February 29, 2008

Maintaining the fluff

Su hasn't been too successful in class this week.
We have been working on fragile, light batters and mousse desserts. And most of you know.. I'm not exactly the most demure or gentle of bakers.It isn't exactly impossible to handle all that soft touching and dainty controlled movements; but I must admit, it doesn't come naturally to me.
In the past, I've made sponge cakes, chiffon cakes, mousses and meringues; and most of the time, they'd work out fine. I've just never done so much fragile baking all in one day before!
My dear partner, Nikki and I have came up with several mishaps since the beginning of 'eggwhite-whipping-week' on Monday.
As your arms and mind tire, you begin to slack, stray and dream about other things. The lack of attention often ends up with us killing off all that precious air from our genoise sponge batter. We learn our lessons well. As punishment; we both slog through re-scaling recipes and making sponge batters over and over again to try to get things perfect.
Something different always seems to be the problem with our technique! I'm glad we're both here to learn. Failure ticks me off; but it teaches me so much along the way. Laughing about our ruined stacks of genoise sponge layers really does help us smile a little more. 30 eggs and a whole lot of frustration later; we finally came up with 2 frost-able layers of cake.
Here's a picture montage of Chef James frosting his perfectly beautiful buttercream and genoise sponge layers. It always looks too easy when he does it. It's very different when you're finally holding your own spatula on one hand, and your crummy looking cake on the other! .... and it's perfect! Almost looks like a concrete block from afar! It's so smooth! it's incredible.
Chef James seems to be getting cheekier everyday! It's been lots of fun in his classes. He still gives me the 'I-disapprove-face' sometimes though. It makes me nervous; I'm thinking he does it because he loves it when I have the 'Omg! What-did-I-do; i'm-sorry' reaction. *tsk tsk* It usually isn't anything. He just gets a laugh from it. *sigh* silly me.We then went about trying to replicate what he had accomplished in less than 20 minutes. It usually takes us awhile. Maggie and Nicole seem to be doing a great job here though. This probably is the first full buttercream cake for most of us in class. I got to say, rolled fondant which im used to is a whole lot simpler to get smooth!
He has probably iced at least 1000 cakes in his lifetime. I wouldn't dare post pictures of my own cake for all to compare! I did come up with fairly shameful results. :P

Here are yummy pie photos instead.
Nil's has given the many pies we've made the thumbs up! He's such a great sport to pose for my photos. I thought the pies were delicious too! My favorite would be the key lime.
Banana Cream Pie Apple Pie Blueberry Lattice Pie
Lemon meringue pieKey lime pie


FairyGodmother said...

dear su,

i was asked by my friend to come and check out your blog, since she knows what a whack i am with food...

i don't really cook, but i really love reading and eating and anything thatis related to food...

i will be constantly nosing through your blog, if you dont mind....

c ya!

Anonymous said...

Hi Su, this is Chiara from Italy. OMG, I absolutely loooooooove this post.....
What about the fake Su? Hope she will stop to be so annoying. Have a great day, Kisses xxx

KWF said...

James' cake is really perfect! How did he do that?!

Love to read your blog, especially on the little details happening in school. Keep up the good work!

Not too sure if you've got the time to do this, but you've been tagged. :) Check it out here, ok?

Anonymous said...

Key Lime Pie is my fave! Looks delicious.

Anonymous said...

What fabulous baking. You are so lucky to be doing this. Most inspiring. Keep at it.

A said...

Hello again. Just a quick question (PLZ PLZ answer) did Chef James use any vegetable shortening to make that butter cream?

Squishy said...

Wow it looks so fantastic what you are doing. I am so jealous. Have a great time!

Anonymous said...

yummy! i just bought a 9' key lime pie from miami and was thinkin of giving some to you!lol. see you soon!

Argus Lou said...

Hi, there. I'm a M'sian living in Switzerland. One of my ex-classmates living in Melbourne sent me to your blogsite.

Very much enjoyed your story and pictures of your cake icing class.

Anonymous said...

that buttercream looks tasty..what is that made of?

Su-Yin -D├ęcorateur said...

fairygodmother: wow! Hello! I love your blog.. it's so much fun!!! thanks for leaving me a message..it'll be great to hear from you again.

chiara: the fake su is gone!!! :P Haha I must have scared her a fair bit.

kwf: He's just a cake-master! hahaha.. thanks for the tag too! I'm always cuaght up with so many things...I wish I had more time to tag others :(

cap'n jack: tasted delicious too :P hehe

anonymous: why thank you :)

the evil lemon: Nope; we use unsalted butter. It really gives it better flavour.

squishy: thank you! :) you too dear~

kassy: the chicken wings you brought over were delicious!!! I had them for lunch the next day too~ hehe

argus lou: thanks for leaving me a message. How's the Malaysian scene in Switzerland?? THere aren't many malaysians down ehre in orlando.. it's quite hard to find food stuff and ingredients to make local delicacies.

anonymous: butter; eggwhites, sugar , water... ;)...*hush*

Anonymous said...

can you share the recipe?

Yan said...

amazing spirit and passion baking are what i can feel from reading your blogs. way to go Su !

adelekoh said...

Hi Su,
A good friend of mine in Perth asked me to check out your blog and I really enjoyed it..

I love cooking and baking too but never got the time to do it when I was in Malaysia. Just moved to New Zealand in Jan and I have heaps of time now. Must really learn from you.

Continue to inspire your readers :)