Tuesday, March 18, 2008

That's One Sexy Cake

This past weekend, I got the wild idea to decorate a cake for my dear friend Becky's bachelorette party. Please, keep in mind I've never really decorated a cake before. But, hey! why not? That's what this blog is all about, trial and error. And why not make a cake look like a bustiere, after all a lingerie shower was involved! Nothing in this cake is from scratch, I mean nothing. And I'm not ashamed to admit it. This was a last minute effort!

For this project, I used:
- Box cake mix prepared in a 9x13 pan
- Pink vanilla frosting
- Cream cheese frosting
- Sparkly pink sprinkles
- That white gel decorating stuff.

Here's what I got:
I started by drawing a template out on an 8x11 piece of paper, basically just showing me where to cut her sexy curves...so they weren't lopsided. Don't mind her tan. She REALLY liked it in the oven. So much so, she wanted to stay in longer than she should have! I let her. I'm nice like that. Then I started to frost her...

and frost her..... for what seemed like forever...

Don't forget to eat the cake you cut out dipped in extra frosting...duh!

Then I began to outline the design of the lingerie in white.....

And pumped up this fashionable lil' thing with some pink sparkles.....

Then her tan went away with the help of some cream cheese frosting! She also got a little lace-up action added....and she's done!
What I learned:
- Making frosting look nice is near impossible
- Showing up to a party with a lingerie cake is a total blast!!!
- I'll keep trying with this cake decorating thing, it's kind of fun. However, I think I need a class!
Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, March 3, 2008

Just Like Bread and Budda Darlin'....

I know I have been absent for awhile. Life gets busy, and kara doesn't cook. This also has to do with the fact that I need to go grocery shopping...BAD. We're talking, I've been waiting around for over a month to get some motivation to go buy food BAD.

Anyways, my friends Whitney and Josh cook dinner for me every Thursday night when I come over to visit their darling little sons. A few weeks ago Whitney made some DELICIOUS bread from a recipe she found in the Post-Dispatch. This recipe is part of a collection from this book:

I have made the Crusty Bread recipe twice and it has turned out wonderfully each time. I tried to go buy the book, but Border's was just plain all out. I need to go back and try again. The concept allows you to store dough in the fridge and break it off as needed to bake. I have not tried that whole part of it yet, but I will.

Here's the Recipe (As Found on STLtoday.com):
Simple Crusty Bread
Yield: 4 (1-pound) loaves, about 64 slices
1 1/2 tablespoons active dry yeast
1 1/2 tablespoons coarse salt
3 cups lukewarm water
6 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus additional for dusting dough
Cornmeal, optional

Mix yeast and salt into the water in a large bowl or plastic container. Stir in flour, mixing until there are no dry patches; the dough will be quite loose. Cover, but not airtight. Let the dough rise at room temperature 2 to 5 hours. Bake immediately, if desired, or refrigerate, loosely covered, for up to 2 weeks (the dough is easier to handle when it's cold). When ready to bake, sprinkle a little flour on the dough; cut off a grapefruit-sized piece. Turn dough in floured hands to lightly stretch the surface until smooth and round on top and lumpy on the bottom. To use a baking stone: Place a baking stone on the middle oven rack. Set oven to 450 degrees. Sprinkle a pizza peel with cornmeal. Place the dough on the peel; let rise 40 minutes. Repeat with remaining dough (or refrigerate).

To use a loaf pan without a baking stone: Stretch rounded dough into an oval and place into a greased, nonstick loaf pan. Let rest 40 minutes if fresh, 1 hour if refrigerated. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. To bake: Place a broiler pan on the bottom of the oven; let broiler pan reach 450 degrees. Dust loaf with flour; slash top in a cross with a serrated knife. Slide loaf from pizza peel onto baking stone or place loaf pan on middle oven rack. Pour 1 cup water into the broiler pan; close oven door quickly to trap steam. Bake until well browned, about 30 minutes; let cool completely before cutting.
Per slice: 47 calories; no fat; 1g protein; 10g carbohydrate; no fiber; 133mg sodium.

Adapted from "Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day: The Discovery that Revolutionizes Home Baking," by Jeff Hertzberg and Zoe Francois.

Here's What I Got:
I would've taken pictures throughout the process, however I was frantically running around trying to make Pioneer Woman's Meal of Love (make it.) for the boyfriend. He loved the bread though!

What good is bread without butter? I decided to make my own honey butter with this bread for my community group. They loved it. Honey butter makes it quite easy to impress, with minimal to no effort, or ingredients.

Here's the Recipe:
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup honey

Beat together slowly in a small bowl.

Here's Wat I got:
Don't be intimidated by the extensive amount of ingredients involved in this recipe:
Done and Done. And TASTY!!!!
What I learned:
-Bread can be annoying, and one loaf doesn't always turn out like the rest. next time, I may attempt to make the loaves in an actual loaf pan, as to prevent blobiness.
-I want to add Cinnamon to that honey butter and make it with hot yeast rolls for dinner!
- A Valentines Day dinner of pan seared rib eye, homemade bread, salad with goat cheese and dried cherries, roasted garlic mashed potatoes, topped off with ice cream sundaes...is sure to please ;)
Thanks for stopping by!