Tuesday, 9 September 2008

My father's birthday cake

It was my father's birthday on Sunday. After making the muffins on Saturday morning, I spent the rest of the afternoon making a cake for him.

Ever since I attended the lesson to make birthday cakes, I made only 1 attempt to make a sponge cake, and that was not too successful. I folded the egg whites too lightly and resulted in large air pockets and egg whites still being seen after the cake was out of the oven.

So, on Saturday, I tried again, and was careful with the folding as I did not want to disappoint myself and having to buy a cake from the bakery in the end. The mixture was great. I whipped the egg whites very carefully, watching them closely. When it was in the oven, I was excited. But my excitement soon turned into a little worry. About 10 minutes after I put the cake in the oven, the top started to burn. Yes, I put it on the correct shelf, so that the cake was right in the middle of the oven. I quickly put a piece of aluminium foil on top. But opening the oven at 10min would very likely make me end up with a deflated cake. With deflated hopes, I sat there to wait for the cake to be baked before I started making any preparations for frosting (in case the cake turns out a total flop).

When my cake was out, I couldn't wait for it to cool. I was anxious to see how it was. It seemed to take so long to cool, I turned on the aircon. Well, I had to turn it on soon when I prepare the frosting, so I might as well turn it on earlier to cool my sponge. It was flat but only a little deflated, but after cutting the top, I got myself a nice flat sponge and felt so pleased.

The silly thing came up when I was trying to slice it in half horizontally. I did it slanted, and it looked ugly, though the frosting would cover it.

For the frosting, I simply whipped some whipping cream spreaded all over the cake. It seemed to have a not so nice taste at first. But after the whole cake was done and refrigerated, the weird taste was gone, it was just how fresh cream tastes like.

The uncreative me did not know how to decorate the cake. Draw a cartoon? Nah...it's for my father. Add lots of fruits and chocolate? The do not like things which are too sweet. So, my cake turned out incredibly simple. I was also lazy to mix too many colours (well, in actual fact, my colourings were at my mum's place and I had forgotten to bring them over), so I only used my green colour paste...which has been recurring in whichever of my bakes which needed colour. The pastel green never fails to remind me of mint taste, but this cake has absolutely nothing to do with mint.

As you can see, I did not cover the cake nicely. The frosting was also too stiff, so it was not smooth. That is also why my pipings were breaking. And knowing my family would want to eat less cream, I tried to cover the cake as thinly as I could.

Despite all these, when my family came over on Sunday, my father was happy with my cake. Perhaps it's the first time we have a home made birthday cake in the family. He eagerly cut the cake and took a slice. He even used his finger to wipe off the last bit of cream left on the plate. Since it's only a 6" cake, the 6 of us quickly finished it in no time. I know it looks far from store bought cakes, at least it tastes decent. Ok, I'm ready to practise again whoever's birthday is coming up next!

And yes, unfortunately the recipe comes from a lady who conducts lessons on cake making, it would not be nice of me to share the recipe.


Maria said...

Your father is one lucky man to have such a talented daughter!

Gorgeous cake!


Rosie said...

Oh what a beautiful cake and I bet your father was very touched by this :)

Rosie x


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