Tag Archives: cake

Cake Ladies

I have a lot of cookbooks. And when I say a lot, I mean it–this collection of mine is growing steadily and one of my most recent acquisitions is one of my favorites. Cake Ladies* by Jodi Rhoden (owner of Short Street Cakes in  Asheville, NC) is a unique collection of interviews and recipes from cake ladies all over the South. Not only is it full of delicious cakes, it’s a page-turning collection of women’s oral history and the connections between women, community and the food that brings us together. I love it.

That said, this is not a book review, but a cautionary tale about baking a cake with a toddler. A charming, smart, precocious toddler who will alternately stir your dry ingredients for you, and within seconds, wander out of the kitchen with your whisk. Needless to say, I was a bit distracted.

We started out looking through the book together, which entailed lots of talk about cake. Violet said hello to Jodi (Hi, Jodi!) and proceeded to “read” the introduction to me, which start something like this: Mum-mum is making a cake and first we put it in the bowl and then we eat the cake! And cakes are yummy… and so on. We decided on the  Pineapple Upside-Down Cake from Lois Mims in Pine Apple, Alabama (Excellent name for a town, no?) because the photos were so pretty, and I had the ingredients handy.

Lois bakes her cake in a 9″ cast iron skillet, which is brilliant. Tragically, I haven’t had a 9″ cast iron skillet in nearly a decade and figured I’d just grab a 9″ cake pan. Poor choice. More on that in a minute. We prepped our pan and got to mixing ingredients and snacking.

Pineapple and cherries make this cake pretty, but the shining star on the ingredients list is butter. Butter and brown sugar, to be fair, but the butter quickly became my problem. Back to the 9″ cake pan: if you didn’t know, a 9″ cake pan does not–I repeat NOT–hold the same volume that a 9″ cast iron skillet does. Deep down I knew this, but denial took over and I decided that this would work. Sadly, it did not. I realized what a mess I’d made as the smoke from the butter overflowing into the bottom of my oven started to billow into the kitchen.

Fortunately, the weather was beautiful. A few open windows, a half cup of batter removed from the pan and some crossed fingers helped to get us through the next 45 minutes. The smell of burning butter is something that pains me, so there were a number of times where I was tempting to yank the cake, turn the oven off and start all over. That would have meant scrubbing out a burnt-butter oven with no cake to nosh on though, so I endured. My perseverance was rewarded.

A little trim resulted in a lovely cake (and lots of crunchy bits from the overflow to snack on!)

* Go now and order a signed copy of your own.  You’ll love it, too!

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Knit, Love

Coffee Love

There’s been an impressive amount of knitted love coming in and out of our home over the last few months (and much coffee drinking to keep my needles going.) With a toddler, a new baby and many pregnant friends, the opportunity to crank out lots of small, snuggly projects is ever present. I’ve got a number of special projects on the needles right now and I’ll be sharing them here as soon as I cast off.

I’d like to be able to say that I’ve enjoyed the mild weather we’ve had all winter, but really, I find it kind of depressing. I want to dress the girls in sweaters and cowls and hats year round because they’re so adorable. And because I need to find reasons to knit them more hats, even though I’m going to find them shoved into the couch cushions or on a plush unicorn’s head.

The bee hive hat is one of my favorites, but is seldom worn. After finishing it up, I showed Violet the awesome bee buttons that she helped me pick out at Mystic River Yarns (where Violet likes to pull up a chair and quietly watch complete strangers knit) and asked her where they should go. She gestured in the general direction of the hat and took off running in true two year-old fashion. After securing them to the hat with 3 minutes worth of knots a piece, they were greeted with shrieks, Take them off! Take them off, I don’t like them anymore! Sorry kiddo, those bees aren’t going anywhere.

I leave you with cake. I’ve been doing a bit of experimenting with natural pigments to replace food coloring for icing cakes. This is a Hummingbird Cake with maple cream cheese frosting. The yellow is tinted with turmeric, and I’m pretty happy with how it turned out.

RAWR… I’m a dinosaur!

Rawr… we’re ready to party!

Note the brutal attack taking place in this shot.

These lilliputian dinos were patiently awaiting their glorious fate: decorations for a toddler’s birthday cake. Lucas loves dinosaurs. We love dinosaurs at our house too–I’m fairly positive that you can find them in nearly every room. They travel in the car too, and I may even have one or two in my purse. Baking a cake covered with dinosaurs for a newly minted 3 year-old was awesome!

Happy birthday, little man.

Sweetheart Cakes

Apple of My Eye

Cherry Bomb

Well, it’s a new year and it’s time for a new blog that will actually be kept up to date! Tiny Cakes is a space where Lucky Girl Bakery will prominently feature events and delicious new treats, in addition to other projects that are under way and occasional happenings with the Lucky Girl family.

(Re-)introductions aside, I’m happy to announce that Sweetheart Cakes are now available, just in time for Valentines Day! Sweetheart Cakes are tiny 4″ layer cakes that are are perfect for sharing with someone special. Cakes are $18 and can be delivered in New London County and include a hand-written note. Pick-up at the bakery may also be arranged.

Our current flavors are: Apple of My Eye–apple spice cake with walnuts & maple cream cheese icing, Cherry Bomb–dark devil’s food cake with a sweet cherry filling & bittersweet ganache, and 24 Karat Cake–moist carrot cake & maple cream cheese icing. Check out the website for ordering details!