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Happy Everything
Posted on Thursday 4 December 2008 at 4:13 pm

Further Adventures in Baking

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I love to bake and I'm not too bad at it. Usually. Something about these cakes is turning into much more of a challenge than I ever anticipated.

The peppermint tree cakes went perfectly today. I guess after causing so many headaches with crushing the peppermint, they decided to take it easy on me. I just bought a can of frosting and died it green so there really wasn't much that could go wrong on that front. I've got twelve tree cakes and a bowl of green frosting ready to be put together tomorrow.

The snowmen, on the other hand, just wanted to be pains in the butt today. The cakes themselves weren't bad. I put too much batter in the pan the first go round and had to cut off the excess mounds that rose on the back, but no biggie. Perhaps the icing decided to be a pain in the butt to get revenge for me cutting the butts off the snowmen?

The recipe I found for the eggnog cakes also included a recipe for eggnog frosting. Step one was to combine flour and eggnog in a sauce pan and cook on low heat, constantly stirring, until it got very thick. After 15 minutes of stirring, I though my arm was going to fall off. At 20 minutes, I wasn't positive if it was very thick, but it was certainly thick and my arm was seriously about to fall off so I moved on. Bad idea. Come the end, I had something resembling frosting soup. It was certainly not frosting. So I tried again. This time I was stirring for at least half an hour and it got very thick. Honest it did. Either I screwed up somewhere else or it still wasn't thick enough because the final product was still way too runny.

Since that recipe and I did not seem to be able to get along, I decided to see if I could find a different one. A quick google for "eggnog frosting" turned up a recipe with no cooking required so I went with that one. Everything was going fine until I got to the bit about adding a pinch of cinnamon. I didn't pay enough attention and grabbed the wrong jar. I'll let y'all guess what spice I grabbed instead of the cinnamon. I caught the wrong smell and realized my mistake approximately .2 seconds after I dropped it into the mixing bowl. There didn't appear to be any way to scrape out the stuff I added and salvage the rest so there went my third attempt at eggnog frosting. I decided to give it one more go then realized I'd used up all my sticks of butter. No biggie. A quick trip to the grocery store fixed that and I managed to do everything right the fourth time. At least, I think I did. Even that batch seems a little too runny, but not soupy like the first couple of tries so I'm running with it. I divided the frosting into two containers, added black icing coloring to the smaller so I'll have black for the snowmen's hats, eyes, and noses, and threw the whole lot in the fridge.

End result:

12 peppermint candy tree cakes

12 eggnog snowmen cakes with six butts cut off (five left because I ate one and it was yummy)

Three containers of frosting

A big mess

Tomorrow I volunteer at the elementary school in the morning, then I'll decorate the cakes in time for the department party at 5:00. If anything goes drastically wrong tomorrow, there won’t be time to fix it, but the cakes won't be as good if I frost them today. Here's hoping everything goes right.


lady_katvic at 9:32 pm on 04 December 2008 (UTC) (Link)
ooooo, I want a peppermint tree cake. Never had one of those before. Hope everything goes well for you tomorrow. Have fun.
bratty_jedi at 10:30 pm on 04 December 2008 (UTC) (Link)
I'd offer to save you one, but I don't think it'd be any good by the time I get to Texas. I suppose if they're really yummy, I could bake some there. Now that I know how to crush peppermints without breaking appliances.
lady_bracknell at 11:18 pm on 04 December 2008 (UTC) (Link)
I so wish I could eat those....
bratty_jedi at 2:10 am on 05 December 2008 (UTC) (Link)
I sorry
littlepixiechic at 11:33 pm on 04 December 2008 (UTC) (Link)
They look so good . . .
bratty_jedi at 2:11 am on 05 December 2008 (UTC) (Link)
I'm not a huge fan of peppermint so I didn't sneak a taste of those, but the eggnog is quite yummy.
labellerose at 1:12 am on 05 December 2008 (UTC) (Link)
Mmmmm...looks yummy!
Are you on the floo network? I'll be right over ! :)
Also, I'll bite, what was the mystery spice?
bratty_jedi at 2:11 am on 05 December 2008 (UTC) (Link)
Sorry. No fire place here.

labellerose at 4:13 am on 05 December 2008 (UTC) (Link)
Cumin? what a bummer-too bad it wasn't chipoltle, pairing that with sweet seems to be all the rage in foodie circles, these days.
Guess I'll have to cheer myself up by looking at your cake pictures-which look great,btw
bratty_jedi at 6:44 pm on 06 December 2008 (UTC) (Link)
Yeah, I'm not sure I'd be willing to try the chipotle even if it is all the rage.

Thanks :)

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