Well, week one of my new adventure. Whew! What a week it has been.
I had all the imaginings of a relaxed lifestyle, working less, having more time……..did I say having more time.
Ha! I take it all back. It is a good thing that I love what I do because I always somehow manage to set myself up with the most interesting undertakings.
In my first week of being completely self-employed I managed to work way more hours than I had imagined I would.
I took on the daunting task of a sculpted cake. A topiary wedding cake. While I am fairly pleased with the end result, there were a few structural issues from which I have learned a lot. I will have to share those issues in a later posting in the hopes of saving you some trouble in your future encounters with structured cakes and sculpted cakes.
I did , as well, largely under estimate how long it was going to take me to create some 1500 or so petals. Greatly under estimated!
It was akin to running an 18 hour marathon. My body ached after hours upon hours of constant cutting, smoothing, curling and setting out to dry the very many dainty little morsels.
But I am so glad I did. The end result is stunning (in my opinion, but I am the one taking Aleve for body pain, lol)
All that being said, I would like to take this opportunity to encourage you to stretch beyond what you think your current capabilities are. Take on a sculpted cake even. Every extra step you take is one step closer to something noteworthy.
Many of you wish someone would tell you the secret to making gum paste figures. You may have watched videos and read articles and still somehow your figures turn out cracked and dry or worse yet, wet and sticky, falling over because of the weight of the material you are working with. This is a 6 hour hands on figure making class. By the end of this class you will be creating professional quality figurines that will stun your friends and family. The step by step process that you will learn in this class gives you firm knowledge of the tools and techniques needed to create using gumpaste. You will create a detailed life-like figure using advanced sculpting techniques.
Prerequisite: **Introduction to Gumpaste as well as previous experience or knowledge of fondant.
What to bring: Please remember to bring sturdy box to take home your works of art. Figure will constructed on a provided 6” cake board. All tools, utensils, equipment and aprons are provided for your use during class.
Presented by Lesi’s Kitchen, School of Cake Artistry
February has been a really great month. Lots of new classes, new students, fresh new ideas.
If you have any ideas, pictures, projects that you would like to share, please send them to firstname.lastname@example.org.
I can add them to the next posting to this newsletter. We do love to share!
Early in February I introduced the new format for Gumpaste.
Intro to Gumpaste is a two hour class to get you comfortable to the process of working with gumpaste for the first time. As with all of our classes, it is hand on, and all supplies are provided. This class is key to moving on to the next level……..
Advanced Gumpaste. In this 6 hour class you learn new techniques and tools to make a more realistic gumpaste character. Again, it is a hand on class and all supplies are provided for your use during class.
*************Time Limited Offer **************
For the month of February only, when you sign up for the Advanced Gumpaste class, you will automatically be signed into the Intro class atNO CHARGE!
This is a limited time offer so don’t wait too long and miss this great opportunity to get two classes for the price of one!
The Gelatin Ribbons and Butterflies class was a big hit. The ladies left with some amazing works of art that I am pleased to share. Next Gelatin class will be in the fall of 2013 so please watch the website for exact dates and times. You really don’t want to miss out.
Perfect Dark Chocolate Ganache:
200g (7oz) Good Quality Dark Chocolate
200ml (6.7floz) Cream
Perfect White Chocolate Ganache :
600g (1lb 5oz) Good Quality White Chocolate
80ml (2.7floz) Cream
Method : Place the chocolate and the cream together in a bowl and heat over a saucepan of simmering water, stirring occasionally until thoroughly combined.
Ganache can be used warm (poured onto cupcakes) or left to cool, then piped or spread on with a palette knife.
More Helpful Tips from Lesi’s Kitchen
When making substitutions in recipes, especially with oils, there are some very important facts that have to be taken into account.
Substituting oils may have an adverse effect on the taste and texture of your final product. For example, if you were to try and substitute melted butter for liquid vegetable oil in a recipe, it may not work as well. Butter contains milk solids that will set after the recipe has baked and cooled. This does not happen with liquid vegetable oil.
When substituting oils follow this guideline:
Substitute solid fats with another solid fat and liquid fat with another liquid fat
Ie: butter for solid vegetable shortening or Canola oil for liquid vegetable shortening
Keep in mind a solid fat in a recipe will behave differently than a liquid one.
Natasha has been doing some amazing work. I am honored to have been even a small part of her caking experience. Keep up the good work Natasha! I am looking forward to seeing more of your amazing works of art.
How do I qualify to be the next recipient of
The Golden Spatula Award?
It’s really quite simple.
All you have to do is send in pictures of your work. I love to see and share pictures of my former and current student’s works. The next award will be presented in June 2013 so you have plenty of time to bake, decorate and snap!
It’s the next level that we are going for. Have you taken note of all of the new caking shows on tv lately? The one name I hear more than any other, CakeBoss, is gearing both young and not so young in that direction. And now, here in our little city of Calgary, we are taking our leap into the cake future. Certain cake decorating “gurus” had remained the same for many many years and now are starting to change their curriculum to keep up. We are all following the progression of things. Everybody wants to be the Cake Boss, and the cake boss does three dimensional cakes. Not many bakeries even, will take on the 3D cake because of the time factor. They are very expensive to purchase and it is strictly because of the time issue and the artistic value that is put forth.
I love to bake and decorate and built my foundation with some of the “gurus”. I am so glad that they’re out there. They gave me a taste…. but now it’s insatiable. The next big project is always around the corner, and I am always searching for it. I just want to take some folks along for the ride!
I dug into my artistic roots and through much practice, loads of trial and error, (sometimes more error than trial), doing and re-doing, experimenting, and converted what I know about art and how it translates over to cake. I combined my love of art with my love of all things caking and few years ago I opened “Lesi’s Kitchen”, School of Cake Artistry. I went in with the mindset that I am going inspire someone to be the next Cake Boss or better yet, their own version of some cake designing great.
I am always inspired when I see the imagination that our young people today have. I am working toward building my little school, taking on a team of artist/decorators, like minded in our creativeness, who love passing on the passion that we have for your craft. A good dream to build on, I feel.
My goal is to teach what I know and continue to learn and grow. Like all good artists, the more we practice your craft and expose ourselves to different media, the better we become. I learn so much from my students as they learn from me and a lot of my classes become brainstorming efforts. The day that I think I know all there is to know about cake decorating is the day that I will hang up my spatula and move on. Until then, I will continue to expose myself to the creativity of others, soaking up idea after idea, reading, reading, reading, traveling and studying with the greats, and passing on what I know.
Apparently even I want to be a Cake Boss…..I’m just not very bossy!
Look into it, come and take a class or two, express your inner artist and never ever stop learning.