Thursday, November 25, 2010

Baking For Thanksgiving

Well, I made two pies for Thanksgiving, a cherry and an apple. The cherry filling is not from scratch because they are not in season, but I did make the apple from scratch. After tasting them, I was disappointed in myself. I knew that the pie dough was not going to be like it should because I had put it in a container while it was still warm. So, the dough got soggy. :(
Well, the lesson I learned is to not bake when you don't have time to do everything right.

I also made a small version of my pecan peach cake at the request of my dad. Well it didn't come out the same as the last time I had made this cake. Next lesson learned is that I need to work harder on cconsistently putting out a good product.

At work I was asked to come up with a standard design cake. The goal is for the cake to suit ages 16 and older regardless of gender, with the option of changing colors as needed. The intention is for the cake to be a little fancier than a stock cake, but still be an affordable custom ordered cake, kind of the next level up. Because of the broad goal, it makes it a little difficult coming up with a new idea that fits the criteria, is easy to reproduce and is appealing to all. Maybe I'm making it more difficult then it is. After all, millions of cakes have been made so it's hard to come up with a new idea.

Our new store is scheduled to open Friday, December 3rd, if all goes as planned. I'll be working there the night before helping setup. That will be fun.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Dead Dough Showpiece

Every once in a while, I look at the history of the hits my blog receives and I am surprised by the search term that leads a lot of people to my blog. Bet you can't guess?
OK, I'll tell you. It's Dead Dough.
I'm guessing that it number of hits are high right now due to Thanksgiving and Christmas coming up and people are wanting to make Dead Dough Sculptures for the table.
While I was in Le Cordon Bleu, studying to be a Patisserie Chef (I'm still working on that), we had to make a Dead Dough Showpiece.

Click below to see the post from back then.
My initial Sketch of the Dead Dough Showpiece.
My completed Dead Dough Showpiece.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Busy week and weekend!

After work on Friday I went to work at Emeril's event. The music was kicking and the food was moving. I even got a picture of Emeril and I. We served our Pear Tiramisu, which is my favorite fall dessert. Yum!

My Aunt brought my Peach Pecan Cake to her church on Saturday for the Pecan festival. I put my cake in the best use of pecan's category. Later after dinner I went with my aunt to see what happened to my cake. I didn't win. :( I lost to a younger kid's cake that was absolutely covered in pecans and was in the shape of a cornucopia. I was very proud of my cake, and I think I went for more of the taste of the pecans throughout the cake than decoration. Come to find out they didn't even taste the cakes. It was all about looks. Duh? But I got to bring my cake home and I have to say that this was the best tasting cake I have made yet!

Today I went and worked for Joel's catering company. I helped put food on platters and plates to be sent out to serving stations. It was different and a lot of fun! The most important thing is that I got the opportunity to learn. Whew! Working seven days in a row this week is a first for me. But it was fun.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Home Baking

Tonight I did a little baking at home. I actually baked the cake earlier in the week and tonight I decorated them. The first two pictures are of a Peach Pecan Cake. This cake is for a cake baking contest at the Pecan Festival which is held at a local church. It is a pecan cake with Swiss butter cream, peaches and candied pecans in middle, and toasted pecans on the outside. The top picture is the finished cake. The next picture shows the peaches and candied pecans in the middle.

Next I baked my cousin Anne a birthday cake. It's a white chocolate cake, with poached pears in the center, and a whip cream outside.
This weekend will be busy for me. After work on Friday, I work a function for my boss. It will have a few celebrity chefs and I'm excited about working it. I'll tell you more about it afterwards. One of owner's of Sucré is Joel Dondis who owns Joel Event Catering. I'll be working an event for him on Sunday from 2pm till 9pm. I'll tell you more about it after I work it. I'm excited about this as well. I figure anything I can work provides an opportunity for me to learn. Oh, yeah, the added bonus is that I get paid. Sweet!

Friday, November 5, 2010

Marshmallow Test and Work

Top left: Cookies n Cream Marshmallow, Top right: S'Mores Marshmallow
Center: Lime Coconut Marshmallow, Bottom: Mint Chocolate Nib Marshmallow

This week I helped Tariq test three different marshmallows; Cookies n Cream, Mint Chocolate Nib, and S'mores. He coated the Mint Chocolate Nib and the Cookies n Cream with chocolate, and half-dipped the S'mores in chocolate. My favorite is the Mint Mint Chocolate Nib. It has this really nice minty cooling effect on your mouth and the nibs give it a little crunch. It reminds me of yummy mint chocolate chip ice cream. I was also allowed to come up with a marshmallow flavor myself and make it too. So, I came up with a lime-coconut marshmallow. Boy was it good, and I'm not even a fan of the texture of coconut. The best thing was that Tariq was impressed and really liked it. YAY! :)
I forget which day it was, but I went to pull a plug out of the receptacle, my hand was a little wet and I accidentally touched the metal part of the plug. Yep, you guessed it, I got a little shock. Oh Fun! My fingers felt weird. I won't make that mistake again.
This week I have also been working on a huge order of truffles for a new customer. It's starting to get real busy at Sucré. We have a new 2,000-square-foot-store opening Thanksgiving week at Lakeside Mall in Metairie. The store is outside the mall next to Bravo Italian, near the intersection of Veterans and Severn Avenue. I've heard they expect to open locations in Houston and Dallas by the end of 2011.