Wednesday, July 30, 2008
My First Daring Baker's Challenge...and one of my new toys
Today is officially my "coming out" day. Not in the sense of a blushing debutante (although all of you who think, or would like to think that way, are by all means welcome to do so), but in terms of being a member of the Daring Bakers.
Considering that I have waited a full month (and then some) to participate in the July challenge, I am surprised at how easily I put this task off until the very last minute. Life, and my innate knack for procrastination got into the way. However, this month at least, I have another very valid excuse for not wanting to complete my challenge sooner.
On July 26 2008, I finally received my much-coveted Canon EOS 450d!! YAY!!! I am now a proud owner of a DSLR!! However I feel compelled to warn you that I have not yet mastered the functions of this camera, nor yet feel comfortable using it, in case you expect mind blowing photos. I have lots to learn and a long way to go.
But I digress. This month's challenge is hosted by Chris of Mele Cotte, and the task is to attempt Carol Walter's Filbert Gateau with Praline Buttercream. I could not be more excited!! Layered gateaux are by far my favourite thing to both eat and make. I know this makes me sound a tad masochistic, but I always like a challenge. So thank you Chris, for choosing this cake!!
Oh, and although this cake looks a little on the heavy side (texture, mouthfeel, flavour etc.), it is as light as a goose down pillow!! The swiss meringue buttercream and the whipped cream really made a difference!! One thing that I am not satisfied with though, is that my layers are not perfectly and evenly straight. This, I admit, is my own fault. Due to greed I have decided to lather an excessive amount of buttercream and whipped cream filling onto the cake layers. And due to laziness I had not bothered to pipe and spread them out evenly. This resulted in the afore-mentioned effect on the cake, and in my anguish for being so careless. Oh, and on being careless, I also dunked a whole recipe's worth of praline powder into my buttercream instead of the 1/3 cup stated on the recipe. Sigh.
But at least it was delicious, right?
(J: I think it tasted really good with the full amount anyway. I don't know why you want to make it with only 1/3 cup.)
Bless his soul.
The complete recipe is available on Chris' website. It contains quite a bit of information, thus I will not post it here. But for those of you who have not attempted it, please give it a go; it's really not that difficult if you read all the instruction carefully.
PS. I will update you on my other new toy in the next post.