The last post marked the halfway point of the #craicinatlantis roadtrip. For bearing with me here and following along on the new path, you guys deserve a treat. Those of you who followed my Instagram might have noticed that I was a bit in alert mode lately as I agreed to make the wedding cake for my former Handball teammate and her husband. She asked me earlier this year and as her request seemed to be doable (no fondant fuzz, a pretty naked cake with seasonal berries), I said yes.
Long story short, I was a nervous wreck that day and the night before, my freakout luckily was cushioned by some dear people who calmed my anxiety, talked some sense into me and a nice bottle of craft beer. I had planned a lot of extra time, as it was my first ever wedding cake and I learned from past cake projects that things never turn out perfect when they need to be on point… I took the extra trip to the grocery store to get more eggs with a smile after one cake turned out bumpy, as well as another cake baking about 3 times as long as I had calculated in the bigger tin. I tossed a batch of curdled custard that couldn’t be saved as it was way too flaky and even all my effort didn’t help. I dismissed the horror scenarios of cake crash or drop, but I think for days I could only think and talk about cake. I tried to take it as Irish as possible (“It’ll be grand!”) and repeatedly told myself that I am capable of doing this cake, which worked pretty well because I knew that everybody else seemed to have zero doubt about it. Some may think I was phishing for compliments, but sorry to disappoint you, I am a master in not believing in myself and my abilities. Even if 20 people tell me that I can, it is hard to convince myself. Self esteem can’t be forced, it can be learned, but it is a hard lesson and every oh so little bump in the road often results in huge setbacks. Enough of the detours, I got to get back to cake: The one thing I had no doubt about was the taste, I knew it was going to be delicious. Continue reading »
Everybody has them though nobody wants to admit: Secrets! While secrets are widely outlawed to be a bad thing, I would like to stress the bright side of them which is the mystery. Be it secret friends, guilty pleasures, loves or recipes, some things are just too good to share. Like your favourite cafe that you don’t want to be too crowded or that cool friend whose attention you don’t want to share. And there are those secret recipes that you have brought to perfection over time, that earned you so many ahs and ohs, the one thing you are really proud of and you want to keep a mystery until you pass it on to your descendants on your deathbed, sealed with a blood pact that they keep it til their own dying day. Well that’s how I feel about my recipe for vanilla buttercream. I have tasted myself through a lot of recipes, measures and directions, tried, combined, tweaked and adjusted them to come to this one in my own eyes perfect recipe.
The first buttercream I ever made was an American Buttercream, which is mainly a mix of butter and confectioner’s sugar. I don’t like this kind of buttercream because it is way too sweet for me, it gnashes between my teeth and the texture is powdery. I played around with custard-mix buttercreams as you can find them in almost every baking book you get here, but I didn’t like the yellow colour, the artificial taste, it was simply not worth all the hassle with handling the warm custard. When I made my first Frankfurt Crown Cake for my Grandpa (his absolute favourite), my Mum recommended to get a little help from the Doctor (Dr. Oetker -housewives helper since forever) and try out their buttercream mix. It’s easy to handle and tastewise much better than any custard-packet-mix-buttercream… I have been using this for a while since it was convenient but over time ambition arouse, I didn’t want to be the foodblogger that relies on a packet mix. After I tried out a few recipes I stumbled over “The battle of buttercreams” on the Tough Cookie Blog, which gave a great overview on different kinds of buttercreams including recipes and directions. Reading through the series gave me the right impulse to give my already balanced recipe the final twist. There is a “battle of buttercream 2.0” series definately worth a read on The Tough Cookie, but I won’t keep you much longer and finally share the result of all this with you. Continue reading »
We’re on the verge of St. Patrick’s Day and as my heart beats for the Irish, I couldn’t possibly let this day arrive without providing you with a goodie. #GoGreen4PatricksDay!
While on my last trip to Dublin in December a new cool bar opened where I live: The Maltbar offers a large variety of Single Malts as well as Craft Beers, alongside with some fancy cocktails including those (and other) ingredients. The one cocktail that caught my attention was the Caibeerinha and I had to try it, because it sounds like a really weird combination. It’s actually a nice combination of a rather hoppy IPA with a fresh and tangy finish. After sitting in the bar and brainstorming on new recipes for the blog, this idea of a craft beer flavoured cupcake got stuck in my head. So if you’re tired of making the same old Guinness Chocolate Cake over and over again, why not try these little bad ass craft beer cocktail cupcakes for a change? I used Braukunstkeller’s Amarsi IPA, as it is used at Maltbar and with it’s strong hoppy flavour & the bitter citrus aroma it perfectly goes together with lime and brown sugar. If you can’t get hands on this one, go for an IPA that also uses Amarillo and Simcoe hop for the strong flavours. I remember the 8 Degrees Brewing’s Howling Gale Ale to be quite similar but less bitter, so if you want to mild the hoppy bitterness I would give this one a shot.
And as summer kisses craftbeer in this recipe, this cute little bowl 58products, inventors of the famous TASSEN, provided kisses the cake. And the luck of the Irish seemed to be with me as they announced -drummroll please- that I am among the winners of their #kissthecake competition. I am flattered and super happy. I had so much fun playing around with the kissing bowl, the cupcakes and the light. And I must admit this bowl is just cuteness overflow and I am happy that it’ll get some company real soon!