Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Kristine's Wedding Cake

My sister's wedding cake was the first wedding cake I made. Kristine is a chocoholic, so we knew it would have to be chocolate with raspberry and chocolate mousse fillings. I used Ina Garten's chocolate cake recipe exactly, a raspberry filling I made (following the basic fruit filling recipe) and the mousse is a traditional recipe. I covered it in white chocolate fondant.

Ina's Chocolate Birthday Cake
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups sugar
3/4 cups good cocoa powder (I use penzeys dutch process cocoa)
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup buttermilk, shaken
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 extra-large eggs, at room temperature
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup freshly brewed hot coffee (Starbucks sumatra)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter 2 (8-inch) round cake pans. Line with parchment paper, then butter and flour the pans.
Sift the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, and salt into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and mix on low speed until combined. In another bowl, combine the buttermilk, oil, eggs, and vanilla. With the mixer on low speed, slowly add the wet ingredients to the dry. With mixer still on low, add the coffee and stir just to combine, scraping the bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula. Pour the batter into the prepared pans and bake for 35 to 40 minutes, until a cake tester comes out clean. Cool in the pans for 30 minutes, then turn them out onto a cooling rack and cool completely.

Chocolate Mousse
4 large eggs
1/3 cup sugar
12 oz. semisweet chocolate, chopped
1 1/2 cups cold whipping cream
1 tsp. vanilla
Whisk egs and sugar in a metal bowl set over a double boiler, whisk constantly for about 5 mins or until a candy thermometer reaches 160 degrees. Remove bowl from water, use an electric mixer and beat mixture for 10 minutes until cool and thick.
Place chocolate over double boiler and melt until smooth.
Beat whipping cream and vanilla until stiff peaks form.
Pour melted chocolate over eggs and fold together, fold in cream a bit at a time.
Cover and chill for at least 4 hours.
White Chocolate Fondant
1 lb. white chocolate cand coating
3/4 cup corn syrup
4 lbs. powdered sugar
8 tbsp. hot water
1 cup glucose
2 tsp. vanilla
1/2 tsp. salt
4 tbsp. white crisco
Melt coating in a pot, add corn syrup. Stir to combine and spread on plastic wrap to cool.
Put powdered sugar in a bowl and make a well in the center. Set aside.
Mix glucose, vanilla, salt and vegetable shortening in a saucepan. Heat until shortening is almost melted. Pour into powdered sugar, stir until thick with a spoon. Pour onto counter and knead smooth. Knead the two mixes together and add more powdered sugar until it reaches a dough like consistency.
To store, wrap in plastic wrap and put in a plastic bag.
Fondant will be somewhat hard when it sets, knead it out slowly to bring it back to original consistency.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Our Wedding Cake

I love gingerbread, so I decided to make half of our wedding cake gingerbread, and half red velvet. I varied a bit from a recipe at foodnetwork.com for the gingerbread. I filled each cake with a cream cheese mixture that I bought. When it comes to cakes that will be worked on for a few days, I don’t like to use homemade cream cheese filling because I worry it will spoil. The cream cheese filling at the Cincinnati Cake and Candy Company is amazing though, especially when I add a little flavor to freshen it up. I added minced crystallized ginger to the gingerbread cake, and cherry to the red velvet. I used a red velvet recipe from foodnetwork.com as well. For this cake, I followed the recipe exactly.

Gingerbread Wedding Cake

1 cup vegetable oil, like soy, peanut, or corn
1 cup sugar
½ cup mild molasses
½ cup full flavor molasses
2 large eggs
3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 ½ tablespoons ground ginger
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon ground cloves
¼ teaspoon fresh grated nutmeg
1 cup water
1 tablespoon baking soda

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.

In a stand mixer, beat together the oil, sugar, and molasses. Add the eggs and whisk until smooth.

In another large bowl, whisk together the flour, ground ginger, cinnamon, salt, nutmeg and cloves. On low, beat the flour mixture into the wet mixture until evenly combined.

Heat water in a mug for 1 minute, stir baking soda in water with a fork and beat the water into the batter until just combined.

Pour batter into 2 9” well greased pans. Bake the cake in the center of the oven, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 25-30 minutes.

Slice each layer in half to make 4 layers.

Ginger cream cheese filling

1 tube of cream cheese filling from Cincinnati Cake and Candy Company http://www.cincycakeandcandy.com/
¼ cup crystallized ginger, finely minced

Whisk ingredients together in a bowl, set aside

Sylvia’s Red Velvet Cake

2 1/2 cups sifted cake flour
2 teaspoons cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
2 large eggs
1 cup buttermilk
2 ounces red food coloring
1 teaspoon distilled white vinegar
1 teaspoon vanilla

For the cake: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour 2 (9-inch) cake pans. In a medium bowl or on a piece of waxed paper, sift together flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, and salt; set aside. In a large bowl, cream together sugar and butter. Beat in eggs one at a time. Alternately add flour mixture and buttermilk. Beat in food coloring and vinegar, then add vanilla. Spread the batter evenly in the pans. Bake for 20 to 30 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Turn out onto a rack to cool.

Cherry Cake Filling (or you can use a can of cherry pie filling)

1 16 oz. sack frozen cherries, thawed and chopped, juices reserved
½ cup sugar
4 tbsp. butter
2 tbsp. cornstarch

Heat a nonstick skillet over medium, add all ingredients, bring to a low boil. Stir constantly, about 10 minutes, until no longer milky looking.

Cool at room temperature.

To fill the red velvet cake, I swirled the cream cheese and cherry in each layer.

I iced the cakes in stardard white buttercream (see Maggie’s Wedding cake) and used white chocolate fondant, which I will post later!

JJ's grooms cake was a carrot cake with walnut cream cheese filling, iced in buttercream and covered in fondant. It was so much fun making his cake and everyone loved it. Charm City has nothing on me...

The recipe I decided on was for cupcakes from wilton.com's website. I tried out a few, we found this one to be the most moist. We had tried some with and without vanilla extract, and we decided we like the cakes without the vanilla best.

Carrot Cake

2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups granulated sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons baking soda
4 eggs
1 cup vegetable oil
4 cups freshly shredded carrots
2/3 cup chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 350°F.
In medium bowl, combine flour, sugar, cinnamon and baking soda; mix well.
In large bowl, beat eggs with electric mixer until foamy; add oil in a thin stream and beat well.
Add flour mixture to egg mixture; mix well.
Fold in carrots and nuts.
Pour into well greased pan.

1 recipe made the car, and 1 for each of the 3 layers.

Make sure you use fresh grated carrot, it makes a world of difference and keeps the cake especially moist.

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

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