Monday, April 25, 2011

Mini Cake

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Today, my blog is 2 months old! Wow... In these two months, I have learned so much, cooked & baked my heart out & tried my best to put up not-so-sucky photographs.

There are some truly beautiful food blogs out there, but more importantly, I have realized that there are some AMAZING people behind each of those blogs. In these two months, I was able to witness the community stand and support a few fellow bloggers who were going through a rough patch, and it blew my mind. These people actually care! I have met so many awesome food bloggers, and I'm happy to say I've made a few friends. I am so happy to be part of the world wide community of food bloggers. It is an awesome community to belong to.

And I don't think there is one, single rude foodie out there! Everyone I have 'met' has been really, really nice! It makes so much sense. People who cook and eat such amazing food, cannot but be happy. Even my mood has improved exponentially since I started this blog. And I have been described by many as 'sullen'. :) It excites me to be able to share my love of cooking & baking, and to be able to see the same passion in others.

This is also my 25th post. Feels like a milestone somehow. Is that weird? So, to celebrate this double mini-milestone, I baked my blog a mini-cake.


I actually baked 2 whole cakes, but cut out two circles and frosted it to make it my mini-cake. Perfect for one. It doesn't look perfect I know. I have a long way to go with my frosting skills. But it tasted really, really good! As for the remaining cake, I have stashed it in my fridge, and there it rests and waits to be transformed into an awesome trifle pudding for my trifle-loving husband.

For the cake, I adapted a basic (but very yummy) yellow butter cake recipe from my red-and-white plaid checked Better Homes & Gardens New Cookbook: 11th Edition. I've been using this book for ages even though I know it is terribly outdated. I love this book because it has a lot of classic recipes.


For the frosting, I used my favorite Swiss Meringue Butter cream frosting, which can be found in one of my earliest posts, but added chocolate.

Yellow Cake
Ingredients
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2/3 cup butter, softened
1 3/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
2 eggs
1 1/4 cups milk (I used yoghurt)

Method
1. Preheat the oven to 375.
2. Grease and lightly flour two 9 inch round cake tins.
3. In a small bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder and salt, and set aside.
4. In a large bowl, beat the softened butter until fluffy.
5. Add the sugar and vanilla and continue beating until well combined.
6. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
7. Add the flour mixture to the creamed butter mixture in three parts, alternating with the milk/yoghurt, making sure you finish with the flour mixture.
8. Bake at 375 for 30-35 minutes, or until it passes the toothpick test.
9. Cool in the pans for 10 minutes, then turn the out of their tins and transfer the cakes to a cooling rack.
10. When completely cool, frost with your favorite frosting.


Chocolate Swiss Meringue Buttercream Frosting
Ingredients
1 cup sugar
6 egg whites
250g / 18 tbsp butter, softened
1 tsp vanilla extract
6 oz semi-sweet/milk chocolate, melted and cooled
1 tbsp cocoa powder, sifted

Method
1. Combine the the egg whites and sugar & heat gently over a double boiler until the sugar is completely dissolved. The eggs should stay translucent & should not start to cook & turn whitish! To be safer, you could do this on a double-boiler. You can check if the sugar is dissolved by rubbing the mixture between your fingers. If it smooth, then take it off the heat at once.
2. Pour into a bowl. Using an electric mixer, beat until the mixture has cooled. Continue to beat until you have soft peaks.
3. At this stage, start adding the butter, a little at a time, beating well after each addition. Don't add more than 1-2 tablespoons at a time.
4. Do not panic if the mixture looks awful & curdles. Keep beating it at high speed. You will find that it will suddenly come together to make a creamy, light buttercream frosting.
5. Add the vanilla extract and beat till incorporated.
6. Add the melted chocolate, and sifted cocoa powder and beat for a further 2 minutes until completely incorporated.


It was a small and tasty mini-cake that I very generously shared with my husband, who has supported me so much since I started this blog. I would also like to mention at this time, that I am so grateful to everyone who has visited my blog & left me a kind word of encouragement. It really brightens my day! :) I have learned so much from all of you & I thank you! I really wish I could share this cake with each of you!

