Sunday, February 13, 2011

WPA Cake Auction 2011

Well, it's been a busy week in my world of cake. This morning we held a Cake and Dessert Auction at WPA to raise funds for our "Heart of a Teacher" outreach in April. With this outreach project, we are inviting local teachers from Waterloo Region to come to our place, have desserts, receive a free book, movie and fill a goodie bag full of those items teachers love to use in their class but usually have to pay for from their own pocket.
^^^Valentines Cakes made by ME!^^^

Without further ado, here are some pictures of this mornings auction...

We were blessed with so many donations:
Cupcakes from Yvonne Zensner at The Cake Box
Cake from Bonnie P

Cake and a gift certificate from Bev Kesselring of Latasia
Cake from Kathy, this one was just itching to go to a party house!

Picking up the winnings!
Excited? Scared? Wondering how he was going to hide his lemon bars from the family?
and my monkeys... wondering why the heck I was making them sit nicely when they could have been eating cake!

In the end, our WPA family was very generous, helping us to surpass our fundraising goal.

Now we have a very real and tangible way of showing the teachers in Waterloo Region how much they mean to us.

Thank you to everyone who participated.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Where Does Talent Come From?

I just finished a phone interview with Clara Kay, an editor at Cake Month magazine.

CLARA: "Is there anyone you want to thank for giving you the great cake decorating skills you have?"

ME: "God".

CLARA: "Anyone else? Teachers? Former Chefs? The Cake Boss?"

ME: "Clara, I have had many great teachers and role models over the years who have helped shape me into the baker and decorator I am today, however, the One who gave me the talent and the opportunity to practice my craft, through church and volunteer activities, who gave me the funds I needed to buy the ingredients I needed to make desserts for neighbors and friends and random people on the street, was God. I credit all my talent to Him, because He is the one who gave it to me."

CLARA: "Ok then, thank you Chef."

What do you want to bet that when this interview comes out it will say "I have had many great teachers and role models over the years who have helped shape me into the baker and decorator I am today", and nothing else? Why does it scare people when I credit what I can do to God?

Trust me, I'm not that great when I'm all on my own... I became great when I learned that what I had, I got from God and that if I used what talent I had for Him, I would only get better.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

A Really Fast Cake

When Peggy and Kerry told me they were Nascar fans, they weren't joking.

When we were trying to set up a consult for their wedding cake and the only day I was available was a Sunday, they said, "No way, that's race day". So we waited another week before I went to their home to talk cake.

Peggy was prepared, she wanted a traditional cake with a Nascar twist. She showed me pictures she had found on the net of cakes she liked, the problem was, none of them went together very well. One was a traditional wedding cake, surrounded by red roses, another was a modern black and white cake with a ton of filgaree work and the last one, well that was the only Nascar wedding cake she could find online. It was a poor job, that is for sure, but it did include the one major element that she wanted on her cake... the checkered flag top tier.

So bourbonbaker pulls out her sketch pad and starts drawing. We have a nice cake with a black and white diamond pattern on top to mimic the checkered flag more traditionally and lower tiers covered in red roses. We have another that has a large red draping coming down from the checkered flag tier. None of them are working.

Finally we realize that Peggy's idea of traditional and mine are different... let's find a way to meet in the middle. So the final cake gets sketched. The top tier of course, is checkered. The middle tier, has a large "S" in red, their new family name and that colour that she so desperately wanted to include and the bottom tier, well, we're a little stuck on. We talk about roses, but Peggy doesn't think they'll fit in. We throw a few ideas around until bourbonbaker gets one that sticks... mini checkered flags.
So Peggy and Kerry's cake wasn't as traditional as she had planned for it to be, but I don't think you could have pulled off traditional and Nascar in the same cake. There is definitely some traditional in there with the initial, but the rest of the cake was just fun, and well-suited for the couple that commissioned it.