Saturday, June 13, 2009

"time is a luxury that we don't have!"

Quite a busy and stressful week at the cake shop so a quick rundown of recent cakes:

Yesterday, we had a pair of 3D Mickey and Minnie cakes to do so I started Mickey and then Joan showed me the right ways to do all the details so I could do Minnie. Now, they aren't the most realistic-looking but it's the formula that she has developed over the years (hence why she can whip cakes in an under an hour), whereas I'm still struggling a bit. When it comes to the 3D cakes, the strategy is to be aggressive with the icing (we use much bigger bags of icing and bigger tips) so you're not finicking around with the details (completely different from drawing + piping on a flat cake). The face, the nose, the clothing, and the arms should each be done with one "swipe" of the bag; the ears are icing-covered posterboard. So on the left is the prepped cake in the beginning, in the middle is Mickey (mostly by Joan), and Minnie (by me).

Last night I started a birthday cake in the form of basketball jersey. Pretty simple, just smoothing icing and then tracing and cutting out fondant letters and numbers to match the font this morning:

Then came the "arghhhh" part of the day when the woman with the 100 cookies called back to say they weren't dry after 2 days. Turns out the combination of humidity and the fact that we (read: I) used too much corn syrup in the glaze meant they were too wet and oozy, so she brought back half of them for me to re-ice. This was when Joan kindly explained that there isn't enough time to spend all day on one cake and there especially isn't time to go back and re-do orders. Right, so have to get better on that. Or, in the words of Bruce WIllis: "time is a luxury that we don't have!" [check it out, high school classmate Ethan on David Letterman @ 1:05]

So after re-icing and re-boxing said cookies, onto my final cake of the day. These (7 5):

Had to get iced white and put on here:

Which would be iced in chocolate. Sounds easy enough, but nothing is worse than icing loose-crumb cake so the order of operations was crucial. I cut mini cake boards for each number, iced all the cake parts down to form the numbers, and prepped them.

Completely iced the sheet cake, marked where each number would go, hovered the cake board over that spot, and basically closed my eyes, said a silent prayer, and dropped the number in place. Luckily, both made it on in one piece and centered for the most part.

This was another down-to-the-deadline cake where I was adding the trim and border literally while the customer waited, so unfortunately no final pictures but I give you my word that it looked pretty awesome.

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