Sunday, April 29, 2012

Planning a Week of Baking

I find that most tasks in life are much simpler approached with a schedule. Producing multiple orders due within days of each other, raising two kids, and running a household warrants me to create a multitude of lists, each one coordinating, overlapping, and working towards the greater goal. The first thing I do when I encounter such a week is plan. This is the key to my sanity and so far it's served me well. Additionally, I don't sleep past the few hours my body truly needs for sleep and that helps a great deal too.
This week I had a couple of cakes, a dozen cupcakes, and over 50 decorated sugar cookie favors to make. The preparation of these cakes and cookies are broken down so I only do a few tasks a day spread out over a week, leaving the cake baking until the very end, since I like to have my cakes super fresh.

Thursday happened to be "Bring Your Child to Work Day," so my daughter was my sous chef for the day! Unfortunately, it's not all baking fun in a day in the life of me, so she assisted in folding and putting away a whopping four loads of laundry as well!

In dealing with fondant cakes, the preparations of the fondant and other decorations must be done days in advance to be ready to apply to the cake. One of my cakes for this week was a horse-themed cake for a little girl, Ella's, 6th birthday party. Everything I make for my baked goods is from scratch, so I prepared the fondant, horse applique, and daisies early in the week so they could set and dry. The cake was classic vanilla with chocolate buttercream. I created a bunch of daisy cookie favors for this order, too. Happy Birthday, Ella! I hope you have a fun and wonderful day!

My next order was for a communion. It consisted of a cake and cupcakes. The cake was a coconut cake filled with a pecan coconut filling similar to one you'd find in a German Chocolate Cake. It was frosted in a smooth white chocolate Swiss meringue buttercream. The design was a rose theme to coordinate with rose cupcakes which were chocolate cake with vanilla-flavored American buttercream.

My last order was for some smiley face and ticket cookies.

I know I've said this before, but as intense as these weeks prove to be, I really enjoy being in the midst of them - the planning, the preparation, the execution. I love it.

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