Fancy Pants and Fischer Price Cakes

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Here I am again, wondering how the hell 3 weeks have passed me by like greased lightning.  I have since become a proud owner of a one way ticket to awesome town.  Proper cakes and mousses which had previously intimidated me are now completely accessible.  I feel as if I have the power!

We started cakes with what could best be described as a Fischer Price cake - made as both training wheels and a crash course of 'what not to do' in 'real' cake baking.  These cakes contained what is called Fluid Flex shortening or what I affectionately refer to as Vaseline.  The scientific mixing method of these cakes was much like the box cake mix where everything is thrown together in one bowl and whipped till the cows come home.  Yes, it makes for a tasty and moist cake, but after seeing the Vaseline-like shortening, I never want to eat boxed cake mix or grocery store sheet cake again.  Do yourself a favor and follow suit - your arteries will thank you.

Once we were brought up to speed, we were thrown into a gauntlet of cake baking, running around the pastry lab like American Gladiators.  Once our hour of guilty pleasure Saturday morning television was over, we moved onto mousses and mousse cakes.  After finishing these and seeing what it feels like to be a bad-ass pastry chef, I feel like I can conquer all with my hand made confections.  Much like Scott Pilgrim, I'm ready for some confectionery Kung Fu fighting.


Behold the Fischer Price cake in all it's glory.  Yes, that is real whipped topping.  Liquid cool whip which we then whipped, ridiculous, I know.

Lemon Raspberry cake.  I'm all about this cake aside from more of that damn whipped topping.  Golden chiffon cake with lemon curd and fresh raspberries.

Chocolate Hazelnut cake.  Pastry speak for delicious.

Clockwise from top left:
Concord cake - meringue cylinders surrounding whipped ganache.  Light as a cloud and oh so lovely.
Black Forest cake - chocolate cake soaked in plenty of Kirsch and dotted with booze soaked cherries.
Sacher torte - dense layers of chocolate/hazelnut cake accented with bright layers of apricot jam.  Coated in ganache and classicaly emblazoned.  Sacher torte history can be found here.
Carrot cake - with pineapple, walnuts and cream cheese frosting, need I say more?

 Opera cake.  Alternating layers of biscuit soaked in coffee syrup, coffee buttercream and ganache.  Topped with gold leaf, cocoa nibs and fleur de sel.  My layering and cutting skills leave a bit to be desired, but not bad for the first try.

Frasier cake - No, you don't eat the acetate lining the exterior of the cake!  Once you peel that off, you will reveal fresh strawberries, mousseline and golden chiffon cake topped with marzipan and garnished with white chocolate, strawberry fan and strawberry gelee beads.

Raspberry mousse cake.  Light, airy and disappeared when I brought this home instantaneously.

Vanilla Bavarian mousse cake.  Amazing!  I thought I'd hate this one, but the saffron infusion along with the fresh vanilla beans made this a heavenly party in my mouth.  Even Tinkerbell blushed.

White Chocolate Raspberry mousse cake.  Layers of raspberry gelee inserts and a madeleine cookie like layer containing raspberries and pistachios.

Chocolate Mint mini mousse cakes.  Chocolate mousse enrobing fresh mint creme brulee inserts = girl scout cookies all grown up.

Hope you all enjoyed the pastry tour!


adriana said...

Amazing. As much as I am a successful bread baker (strictly sourdough lately), I have always been a complete failure when attempting to do cakes. They always wound up like bricks... I attribute that to the baking powder/soda or my utter incompetence. Any tips for trying one of the simplest(?) formulas from the Michel Suas book?

Margie said...

beautiful post...beautiful food!

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