Notice my contact info to the right, if you want to contact me with any questions. I would also like to say that I do attempt to give credit where credit is due. I do not make any claims to cakes in my blog except the ones in my slideshow. If I show a cake I will try to post some type of identifer with it, however, if I don't know who posted the cake it is impossible for me to do that. I am only using the cake to illustrate a specific technique.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Cake Designers beware!

I recently had an issue arise that I wanted to make my readers aware of. I post this for the people that, although they are new cake designers, they sell cakes to others.

I don't sell my cakes so to speak. I only charge for the ingredients, so that I might get some practice at something I really enjoy doing as a hobby. I can't afford to make all the cakes I make, and I can't eat all the cake I need to make in order to get practice. This is why I do cakes for family and friends and only charge for ingredients. It is a win/win situation for everyone involved.

But recently, I had an incident that crushed me to the core, and I wanted to share it with you for a couple of reasons. First, because I needed a forum to vent my frustration and two, because I would really hate to see this catch someone else unaware as it caught me.

I would like to know what you would do in this situation:

How do you respond to this: 1) "cake customer" orders a cake at last minute, 2) picks up a day early (thank goodness I just finished it), 3) you only charge them for ingredients (someone I know), 4) calls and tells you cake collapsed and they had to buy another cake from Walmart, 5) you find out that this cake (a wedding cake to boot) was not only not collapsed, but also eaten and enjoyed by wedding party. 6) bride cries when she finds out what her friend (the one that ordered the cake) had done and this makes cake maker feel like crap even though she didn't do it intentionally. How should the cake designer respond? Please let me know how you would feel, and how you would respond.

I would also like to add this...the cake "customer" was a family relative who purchased the cake for a "family friend" who was the bride the cake was for. The cake designer found out that the cake didn't collapse and was eaten by the wedding party from the "family friend" at the cake designer's niece's wedding where all three were in attendance. Now "family friend" is upset that "customer" lied to the cake designer about her cake, and cake designer is upset with "customer" because she lied to her. Especially since the "cake designer" can't say anything to the "customer" at her niece's wedding, because she doesn't want to cause a disturbance there.

Sounds like a soap box opera...doesn't it. Well, I just wanted others to be aware that just because a cake is for a family member don't think that everything will go smoothly. Sometimes family members can be the worse people to fix cakes for. I don't have any further contact with the "customer", and I will never make her another cake...ever. I just wanted to vent, and I needed a place to vent. I was very upset by the whole situation since she lied, but she also went around and trashed my cake making skills to everyone. I am new to this whole thing, so I am very self-conscious anyway. When I had this happen, I almost said to the devil with it, I am not making any more cakes. But, I have since calmed down and I try not to let the stupidity of ONE person sway my desire to learn. Wedding cakes are a really big deal, and to think you made a bride do without a wedding cake, or to have to have a chain store bought cake is devistating. I thought I messed up this bride's wedding day, and you can imagine how that made me feel, only to learn that the customer lied to me.


Saturday, May 21, 2011

May 2011 022

May 2011 022
May 2011 022,
originally uploaded by cabescakes.
This is my most recent cake using the cake of the month recipe. Lemon-yumminess.

Comment on the recipe of the month

I recently was requested to do a lemon cake with lemon filling. So, I thought I would try out a new recipe using the recipe of the month. I was not disappointed.

First, I used Duncan Hines Moist Deluxe Lemon Cake mix and sifted the dry mix with 1 cup of flour, 1 cup of sugar, and 1 large box of Jell-O lemon pudding mix.

Second, I mixed together in another bowl the water, oil, sour cream, egg, and lemon extract.

Third, I combined the two separate bowls, and I mix just until the liquid is absorbed in the dry ingredients. I scrape down the bowl, and I mix again just until the mix looks silky. Then I pour into my prepared cake pans (pans sprayed with non-stick spray and lined with wax paper or parchment paper). Bake at 325 degrees until a toothpick comes out with just a few crumbs on it.

I level using the tea towel method (see previous post) and cover the pan with aluminum foil after they have almost cooled completely in the pan. This will make the cake more moist (however, only do this if the cake will be used right away the extra moisture could make the cake go bad more quickly). Tort you cake and fill with lemon filling with a buttercream dam.

To make your lemon filling use the juice and zest from 3 large lemons, 1 cup of sugar, 4 eggs and 1/2 cup butter. Place zest and sugar in a food processor and process until combined. Add lemon juice and eggs and process until smooth. Slowly add the butter to the mixture, pulsing as you go. Place in the top of a double bowler and cook over simmering water until thickened (about 5 minutes). Let the mixture cool completely. To apply to cake, using thick buttercream, make a dam around the outside edge of the torted cake (about a 1/4 of an inch from the outside edge) place the filling inside the dam. Place top layer on cake. Apply your crumb-coat (some call this dirty icing which just means to apply a thin layer of icing all over the cake to prevent crumbs from getting into your final icing.

Once you have applied your crumb-coat and allowed it to crust, you can apply your final coat of icing. The thickness will depend on whether you are adding fondant or just using buttercream. If I am applying fondant, I use a thinner layer of buttercream to prevent it from squishing from under the fondant. I apply a slightly thicker layer if I am using only buttercream.

Once the buttercream has crusted, you can apply your rolled out fondant. Smooth the fondant according to the fondant smoothing techniques I have posted in this blog. I made the lemon fondant by making marshmallow fondant and adding LorAnn Oils to it. Melt a 10 ounce bag of marshmallows with a tablespoon of water in the microwave for about 2 minutes (stirring after about 1 minute...*note this is important as it keeps the gelatin in the marshmallows from coagulating on the bottom of the bowl). Remove from microwave and add your flavoring and coloring. Stir in powdered sugar until it forms a stiff playdoh-type fondant. Let rest overnight before using (Note: this is also important, because the fondant will completely absorb the sugar and is easier to work with). Decorate as desired.

This was absolutely yummy.