Saturday, May 10, 2014

Please tell me this looks like cake to you...

Yellow cake is arguably the best smelling of all cake flavors. So don't make the same mistake I did today and pull one out of the oven and then sit down to eat a chef salad for lunch while the cakey aroma wafts through the air...because there is nothing more unbelievably unsatisfying as eating rabbit food for lunch while the delicious, buttery yellow cake smell haunts your nostrils. And this is even coming from someone who voluntarily likes and eats salads on a regular basis. Yes, there are actually people in this world who enjoy a good salad. I know our margins are insanely low compared to people in this world who enjoy a good piece of cake:
Topped with chocolate ribbon frosting, and sprinkles-
because they still make everything better.

I'll get to the deets about this chocolate-iced scrumptiousness here in just a moment...I feel my strikingly successful attempts at wooing you with my humor every weekend has earned me a small "whine and cheese" session (that's what I call it when I bitch about things and have a glass of wine handy; it sounds so much more entertaining that way). It has been one of those weeks around here. Between dust storms making me even more embarrassed about living in the armpit of NM while I tried to entertain family on a very brief visit (timing may or may not have been affected by said dust storms), things randomly popping up dead around here (birds, rodents), and finding snakes in the yard (OK, so it was just the one, but still), I'm about ready to consider becoming a full-time shut in. All the while when I was dealing with dead animal carcasses and existential crises solo this week, my lucky hubster was working down in Hawaii for a week, flying and hobnobbing with celebrities...
I'm not sure what she's wearing, but she's still fabulous either way.
Can we talk about how jealous I am??!? I mean, I know I shouldn't be because he was working the whole time he was gone minus one day, but how fortuitous that he gets to meet the House Bunny herself, Anna Farris, on his ONE day off! He really has the luck of the Irish on his side. Apparently my heritage is not nearly as kind and obviously more self deprecating. I definitely probably made myself a few drinks with tiny umbrellas in them this week to soothe my longing for tropical regions. Thank you for allowing me to whine, now, on to the tasty part...
Don't look, its naked!
I finally got to try out my cake leveler (pictured above) with this cake. Normally I don't because I'm awesome at evening out my batter before throwing it in the oven, and directly after a 10-minute cooling period, I place my cakes face-side down on a towel on my cooling rack, which flattens everything out even further. But since this cake obviously was aware of the theme of my week, it decided to come out a bit lopsided and disappointing. Looking for a silver lining, I was antsy to use my leveler because it combines two of my favorite things: garotte wire a la Hitman, and end results of perfection. You also better believe I ate that discarded piece in the back with a dollop of chocolate frosting...just making sure my cake was safe to eat before giving it to friends and taking one for the team. I'm extremely loyal like that.
It's so..smooth.
Last week I told you about my failure when it came to smoothing canned butter cream...pictured above is my crumb coat with canned chocolate frosting. I wasn't even trying and this stuff smoothed on like the cake gods were giving me the win I so desperately needed. I was honestly a little sad to cover it up. But since Kate doesn't bake plain cakes, I went for the gold...
Chocolate ribbon, squee!
And proceeded to ribbon the entire cake. Here you see it without its top layer of frosting, or cake toupee, if you will. This technique is fairly straight forward. All a caker needs is frosting of his or her choice, piping bag fitted with a petal tip, and strong wrists. Starting with the small end of the petal tip facing your fine self, hold the bag straight up and down and pipe out little ribbons, swaying your wrist back and forth. By the time I was halfway through icing this cake, I realized my entire body was mimicking the swaying of my wrists, and the cake and I had been having an intimate, junior-high style slow dance together. "Careless Whisper" was of course playing in my mind, and cake, I'm never gonna dance again, the way I danced with you. But mostly because I hate dancing. So, don't take it personally.
We've gone from naked cake, to bald cake, to fully clothed and covered cake.
To add the cake toupee, just ribbon in the circle with the small end of the petal tip still facing you. To cover up any premature balding spots, just add sprinkles (we can't all be perfect).

I was SO worried about the chocolate icing just looking like a  poo-cake. But, thanks to the ribboning, even if it does look like a piece of poo to you, I think we can both agree it is the prettiest piece of poo you've seen all week, amiright? Other than sore wrists (its tedious, people!), this one turned out almost as I had planned, so I owe the cake gods a sacrifice. Looks like I'll be eating another salad for lunch tomorrow to appease the gods while looking for wrist strengthening exercises and leaving the cakes be. Til next time, my fellow eaters!

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