Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Surprise Birthday Cakes

Just before I left on holiday I got a request for 2 cakes from V who had arrived in Seoul just 2 weeks before.  It was her husbands birthday and she wasn't sure what the office culture here was like and whether there was going to be cake... well she was going to make sure there was going to be cake! : )  

I know what it is like to be arrive in a new office so I thought it was a wonderful way to surprise him to celebrate his birthday.  She also wanted another one for a smaller celebration at home the following day which was his actual birthday which fell on a Saturday. 

I've always loved the way the Hummingbird Bakery in London decorated their cakes so I attempted theirs simple swipes here to give the buttercream texture.  I think next time I won't be so gentle, and use a heavier hand to get deeper grooves and some nice light and shadow going.  It will make for better pictures too.
See what I mean about the pictures not turning out so well?  My camera had problems adjusting to the whiteness of the cake so the shadows weren't captured very well.  I am sure there are ways to get around it but I'm not sure how to adjust the settings on my camera. Seems like photography lessons are on the books for next year.
 When it came to the cake, she had a clear idea of what she wanted.  They both liked cakes that weren't too sweet and they enjoyed fruit toppings on cakes.  V's husband also liked apples and I incorporated that into the cake which was the one for celebrating at home and it was a Chocolate Chiffon cake (Cake No. 2) layered with apple and Italian Meringue Buttercream.

Chocolate & Apple Cake with Italian Meringue Buttercream, topped with seasonal Korean grapes and chocolate curls.

The first cake which was for the office was an Orange Chiffon cake layered with peaches and cream. I chose a selection of seasonal fruits to top the cakes.  I had some problems with the chocolate curls as the chocolate bar was either too warm or too hard.  In the end after a messy start and with some help from my Mom (hee hee) I got some nice curls going and that went on top of cake number 2.

Orange Chiffon cake layered with peaches and cream, topped with Mandarins and a selection of seasonal Korean grapes.
Ok, I admit I was a little excited about delivering the cake to the office.  It was a bit like receiving flowers when you're at the office (hasn't happened in a looooong time, Maddog if you are reading that's a hint!) except this time I am not the receiver but the delivery girl.  Weird huh?  It was a surprise afterall and it went without a hitch.

The cakes were eaten and people were happy.  My work there was done.

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