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2-tiered cake - purple flowers
Posted: 17 June 2008 03:14 PM   [ Ignore ]
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This is a 2-tiered cake (10 and 6 inches) that I made for a friend’s daughter’s baby shower.  They specifically requested an all white layer cake, with Raspberry Buttercream filling, and vanilla buttercream frosting.  All recipes were Rose’s - her white butter cake, mousseline buttercream with raspberry puree, and standard mousseline with pure vanilla extracts to taste.  I was hoping to find a nice bouquet of pink flowers and some fresh raspberries, but the store only had these maily purple ones, and not a single raspberry in stock.  I quickly snipped the bouquet apart in the parking lot and placed them onto the cake which was sitting in the front seat of the car, door open, air conditioner on full, blazing sun beating down - the Mousseline held up wonderfully!  Please ignore the two white lines which are rays of sunshine peaking through the sunroof of the car (opened just slightly to allow any heat to escape while I ran in to the store for the flowers).  Also ignore the mis-matched and non-coordinating kitchen towels that were used to prop the cake plate and keep it level on the bucket seat smile.

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Posted: 17 June 2008 03:31 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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What a gorgeous cake! As I read your post, I though: Who cares if there are no raspberries and no pink flowers? The cake is lovely as it is! It’s funny how as cake creators, we have an image of how the finished cake will look, and if it doesn’t turn out exactly that way, we get disappointed, even though the finished product is every bit as beautiful. I always have to fight the disappointment in having my cakes not turn out exactly like the pre-conceived Platonic ideal I started with.

As for the mis-matched towels . . . well, I won’t tell Martha.

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Posted: 17 June 2008 05:05 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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Patrincia, lovelly and thank you for sharing.  What number start tip did you use?  Love the scrolls.  Flowers look lovely by all means, and you arrange them so well.  Purple is my favorite color.  One thing, since you avoid adding the liquor to the mousseline, have you tried using syrup (simple syrup, honey, strained preserves) or some other liquid?  perhaps it would smooth out the mousseline as smooth as when I use the liquor.  When I added the incredible amount of thinned out CR strawberry conserve, the mousseline still held well, and so smooth to frost.

I don’t like to carry cakes in the car seat, fyi (I think you just used the seat as a work table).  Best to carry cakes on the floor in front of the passenger seat, it is the most stable surface in the car the closer to the ground.

And YES, I detest when my cakes come out picture perfect of a customer’s request!  I try to tell every customer about my surprises.

Here some commercial cakes I delivered, setup, and flowered!

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Posted: 17 June 2008 05:19 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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Oh Hector - I just love the photos!!!  I hope you are soaking in all the professional tip and tricks of the trade!!!  Did you get to make any of them, or just set-up and place the flowers?  Did you transport them stacked or did you stack on site?

As for my cake - I usually transport cakes on the floor of my mini-van, but I had to use my MILs car on this day, which has a very small door opening, and an even smaller floor area, and I was afraid I wouldn’t be able to get the cake in or out without bumping into something.  I was also driving the cake by myself and I wanted to be sure that I could catch the cake if it started to shift (because I rushed out the door without putting a dowel down the center of the cake - oops).  I put a non-skid mat between the cake plate and slippery car seat, and the cake didn’t budge at all.

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Posted: 17 June 2008 05:30 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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Those are some mighty beautiful cakes, Hector.

Tell me, are your customers okay with the “surprises” you warn them about? One of the reasons I’ve turned down making cakes professionally is because I don’t want to deal with the Bridezillas of the world.

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Posted: 17 June 2008 05:30 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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Oops, forgot to answer your questions.  The tip I used it my new favorite - the Wilton 1M.  No I haven’t tried simple syrup, honey, etc in place of the liqueur.  This particular batch of mousseline wasn’t quite a smooth as usual for me, but I was in a rush and didn’t have time to let the cake chill properly before my final once over.  I promise I will try a batch with liqueur soon and see if it is smoother.

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Posted: 17 June 2008 06:10 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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1M, great!

I got to sift flour, crack eggs, and measure butter.  But the flowers were done by me.  Cake transported on 32oF refrigerated van.  Cake done about 6 hours prior to delivery so firms up.  All genoise and whipped cream (not sure if stabilized or not, don’t think so).

These cakes were transported stacked, which makes me nervous.  The van compartment is flat and cold, which helps tremendously specially when cakes didn’t have time to sit in the walk in fridge for at least 2 hours prior to delivery.  No staking.  Dowel rods were wooden chopsticks and they only put 5 even on the largest tiers…. nervous.  The larger cakes do shift (the whole thing) from the cake board, and I have reported this to the chefs; they normally use acrylic as a cake board or traditional board with foil; a long non angled icing spatula is on my hand to push back the cake shall it shifted.

