Ideas for an Anniversary Cake
Posted: 16 February 2011 01:37 PM   [ Ignore ]
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I want to surprise my parents with an anniversary cake.  Their anniversary is this weekend and I’m treating them to a little get-a-way to their favorite casino in the regional area.  They have been married for 34 years.  Well, I asked my mom what is their favorite cake, icing, and filling and she said it is coconut w/ pineapple filling and whip cream type icing. 

Now, I must tell you before you start throwing out ideas that I am a novice at this baking thing.  I’m currently taking decorating classes and we haven’t learned yet how to pipe flowers, leaves, and roses, although some of the drop flowers look easy enough to learn without going through the class for instruction. 

Do any of you mind supplying some ideas of what can I do to incorporate their favorite ingredients inside of simple and elegant decorated cake that a beginner can do?

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After some time to think it over during lunch and by researching RCB, I think I narrowed it down.  Tell me what yall think.

Basically, I’ll be making a Pina Coloda Cake.  The cake will be a Classic Genoise which will be coated with a pina coloda syrup, iced with a simple lightly tinted colored (haven’t decided on the color yet) whipped cream frosting, filled with a neoclassic pineapple buttercream, and garnished with toasted coconut and sliced pineapples.

After reading the receipe for the Classic Genoise, it stated to use 2 tbs liqueur of your choice.  Which type do you think is the best to use?  The neoclassic pineapple buttercream and the pina coloda syrup both calls for rum.  Actually the pina coloda syrup calls for light rum so I have no idea what’s the difference b/c I’m not that much of a drinker of liqueurs.  My guess is that it means light in color but maybe someone else can correct me if I’m wrong.  I don’t know if I should use rum in the cake batter since two other elements of the cake will have rum in it.

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Posted: 16 February 2011 04:45 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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Classic genoise with pina colada syrup sounds perfect.  Definitely make the syrup with rum, as specified, but don’t add any to the genoise batter before baking.  Light rum means rum that is clear/white in color and has a milder taste.  If you don’t have any use for a larger bottle of rum, liquor stores sell little tiny bottles, and they’ll probably have one in Bacardi white rum that will work nicely.

Whipped cream sounds good too.  If you want to pipe it, be sure to stabilize with either cornstarch (if it is fairly rich) or gelatin (if it is less rich).  Be sure not to overbeat the cream, consider doing the last bit by hand.  If it threatens to curdle (get lumpy), stop beating and chill for an hour or two before resuming beating (I do this regularly now to improve smoothness).  By more or less rich cream, I still mean heavy whipping cream, it’s just that in some places you can get pasteurized heavy cream with a 40% butterfat content, while in others there is only ultra-pasteurized available, and its butterfat is generally lower.

For the filling, you could make your life easier (and the cake lighter) by making the pineapple puree and then just thickening that with either gelatin or agar and using it for your filling.  I’ve done this recently and it was a very nice filling.  The pineapple neoclassic is very rich and doesn’t have a strong pineapple flavor, which is fine, but I guess I prefer genoise paired with fruit instead of buttercreams.

Don’t worry too much about the piping, you can frost with swirls and skip it if you like.  Or, if you want to try something easy, make drop star borders at the base and top edges.  You can also make ridged sides with the spatula and then cover the top with rosettes.

Good luck, please consder posting a pic!

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Posted: 16 February 2011 06:10 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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And a tip Julie gave me before is to be sure to do your whipped cream piping/swirling before it sets.  In other words, stabilize and use (rather than stabilize, put in a bowl for later, then use).

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Posted: 17 February 2011 03:52 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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Wallace, your cake sounds delicious!  Just a note, if you don’t want to bother with the pina colada syrup and the rum thing—I made a coconut cake this weekend which used a coconut syrup.  It was just a simple syrup, then with about 3/4 of a cup of sweetened flake coconut added.  Let it sit for 30 minutes and up to four hours, strain, and then boil the syrup slightly to concentrate it, about 5 minutes.  Then brush onto your cut cake layers.  It really added a delicious coconut flavor and moistness.  If you like a touch of alcohol you could always stir in a little malibu (coconut run) for flavoring, but I didn’t think it was needed.  Have fun baking!!

