When I saw Smitten Kitchen's Lemon Yogurt Anything Cake, it was a no-brainer item for me to star. Yogurt...blueberries...lemon... Three ingredients I love baking with.
If you take a look at her post, Smitten Kitchen proposes several modifications that can be made. So, I thought a few modifications of my own would be acceptable. Maybe not.
The pictures look pretty good, right? I was entering into the "hopping around stage", my usual successful cooking dance and realized that my celebratory dancing was possibly premature. This baking experience exemplifies that although appearance and taste are often related, they can be completely independent of each other. When I looked at the slice of cake I had just plated, I discovered that the bottom 1/4 of the cake was mushy. My oven is usually fast, so I'm not sure if it was too hot and cooked the outside too quickly or if adding strawberries to the recipe increased the moisture, throwing off the balance of dry and wet ingredients. Bakers of the world - advice???
Although I had already poured the lemon juice on top of the cake, I went into disaster control mode and tried to place the slice of cake back into the pan and return it to the oven. I'm not really even sure what I did from this point. I probably repressed most of the memories. I'm sure it involved calling Giz a few times to whine (and possible blame her) about my failure. Maybe some foot stomping (of the non-celebratory variety) and a reassuring hug or two from R. Ruining a cake sucks, but it's even worse when your hopes have been raised by the deceivingly good-looking appearance of the product.
Even though returning the cake to the oven resulted in the gross-looking picture, below, it would have been edible (luckily, R doubles as human garburator when necessary), there was just no getting around my complete disregard for the word "Meyer" in Meyer lemons. Are Meyer lemons even sold in Canada? The small piece of the cake that I did try left my mouth coated with a taste of acidity. I guess some cakes just aren't long for the world. Into the garbage it went.
More evidence of mush:
So, with this post, I am going to move on from this experience. My mourning period is now over. Right in the nick of time, Rosie, Pixie and Maria have teamed up to create a new blog, Simple Bakes. This blog is about simple easy true and tested good bakes. It's geared towards both new and beginner bakers but also, for those who simply just can't get enough of baking. Great idea gals! I hope to see your recipes in a future Tried, Tested and True roundup!
Another positive experience, with which I am replacing the memory of the above debacle, is this dessert that I ate for lunch yesterday (my labmate and I took my supervisor out for lunch yesterday to a chi-chi restaurant):
As well, I've signed up for a cake decorating course and my first class is tomorrow. Giz will also be taking the same course in her city. So, we're in talks to have a bit of friendly competition to see who, between the two of us, is the queen of basic cake decorating skills. Stay tuned for pictures of (hopefully) our successes.
A big thank you to Bellini Valli who has given us the Arte y Pico award.
Bellini Valli's blog is one of our favourites, so receiving an award from her is quite the honour. I star a lot of her recipes for future use and actually have a salad recipe coming up that uses this salad post as inspiration. Bellini Valli's food is fresh, colourful and quite often Greek-inspired. I'm thinking about setting Bellini Valli up on a friend-date with my mom to go to a cooking school in another country together. What do you say ladies? Bellini Valli - I swear, Giz is not a 60 year old man who blogs naked. Plus, you ladies can get together and talk about how amazing your kids are.
These are rules that come along with this award:
1) Pick 5 blogs that you consider deserve this award with their creativity, design, interesting material, and also contribute to the blogger community, no matter what language.
2) Each award has to have the name of the author and also a link to his or her blog.
3) Each award-winner has to show the award and put the name and link to the blog that has given her or him the award.
4) Award-winners and the one who has given the prize have to show the link of "Arte y pico" blog, so everyone will know the origin of this award.
5) Display these rules on your blog.
So...here are our five picks:
1. Kittie of Kittens in the Kitchen for giving me the inspiration and help I needed to make this and opening my eyes up to different food combinations.
2. To Neen and Do of Post-Collegiate Cooking who share great recipes and witty banter on their blog. They really strike me as the kind of people I would get along well with in "real life".
3. To Cathy of Noble Pig who has a variety of posts (family life, pop culture, food, drinks, etc.) and does a great job with each.
4. Katie of Good Things Catered because she has inspired both Giz and I to take a Wilton cake decorating course. Her cakes looks beautiful she always puts a lot of care into her recipes and decorations. She definitely cooks with love.
5. Emiline of Visions of Sugar Plum who is also an inspiration in the baking department. I recently made her carrot cake, which was definitely much more successful than the beautiful disaster, above.
We also wanted to pass on the Excellent award that we received from Pixie the other day:
- Ruth's Kitchen Experiment (I plan to submit an upcoming post to her Bookmarked Recipes weekly event).
- the newly named That Girl of Paved with Good Intentions. She posts a mix of daily living, recipes, product reviews and travel experiences and is the only blogger out there that is a regular on both this blog and my personal blog. It's like two worlds colliding.
- Kevin of Closet Cooking who has recently come out of the anonymous closet to show the mastermind behind the good food. Kevin is arguably one of the most prolific food bloggers and commenters out there.
- Lori Lynn of Taste with the Eyes a newer blogging friend who has great recipes and photos!
- Last but not least Nikki of Canary Girl. She's another one whose recipes I am always starring. Her recent Creamy Zucchini Soup looks to die for!