For my 2 month milestone, I made a few changes to the blog as well. If you haven't already noticed, I have added 2 new pages - About The Harried Cook, and Recipes. You can see the tabs just below the header. I hope you take some time to check it out. Also, I have a new signature now. You can see it below each post. Do you like it? I do!

Am I making too big a deal for a 25th post? Should I have saved this for something bigger? Like a 100th post? I hope no one laughs.


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67 comments:

Beth Hyzy said...

Mini cakes are ALWAYS adorable, yours is so cute and it looks delicious! Happy 2-month anniversary :)

theharriedcook said...

:) Thank you, Beth!

Firefly said...

Congrats :) And that cake looks delicious :) :) I love it!!! Love the new changes too!

Kim - Liv Life said...

Congratulations on two months and 25 posts!! I agree with your comments about the foodie blog community, I don't think I've ever been made to feel so welcome anywhere and I look forward to catching up with my new friends often. I'm so glad you started your blog and I've so enjoyed meeting you!
As for the cake... wow!! I'm not very good at frosting either, hence, I really don't make cakes all that often. Frequently I let my daughter take care of the frosting, she does a darn good job!
Nicely done!!

Beetlebuggy said...

I'm not laughing because my mouth is watering :) This is an awesome landmark, at least for me, since I usually abandon blogs way before that! And hey, you don't need a big reason to celebrate...living life is to also celebrate the small joys :) So, Happy 2-month anniversary!

Rachel said...

Happy 25th post! And every post is worth celebrating - especially as a "harried" mom who never knows when she will find the time to bake, cook, photograph, or blog again when kids need to be changed, bathed, fed, chased, and cleaned up after! ;) That's a beautiful mini cake to celebrate such an occasion, and I'm so glad you found a warm, welcoming, and encouraging community among food bloggers. I've been pleasantly surprised as well!

Amanda . said...

Your pictures are getting better and better. And so are your props.
I love butter. And I've eaten your butter cake once, years ago... I still remember it as the best butter cake EVER. Next time you bake this, please call me!

Nami said...

Hi Marsha! The last picture of the cake inside made me very hungry at the end! I was hoping to see the inside picture and you shared at the end... Phew! Thank you for sharing!

Nami said...

And congratulations on your 2 months anniversary! It's a perfect dessert recipe for this special occasion!

theharriedcook said...

Thank you, Suzana! :) I really appreciate all your support :)

theharriedcook said...

:) Thanks for your support and kind words, Kim! I can't wait till I can cook with my daughter... it sounds like so much fun & I would love to share it with her! She's 18 months old now & I am enjoying her so much! :)

theharriedcook said...

Thank you! :) This is my second time blogging, and my last blog was 33 posts long.. LOL... still gotta cross that milestone... but last time, it wasn't a food blog & so I wasn't as inspired :)

Thanks again!

theharriedcook said...

Thanks, Rachel! You are so right... Every post is a big deal in a house with a toddler! :) I always wanted to step-by-step pictures, but gave up very early on! Now I can barely get pictures of the food with my toddler and dog sticking their fingers and noses into the plate! :) LOL... Yes, the food bloggers community is a fantastic place to belong :) Thanks for your support!

theharriedcook said...

You are so kind! I have been trying really hard with my pictures and I am glad it shows! :) Yes, I remember that buttercake. Wasn't it at that birthday party when we played hide-and-go-seek at night, with the lights out? :) What fun! :) I will call you the next time I make this cake! For sure :) Thanks for supporting my blog! :)

theharriedcook said...

Thank you, Nami! I almost never got that inside shot because when I got up to go get the knife, I knocked the whole plate over! Fortunately, the cake escaped uninjured :) LOL... Thanks so much for your kind words! I am very happy to have 'met' you! :)

Rosemary Wolbert said...

Happy 25th post! The cake looks great. And you're right, there's a world of wonderful people (and cooks) here. It seems we inspire each other and that makes good food and good friends. Keep on blogging!

Rosemary Wolbert said...

Happy 25th post! The cake looks great. And you're right, there's a world of wonderful people (and cooks) here. It seems we inspire each other and that makes good food and good friends. Keep on blogging!

