Here's the first Backen auf Deutsch installment of 2011! I was commissioned to bake the dessert for our graduate department's January birthday party. (If you give me money for ingredients, I'll bake you a cake, too.) We had two birthday-folk: Lee and Clayton.
As you possibly have gathered, it's wintery over here.
So, I chose a bright, sunny, cheery recipe!
Isn't that adorable?? As I don't have the correct pan, mine looked different, but it turned out all right.
I love cooking with my food scale. Dump, dump, dump. No measuring cups needed.
The batter was divine. Freshly-squeezed lemon juice and lemon zest made it taste like summer. Or at least spring...
Considering how all previous cakes have been smaller than expected, I doubled the recipe. It perfectly filled two nine-inch round cake tins.
Faraday wanted to help:
He's a bit big for a shoulder-cat, isn't he?
My new neighbors, Nadine and Raphael, came over to use the internet. They happen to be German! Once she finished checking email, I recruited her to make marzipan bees with me. Just like the marzipan bat situation, I dyed my fingers black for two days. The bees were much easier to mold and completely adorable.
(She made the two little marzipan Bienenkörbe.)
Nadine and I are slowly speaking more German to each other. Er, I'm slowly speaking more with her--she's clearly quite comfortable with the language. ;) Understatement of the post: speaking a foreign language is so much harder than reading it.
The icing was an amazing confection of butter, powdered sugar, lemon juice, and honey (it was a beehive cake, after all). I was skeptical and thought it might taste like my honey-lemon cough drops, but it didn't.
We attempted to created more of a beehive shape by cutting out a circle from one layer, sticking it on top of the bottom layer, and arranging the leftover cake pieces around it at an angle. We used a lot of toothpicks. We had issues frosting it, even though I used my new spreader:
It looked mostly not-sad:
The bees saved it!
Heehee. We couldn't stop giggling at our cake crawling with insects.
We were charmed.
Also that day, I whipped up homemade oreos (but didn't cover them in chocolate), just in case people didn't like the cake or there wasn't enough.
(See the new cake carrier?? Love it.)
I'm thrilled to report that this cake was DELICIOUS and devoured so quickly that I barely saved one piece from the jaws of a second-year grad student for Lee, who actually missed his birthday party.
~Doubled the recipe to fit two nine-inch round cake tins
Next time would:
~not bother fiddling with the shape and just cover it in bees
~well, maybe add more bees
~people who like honey and lemon
~anyone who likes super cute little bees
My next baking purchase will be this pan. Guess what I'm baking in the near future and I'll mail you a batch of cookies.