This month I celebrated my 1 year anniversary of baking from RHC with the Heavenly Cake Bakers.
I have baked 46 cakes from the book:
20 (out of 39) Butter and Oil Cakes
11 (out of 19) Sponge Cakes
6 (out of 13) Mostly Flourless Cakes and Cheesecakes
9 (out of 23) Baby Cakes - I am not counting the 3 frosting recipes in this section
I have made any of the 4 Wedding Cakes - Rose excused HCB from making any of the wedding cakes - though I might attempt to make one someday, .
One more cake and I will be exactly halfway done with the book yay!
It has been a really good year. I have learned A LOT! I have grown from not liking cakes so much to loving cakes. I have learned to appreciate weighing ingredients. I also have accumulated a lot of cake pans, decorating tools, 2 oven thermometer, 2 instant thermometer, 5 kinds of sugar, 9 kinds of flour (well okay so some of them are from bread baking ). Also, most importantly, I have met a lot of really nice and cool bakers out there who - even though I have not met in person - I am proud to say are my friends.
So to Rose, Marie, all my HCB friends, and all of my Rose’s forum friends, here’s to 1 year of baking, and let’s hope the next year will be just as exciting .
Wow Jenn, what an acomplishment!!! You should pat yourself on the back. I am no where close to that. I found too that since I started baking from Rose’s books, I have accumulated so much baking tools, more than my husband would like. But they made all the difference from producing a cake and an exceptional, wonderful, to die for cake.
Next year will definitey be great, you still have half the book to go through Lots more baking accomplishments to experience.
As an absolute beginner (4 of Rose’s recipes so far), I am jealous and excited for you! In only four recipes, I feel like I’ve learned so much, too! How wonderful to have tried so many recipes! I feel like the Julie and Julia movie should have a sequel for Rose. : ) And Rose, if you ever read this, I must admit that you have turned me into what my husband jokes as a cake snob. I had a chocolate cake from a restaurant the other day that was supposed to be in the Top Ten decadent desserts according to Food Network. I didn’t like it! I thought the perfect chocolate cake with the mocha espresso buttercream FAR surpassed this dessert. Hooray for your one year and hooray for Rose!
Sarah, welcome and congratulations! I think it is awesome to be on the starting point. It might seem frustrated from where you’re sitting (i.e. you have a lot to catch up on) but I think it is exciting, you have a lot of good things to discover!
Julie and Anne - the favorites are:
Apple Caramel Charlotte (I still dream of the bavarian cream filling and the tart apples)
Saint Honore Trifle
Baby Lemon Cheesecakes
Chocolate Ice Cream Cake
Almond Shamah Chiffon
Apple Upside Down Cake
Plum & Blueberry Upside Down Torte
See the pattern? Lots of fruit cakes .
Favorite buttercream from RHC: chocolate egg-white buttercream
Favorite buttercream of all times: lemon curd mousseline
Anne - you are so funny. I don’t feel I am in a position to compare LOL. Though I have learned leaps and bounds through this baking adventure, I feel I am still sooo “immature” when it comes to baking - compared to the likes of you!
A side story…
Last weekend I made Apple Cake from Dorie Greenspan’s new book “Around the French Table.” The recipe was very easy and the result was good, but when I started looking at the recipe I was so uncomfortable with the fact that I had to measure ingredients - there’s no weight measurement! I’ve been so used with Rose’s recipes that it is what I expect to see. Even Peter Reinhart has weigh measurement in his bread book (thank goodness!).
(I’m off on the Baby Cakes count though…even when I don’t count the three frostings, I get 25 in all. Did you count all the cupcakes as one?)
My baking has been sharply curtailed since I returned to work recently, but I’m looking forward to trying more from RHC and TCB, too!! Like you, since getting RHC my baking equipment has doubled or even trebled…the only thing I allowed myself to splurge on when I wasn’t working. Now I have a Nordic daisy pan, heritage pan, madeleine pan, 6 cup bundt, etc. etc. Not counting the cake strips, decorating tips, parchment rounds, a fine grind food mill, more silicone spatulas, measuring cups, spoons, and a giant balloon whisks. And how can we forget the actual good stuff…white chocolate, 68% chocolate, 99% chocolate, cream of coconut, coconut cream powder, dutch process cocoa, American spoon preserves, and all that high fat butter…yikes!!!
Thanks for your post and making me think about all of the great fun I’ve had with RHC since I got it in February!
Jenn, the photo collage is awesome- when I first saw it I thought it was a professional photo from Dorie Greenspan’s book, then I looked more closely and realized that it was all your work!
I’m with you on the weights issue- the only book of Dorie’s that I’ve baked from is the Paris Sweets book, recipes in that came from professional french bakeries and so were devleoped with weights. I find that recipes developed with weights and baked with volumes don’t work out so well, no matter how careful you are.
Case in point, the Korova/World Peace cookies. First time I baked them I used the World Peace version (volumes), and thought they were nothing special. Then I tried again using Pierre Herme’s original weights, and discovered that they have a beautiful, unique texture and flavor. I’ll check out baking books from the library that are volume-only, but I’ve never bought one that didn’t have weights. It’s a great way to narrow down the range of baking books that I’m considering purchasing.
Oh wow, Loopy, you’ve made 38 since February? Congrats and way to go! Seeing your count, butter cakes are more of a favorite in the house?
Speaking of equipment again, I have 4 whisks, 2 kinds of cake strips (Wilton and Rose’s), a yard stick , 2 cake tester. And when butter or green & black white chocolate is on sale at the grocery stores, I bought several boxes and store in the freezer. And the butter goes by fast!
Julie - the photo collage is created last night, using Picasa photo editor. It is a free photo editing software. I just downloaded it last week and really love it. It is easy to use, you can crop your pictures, make the pictures brighter, softer, etc etc. It is a lot fancier than Paint, or Picnik but just as easy.
About Dorie’s book, I joined French Fridays with Dorie and so far her savory recipes are really good. I think of her dessert as a quick and easy things - so I wouldn’t mind making it. But it wouldn’t be something that I would give to friend or bring to a party (not as impressive as Rose’s ).
I feel I am still sooo “immature” when it comes to baking - compared to the likes of you!
You is waaaaaaaay ahead of me, Jenn!
And WOW! the photo collage is gorgeous!!! I thought it was the cover of the other book you mentioned in your post, but then when I opened it, I recognized many of the pics from your posts! You sort of forget each thing someone makes, and seeing all these pics together—that they were the ones YOU made—well, I am truly flabbergasted and gobsmacked.
That is some wonderful, wonderful baking!
Did you count all the cupcakes as one?
I think each cupcake should get counted individually. ; )
Anne, you just put in words what I couldn’t. When I made the collage last night, I initially want to put all 46 pictures, but there’s not enough space. So I settled for 22 of the best looking ones. And then when I was done and saw it, I was shocked - of all the different colors and different variety of cakes. As you said, it is one thing to see one cake at at time, but all together in 1 picture, that’s a different view! Hope this doesn’t sound too much like a self-applauding/arrogant thing LOL.
Loopy, I count the cupcakes individually. I figured they are cakes too - and sometimes I even make regular cakes as cupcakes.