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18 June 2009

Taste Test Part 1

In October, my best friend will marry her boyfriend. There has been a flurry of wedding planning going on, with me spending almost every weekend with them trying to help as best I can (I planned mine for almost three years so I'm practically an expert...OK, not an expert). When my friend told me what she had planned for her wedding cake, I dropped dead on the spot. Well, not dead, but my heart did stop beating for a split second. She was going to order three sheet cakes from a grocery store and stack them herself. I could not let this happen. This is the most important day in her life, besides the two days when her babies were born.
Being the selfless person that I am (please pardon the ego; I'm not really this self-absorbed), I offered to make her cake for free. All I asked was that she supply the ingredients (we're talking boxed cake mix so it'll be easier but homemade frosting and fillings).
So we had a little chat. "What flavors do you want for your tiers?" I asked. She knew she wanted the bottom layer to have an amaretto flavor (I'm still working out the kinks for this one). She turned to her fiance and asked what he wanted. "Red velvet," he mumbled through a mouthful of Doritos. Well, sorry dude, that's what flavor the groom's cake is so let's go with something else. How about lemon??? The other tier is going to reminiscent of a Black Forest Gateau.
I actually made the lemon and black forest cakes. I just forgot to take pictures of the latter (just pretend one of these cakes is chocolate with some cherry puree peeking out over the whipped cream). I have to make it again anyway. Since this is just a taste test, I didn't frost them or even bother to make them look pretty. I was happy just to get them level. We decided that the lemon needed more lemon flavor (that's what I get for going to boxed route), but that is easily fixed with lemon zest and juice. The black forest needed more cherry (I pureed a can a Bing cherries, but it was a bit too watery; I didn't want the top layer to slide off as I drove across town with it). Below is the recipe for the whipped cream filling I used for both (not that you really need it since it's so easy). Next time, when I separate it into two batches, I'll add lemon zest to the lemon one.
Whipped Cream
2 cups heavy whipping cream
1/2 Tbl vanilla extract
2 Tbl white sugar (this is a guess, I didn't measure too well; I wanted it to be just sweet enough)
  1. In a clean mixing bowl, whip heavy cream to soft peak stage. Add vanilla and sugar and continue to beat until stiff peaks form.

This can be modified with different extracts (almond would probably be really good). I may even scrap the whole whipped cream idea and go with a buttercream instead.

9 comments:

maris said...

The buttercream sounds really good! And it's always easier to work with, too!

Nurit said...

What a wonderful thing to do for a friend!
Good luck with your experiments.
One thing - lemon juice can curdle dairy products.Not sure how it works with whipped cream. I would play it safe and use only the zest...

Sunshine said...

Maris - Thanks for stopping by! I might go with the buttercream just becaus eit's easier to work with.

Nurit - Thanks for the suggestion. That was how I planned on doing it since I don't want all my hard work to be ruined by a little curcled cream. Blech!

♥peachkins♥ said...

Aaaaww...you are a really good friend.The cake looks good..

Sunshine said...

Peachkins - Thanks so much...for both parts of your comment. I'm supposed to go over to her house tonight because she's come up with somthing different that she might want instead of a traditional cake. I'll keep everyone posted if she does change her mind...

stephchows said...

Too funny we both had wedding related posts today lol. three years of planning?? GAHH!!! It's funny I don't think I'm going to have a "wedding cake" I mean they have to freeze the cake and load it with lard to make it last and take the heat of the day/ stand up to all the decorating... I'm just going to order a bunch of cakes/pies from a bakery I LOVE here and make a big table full of choices I think. :) My mom is not pleased though haha so we'll see what happens. It's totally sweet of you to make one for them though!!! rock on!

Sabine, La Marquise des anges said...

what a sweet friend you are ... 3 years of planning wao !!! amazing ...
for our wedding we had the most typical wedding dessert you can have in France ... a "piece montée" with different choice of choux à la creme ... it was very big and very tall as we had a 200 people -croad to nourish ... we both have big families

Sunshine said...

Stephchows - I thought that was pretty funny too! I see no problem with not having a cake. It shows the uniqueness of the couple.

Sabine - Merci beaucoup! My auntie made my wedding cake, and it was very pretty. There are times that I wish I had done something different though. Yours sounds way cool!

Kristin said...

Sounds weird but I've used lemon pudding in my lemon cake before.