Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Cupcakes and Cakes and Awards! Oh My!

Hi all!

Boy does it feel weird to have been away from the blog for so long! It's been less than a month but it feels like eternity! That's a compliment to my talented and supportive fellow foodies -- definitely missed you all!

So while I've been away and getting into the spirit of being back to school, which is proving to be much more stressful than I'd anticipated, I baked! (Surprise, surprise!)

First up, the cake I baked for Lail t'ul Qadr at khane. It's triple-layered and pina colada inspired. I decided to try and convey the whole pina colada idea through a pineapple cake with vanilla buttercream and coconut layered in between. Next time, I think I will try to switch it up with a pineapple filling and coconut cake. I suspect that since pineapple is not quite a stand-up kind of a flavour, that it might have gotten lost in the cake, though I didn't get a taste!
Next up, inspired by my dear uncle and therefore, aptly named "Alnoor's Spicy Apples". The name is quite fitting since my Alnoor Masa has quite the spicy personality, himself!

I had a talk with Alnoor Masa the other day and he ran the idea by me to create an apple-crisp inspired cupcake just for him: so here it is! The Spicy Apple consists of a plain cupcake with a spicy apple filling in the centre, topped with my famous apple crisp topping! Since the cupcake is so decadent, I decided to cut the sweetness with a spiced cream cheese (idea courtesy of mum) for that little bit of contrast. They are garnished with an extra bit of the spicy apple topping.

Finally, I would like to thank fellow blogger Shabs (shabscuisine.blogspot.com) for my first set of awards! (look, mom!) I'm so honoured!

Since the stress is mounting as the semester progresses, I'm sure I will be blogging soon so, till soon!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Cake City and Pie Town

I have ventured into Cake City twice in the past (with the Quilt and Polkadot Cakes) and found it not too much to my liking.

I now realize that the frustration that ensued from that positively harrying experience could very well have come from doing too much, too fast!

I decided to venture back into Cake City a couple of days ago since we had planned a barbecue at my cousin, Al's, house. It was a housewarming of sorts since my mum, sister and I visited his place for the first time, today.

Since Al always takes interest in my baking, I thought I would make a cake to bring over there! (Can't ever go anywhere empty-handed when people know I bake!).

I went with a simpler design, since this is only my second cake fully covered with fondant, so cherry blossoms bonanza it was. I found this cake way less stressful since I split the work up over a couple of days. That definitely made for more patience and a better outcome, I think.

I went with Al's favourite flavours for the cake. The top and bottom layers are a chocolate orange and the middle is a coconut cake. Between each of the layers, I spread a deep, dark chocolate orange ganache. For a clean finish, I went with a rope border (covers up any messy edgework...hey, it's still only my second cake!)

Why don't I ever leave well enough alone? Oh yeah, because I'm a baker. This morning (before the barbecue) I decided to whip up a pie! I made it with a cherry filling (my Mumti Masi's favourite) and it ended up hopping right in the van somehow and got taken to the barbecue, too!

Cake and pie for dessert, anyone?

Seriously, best.vacation.ever.