Happy Birthday Helen

August 2010

On Friday I delivered my first cake order from a coworker from my *real* job. Dawn has tasted many of the experiments I’ve brought into work and she asked me to make a cake for her daughter’s 2nd birthday.

Dawn wasn’t too particular about what kind of cake she wanted. She asked for chocolate cake and for it too be “girly”. And she later asked if I could make the cake and icing less sweet than usual. I must admit, I was stumped about making the cake itself less sweet since I normally think of the icing as the component bringing in the real sweetness. So I planned on making a less sweet vanilla icing and my regular chocolate cake.I ended up going a little shy on the sugar in the chocolate cake, but I was wary of cutting it too much with out testing this out first.

For the icing, I was first thinking of doing the adapted Swiss meringue buttercream, but then I remembered another recipe. I had seen it on the Pioneer Woman’s blog awhile back and it was labeled as “the best frosting I’ve ever had” which is quite a glowing recommendation! The recipe is unusual – it contains flour – but I gave it a try. I thought it was a nice change of pace. It had a light whipped consistency and a different taste than American buttercream. However, I thought it was just as sweet.

I had a little bit of a problem with the consistency of this icing. I trimmed and assembled my cake, slapped a crumb coat on, and popped it in the fridge to crust. Maybe 20 minutes later, I came back and gave the remaining icing in the bowl a quick whip in the mixer and then iced the cake. Then I put some of the icing into a bag with a tip and piped a shell border. This is when I noticed that the icing was separating 😦 I wasn’t sure what to do, but I knew I needed to tint some of the icing purple for the writing, so I tried that. In adding the color, I whipped the icing for a couple minutes and it firmed right up. Damnit. It was too late for the cake, but I scraped the shell border off, rewhipped that into the proper consistency and re-piped it on the cake. So the writing and the border were good, but the cake icing was slightly separated. I’m disappointed but it still seemed to taste good and it crusted fine, so hopefully it will be okay.

I also cut out a few flowers in purple and pink fondant and used them to decorate the sides of the cake. And lastly, I cut out a “2” from purple fondant. I did that one free-hand and it actually turned out alright.

Dawn seemed delighted upon seeing her cake, so I hope she and her family enjoy it!

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Today I delivered my first cake order from a coworker from my *real* job. Dawn has tasted many of the experiments I’ve brought into work and she asked me to make a cake for her daughter’s 2nd birthday.

Dawn wasn’t too particular about what kind of cake she wanted. She asked for chocolate cake and for it too be “girly”. And she later asked if I could make the cake and icing less sweet than usual. I must admit, I was stumped about making the cake itself less sweet since I normally think of the icing as the component bringing in the real sweetness. So I planned on making a less sweet vanilla icing and my regular chocolate cake.I ended up going a little shy on the sugar in the chocolate cake, but I was wary of cutting it too much with out testing this out first.

For the icing, I was first thinking of doing the adapted Swiss meringue buttercream, but then I remembered another recipe. I had seen it on the Pioneer Woman’s blog awhile back and it was labeled as “the best frosting I’ve ever had” which is quite a glowing recommendation! The recipe is unusual – it contains flour – but I gave it a try. I thought it was a nice change of pace. It had a light whipped consistency and a different taste than American buttercream. However, I thought it was just as sweet which makes me a little nervous.

I had a little bit of a problem with the consistency of this icing. I trimmed and assembled my cake, slapped a crumb coat on, and popped it in the fridge to crust. Maybe 20 minutes later, I came back and gave the remaining icing in the bowl a quick whip in the mixer and then iced the cake. Then I put some of the icing into a bag with a tip and piped a shell border. This is when I noticed that the icing was separating 😦 I wasn’t sure what to do, but I knew I needed to tint some of the icing purple for the writing, so I tried that. In adding the color, I whipped the icing for a couple minutes and it firmed right up. Damnit. It was too late for the cake, but I scraped the shell border off, rewhipped that into the proper consistency and re-piped it on the cake. So the writing and the border were good, but the cake icing was slightly separated. I’m disappointed but it still seemed to taste good and it crusted fine, so hopefully it will be okay.

I also cut out a few flowers in purple and pink fondant and used them to decorate the sides of the cake. And lastly, I cut out a “2” from purple fondant. I did that one free-hand and it actually turned out alright.

Dawn seemed delighted upon seeing her cake, so I hope she and her family enjoy it!

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2 Responses to Happy Birthday Helen

  1. Kate michaels says:

    I love that flour icing Sarah…I used to use it alot and it does tend to separate. It is delicous on chocolate cake.

  2. […] 3 weeks after ordering a birthday cake for her daughter, my co-worker Dawn asked me to make a birthday cake for her own birthday which is today! Dawn asked […]

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