Thursday, December 16, 2010

This Time Last Year...

This time last year, my little sister got married!  December 11th, 2009, Betsy Overman became Betsy Overman Roberson, and I was honored to be her Maid of Honor!  I really can't believe its been a year seems like just yesterday that we were having parties with family, themed showers, celebrating her bachelorette at the beach, and planning her wedding! 

When your little sister gets married, you want her wedding to be perfect.  And when you happen to be the maid of honor (henceforth known as MOH) and the cake baker, there is lots of planning and hard work required to make that kind of perfection happen!  I knew that I wanted to make her and Ryan a wonderful cake and I didn't want cake stuff to get in the way of my duties as MOH.  I knew that I could do both, and hoped that I could do both well!

Bride, MOH, and Bridesmaids!

A December wedding with red, white, and gold accents yielded a very simple yet elegant velvet with white buttercream accents, square tiers, and red ribbon borders.  And surprise....the whole cake was red velvet!  Delicious, and it matched the colors of the season and wedding perfectly.  The main challenge of this cake was the size....there were over 300 people attending the wedding, and that is a heck of a lot of cake!  Over 50 eggs, 15 pounds of flour and sugar, and you don't want to know how much shortening for frosting!  We decided to do a regular 4 tiered wedding cake and then 2 double layer sheet cakes to be pre-cut in the kitchen.  Lots of careful planning went into the design and baking of this cake, just so I could be at everything and do everything and still finish the cake by the big day!

Betsy and Ryan got married on a Friday, so I started baking the cake on that Wednesday night. I decided to mix the batter at my kitchen and then transport all of the batter to the church kitchen to use the convection ovens there, they bake so quickly!  After a particularly rough day at work, I came home late and quickly mixed 15 batches of red velvet cake in my KitchenAid.  I put all of the batter in tupperware bowls, put the lids on, and ran around frantically packing for the wedding, gathering my dress, Betsy's shoes, etc etc. 

I came back in the kitchen and noticed something red on the floor.  Looking up, I realized that in the 10 minutes I was packing, the self rising flour in the batter had risen in all of the sealed bowls, popping the lids off, and batter was rolling off the table!  Red velvet cake batter was EVERYWHERE.  I grabbed a ladle and started emptying some of the full bowls, put the lids back on, and threw everything into the backseat of my car.  Blazing my way to Goldsboro, I got there with my Dad waiting for me, ovens on, kitchen door open. When we opened the backseat, more batter had exploded everywhere, again.  We ran the batter into the kitchen and got the cakes in the oven.  Now not only does it look like someone has been murdered in my backseat with red cake batter everywhere, now there is a trail of cake batter through the parking lot and church hallway.  Dad took a scrub brush to the back of my car and the parking lot while I tried to go get things rolling in the kitchen.  When I walked in the kitchen, my sweet Meme had the ladle in her hand, stirring the batter saying, "Its alive, Its alive, Its ALIIIIIVE!"   And suddenly, the hilarity of the whole situation hit me!  We laughed/cried for a while, and then got to work. 

Thursday morning, I got up and frosted cake all day, with just enough time to wash the powdered sugar off of me and get to the rehearsal dinner on time.  Amazingly enough.  We finally got to sleep after the rehearsal dinner and shower, only for me to dream all night that the red food coloring in the cake had seeped through the frosting to make it turn pink!  The next morning, we assembled the cake by 8am at the reception site, and spent the rest of the day doing wedding-related things...hairdos, dresses, lunch, pictures, etc. 

Square cakes, I have to say, are kind of difficult.  Getting sharp corners with soft buttercream is challenging!

That afternoon, my sister was the most beautiful bride I've ever seen.  She was glowing from head to toe!  The church was shining with Christmas lights, luminaries, joy, and love as Betsy and Ryan pledged the rest of their lives to each other among family and friends!  There wasn't a dry eye in the house!  At the reception, Betsy and Ryan had their first dance together as Mr. And Mrs Ryan Roberson before Betsy and Dad had their dance.  So much preparation went into that moment!  And when they cut the cake, I was so proud it was mine!

Betsy and Dad dancing...I love the bustle on her dress!

Husband and Wife!

The wedding was absolutely beautiful, and I was honored to be a part of it...both in the wedding party and the cake decorating committee :)  Betsy and Ryan have now successfully made it to the big 1 year anniversary, and are still in love, happy, and going strong!  I've never met two people more perfect for each other, and I hope to make a cake to celebrate their 25th, 30th, and 50th wedding anniversaries too!

The cake, after the flowers were added!

Me and the beautiful bride!

Grandaddy David loves to tell the story that when I went to kindergarten for the first time, Betsy was worried that I wouldn't be her best friend anymore.  According to legend, I replied "Betsy, don't be silly.  You're my sister, we'll always be best friends!"  And its true...we'll always be best friends!  I'm so thankful for my sister, and even though none of us could really give her away, we can definitely share her with Ryan for the next 70 years or so!

Love to you both! 


Sunday, December 12, 2010

Gobble Gobble

Better late than never....Happy Thanksgiving!  I'm a little behind in posting this one, as its mid-December, but what can you do.  Christy Bigelow, a friend from church, asked me to make her dad a birthday cake for Thanksgiving.  When she said he loved German chocolate, I got very excited, as I've never done one of those before! 

I immediately said German chocolate, with carmel coconut filling, chocolate buttercream and gnache topping.  Christy told me that her dad likes plain German chocolate.  Plain?  I don't even know how to do a plain cake anymore!  Eventually I talked her in to a more snazzy cake...and eventually she even asked for a turkey on the cake to commemorate the holiday! 

I have to say that German chocolate cake and frosting is more challenging than I initially thought...the frosting itself turned out terrible the first time.  My stovetop seems to heat hotter and faster than any stovetop known to man, and that resulted in, basically, scrambled eggs with butter.  Gross.  My second go round was much more successful, thankfully.  If it hadn't have been, I would have had to make a 3rd grocery run for more eggs!  The final product was delicious!

Having never done a turkey out of frosting before, I googled frosting turkey, and found a couple of pictures online of what I wanted it to look like, and there you have it!  Frosting Turkey.  I just basically layered milk chocolate and dark chocolate not only was he adorable, but tasty!

Pretty much the cutest frosting turkey I have ever seen.  Period. 

You could just eat him up!

He looks a little scared, don't you think? 

And then here's Mr. Bigelow with his cake and daughters!

All in all...I'd say the turkey expedition of 2010 was a success.  I'm going to have to make me a turkey cake next time...I hated to see him leave my house!

Until the next time I get a chance to post, enjoy the cake!