Sunday, May 26, 2013

Amazing Cakes by the Quenary Academy--pottery style

Southern Comfort Red Velvet Cake

 Per request, here's my favorite Velvet Cake. It's pictured here with the Southern Comfort Buttercream frosting mixed with Apricot Preserves for a filling:

Southern Comfort Red Velvet Cake
Makes 12 to 16 servings or 24 cupcakes
For the cake:
3 cups cake flour
4 tablespoons cocoa powder (try to find Hershey's Special Dark Cocoa powder--rich!)
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup buttermilk
1/4 cup Southern Comfort
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 teaspoon white vinegar
1 (1-ounce) jar Wilton's "no-taste" red food coloring
12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
2 cups granulated sugar
3 large eggs

For the frosting:
14 tablespoons (1 3/4 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
6 to 8 cups confectioners’ sugar
1/4 cup milk
1/4 cup Southern Comfort
Chopped toasted pecans, for garnish (optional)

To make the cake: Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease two 9-inch round cake pans with butter, or spray them with nonstick spray. Dust them with flour and tap out the excess.
Whisk together the cake flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt. In a separate bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, Southern Comfort, vanilla, vinegar, and food coloring.
In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugar with an electric mixer until light and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the flour mixture alternately with the milk mixture in three additions, beginning and ending with the flour.
Divide the batter between the prepared pans and bake for 30 to 40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cakes comes out clean. Let the cakes cool in the pans on a wire rack, and then remove them from the pans and cool completely.
To make the frosting: Beat the butter in a large bowl with an electric mixer for about 2 minutes. Add 6 cups of the confectioners’ sugar, the milk, and the Southern Comfort. Beat on low speed until creamy. Gradually add the remaining confectioners’ sugar, a little at a time, until the frosting has reached the desired consistency.
Place one cake layer on a plate and spread it with about one-third of the frosting. Top with the remaining cake layer and spread the remaining frosting over the top and sides of the cake. Sprinkle the cake with chopped pecans, if using.

--if you don’t want the alcohol in your cake or frosting, bring to a boil the quantity of Southern Comfort, reduce the heat and simmer 10 min.  Add water if necessary to bring back to the correct liquid amount.
OR make a Southern Comfort Simple Syrup to brush onto the layers for moistness and flavor.  1 c water, 1 c Southern Comfort and 3 c sugar.  Dissolve the sugar in the water over heat, then add the alcohol and simmer for 20 min or until slightly thickened.

Heirloom Frosting (cooked flour frosting)
24 Services, or enough for a 3 layer 8 inch cake.
1 cup milk
4 tbsp flour
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup shortening
1/2 cup butter (or you can use all butter or all shortening)
Whisk together 1 cup of milk and 4 tbsp of flour. Cook over low heat until very thick. Let cool to cool room temperature.
(Optional: You can process the sugar for a short period in a food processor. This may or may not make a difference, and was not in any recipe I have seen.)
Cream together 1 cup of fat (either the shortening/butter mix, or all butter), and 1 cup of sugar. Make sure to fully cream these together, at least five minutes. Once the butter is light and fluffy, add the cooked flour mixture. Mix until it looks like whipped cream. You can add vanilla extract towards the end of the beating process.

Earlier post on this subject

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Fancy Royal Icing Cookies

Embellishing "Broderie Anglais" on Royal Icing Cookies is fairly simple as seen in this YouTube video:

I have created a home class on making and decorating cookies with Royal Icing, if you're interested (and are in this area of northeastern CT) let me know. My in-your-home classes are a two hours long, $15 per person + ingredients, supplies and tools, and groups of 4 or more, only $10 each,  + supplies and tools.

This first class involves baking and basic decorating.  A second class is for advanced decorating.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Wilton Candy-making class

Wilton Candy-making class is scheduled for  
Tuesday, May 28, 6:30-8:30pm in the Lisbon, CT Michael's
-- $15

Sign up by the 27th to be sure you're in! 
Minimum of 4 and Maximum of 10 for the class.


Friday, May 10, 2013

May Class Schedule--Edited...again

Wilton Courses 1-4 are all 4 weeks long, 2 hours per class.

Current May Courses:

 Course 4: Advance Gum Paste Flowers Michael's in Lisbon, started Monday May 6, 6:30-8:30 pm 

Due to the Monday, May 27--Memorial Day holiday, classes three and four are scheduled as follows:

the third class to Sunday, May 19 4-6pm, and 

fourth class on Monday, May 20, 6:30-8:30 

 Course 2: Flowers and Cake Design 
Michael's in Dayville started Wednesday, May 8, 6-8 pm. 



Course 1: Decorating Basics

Michael's in Dayville starting Saturday, May 11, 12:15-2:15pm 


Provided that at least 4 people sign up for each course, these classes will continue directly into the next one in order in June, so...

Course 1: Decorating Basics
Michael's in Lisbon, Monday June 3, 6:30-8:30

Course 3: Gum Paste and Fondant
Michael's in Dayville, Wednesday, June 5, 6-8pm

Course 2: Flowers and Cake Design
Michael's in Dayville, 12:15-2:15pm

Sunday, May 5, 2013

May Class Schedule

 For May 2013, I have two courses starting:

Course 4: Advance Gum Paste Flowers
Michael's in Lisbon, starting tonight, Monday May 6, 6:30-8:30 pm

 Course 2: Flowers and Cake Design 
Michael's in Dayville starting on Wednesday, May 8, 6-8 pm. 

For whatever reason, there was insufficient signups for other classes in both Lisbon and Dayville.  

If you have 4 people you know that are interested in starting next week, there is still time to call your local Michaels and see if they'll book you a class.

Decorating Basics will be $20 from May 5 to May 13, and the other three courses are $22.50.

You can buy a class for a friend or relative, your mom or grandma for Mother's day or just 'cause you think they'd like it!

Thursday, May 2, 2013