Christmas Baking - Log Cakes

Merry Christmas!

This christmas was spent doing log cakes and even though it has been fun, I wish I had more time to do my other christmas cookies and other christmas goodies. I miss making cupcakes/muffins/brownies and all things else other than cakes!

But this year's log cakes showed a major jump in improvement and were pretty well-received at parties. I sold log cakes for the first time - a grand total of 4! Then I made another 4 to give away at parties and for the family.

This was for the family (I made 2, the other went to my aunt):

The log cakes that I sold:

The cakes that went to parties:

The hard work of 23/12/10:

The log cakes that are black, i.e. covered in ganache, are different from the normal buttercream ones. They're ice-cream log cakes! Which tastes pretty good, and could be better if the ice cream stayed in the cake and not get squeezed out when I roll it. I'll work on that, but I must say that after all this rolling, I'm really pretty good at rolling swiss rolls now! An achievement really...
Of course, I must say a big THANK YOU to my volleyball coach, Jerry, as well as Limei and Mingzhe for the orders. Thank you for having faith in my cakes and I'm eagerly waiting for feedback to further improve! Also, thank you to everyone who ate my cake and gave me their encouragement and opinion!
I'll end this year's christmas baking with an interesting picture that is obviously not taken by me. It's all about perspective isn't it? This year's christmas feels the same as last, except a little more real. I can't wait for 2011!


Christmas workshop

Christmas is here again and before the start of my annual christmas baking, I was lucky enough to have a chance to go for a complimentary POSH workshop conducted in orchard central. Courtesy of kenwood!

So they made this really cute white and dark chocolate mousse cake which I felt tasted like ice cream on brownies. I had a fruitful chat with the lady next to me and when we shared ideas, we came to the conclusion that the mousse can be used as ice cream and the cake replaced with brownies. That would make it more versatile and tasty.

The other recipe taught was a traditional log cake which I personally find... could have been better. The cake was hard, and sponge cake should be soft! Furthermore, the buttercream was thick and looked like it'll go straight to your legs, such that the new pair of jeans you bought specially for christmas would no longer fit. Also, the rolling of the sponge wasn't well done. Possibly cause the sponge was so hard. So there wasn't a nice log shape.

Ah so much to complain. But again, I did learn some things, and also realised that many things i picked up on the way unknowingly. That made me a little proud of myself. Whatever the case, the cakes do look pretty and cute, but looks aren't everything. I expect my cakes to be good on the inside and outside, before and after!

Sadly, due to my very strong pride, I was a little upset at the start. As I was queuing for registration, I told the person that I registered under my own name and the name on the complimentary letter was my mum's. The 2 ladies next to me then said quite loudly:
"Oh, she's just replacing her mum."
Yea, I know I'm the youngest there (a fact that never fails to intimidate me whichever baking class I go to). But that doesn't mean I can't bake as well as the rest. I didn't know that Age was an essential ingredient next to flour/sugar/butter. I would like to think I can hold a very decent baking conversation and bake a very decent cake.

Whatever the case, the nice lady next to me taught me some little tricks. And I learnt how to tell if my sugar syrup is in "softball" stage, one very crucial step. Tiramisu log cake was also a new input I got today from my friendly neighbour.

I have 4 log cakes to settle now. With my own created recipes, we shall see how things go. Excitement and nerves are the same feelings and hence I'll take whatever is stirring inside to be excitement!

4 Flavoured Chiffon Cake


Finally, the dreary times are over and the happy times are here! My baking drought ends with an explosive idea that I paid the price with a sleepless night. So here comes my multi-flavoured chiffon cake, with green tea, chocolate, coffee and pandan all in one cake. Like I said, you can never have too much of a good cake!

With 4 different batters, derived from a single recipe, and using secret techniques that I shall not share... ;) I came up with 2 types of chiffon cakes!

My personal favourite was chocolate, cause I used real chocolate instead of only cocoa powder. But I think green tea was not bad too. And it drew great response cause the cake is now gone after only a day!
I hope I really did change his mind about chiffon cake. It's not so much about the cake itself, but more of the experience when eating the cake. Many times, even when the food is not to our taste, we still adore it because it evokes certain memories. Food, like music and places reminds us of certain experiences and feelings. It's a secret storage compartment which we unlock when we crave nostalgia. I hope chiffon cake will create happy thoughts next time.
Fionainthekitchen is back in business!