Showing posts from February, 2013

Caking in extreme weather

If you live in Sydney, Australia, you will know that it has been a summer of extreme weather. We’ve had two extraordinary heat waves where the temperature has reached over 45 degree Celsius. And then there have been a few occasions when we’ve suffered through extreme monsoon rains.

Both types of weather create conditions for cake baking which change almost everything I know to do in the kitchen. During the heat I left the butter on the bench and it warmed to almost melting, then I used it to bake cupcakes. The result was an incredibly rich, thick cake batter which produced about six more cupcakes than usual – a surprising, good result.

In the monsoon rain I created a selection of cupcakes as samples for a wedding, with four different designs using buttercream, fondant and royal icing. The buttercream never set – never even formed a shell on it which is really necessary to help it hold its form. Mean while, the fondant absorbed the moisture from the air until it became sticky and…