baby shower

Baby Shower | Congrats Vickee & Ian!

| Baby Showers

Back in November, we celebrated the expected arrival of a baby girl for my dear friends Vickee and Ian. I was unfortunately recovering from appendicitis and unable to stay for the baby shower, but was happy to deliver a lavender + bunny themed cake and cookies for the party. The cake itself was a white cake with lemon curd and blackberry Bavarian cream:

For the cookies, we had bunny-shaped iced shortbread cookies and salted chocolate chip cookies:

I love the opportunity to make gumpaste flowers for cakes. While they are a bigger time commitment, they are probably most reflective of my own cake decor aesthetic and I find the process meditative. For this cake, I made lavender buds, a white rose and some white filler flowers. Thank you to Subodh Kolla for sharing these beautiful photos!

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Baby Shower | Congrats Roxana & Al!

| Baby Showers, Featured

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You can’t help but smile when you see this two-tiered baby shower cake. Although the design is based on photos of cakes from a New York bakery (provided by the sister of the expectant mom), I was still offered creative license, and there is something fun and challenging about figuring out “how they did it.” Sometimes customers give me basic directions and entrust me to make something interesting, and other times, they have a very specific image or idea in mind. I’m happy to make it happen, either way!

The bottom tier is a 12″ citrus poppyseed pound cake, with lemon curd and pastry cream custard filling. I say “citrus” because I used primarily grapefruit juice, with some lemon juice, to flavor the cake itself. The pound cake made for a hefty cake. We sure got our workout moving this piece around.

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The top tier is an 8″ chocolate layer cake with alternating layers of dark chocolate mousse and milk chocolate mousse with chopped milk chocolate bits. The expectant parents told me this reminded them of their favorite “Bibi’s cake” from their hometown of Iran, that they’ve searched for but haven’t found in the past 12 years in the US. Lucky coincidence perhaps, but what a compliment!

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The cake is covered in fondant, with fondant-gumpaste decorations. This was my first time using tappits for lettering, and it was easier to use than expected.

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As for the cake topper, the baby bath was made first by molding gumpaste in a bowl, letting it dry, and then covering with a thin green fondant-gumpaste layer. I placed a concave disc of gumpaste inside the bath to take up volume (without adding weight) and prop up the baby’s head, feet and arms (yup, there was no body or legs . . .). Then, I individually glued white and blue “bubbles” with royal icing to fill in the bath. Finally, I dusted a few bubbles with pearl luster dust to add dimension.

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As you can see, the baby’s head was a bit heavy. Once placed on the cake, the bath depressed into the cake on one end. I was a little stressed about whether it would keep sinking, but I hear it held up just fine. Also, depending on who you asked, it might have ended up looking better that way!

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Baby Shower | Congrats Alice & Mark!

| Baby Showers

Babies on the way are always exciting news, but this one in particular makes me so happy. Alice has been a sister to me, friend, confidante, mentor, and even once-employer. Her recent baby shower was a no-frills gathering of friends and featuring great food (Waffle Roost Food Truck), reflecting the priorities of Alice and Mark. Other than some flavor preferences, there weren’t any special requests for desserts. So left to my own whims and imagination, I made chocolate hazelnut mousse (with flourless chocolate cake and chocolate meringues), matcha green tea “napoleon” cakes and lemon curd strawberry buttercream mini cupcakes.

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The chocolate mousse cups had a small circle of cake at the bottom, topped with the chocolate hazelnut mousse, and a cluster of meringue sticks inserted on top. Although baked until they dry out, the meringue absorbs a bit of moisture over time, resulting in a melt-in-your-mouth texture.

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The matcha green tea cakes had layers of green tea chiffon cake, green tea pastry cream and puff pastry (one of my favorite combinations these days). I topped them with buttercream and sprinkled with matcha green tea sugar and turbinado sugar and served as small slices.

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