Saturday, June 18, 2011

Just in Time for Fourth of July...

My Memorial Day Cupcakes! I created these beautiful babies for a memorial day barbeque with my boyfriend's family. I knew I wanted to make something summer-y and patriotic, and picked up some beautiful fresh berries at the supermarket. When I came home, I decided that I would make a vanilla bean cake and fill it with berries. So, I cooked down some strawberries in a simple syrup and pureed them, and it turned out runny. I mixed in some of the cream cheese frosting I made and it came to a pretty decent consistency and a wonderful taste! I filled the centers and topped it with the cream cheese frosting, some berries, and these great red, white, and blue sprinkles I picked up. The cupcakes went over really well, as did I, when I fainted in front of Martin's extended family :) I've learned to take the good with the bad.
If you look closely, you can see the little vanilla bean flakes, it was deee-licious!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Guilty as charged.

I've been bad. I've baked without blogging. I promise to catch up, starting now! I wish I had an excuse- I especially wish that I'd been too busy to blog because I've been feeling so great and my dysautonomia spontaneously cured, but that would be a lie. I've been feeling... normal. I have, however, spent some quality time with my mixer lately... including, but not limited to, cake pops.

It was my first time making cake pops, and if I have anything to say about it, it'll be my last. I used boxed cake mix because I wasn't sure how it was going to turn out, and I knew the process would be labor intensive. (Labor intensive? More like working in a Chinese sweat shop!) If you've never heard of cake pops, it's a combination of cake and frosting, molded into a ball, stuck on a lollipop stick, and covered in candy coating. Much more fun to eat than to make! Here's some pictures:

The stick is dipped into the candy coating,
then it's frozen to get nice and firm for dipping!

This is what the finished product looks like!

I know they don't look so evil. They look cute and delicious. Here's the clincher: the candy coating- it's impossible to work with. Maybe I need some more practice, maybe I won't bother trying. It stays the perfect consistency for no more than 90 seconds, then it gets too hard or too thick to coat. So, you've got to keep putting it in the microwave, taking it out, dipping a few, repeat. That's not fun. But, WAIT! There's MORE! The freakin' pops don't stay frozen long enough to keep them intact through the whole microwaving torture process. So, the candy coating gets too hard, the pops get too soft, and remedying all of this requires lots of standing and walking and sitting and running and all sorts of other activities that aren't always possible with dysautonomia. Final verdict? I'll stick to cupcakes. Unless you're willing to pay a lot, a lot, to make me make cake pops again.