Sunday, July 20, 2008
So, I have to thank Elisa Strauss for publishing the book Confetti Cakes (see link in previous post or 'books to love' to your right) because without this book, I could not have made my latest fondant creation, an open hatbox cake. My mother-in-law was in town this weekend to attend a friends fashion party. Since I hope to start a business and need the practice, I asked if she would like a cake. After much drawing and planning I came up with the idea of a hatbox and got busy purchasing everything I would need. I made the tissue paper and bow three days in advance while on conference call with my girlfriends who very politely asked that I stop crumpling parchment paper--nobody could hear anything I was saying. Thursday morning my daughter and I ran to the grocery store for last minute ingredients and then I proceeded to bake (using the vanilla cake recipe in Confetti Cakes). I will not bore you with the details, but the first cake was a total disaster! I don't know the science of it all, but the baking pan I used was 3 inches deep and while the outside was cooked, the inside was pure mush. By the time the inside was cooked the outside was burnt. Fabulous. Trip to the grocery store for more ingredients. Vanilla cake: take two. Much better. Friday morning my mother and brother-in-law were on board for watching my darling one-year old while I faught with, I mean, decorated, the cake. I am not the greatest slicer of cakes and so some troubles ensued. Luckily, I was able to cover some of my slicing mistakes and all was well. Covering with fondant was also not the best--I rolled it too thin and you could see through a bit to the cake. Lesson learned--when directions read 'roll to 1/4 in. thick' it means 'roll to 1/4in. thick', not 'roll until fondant is transparent!' At the end of the day, however, the cake turned out fantastic and everyone was more than pleased with it. Sure, it has it's little flaws, but the big picture, well I was pretty darn proud of myself. It was certainly the hit of the party until, of course, my one-year old and all of her cuteness stole the show. But that's okay, I guess--I made her too!