First, for my friend Tom's 21st birthday I made him a little monkey cake (inside joke with "monkey butt") Anyways, I saw a cake just like this on Baking Art's flickr site, but I changed a few things around.
The cake is a devils food cake filled with plantain buttercream and frosted with chocolate ganache. Word to the wise: do NOT work with plantains in cake unless you have ample experience with them. I was going to do a simple banana buttercream, but none of the bananas at the store were ripe enough, so I thought I'd pull a Top Chef move and use plantains instead. Well, little did I know they aren't the easiest to work with, and I thought the buttercream was disgusting. BUT, Tom said it tasted good...so that's all that matters, right? And here's an up close of my fondant monkey:
I tried to google a tutorial or something that would help me with it, but my iPhone wasn't cooperating and I was in a rush. I even made the monkey a cute bellybutton, but I had to cover it up with a banana so the arms wouldn't look so awkward. I need more practice, but I'm glad I've gotten started on figurines!
Next, while I was making my first wedding cake (pictures to be posted later), I was fooling around with some miniature cakes. Here is one that I whipped up...and any cake decorator will know that I used buttercream and not royal icing so my piping looks like crap:
I cut open the cake too! Not often do you see the "guts" of a cake on blogs like these (dark chocolate cake with espresso buttercream):
As soon as I got home from Europe, I had a baking itch that needed to be scratched!! So, I made pizza and ciabatta and cookies and cupcakes and lord oh mighty...I baked a lot. Unfortunately, I didn't get pictures of everything :(
I made sable cookies and soft ginger cookies first. The sable cookies I got from Tartelette's blog, and the ginger cookies from The Big Cookie Cookbook (or a name close to that). They both turned out well. I ended up using homemade apricot and apple jam that my parent's friends gave us - yumm-o!
Next, one of my mom's friends ordered cupcakes for her coworkers birthday, and voila! I made german chocolate cupcakes at her request. I finally found the perfect German chocolate frosting - not too eggy, not too caramelly. The King Arthur's Flour Baker's Companion has been very helpful lately.
For Thanksgiving, I made this pumpkin cream cheese pie from How To Eat A Cupcake. I love her blog...go check it out! It turned out well, and everyone liked it! My uncle always makes bomb apple pies for Thanksgiving too, so I made sure my pie stayed in the corner so I wouldn't steal his thunder :)