Thursday, August 15, 2013

Cake Baking - Part One

So I've decided to make my daughters birthday cake this year. I love to bake, but my specialty is cookies. I have about three weeks until the party and my cake baking skills will be put to the test. So it's time to practice.

After hours of research, I've decided on two cake flavors, the frosting and the design. This post is about trying cake flavor #1 and trying my hand at buttercream frosting. 

Cake Option #1: Chocolate Chip 

I'm slightly cheating and using a boxed cake mix, but I'm adding a little more love to make it more yummy. First, I started with a box of Pillsbury Yellow Cake mix, making sure that pudding mix is included (this is key). Then instead of just three eggs I added a fourth. I also replaced the water with milk. And sticking to what the box called for regarding the oil. 

After mixing, I added in the hubs and daughters favorite part...the chocolate chips! 

Here is a very valuable baking note: when including chocolate chips in cakes, toss them in a small amount of flour before adding them to the mix. This flour coating helps them stick to the batter when baking. This keeps them well dispersed throughout the cake. If you don't toss in flour then your chips will sink to the bottom of the cake and know one wants that!! 

Next step was splitting the cake into the round cake pans and baking! Doesn't that look soooo good? 

Ahh, now here is when things went wrong. I needed softened butter for the buttercream and I hadn't sat out my butter to soften. Microwaving butter to soften it is not a great idea. But I did what I had to do. Anyways, I start mixing and I'm following the directions and I'm not getting a wonderful result...

It might look fine but its not thick and I haven't even added all the whipping cream called for in the above photo. So I just keep adding stuff. None of which I wrote down or measured, which is fine since I had already decided I needed to find a new recipe. Finally good ol' Google told me I could add a small amount of cornstarch. So I think I added like 3 or 4 tsp. and it worked...I think. 

Plop in some food coloring...which I'm going to have to invest in some good quality stuff for the actual cake because this store brand drops were terrible. Anyways, after letting the crumb icing dry on the cake (a super thin layer of icing that holds the cake and crumbs together) it was time to frost this puppy. 

I'm a terrible cake froster...

So now it's time to taste this thing...

The cake was amazing. I mean amazing! I'm not a frosting/icing kinda gal but all together it was pretty darn good! 

The hubs reaction: shakes head in an up and down motion multiple times while stuffing two...three...four forkfuls of cake in his mouth. "Yeah, this is good. Real good." 

There you have it, one cake practice and taste test down, one more to go...



mrs.waddington. said...

We used the ol' toss in flour trick when we made cheesecake for game night! Such a clever little drop of knowledge to have!

Amanda said...

umm...this is a test. CAN YOU SEE ME!?!??! By the way, that cake looks beyond amazing. Can you mail cake....?