Sunday, July 25, 2004

Made the Lemon Pound Cake (Cake au Citron) from the The Art of the Cake. It's one of the simpler recipes from that book, but made a very nice pound cake. Very smooth, mild, not too sweet. I did forget again to lower the temperature to compensate for the dark non-stick pan. Little bit of crispiness around the outside. Once I collect a few more ingredients, and some free time, I want to work my way through a bunch of the recipes in that book. They get more and more complicated, but they look seriously classy and tasty.

This week, I need to take an inventory of the cake equipment I've accumulated and figure out what I still need to acquire to do the final wedding cake. I'm planning on doing a full-scale test towards the end of August. Also need to pick up some ingredients to start practicing chocolate decorations, leaves and stuff. And I need to get on the ball about tracking down an organic florist. Whole Foods flower section, maybe?

Below, heating the apricot preserves to make glaze, straining the glaze, laying out the ingredients for the cake, mincing the lemon zest, cake batter going into the oven (like my teeny tiny new oven?), cake fresh out of the oven, cake glazed and ready to go:
poundcake-glaze1 poundcake-glaze2 poundcake-misenplace poundcake-lemonzest poundcake-batter poundcake-baked poundcake-glazed

Sunday, July 18, 2004

Today I made coffee-flavored Dutch Macaroons (Massepains Hollandais) from the French Cookie Book. My first recipe out of that book. Despite a number of minor setbacks (inaccurate time estimate, insufficiently powerful food processor, incorrect pastry tip, lack of third arm), they came out surprisingly good and looking almost exactly like the picture in the book. Mostly powdered sugar, with a couple egg whites and some ground almonds, yet somehow they puffed up in the oven like there was an actual leavener. Is there some chemistry going on there that I'm not aware of?

And, most excitingly, I got to wear my new "Choose Carbs" t-shirt for the first time today. Fun! :)

Sunday, July 11, 2004

Checked out a relatively new "sugar-free bakery" in town, Indulgence Bakery. I'd read about it a while ago and finally got around to taking a look. The guy at the counter, I think one of the owners, was very friendly and suggested a few favorite items. I wasn't so into the "Cherry Almond Balls," but the peanut butter cookie was not bad. I think I'll reserve judgement until I try a few more items, like maybe one of the mini-cheesecakes. Everything is labelled with nutrition information, including, yes, Atkins/carb info. If anyone else tries this place, let me know what you think. They serve breakfast and lunch as well.

Sunday, July 04, 2004

Here are the cakes for this weekend. They're both chocolate cakes with blackberry/raspberry curd filling and bittersweet chocolate ganache. The one with sprinkles is a Sachertorte. The one with chips on top is Dede Wilson's Essential Chocolate Cake. The triangular wedges are getting sent to the bride and groom. The big ones are being served at my Housewarming / 4th of July / Cake Tasting party today. Any thoughts on one cake versus the other?

Thursday, July 01, 2004

Baked and froze two layers each of Sachertorte and Essential Chocolate Cake last weekend. They'll be assembled into two cakes this coming weekend to compare and contrast. I used the new double-boiler to make the blackberry-raspberry curd and it did work out a lot better. Easier, anyway. Nice to have.