Thursday, September 15, 2011

80th Birthday Rose Cake, Slot Machine Cake, Poker Card and Poker Chip Cookies

I was asked to make the cakes and cookies for my great Aunt's 80th birthday party.  I made a total of 3 cakes and 150 cookies.  It was such a joy to bake these desserts for my family!

First I made two rose cakes with a lavender "8" and a "0" on individual cakes.
One cake was lemon with lemon curd filling, and the other was white cake with strawberry filling.

The last cake was a slot machine cake. It was made of chocolate cake and chocolate buttercream with a bavarian cream filling. Unfortunately there was a slight accident with the cake during transportation to the banquet hall- a car cut me off and the cake fell over :(  But it was still salvaged and tasted ok when all was said and done.  Hopefully I'll have another opportunity to make a slot machine cake in the future to redeem myself and make the cake I really wanted to see served to someone. 

Added to the cake at the banquet hall was a set of candles (one for each birthday person ages 80, 77 and 82!), and had a photo of each of the birthday honorees in rice paper on the slot machine reels. There are also 80 "gold" chocolate coins coming out of the front of the slot machine for the "winners" :)

Lastly was the cookies! 150 poker card and poker chip cookies- the numbers were made in royal icing, with colors drug through in colored royal icing to make the numbers and symbols. 

Happy 80th Birthday Tia Anita!!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Vanilla Extract- 3 Months Later

Hello Vanilla Lovers!

This post is to follow-up to my original post 3 months ago titled "Vanilla Extract-a-Palooza." To recap- I had 7 different types of vanilla beans, and made 7 different types of extract.  The original photo looked like this:

And 3 months later the same bottles look like this:

Unfortunately I wasn't able to duplicate the lighting of the first batch- but I'm going to try to get new photos at a different time of day for documentation purposes.

About 2 months ago I added in slightly more vodka to fill the bottles completely to the top as a slight amount evaporated during the first month, leaving the tips of the beans slightly uncovered.

As you see all bottles got much darker,  but the Tongan vanilla was the least darkened in the 3 month time period.  The darkest extract was the Madagascar vanilla bean.

And here is the final packaging we gave to family members as gifts: