The Answer

Yesterday, I posted this:

And asked you to guess what it was. Well…

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Summer Party

Yesterday, I showed some not so tasty pictures. Sorry.

Vegetarians, beware. The next 3 pictures are not for you. However, omnivores and paleo folk will be happy!

It gets better

Three Decades

Yesterday, I turned 30.

It’s funny how I had the same experiences this year and last year, in that at the beginning of July I felt depressed. I came downstairs a week before my 29th birthday, my roommate said “Good morning,” and I promptly burst into tears. Yet, the day of, I was fine. There’s not a thing you can do about turning a year older. All it does is mark the passage of time.

No rules exist which state that by 23 you MUST be graduated from college and be supporting yourself. Nor that you must be married by 27 and have babies by 30. Nor does anything say that you must get married and that if you don’t get married, your career needs to be of utmost fulfillment so you can have something to stave off those who give you that questioning look.

Anyway, 30 was okay. A few days before, I wasn’t a fan. There had been a lot of transition in the preceding weeks, so yet another milestone of change and life was before me. So, while a friend asked for my love and support in the trials of her life, I also selfishly asked for her support in mine. Misery didn’t love or need company. Two friends needed to share their rough times and know that each wasn’t alone.

My Day

Brownies: Study Distraction Extraordinaire!

So, I have some finals in the next few weeks. You know what that means? Baking and whining. Yep, those be my go-to vices for dealing with the stress of tests, work, and impending move. Yet, I know if there weren’t at least 3 important future events at all times in my life – well, nothing would get done!

I’ve been experimenting with brownie recipes lately – mostly inspired by this recipe for brownie frosting I found at work a few weeks ago. It was good, but after making it a few times, the frosting was too sweet. It’s brownies with fudge on top. One word: OVERLOAD!!! Seriously, I think I’ve lost a little weight in the past few months, and those suckers are not helping me maintain at all.

The second time I made the above frosting, I needed a different brownie recipe as I don’t have any boxes of brownie mix on hand and the previous brownie recipe was disappointing. I looked through my cookbooks and came across one called “Beat This!” by Ann Hodgman.

God bless that woman! Wipe up your drool!

Catching up…

Yep, it’s been hectic around here again, folks. So, here’s another oldie while I continue studying. At least my mid-terms turned out well. I got A’s on both my Statistics and Physiology tests – much needed points for the rest of the semester. So, I’m off to my cloistered dining room with some tea where I will attempt to ignore the pile of dishes in my sink. Until a new update:

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Thursday, 10 June 2010

Blah. It gets exhausting not only making the tasty cake, but then to design it, take pictures, and write about my foibles for you all takes an act of sheer energy resilience. That and the overwhelming nature of life at this point have prevented me from showing my delicious experiments.
Continue Reading

The Cake Lessons Continue

Thanks for your patience while I still mix some old posts with new. I made this cake in early 2010. Oh was it good. Prepare to drool.

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The first lesson I learned from this cake was to specify the date needed rather than talk in terms of “upcoming,” or “next.”

More YUM! Ahead

Three Cake Weekend

I’m working on some current posts, but they involve some processing-before-publishing. Anyway, enjoy some pics and experiences from 2010 early summer!
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As promised in my last note, which was grossly behind schedule, the next events in the cake decor saga culminated in a three cake weekend. It should have been a two cake weekend, but I misunderstood a request, therefore had an extra.

To share some unrelated, but fun, happenings: I found a genuine four leaf clover on the All Saints property! Katie still has it in one of her books, so I haven’t see it since shortly after the picture was taken, but here it is:


Cake, Cake, and More Cake

A Tale of Two Mixers

Throwback to another Facebook post from a few years ago. However, it seemed worth sharing.
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Monday, 12 April 2010

There was royal icing; there was color flow icing. There was the reality of me having a cheap hand mixer and the dream of a Professional 600 Kitchen Aid Mixer. There was my stupidity and pride, and there was my boss’s benevolence.