Yes, when I show up with cake, I see everyone involved in running the wedding so stressed out!  Brides need to know how torturous it is to have a wedding!  It is almost like slavery work under a whip.

I show my customers my portfolio in person, and see when their eyes brighten up.  Then, they pick components from one cake and another, and I try my best to match color to the most.  When they ask me for exact pattern, I not promise.  I also ask not to bring any pictures of cakes.  By looking at my portfolio, I think they know I am a wild cake maker, so warnings accepted it is a event Bridezilla vs Cakezilla.  Which September 13th will be, on my cousin’s 7-cake wedding!  I always feel, if they want a different type of cake, with a more traditional approach, they can go somewhere else, which there are many bakeries out there for that.  I really need-not to do what is offered somewhere else, that is my mission statement in my business.

=)

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Posted: 17 June 2008 10:01 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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You always work magic with flowers—I think the purple is quite beautiful—I think I like it more than I would with just pink!

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Posted: 17 June 2008 11:36 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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It’s beautiful, Patrincia!  Awesome job…  Thanks for sharing.

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Posted: 18 June 2008 09:10 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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Thanks guys - I was hoping for pink to tie in the color of the flowers with the raspberry filling, but my friend knew it all depended on what flowers were available when I went to the store.  I like the look overall, it’s just completely different than what I had planned in my mind smile.

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Posted: 18 June 2008 10:39 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
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Patrincia,

Thanks for sharing!  What a lovely, inspiring cake!  I love the contrast between the flowers and the white cake, it keeps it from looking too much like a wedding cake (I think only wedding cakes should look like wedding cakes).  Fresh raspberries would have accomplished the same thing, nice idea.  And beautiful piping! 

Hector, thanks also for the pics (so lovely!) and the details about transporting a cake, very interesting.  The last time I transported a cake, it went in the passenger seat, on a pedestal cake stand, with a seat belt around the stem of the pedestal to hold it in place.  I also felt better knowing I could brace it with my hand going down hills and around turns. 

Julie

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Posted: 18 June 2008 11:53 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]
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I love it Patrincia. It is feminine and cheerful smile
Hector, on your fist picture, the elements on the sides of the cake are painted on it? How do you do that? I will also have to try adding liquid to the mousseline…

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Posted: 18 June 2008 01:05 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]
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Thanks Julie and Marina!

Hector - I was just thinking, although my vanilla version of Rose’s Mousseline doesn’t have liqueur, it does contain vanilla extract, which we all know is mostly alcohol.  I’ll still try a liqueur as you suggested, but my vanilla extract version really isn’t too buttery at all.

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Posted: 18 June 2008 02:05 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]
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Patrincia,  Your cake is truly a marvel!  I cannot believe that you put the flowers on in a hot parking lot.  How did you attach the flowers to the cake?  I am so impressed and can only aspire to walk in your shadow.

Annie

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Posted: 18 June 2008 02:49 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 14 ]
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Annie - you’re much to kind, really - Rose’s recipes are the real star of this cake!  I’m completely self taught with the help of The Cake Bible (and now this great website), and you can certainly do it too!!!

It was definitely a scorcher of a day here, and the makeshift decorating session in that parking lot was held at high noon (12:30 to be exact), but Rose’s Mousseline, in combination with the AC on full blast, held up very well.  Definitely not my first choice for a suitable location to add the finishing touches, but I tend to work well under stress, which is a good thing since I always seem to be running late! 

I was using my MIL’s car on this particular day, and unlike my mini-van, her car is very small and low to the ground.  It was really awkward standing outside the passenger door, alternating between hunching over and hovering w/slightly bended knees trying to position myself at the right height to get the job done.  I’ll say after about 20 minutes my back and thighs were killing me, I could feel beads of sweat forming on my scalp, and I cursed the fact that I hadn’t driven to the store the night before to purchase the flowers so I could have placed them on the cake at home.  For me every cake is a learning experience and I will avoid ever doing that again!!!

As for the attaching of the flowers - I cut the stems completely off so that the flower heads just sat on the buttercream, which was just soft enough to allow them to stay in place without shifting.  I like to cut the stems off because I don’t like poking them into the cake (yuck).  For those times when sticking a stem into the cake is kind of necessary, you can push a length of drinking straw into the cake, and then insert the stem into the straw (with a dab of buttercream if the flower is heavy).

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Posted: 18 June 2008 02:59 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 15 ]
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Just Gorgeous!

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