Thursday, August 19, 2010

White Cream Cake with Raspberry Filling, Vanilla Buttercream, & Fondant

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My first experience with fondant for Mitch’s surprise party bday cake. It was actually fun to make the cake and filling, but it was miserable dying the fondant, so I think next time I’ll opt for pre-dyed fondant. However, I’ve heard that making your own tastes a lot better than the store-bought Wilton kind.P1060251P1060300

Here’s how I made it:

- Baked 2 white cream cakes from this recipe (only used this recipe for the cakes, not the icing or filling)

- Used different size pans for each cake; and 8-inch round for the top cake and a 10-inch round for the bottom.

The cake alone was delicious. I could have eaten it plain.P1060227P1060226

While the cakes cooled I made the raspberry filling. I used this recipe. The filling really made the cake taste more fresh; usually buttercream is so heavy, but this made it feel almost light (almost).

Next I made a homemade buttercream, using butter, powdered sugar, cream, vanilla, a little bit of cream cheese, and a bit of lemon juice.

Then came assembly. Cut each cake in half and then fill.P1060238P1060237

Try to get the buttercream very smooth and even, then freeze. I think I could have made mine much more flat, which really would have helped the fondant look better.

As cakes are freezing, prepare the fondant. This is not fun. In fact, it took me about 45 minutes to get enough blue into this stuff to keep it from looking like baby blue.P1060241

As my hands and arms were covered in blue as I worked in the color, I have no other pictures. Sometimes it’s just not your top priority. Imagine multiplying the amount of color here by 20 and working it into the fondant.P1060242
Once the fondant is colored and rolled nice and thin, get your cakes out. By brushing water on the frozen cake, you can help the fondant to stick better. P1060247
You can also brush water on the fondant when it’s rolled onto the cake to get the powdered sugar off (which keeps the fondant from sticking to your counter).P1060248

Smooth and stick in dowels for the top cake. You’ll notice several cracks in my fondant. So it was my first time. I was just happy to have the fondant on by this point.

Placed top cake on, and then I adhered the LA logo (cut out of a printed logo into the fondant). Then I decided to pipe some buttercream on the edges to cover the fondant seam. Maybe I’ll be good enough one day to omit this part. It was also about this time I noticed that my buttercream was slightly off-white due to the brown vanilla extract. Next time I may opt for the clear vanilla, if I’m feeling over-zealous about the whites matching.P1060256P1060304
Yum. If it wasn’t so time intensive, I’d probably make this way too much.P1060307

Friday, August 6, 2010

Homemade Raspberry Jam

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Raspberries, sugar, lemon juice, water, cornstarch. Simmer, stir, strain, thicken, then cool and allow to set. I used the extra raspberries from a cake filling to experiment and it really tastes great; but how could you go wrong with raspberries and sugar??P1060209P1060214 P1060218

Monday, August 2, 2010

Vegan Coconut Ice Cream

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When it’s hot out I find it hard to bake… without getting a bit too sweaty. I found a couple recipes for this online and combined them to make a nice summer treat.

P1060174 Ingredients: 2 cans coconut milk, 2 tsp. vanilla extract, 1 1/2 c. sugar. Whisk together until sugar is fully incorporated. Pour into ice cream maker for 20 minutes, then freeze for 2 hours. I have yet to try this with light coconut milk, but I have a feeling it wouldn’t be as good.

Because I need chocolate in my desserts, I love to make my great-grandma’s hot fudge recipe to pour on top. (This is getting really unhealthy.)P1060177