And in the end, there were pretty flowers, basket weave designs, and 3-D objects on my cake.

Icing Awesomeness

Fondant Fun

I’m working on some new posts, but they are requiring more energy than I currently have. Sorry. Enjoy this oldy-but-goody from Thursday, 29 April 2010.
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Long before I thought about cake decorating, I was a wanna-be-foodie who watched “Ace of Cakes.” Chef Duff and gang kept referring to fondant for the cakes. It was so versatile and smooth; frosting Play-Doh.

Two years later, here I am taking cake decorating mini-courses wondering why I didn’t get in on this stuff earlier! I will finish Course 3 and the Fondant & Gum Paste course in May. Back to the events of March.

The first evening of Course 3 kicked off with some more flowers and cute garland options. Assignment for next week: bring a two-layer, 9-inch square cake, enough fondant to cover said cake and other supplies.

Forgive me while I sidestep a bit: I am a cake purist! If I am going to all the trouble to decorate a cake, IT WILL NOT BE OUT OF A BOX!!!! Part of my reasoning is that I want to experiment with recipes and flavors. The other part is that I feel I will fit into the baking world of “my decorations might be simple and elegant, but the cake will be awesome!” Thus, I should practice.

With a few days before class #2, I still needed to decide the flavor. I attended a Saturday morning service at All Saints and afterward, I chatted with Kh. Kristina who informed me that she needed a cake that week, etc. DIVINE APPOINTMENT, ANYONE!!!

“Khouria, I will have a cake after 9 PM on Tuesday. What flavor do you want it?”

There was more to the conversation, but I was informed that a lemon cake would be welcome. I found a recipe that included homemade lemon curd, thus I got to work.

Excitement abounded as I had my first experience with a cake leveler:

It starts all bumpy, then turns to this beautiful sight:

Fast-forward to Tuesday afternoon. I had a morning full of work then lunch with my Godmother. I resolved that after a nap, I would gather what I needed for class. Then I started feeling queasy.

Drat. I knew where this was going. Rather than the winter flu, I tend to get a Spring Break virus. I’ll spare you the graphic details, but it’s the type of virus that makes me utterly miserable for 12-24 hours which requires 3-7 days for me to gain my strength back. Needless to say, I missed class that night.

But I still had a delightful 2-layer lemon cake in the fridge for Kh. Kristina. It would not have the lovely fondant décor I was hoping to present my parish mother with on her birthday, but I had to come up with something.

Having missed class, I read some instructions on how to roll out fondant and smooth it over a cake. A deep yellow icing would look lovely on the white fondant coat. Thus, these results:

The flowers could use some symmetry help along with my writing. I am seriously considering getting help for my penmanship. Er,” icingship”? Hm, how about “pipingship”? That aside, if there are any calligraphers that have time for a consult, you know how to contact me.

Second fondant experience was a sheet cake. Let me just say: that is a lot of cake and a lot of fondant.

My mom came to my recipe rescue yet again since I left the Buttermilk White Cake recipe in Nashville. I added both orange and lemon zest to the batter and icing. Extra Yum…except, orange zest tints icing more than I anticipated. I originally thought the icing would be a light ecru, not beige. Anyway, with Lazarus Saturday chrismations, I felt the cake and writing should be as white as possible. Thus, I pulled out the fondant, printed off a cross template and came up with:

Yes, I know, it’s hard to see. It has a 3-bar cross and says, “Welcome Home! Many Years!”

With two make-up classes for Course 3 and all of Course 4: Fondant and Gum Paste and a few cakes for All Saints, there will be plenty of cake and fondant to be had at Acadia Court in the month of May. Stop on by and do my dishes!

Not quite a cake wreck, but close

I haven’t posted a food/cake story in a while. There will be more from the career-flip and dating aspects of life. For now, revel in my weekend of cake misfortune.

Humble Pie, er, Cake

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