Because I made two not-permitted posts since Anya started the challenge, she’s extended it by ten days! October 7th is the last day of Anya’s rule about what I can post on my own website … the one I set up for myself, on my server, so I would have somewhere to store my stuff. Yeah.
Anya has made us a scavenger hunt complete with clues — clues that are encrypted! While working out a ROT-1 or ROT-2 decryption isn’t terribly difficult, it was getting a little time consuming [especially when what was advertised as ROT-1 was actually ROT-(25) and I had to do it all over again!], so I made a quick spreadsheet to decrypt strings. The letter pairs are in the first two columns, then VLOOKUP is used to convert the printed character to the actual one. I found a trick card!
This year, Anya wanted a cranberry black forest cake. Which I didn’t really realize was a thing, but I found a recipe online. I used maple whipped cream between layers with maple glazed whole cranberries. It was tasty, but a little dry. If I were making it again, I would either soak it in some cranberry juice or some other liquid.
This year, Anya wanted a chocolate brownie for her cake …
Scott had a business idea for Anya — mobile concession stand at the park next door. To me, it seems an easy sell in their off-season — have thermoses of hot cocoa and mulled cider. But he was thinking in the summer, selling their ice cream and bottled water.
This year, I made a really cool apple cake for Anya’s birthday. It’s about 80% apple — very thinly sliced.
It’s called Gateau Invisible
- 1 pound Fuji apples
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1 tablespoons melted butter
- 3/4 cup flour
- Preheat oven to 350 F
- Peel and core apples. Slice into very thin slices. Soak in lemon water.
- Wisk eggs until they are frothy and add sugar.
- Add milk and melted butter.
- Sift the flour into liquid mixture.
- Add sliced apples and stir gently to coat apple slices in batter.
- Pour the batter into a parchment lined bread loaf pan.
- Bake for 40 minutes, cover with foil, then bake for another 10 minutes.
- Remove from pan and allow to cool
- Pour caramel sauce over cake and serve.
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 tbsp butter
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- Melt butter in a small pan.
- Add sugar and heat until sugar turns a medium brown.
- Add heavy cream and wisk to combine.
I made a cake with red beets for Anya’s birthday cake. I roasted the beets instead of boiling them. Then replaced the espresso with beet juice (mostly because I had it in the pan after roasting the beets). Finally I used 7 oz of carob chips along with three tablespoons of a triple cocoa powder blend. To make it a little fancier, I made a small layer cake with the mascarpone between the layers.
I covered the cake with a stabilized whipped cream flavoured with raspberry and added fresh raspberries to to the top. The cake what what I imagined a red velvet cake was before it became white cake with red dye – a deep reddish brown colour. Very moist and dense in spite of the whipped egg whites folded into it.
Raspberry Whip Cream
1 cup heavy whipping cream
1/2 cup fresh raspberry purée (seeds strained out)
1 packet unflavoured gelatin
2 tablespoons superfine sugar
Dissolve gelatin in the raspberry purée.
Begin whipping the cream in a stand mixer. Slowly add in the sugar. Leave the mixer run and heat up the gelatin per instructions. Allow to cool a bit but don’t let it set. Drizzle raspberry mixture into cream and continue whipping to the soft peak state.
Since I was using this as a cake ‘frosting’, I immediately applied it to the cake and allowed it to set on the cake. Before the gelatin set:
After gelatin has set:
Anya got to wear her new birthday party skirt too!
I purchased a pattern for Anya’s Easter dress almost a year ago. I wanted the bodice and outer skirt to be blue with a sparkly white fabric as the inner skirt. I am going to make a booster cushion for Anya, and I needed to add about ten dollars to my order to get free shipping. Fabric keeps 🙂
We have a bright-ish dark blue for the main fabric, and one of the Michael Miller Fairy Frost glittery fabrics for the inner circle skirt (which will also be used for the sash and bow).