Emilia said...

Happy two months anniversary!!!! and many ahead. The tarts look so tasty and lovely.

Beth said...

Congratulations on your 25th post! I think we need to celebrate whichever milestones we want to!

Christina said...

I think it's nice to celebrate the small milestones as well as the bigger ones. Congrats! The foodie community is really great and fun, and it's amazing to be able to meet so many people through it.

Pudding Pie Lane said...

Glad to have discovered your blog, can't believe your blog is only two months - your photos are very good! Keep at it, the 100th post isn't far away :)

Kate said...

This little cake is so cute and looks delicious! I love yellow cake with chocolate buttercream frosting. And congrats on 2 months of blogging! I am right there with you :-)

theharriedcook said...

Thank you, Rosemary! That is so true :) We really do inspire each other! Thanks for your support :)

theharriedcook said...

Thank you, Emilia! I love your blog... you are an amazing cook & photographer! I learn so much from your blog... Thanks for your support :)

theharriedcook said...

Thanks, Beth! :) I agree... :)

theharriedcook said...

Thank you, Christina! That's so true... I have met so many wonderful people in these two months.. can't wait for more! :)

theharriedcook said...

Thank you! I love your blog... you are an awesome cook & photographer! what gorgeous food! I am going to be following you... :) Thanks for the support!

theharriedcook said...

wow! you're about 2 months old as well, but so much ahead of me in so many ways! I admire how much work you've put into your blog... such lovely work! I'm going to be following you :) Thanks for your support!

Gitusabu said...

It looks adorable! And yellow butter cakes are a personal favorite of mine! The red polka dress pattern makes it super cute!

Kate@Diethood.com said...

Your cakes look fantastic! And mini is always better. ;-)

Mary@One Perfect Bite said...

Congratulations on post 25. I hope to be here when you post your 1000th entry. Your petite cakes were a perfect way to celebrate the day. I hope you have a great day.. Blessings...Mary

Briarrose said...

Cutest little cake ever....what a great way to celebrate. The garnish of fresh strawberries is a wonderful touch.

I love that cookbook....It's one of my oldies but goodies I use all the time. ;)

theharriedcook said...

Thank you, Gitu! :) You know how much I love yellow cake too!

theharriedcook said...

Thank you so much! :) I agree... everything's cuter in miniature!

theharriedcook said...

Thank you, Mary :) Yours is one of my favorite blogs! I think you are fantastic! Thank you for all your support! Have a wonderful day! :)

theharriedcook said...

Thank you so much! :) :) It is a great cookbook, isn't it? Mine isn't in the best condition but I still hang on to it :) Thanks for your support! :)

RebeccaSubbiah said...

beautiful little cake and yep love blogging too great folks

My Scene and Herd said...

I too am a new blogger! Congrats to you, and what a cute little cake to celebrate with.

theharriedcook said...

Thank you so much! And thanks for stopping by, Rebecca! :)

theharriedcook said...

Thanks! :) It was a yummy cake too... Thanks for stopping by! :)

Lizzy Do said...

Marsha, congratulations on 2 months and your 25th post! What a stunning mini cake...just perfectly executed! You are a blogging and photography pro already!!! Looking forward to your 100th and 1000th posts!!!

PS...I agree about all the bloggers I've met...so nice, helpful and supportive :)

Galexi Cupcakes said...

Congratulations!! You put out great food and I love the recipes! Always blog with your heart and soul and it comes through..Best, Jackie

Jill Colonna said...

Marsha, 25th post, 2 months is just fantastic and here's to the 100th: btw it's not a bad joke at all :-D
These mini cakes are just beautiful, as are your photos as always. I couldn't agree more about the lovely blogging community spirit and it's lovely to know you! Cheers!

Georgia said...

Congratulations on having your blog for 2 months! I absolutely love your mini cakes, too. They would be the hit of any fancy party, I'm sure!

Erin @ Making Memories said...

Oh! I want a mini cake! It looks wonderful!!! Nice job!

Vicki @ WITK said...

