- Date: Thursday, November 26, 2009 -- 4pm
- Location: Westerville, OH
- Kitchen: Karen and Dave's House
- Dining Companions: Matty, Dave, Karen H, Deniz, Brad, Evelyn, Eddie, etc...
- Recipe Rating: B-
I made the appetizers for Thanksgiving dinner this year and one of my selections was these deviled eggs. I started by hard-boiling some eggs. Then I peeled and halved them and carefully removed the yolks. I mashed the yolks with a fork, then stirred in mayo, mustard, cayenne, salt, and pepper. Then, the recipe claimed I would be able to put this in a pastry bag and pipe it through a star tip. Yeah, right. Star tips have tiny crevices, and unless something is completely smooth, little chunks will get stuck in those crevices and then the tip pipes ugly shapes rather than lovely stars or swirls. There was no way to get this stuff smooth enough with a fork to go through a star tip. I know. I tried. Twice. After taking the mixture out of the pastry bag the second time, and cleaning the tip the second time, I decided to put the mixture through a fine mesh sieve. That worked and I was able to pipe it after that. These deviled eggs were only ok. Aside from the textural issues I had with the filling, I found it a bit bland. You could taste the mustard a bit, but other than that it just tasted eggy. I enjoyed eating them well enough, but I wouldn't make this recipe again. There are better deviled eggs out there.
The recipe is here.
My husband and I have been married just over 6 months now, and I remember promising shortly after the wedding that I would post some pictures on my blog. Then I never did. So scattered throughout the next few weeks I am going to do a series of wedding posts, both because it was such a fun time and because we have such wonderful pictures (thank you Brian and Chris!!!). I'm going to start with the adventure I had making my own wedding cake!
My special gentleman and I settled on a less traditional wedding cake flavor: Red Velvet Cake with White Chocolate Cream Cheese Buttercream. I couldn't find a Red Velvet recipe that I loved, so I had to come up with my own version. This took several test batches of cake, which Mike and Teresa generously helped eat! By the week of the wedding I had my recipe perfected and I was ready to go! Two days before the wedding was Wedding Cake Day. It all started with one layer of Red Velvet cake:
My cake had 9 layers, which I first assembled as 3 smaller 3-layer cakes. Here's the first one:
I frosted each of the 3-layer cakes individually:
Mmmmm.... more frosting:
I tried at some point to convince our ring bearer Sam that frosting was delicious. He was not so convinced:
My mother, on the other hand, took no convincing. She happily ate the leftover frosting by the spoonful:
One thing that makes a wedding cake trickier than just an everyday cake it its size. A 9-layer cake can't support it's own weight, and without any additional structural support it would collapse. So, in the bottom 3-layer cake we put 3 wooden dowels. Then we rested rounds of cardboard on the wooden dowels, and the second 3-layer cake sat on that cardboard. So the weight of the upper parts of cake was supported by the dowels rather than by the bottom three layers. We repeated this process to set the third cake on the second one. Luckily, my dear friend Brian is an experimental physicist, so he helped cut and place the dowels for maximum stability:
Once the dowels were in, the second set of layers went on:
And then the third set of layers:
Then the whole thing was ready to be frosted again, this time with a thicker layer to cover up the cardboard and red velvet cake which was still peaking through:
Once it was all frosted, I melted white chocolate and piped a design onto huge freezer paper. Then I let it set just slightly. Once it was set enough it hold it's shape, but not enough that it was hard, I used the paper to transfer my design to the side of the cake:
Somewhere in there it says, "Teena and Matt" but it was very well hidden! Once the white chocolate cage was on, I just had to place the roses on top. I had piped all the roses in advance and frozen them, so I just needed to place them:
Here are all the roses, nicely in place:
At that point I was exhausted. The look on my face in this picture says it all:
But after a quick shower, I was rejuvenated. Here's me finishing up the last few details:
And here is a picture of the finished cake:
The most nerve-wracking part by far was transporting it from my apartment to the restaurant where we had the reception. It was only about a block, but no one was willing to carry it but me, for fear of dropping it, and it was so heavy that my weak little arms were shaking the whole way. My big concern was that the mirror we were using as a serving platter would break under the weight of the cake. Brian guaranteed me that was crazy, but the person who suggested the mirror serving plate idea claimed he had seen it happen, which was enough to make me paranoid! The platter held up and the cake made it in once piece. Here it is at the restaurant, shortly before it was time to eat it!
I had a pretty relaxed attitude about the cake making. I figured if it was a disaster we just wouldn't have wedding cake. But in the end, I was really happy with how it came out. And I thought it was very tasty! Plus, it cost about $50 to make, rather than the hundreds (if not thousands) that it costs to get a professional cake made. Everyone said I was crazy to make my own wedding cake, but if I could do it all over again, I would do the same thing. I was surrounded by people I love while I was making the cake: Matty, Emilee, Brian, Sam, my mom, and my dad, and I have very fond memories of that day.