Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Moving Up the Cake Ladder

Although I have always loved to bake, I have for the most part stayed away from whole cakes that needed expertise in decorating, preferring instead to make miniature cupcakes, bars and cookies.

Lately however, I have been feeling daring and experimental. I feel like it’s time I expanded my dessert repertoire. So with the numerous pot-luck dinner parties all lined up this holiday season, I unreservedly offered to bring not just one, but two desserts to the dinner buffet table.

In my first try, the strawberries sank in the whipped cream frosting. I must have been taking my sweet time to decorate that the cream warmed up to room temperature. Still, I managed to impress our friends, I got compliments from the wives of C's Tuesday group.

The second time I made it, it was for my co-parents in J's class. I was going to make it for ladies who really know their way around the kitchen, so the was a little pressure there. This time around, I made sure to put the cake back in the refrigerator after putting the swirls to make the cream firm up. After a few minutes, I took the cake out again and added the luscious berries. Here is what it looked like:

The tiramisu was relatively easy to make as I have been making this for years, but I used to make this trifle-style, in a glass baking dish. So the challenge now was to make the cake as divine looking as it was delectable. As predicted, it was complicated to pretty up the sides of the cake, so I decided to cover up my lack of talent and improvised by putting ladyfingers around the sides and tying it up with a festive colored ribbon.

Friends who can't wait to slice and enjoy the cake...