Pharm Fresh

The foodie alter-ego of a pharmacy student

Spice Awesomeness and a Wedding Cake Update April 3, 2009

Filed under: etc. — pharmfresh @ 8:16 pm
Tags: , , ,

So, I probably don’t say it much, but I have a pretty fantastic boyfriend. He’s caring, he’s considerate, he doesn’t like sports (how jealous are you?), and best of all, he’s pretty handy with some wood and a few power tools.

And why is this important, you ask? Because he used his construction skills to build me a spice rack! And not just a small, boring spice rack. A huge, pretty spice rack that was exactly like I wanted. I showed him a picture of what I wanted it to look like and he said “yeah, I can build that.” And he did!

img_3652

I love it!  I had a small, 15 bottle spice rack before, but it just wasn’t working out.  There were way too many spices that I wanted to have, and I didn’t have any place to put them.  The bottles and baggies of them ended up getting shoved into a small cabinet that had some room in it, but then I ended up having to take everything out each time I needed to find it again, because there was no order to it.

img_3646

Some of the spices I bought at my local supermarket, but I ordered most of them from the Savory Spice Shop.  They’re a fabulous shop based out of Colorado and they offer a ton of herbs and spices at really reasonable prices — most of which are a lot less expensive than the tiny little jars you find at the grocery store.  They’ve even got some really interesting ones, like honey powder, cheddar cheese powder and black sea salt, all of which I bought.  They also offer a ton of organic products and their own custom spice blends.  I highly recommend checking out their website.  But be warned — you probably won’t be able to resist buying something!

img_3656

So, needless to say, I’m a very happy girl.  A girl that can’t wait to use all the herbs and spices that are waiting in her pretty little spice rack!

Wedding Cake Project Update:

My wedding cake project is going well.  My cousin and his fiance finally “decided” on flavors, meaning that they said “oh, we think some sort of spice cake would be nice, and do whatever you think would be good for the other two.”  So, after a little bit of thought, here’s what I decided on:

Bottom layer: chocolate cake, filled with chocolate ganache and frosted in chocolate frosting.  It’ll basically be my triple chocolate cupcakes in cake form.

Middle layer: spice cake with penuche filling (kind of a thick, brown sugar caramel frosting) and frosted with cream cheese frosting.

Top layer: vanilla bean cake filled with strawberry filling and frosted with Swiss meringue buttercream.

I made mini test cakes last weekend and then made my friends come over to act as taste-testers.  The spice cake is absolutely FANTASTIC.  Probably the best cake I’ve ever eaten.  And coming from a big chocolate cake fan, that’s saying something!  The chocolate cake was delicious too.  I had a few problems with the vanilla bean and strawberry cake.  The actual vanilla bean cake tasted good, but it was a little on the dry side, and the strawberry filling never set, so once I cut into the cake it came spilling out everywhere.  But I have a few ideas on how to fix it, so it should be fine.

I tried my hand at making marshmallow fondant last weekend, too.  About 5 minutes into making it, I broke my hand mixer.  Apparently the fondant is a little bit too thick and hard to mix for my poor mixer’s little motor.  Luckily it was almost completely mixed, and I was able to finish it by hand.  When I make this at my parent’s house, I’ll have my KitchenAid mixer, so hopefully that won’t be a problem again!  The fondant was pretty impressive…and the best part about it?  It actually tasted good!  I used this recipe, and it was a breeze to make (well, aside from breaking the hand mixer.)  Just make sure to use a stand mixer, or a very sturdy hand mixer!

I unfortunately didn’t take any pictures of the test cakes because I didn’t actually decorate them – I just covered them in fondant.  And to be honest, they didn’t really look all that great without the decorations.  I will definitely be posting pictures of the finished product though.  The wedding is next weekend, so I’ve got lots of work to do!

Advertisements