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Posted: 19 February 2011 10:35 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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I would like to thank everyone for their responses.  I have one more question.  I made White Velvet Butter Cake batter for cup cakes and I had enough left over to make a 8” round cake.  Instead of making the Classic Genoise, will the syrup adhere and mend well with the White Velvet Butter Cake.  I’m just curious b/c I certainly can use this cake instead of making another one if it’s not going to be much of a problem.

Oh, and Loppy your coconut syrup sounds awesome.  I’ve decided to do that on instead!!

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Posted: 19 February 2011 11:05 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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You can syrup the white velvet according to the directions in the wedding cake chapter, but it will be far less syrup (and so less flavor) than what you would use with a sponge-type cake like genoise.  You could add coconut and/or preserved pineapple to the filling or topping to help add more flavor to the white cake.

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Posted: 20 February 2011 11:50 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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Ok, I tried doing the Classic Genoise this morning and I ran into a slight road block.  The recipe is from RCB on pg 120.  I just finished beating the eggs and sugar mixture on high for 5 minutes and was about to sift the flour and corn starch together, but got really confused on how much cornstarch should be added.  If someone can look over the recipe and clarify this for me, I would greatly appreciate it.  Oh, and I don’t intend to you use the syrup noted inside the recipe.  Loppy, suggested a coconut syrup instead and was going to use the one he suggest in this thread.

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Posted: 20 February 2011 01:43 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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It looks to me like 1/2 cup less 1T, so 7T.  Always better to weigh it for 50g, though, if you can.  I can see how you were confused my the minus sign maybe meaning"to,” but I think it means “less” here. Good luck!!!  I have yet to tackle a genoise!

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Posted: 21 February 2011 10:27 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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Well, I made the cake this weekend and I must say that I learned a lot about baking preparation LOL!  I had to make this cake three times because the first time I didn’t clarify the butter and the second time I misread something in the directions.  Finally, I got it right on the third try.  This weekend I learned that I must be more prepared and know exactly what I’m going to do in the kitchen before I even get started or else I’ll be in there all day long!!!!!

I took some pics, but I’m having a hard time posting them on the site b/c I think the size of the pics are too big.  The smallest I can get a pic is on my cell and that’s 1MB.  I believe the site only allows 400K max.  I would greatly appreciate it if someone can provide some insight on how I can make my pics smaller in size so I can share them with yall good, helpful people on here.

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Posted: 21 February 2011 02:46 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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I think there are a number of ways to shrink down the picture.  One that works for me is to open the picture in Microsoft Office Picture Manager.  Then click on “Edit Pictures” and a sidebar opens on the right.  In the sidebar, click on “resize”, and then fill in the size you want.  Remember to save changes.

I think if you do a search there are a few other ways posted in older threads.

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Posted: 21 February 2011 11:55 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
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So Wallace, what did you think of the finished product?  Did you get to sample it?  Would you make the same cake again??  Also for shrinking pictures, I use a site called “shrinkpictures.com” and just do them one at a time.

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Posted: 22 February 2011 10:38 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]
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Loppy, I ate a small sample of it, but I’m not a fan of light and airy cakes.  When I hear the word cake, I like them to sweet and have some density to them.  The flavors were definately there though.  The coconut syrup you recommended was very prominent. I will definately use that in other cakes I will make in the future.  My mother, who enjoys these types of cakes, said she really like it.  The whipped cream from RCB was very good.

Now that I know how to shrink the pics, I will post some pics of the final product in a few days.

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Posted: 22 February 2011 11:18 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]
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Here’s a pic of the cake.

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Posted: 23 February 2011 02:31 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]
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Your cake looks lovely!  The piping looks great, can’t believe you are just now taking classes!!

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Posted: 23 February 2011 08:21 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 14 ]
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Looks great!  Thanks for posting the photo smile

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Posted: 23 February 2011 10:27 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 15 ]
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The cake looks wonderful!  The pink is such a pretty shade.  Hey, you even made it into the bake-off with your heard shaped pan!!

I like a denser cake and a nice, heavy buttercream myself, but I made the SMBC for the first time—it’s very fluffy compared to regular buttercream—and I’m really falling in love with it, so maybe with time, you (and I) will come to love the lighter fluffier side of baking!

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