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Saturday, May 24, 2008

It's all about the pressure control



*For cake decorating class.

This was probably my least favorite cake we made in class. It is supposed to look like an open book. First off, the basics: it's a chocolate cake with buttercream icing.

The standard recipe for buttercream is 1/2 cup butter, 1/2 cup shortening, 4 cups of icing sugar, a little milk and teaspoon of vanilla. I made the icing for the Sunflower cake using the shortening but I was a little skittish about it. I prefer to use as little ingredients as possible that were made in a laboratory. I had read that there was an organic shortening by a company called Spectrum. I found their Organic Coconut Oil but not the shortening. The coconut oil was in solid form like shortening, so I substituted that in for the shortening while making the icing for this cake. The problem was that the coconut oil "shortening" did not blend smoothly enough and I felt like you were biting into a little chunk of solid coconut oil. The fact that it was organic didn't really make up for the fact that I was biting into solid fat. So there was an issue with the overall feel of this icing.....

Then there is the open book cake design itself. It just turned out a little lame in my opinion. I did not use a "book cake" pan. I just did a 9x13 cake and cut out part of the top to make it look like an open book. Also, I had nothing to write on the cake. "Happy Rainy Winter"??? It was raining that week...but seriously, a cake to memorialize the rain? I just couldn't think of any thing say. I guess I could have written a message to Victor like "Thanks for taking out the trash every day!" or "Please pick up hummus at the store"....but I just wasn't thinking. As evident by the title of this post, the focus of this cake was practicing pressure control while doing "string" work, so "Happy Rainy Winter" with a stick figure woman holding an umbrella fit the bill.

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