Monday, 13 August 2012

Bacon Makes it Better

So I think we can all agree, bacon makes things better.

I know, I know, bacon is super trendy right now. I'm not just jumping on the band wagon though, I swear! I have been baking with bacon for awhile now. Of course there are the obvious applications for pork in baked goods. A ham and cheese croissant here, a bacon cheddar scone there, but lets go outside of the box here. I have made maple bacon cakes, chocolate covered bacon, and my favourite ... bacon caramels. My latest idea struck me when I made a batch of sweet dough that was way too big. So i decided to do 3 types of sticky buns.One pan was regular, one pan was full of chai spices, and one was filled with bacon.

by far the bacon was the star!

Not long after I tried to replicate the deliciousness, with even more bacon in it. I went to my favourite butcher and procured some tasty bacon. And I made up a simple sweet dough, using beautiful freshly milled wheat flour from my favorite bread baker . I made a sweet glaze o line my pan and then I cooked off my bacon till it was almost crispy. After draining off the excess grease I finished the cooking of the bacon with some good quality maple syrup, glazing the salty bits of meat in sweetness. I tossed half of the bacon in with the pan glaze, and the other half i sprinkled over the brown sugar butter mixture on the sweet dough.

these sweet treats baked up beautiful. My arteries wept as i munched on them, but I couldn't stop. so much deliciousness!!

so the morale of the story is, just because you haven't tried something before, doesn't mean it wont be amazing. So try something new!
Also, bacon is rad.

Tuesday, 7 August 2012


I have been busy. I have been trying to at least keep up with putting up pics, but I apologise for no new posts for so long. I'm going to try to make up for it today with a post about a super fun cake!!! A lovely lady I know ordered a taco cake from me awhile ago for her daughters birthday. So fun! So awesome!!! check it out...

I started with a 12" round vanilla cake, cut into three layers and filled with vanilla Italian butter cream. then I cut the cake in half to make two giant tacos. then I had to think of the best way to decorate to make it look like a real taco. I knew the lettuce would be fondant tinted green and simply ruffled. A friend had the brilliant idea to use maraschino cherries as tomato, ( I know usually I would tell you  that maraschino cherries are evil, but it really was the best idea for the effect i wanted ) The melted cheese was also pretty straight forward, melted white chocolate tinted slightly orange and piped on.
                                                                                            the ground beef part of the taco took more thought. I didn't want to just mash more and layers of fondant on the cake. My fondant is better than the stuff you buy in a pail, but it is still fondant and not the funnest thing to eat in big mouthfuls. eventually I decided to toss puffed wheat in melted chocolate. the result was both effective and delicious. 
 The final piece of the puzzle was figuring out how to make an authentic looking taco shell. This took some experibaking. I knew in theory I could make a tuille cookie work, but I had to try afew ideas to get it to where I wanted it to be. Finally I baked large oval shaped cookies, and while they were still warm out of the oven, I shaped them around the cakes which were already covered in plain fondant. once the cookie set, I used a culinary torch to char the outside and give it the right look. I am not going to lie to you, I was pretty darn impressed with myself at this point. the toasted cookie looked exactly how i wanted. it took alot of fails but i was finally pleased.

then all I had to do was "fill" the tacos with the other elements! When I was done I was thrilled. I exceeded  my own expectations on this project, and the client was happy too. Taco cake for the win!