This is my 3rd week participating in The 12 Weeks of Christmas! It has been so much fun and we have something like 7 or 8 weeks to go! Yippee! Brenda at Meal Planning Magic hosts this amazing linky party! If you are interested in joining you should really go to her site and fill out the form! Last week I saw some amazing cookies, bars, cakes, cupcakes and all sorts of sugary delights! One of the requirements is that your goodie needs to be freezeable. Most people do not realize that you can freeze a decorated cake and it will be just the same when you take it out and thaw it! I used to do it all the time when I was making cakes for people. I am still amazed that bride’s trusted me to make the cake on the most important day of their lives!!!
To freeze a cake that has already been frosted and decorated: Place the cake unwrapped in the freezer for a min of 2-3 hours. Remove and gently test the level of hardness on the frosting. If it is hard and not yielding proceed to the next step, if it is still pliable then keep it in the freezer a little longer. The next step is to gently wrap cling film (saran wrap) around the cake. I take a piece that can wrap from the bottom of the cardboard disc all the way around to the other side and then touch again in the middle on the bottom. Then I do the same on the side. (like you are making an X) Place the cake in a “Cake to go box”. I am not sure that is the real name, but like the kind you get when you buy a cake at the bakery. Then I wrap that box in many layers of the cling film. It should last in the freezer for at least a month.
This is my snowflake cake! I had a good time making this. By good time I mean I was stressing out and yelling at the frosting when I was doing the crumb coat! It was 85 today!!! Hot and Humid!! Two of the worst things for cake decorating! I am hoping that by making a Snowflake Cake the Weather Man will be nice and bring us back our beautiful fall weather we have had the past few weeks! Please Pretty Please!
Don’t get scared off by how long this recipe is. I give you lots of tip and do’s and don’ts. Take it from someone who has been there. If you go slow and take your time and not try to rush it you will have a beautiful outcome! I know I should have taken pictures as I was doing this today. I did not plan on having this post become a “how to” it just kinda happened right now as I was typing. If you leave in the comments that this is something that would interest you, let me know and I will do another one with “how to” pictures!
Snowflake Cake Frosting Recipe
Don't be alarmed at the length of this recipe. I am giving you fool proof directions and I am quite "wordy"
- For the cake you can make any flavor cake that you like best. I suggest White as that will be the easiest for you to frost white with.
- If you are an experienced cake decorator I made this using a traditional White Wedding Frosting using Bright White.
- For first timers and beginners DO NOT FRET this is a fool proof recipe that I am going to give you and instructions on how to frost it!
- 2 lbs bag of powderd sugar
- 1 cup white VEGETABLE shortening
- 2 tsp almond extract
- 2 tbs CLEAR immitation butter flavoring
- 2 tbs meruinge powder
- approx 8-10 tbs water
- 18 in pastry bag
- largest flat frost tip
- 12 in pastry bag
- #21 star tip and #5 round tip
- In a Stand Mixer with a paddle attachment (you will not be able to do this with a hand held it will not have enough horsepower) put in the shortening, half the bag of sugar, both flavors and 3 tbs water
- mix till combined
- add the rest of the sugar
- Ok this is the only sorta tricky part: You want to add water 1 tbs at a time until you have a spreadbale consistancy. How do you know when you get that? When the paddle is lifted and the frosting still stays attached but starts to hang down like it wants to fall off but you can tell that there is now way that it will. (I hope that makes sense) Also if you swipe your finger through it and glides super smoothly. I say that you would be safe with a total of 9 tbs of water. That is about what I always use. Temp and humidity will effect how much you will need.
- let the mixer run for a good 15 min. This will ensusre that you will have no lumps and it will glide on the cake for you easily.
- Slice your cake in half (if you have a lazy susan use it it will make your life much easier. If you dont just go extra slow and take lots of deep breaths!)
- place about 1 cup of frosting on the top half of the bottom cake
- spread out till it almost touches the edges but not quite
- place the top half of the cake with the flat side facing up
- (do you have a gap between the top and bottom halves? don't worry if you do we are about to fix that.
- using the 18' pastry bag and the cake frost tip start on the sides and while slowly turning the cake squeeze the frosting against the sides. Go around the whole cake
- then make flat frosting circles on the top of the cake.
- Using a large flat spatula smooth the sides and the top
- this is the crumb layer so don't worry how it looks and that you can still see the cake.
- let this sit for 15 min and "crust"
- now do that same step and the cake will be completely covered and smooth
- still let this sit again for 15 min
- in a 12" pastry bag with a #21 star tip make small litttle half circles all along the bottom edge of the cake. (see it is looking better allready!)
- Switch to #5 round tip and "Draw" the pattern on the top
- Switch back to the #21 star tip and make small stars all the way around the top edge of the cake and a very large star in the middle to hide all the joining points of the snowflake.
- Now sit back and be very proud of the beautiful cake you made!!!
The Plaid and Paisley Kitchen 2012
It is Hatch Chile Time!!! The best green chiles in the world, yes I said it the WORLD, come from New Mexico! And it is Harvest Time!!! Once a year, once a blessed time of year these wonderful little green peppers are available and I am like a kid in the candy store! The time we spent in New Mexico was filled with some of the best cullinary delights I have ever tasted! These chiles were the main compent of every dish that I fell in love with. I loved Albuquerque so much and wish we had been tansfered there permanetly. As it was the few months we spent there in 2003 and 2009 were great and we have wonderful memories. So as you can imagine when I was in the grocery store on Saturday and I saw Fresh Hatch Chiles I went a little LOCO! I did not think that I would have ever found them way out here in Kansas City, MO! I purchased some then I went back and got some more!
Here is an easy way to prepare them to freeze so you can enjoy them year round!
Heat a pan on the stove over high, NO OIL added! Place the chiles on the hot pan and let sit till they pop and the skin blisters.
As they cook they will pop and curl up a bit. Just press them back down. You will want to flip them over a few times to ensure even cooking. Once the skin is black and they are tender and starting to split a bit it is time to pull them off.
Once you take them off the stove place them in a large ziploc baggie and seal. The steam they create will help cook them further. Let cool completely in the bags.
Once cool, take them out and peel the skin off. (a little tip: if you did not cook them enough the skin won’t peel easily. So in the baggie pop them in the microwave for 1 min.) The skin should just slough right off. I take the seeds out before I freeze them. You can leave them in , but I think it is easier to do this step now rather than after you thaw them out. I wrap each chile in cling film individually then place them in a freezer safe bag. This way I can thaw one out at a time if I need to. These chiles have so much flavor and they really add a wonderful kick to any southwestern dish!