pretty easy to do!  I mean if you know zumba it is probably a little easier to immediately do but after a few runs with it I am positive anyone can do it.  Again, Ashley was doing it with me and she is six.  I was able to complete about a half an hour work out and I was sweating as if I was in regular Zumba class.  I do not ordinarily exercise with Wii and thought it was actually the lazy man’s gym but I am now a believer!
Oh yeah, Sunday night I saw Insidious at the Atrium. Good times as it is Easter vacation and there were a bunch of high schoolers around.  (Not!)  However the movie was excellent!  Lots of spooks but a very good story as well!

Saturdays Baking Adventure

My first attempt at the new trend cake pops was a delicious mediocrity.  The making of the cake part of the cake pops is actually simple and fun.  It’s like making meatballs honestly, something that as an Italian American I have done hundreds of times.  I’m something of a ball rolling expert in that case.  So, basically with these cake pops it is an ordinary cake recipe (box mix) of your choice.  Bake as directed and cool completely.  This is one of the most important parts actually.  When cooled crumple cake (I used clean hands) and mix your crumbs with a frosting of your choice. 
Here’s where things crumbled.. literally… I put the cake pops in the fridge to rest and do whatever they are supposed to do in there but I took them out to soon.  The shaped ones that I made (My daughter’s favorite butterflies included- imagine the pain I suffered at their demise) literally broke apart from the center where the stick was inserted when I dipped them for their candy coating.  At this point I realized patience would be required and I went and watched cake pop you tube videos to school myself on the dipping of cake pops.
First things first I learned a trick.  I don’t know how many of you drink Starbucks (I assume millions from their company profile) however there is what I like to refer to as “The Starbucks Shake”.  This is when you are drinking a Frappuccino (God Bless the Vanilla Frap) and it becomes a chunky ice you do “The Starbucks Shake” and voila a creamy frap once again.  Apparently there is also “The Cake Pop Tap”.  This is a method of dipping your cake pop in the melted chocolate (double-dipping not suggested by the way) and take it out.  You hang it over the chocolate dish with one hand and with the other you gently tap your wrist to remove the excess chocolate from your cake pop.
I gave the cake pop’s a couple of hours in the fridge as I did not want to disappoint myself and never do it again.  I started over with a new bag of chocolate and I have to say this attempt was far more successful.  I say for my first attempt I was fairly successful and perhaps it’s my fabulous cake decorating skills but I think it’s just plain old moderately easy.  My six year old daughter managed to do one with a six year old girl’s dramatic flair of overdressing with sparkles but the point is she did it fine.
The cake pop itself was delicious in my opinion.  To me it tasted like a zebra cake.  In case you never had one feel free to order some cake pops from me, I’ll design them like zebra’s (hot pink and zebra is a fashion statement) and you’ll know what it tastes like.   Anyway the chocolate coating outside gives it a crisp shell of sweetness and then the inside is soft cake consistency.  Smaller than a cake slice or a cupcake I felt pretty good eating two and staying in shape.  My mother told me she didn’t really like “the mushy” consistency inside but then ate another one just to be sure.  Mind you she had I think four in total.  Being there was not that many (Read above butterfly mishaps) that seems to rebut her previous statement of too mushy.
By the way....  I took some fancy pictures and my daughter decided she wanted to do a photoshoot.  The first picture was taken by her.  She set it up with her pink headbands and her pink homeade picture frame to set off the pink heart cake pops.  Shes so creative lol.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Virgin Post..... popping the blog cherry folks

So today I started a blog for the very first time.  Convenient little thing cause I love to hear myself talk!  I actually have no clue how to do this but I am about to learn!

Ok so I bake cakes.  I decorate them and I try to do it well. I will be displaying my cakes here and hopefully filling my blogs with comical relief as I attempt my masterpieces.  Believe me cake decorating especially at home, after working full time and going to school full time with a child watching and shaking the table is full of mishaps that you can laugh at later....

Allow me to start with my cake I am actually working on currently...

I got a call from a wonderful woman who lives across the street from me asking me to do a cross cake for her nephews christening.  She knows it is short notice but needs it for Friday at 5:30.  Of course I can do it because quite honestly, she is a wonderful person, I happen to really like her and wouldn't you know it... I need the money....

Wednesday... I get above email.  I say yes and then realize I am working overtime at my job for next two days.  That means I will be working from 7 am to 6 pm plus traveling home from the city.  I have to buy supplies after work and start working on cake along with completing my daughter’s homework.  Awesome... I do all above activities plus shower and bathe myself and my daughter.  I tried to sleep however the dog insistently barked at nothing 15 minutes after I fell asleep.  Thank God because I am an insomniac and now I was able to get two hours of sleep and was up at 6 to go to work again for another 11 hours. 

Thursday...  Work 11 hours... Start second part of cake, get it in oven.  Finish daughter’s homework with her and complete Easter bonnet hat that is required for school the next day.  Scarfed down a quick bowl of cereal (My mother thankfully fed my daughter and took her to soccer while I was working overtime) and my daughter took a shower and then I did.  Put her to bed and went downstairs to continue working on cake.

Where things started to go haywire....
Ok so I initially just made a cross cake, however I realized it would only feed 16 people and I would need to have a serving size for at least 25.  I made a sheet cake to go underneath which would up my servings.  The sheet cake I baked, hoping and praying would be a thick enough sheet cake (C'mon I know better) was not... I baked another sheet cake.  Wouldn't you know it, upon flipping cake that I did not cool completely (Can I say I know better again?) it broke off a little bit.  I fixed it with icing.   However now I used more icing than I planned for and now I have to make new icing along with a cake that still needs to have another coat of icing and still be decorated...  I said to hell with it, I’ll leave work early tomorrow and finish the cake...

Well its Friday morning kids!  I woke afresh and was able to laugh at my mistakes of the last few days.  I will be leaving work in a little bit... Wish me luck!!!