Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Return of the Cupcakes

Dear all,

My baking journey in Indo has been up and down since the beginning of the year. There were good days where my cakes raised to perfection (trust me, nothing beats the feeling of it!!), and there were also days where they turned out to be utterly miserable. I have to adjust my recipes to suit the baking condition here at home. The humidity, quirks of my ovens, and the different ingredients, mainly the flour, the eggs, the sugar, and butter (butter is oh so expensive here!) make all the difference in my cakes. You see, most of the Indonesian recipes use margarine instead of butter, but when i substituted butter with margarine, i get all sorts of funny taste and smell from my cakes! There is this very famous Indonesian margarine brand that smells so funny when it’s being baked to the point that my usually very fragrant banana cake gives out sour aroma from the oven. HAH! Figure that out! I haven’t found a good brand of margarine that can be used for every recipe that I have hitherto compiled. Anyway, after several successful and not-so-successful attempts at various recipes, I’ve finally braced myself to baking cupcakes (again).

I made Red Velvet and Matcha cupcakes yesterday. Those two were the favourites along with my cookies and cream cupcakes. The red velvet were not as red since I used different brand of red colourings (i used to use Wilton’s, they’re good!) The cupcake wrappers were a bit too small too. I can’t find the usual cupcake wrappers here at home! Arghhh.. they’re all not the sizes i want. The mixture itself, were not as thick as it were back in Melbourne. And the cake is not as moist either. Julie!! I need you to taste my red velvet cos you’re the red velvet expert! Oh!! You know what!! Indo’s icing sugar is super duper sweet! I have to halve the sugar content in the icing, and even with that, those who tasted them last nite still complaint that they were a tad bit too sweet.

Surprisingly, the Matcha turned out to be a hit! Everyone says that the green tea one is nicer than the red velvet. In my humble opinion, though the chocolate tastes very very yummy, it overpowered a hint of tea flavour in the cake itself. And yes, the matcha icing is a bit too sweet. I was scared that it would leave a very bitter after taste, so i added in a little more sugar (and for your information, that’s already half of the original recipe. Thanks to indo’s super sweet icing sugar, my recipes are all messed up!)

The matcha is very special too because the Japanese green tea powder is imported from Melbourne (thank you dear cousin for your kind favour). Those of you who think that the green tea icing is a bit sandy, it’s because of the green tea powder. I didn’t use artificial green tea essence for it. Nor did I use any added chemicals/ cake emulsifiers such as TBM, VX or ovalet for ANY of my cakes. Only premium ingredients are chosen for bakingbee’s cakes. I always do my best to bake cakes that are as natural as possible.

These cupcakes are dedicated to my dear friends back in Melbourne who have been very supportive in testing my cupcakes and giving out comments and suggestions. They’re not as pretty or as yummy (in the case of the red velvet) as the ones back in Melbourne, but i will continue my quest for the perfect cupcakes.

PS. new photos will follow shortly.

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