Happy two months and 25 posts! These cakes are just so cute, I love that they are single serve :)

theharriedcook said...

Thank you, Lizzy! :) You are, without doubt, one of the nicest bloggers I have met! :) Thank you so much for your kind words... :) And thanks for your support!

theharriedcook said...

Thank you, Jill! You are very kind and generous with your compliments! :) And I am so glad to know you too! :) Eat a macaron for me... :)

theharriedcook said...

Thank you for your thoughtful words, Georgia! :) And thanks for stopping by! :)

theharriedcook said...

Thank you, Erin! :) You are one of the nicest & most creative bloggers I have had the pleasure of 'meeting'! :) Thanks for your support! :)

theharriedcook said...

Thank you, Vicki! Yes I figured the more cake I make, the more I will eat. Hence, the mini cake :) LOL... Thank you so much for stopping by!

Anjusabu said...

How come I haven't tasted this?? I don't get to eat half your stuff and you demand for feedback. :p
Food bloggers are waaaay better at commenting than the rest of them - that's awesome. Love the new and organised look. Very cool.

theharriedcook said...

Am I seeing things? I have a comment from THE Anju Sabu! Wow! Thank you! :) Visit me more often and I will be happy to make stuff for you.

And Food Bloggers are waaaay better. Period. :p Thanks for your feedback! :)

spcookiequeen said...

I like your cute signature, I still haven't gotten around to doing one. Happy 2 month anniversary. Time does fly when you are having fun. I think you are on the right path if you have already figured out your reward is the knowledge you are building and the connections you are making. Can't wait to see more of your yummy recipes.

theharriedcook said...

Thank you for your thoughtful words, Gina! I am so glad to have 'met' you in my journey as a food blogger! Looking forward to many, many more months of recipe swapping! :)

ps - hope to see the recipe for those delicious looking bacon biscuits soon! :)

Frugal Antics said...

What a cute cake to celebrate a milestone! You go ahead and celebrate any thing you want!! I wish I had been able to jump right into such a great community when I first started blogging. It took me a long time to find my place. You are doing fabulously.

Fooddreamer said...

Happy mini birthday to your blog! A perfect mini cake to celebrate, too. Why is it that mini versions are so enticing? I just made mini bundt cakes and they are adorable.

In Katrina's Kitchen said...

This post cracked me up...well the end! lol It was PERFECT! Happy 2 month anniversary!!

theharriedcook said...

Thank you for your thoughtful comment, Kristen :) I still feel like I am floundering, but it's so much fun! :)

theharriedcook said...

Thank you, Carolyn! I just saw your mini bundt cakes. How gorgeous they are... Absolutely adorable... I agree that miniature versions are absolutely adorable... :) Thanks for stopping by!

theharriedcook said...

LOL :D Thank you, Katrina! I was seriously wondering if I was making too big a deal. I am so glad my fellow bloggers are all so encouraging of my silly anniversaries :) Thank you so much for stopping by! :)

Xiaolu @ 6 Bittersweets said...

This is so adorable with it's small size. I've been wanting to try chocolate SMBC too!

A little bit of everything said...

Happy double celebration. you're so right about the blog community, there are so many wonderful friends out there. I'm so glad I got to meet you and look forward to read your 100th post followed by the 200th and so on.
The cake looks amazing. love the chocolate frosting. thanks for sharing

theharriedcook said...

Thank you, Xiaolu, for your thoughtful comment :) It was the perfect size! :) LOL and it took me a while to figure out what SMBC was... Google said it was Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal... HAHA :D The Chocolate SMBC was very good ;)

theharriedcook said...

Thank you for your kind words... yeah the people I've met so far have been awesome! :) Thanks for stopping by!

Cynthia Rodriguez said...

This is a very nice looking cake, indeed. I especially like the picture showing the layers. They are very neat. Great job :)

Amanda said...

Mini cake - indulgence with less calories.

And no, a two month anniversary is totally worth celebrating. Especially how you fit 25 posts in 60 days! That's a lot of cooking, picture taking, writing, posting, and etc, you did there! Celebrate all you want!

Amanda
softandstiffpeaks.blogspot.com

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