November 06, 2012

My firsts in baking

I am attention-hungry today. This is because I just launched the FB page for my blog. Yehey! I've been meaning to do it for a long time, but I've been very busy. 

I think this blog should be something more than just a photo album where I showcase my latest cake designs. I think this should tell the story of how I started to get into baking/cake decorating. It should chronicle my journey from being a complete kitchen idiot to a quite successful self-taught baker/cake decorator. I still can't cook a decent meal (I even have to rely on a rice cooker to cook rice just right), but I am proud to say that for someone who hated the kitchen, I can now do what I am doing. I didn't attend any baking classes (yes, because I am CHEAP, and I think it would do me more good if I directly used the money to pay for classes to buy ingredients and just learn from books and online blogs and tutorials), but I've learned quite a lot in over a year.

My friend Ristie was the first one who ever broached the idea of me getting into baking. As always, she got me to start doing things. She was the first one who gave me the idea to make my own beaded jewelry (I've been pretty successful in that too until I got too busy for it...besides there's more money in a food business than in an accessories business...HONESTLY), and more than a year ago, she showed me how to ice my first ever cupcakes.
Photo from my personal Facebook account; taken last June 11, 2011
Right after this, I bought my first ever cookbook, The Hummingbird Bakery Cookbook. I've been using the basic recipes from this book eversince (with minor tweaks according to my preferences along the way).

I know the red velvet (which I modified for plain chocolate cupcakes) and vanilla cupcake recipes by heart.
After that, I bought a whole bunch of magazines and secondhand baking books from Booksale to copy recipes from and to get basic cake decorating ideas. I also did a lot of research, especially on working with fondant. 

After the third try, I was finally able to bake something edible! Whew! But the buttercream here is still very unstable. (June 29 2011)
My first-ever cake: 5-inch round vanilla cake for my niece Julia, my first-ever fan
The first ever batch of orders I took (July 14 2011)
My first ever sugar cookies (July 20 2011)
My first ever fondant pieces were for my friend April's bridal shower (July 28 2011)
Looking back at my previous work, I could say that I've really made a lot of progress. There are still a lot of things that I need to learn and to master, but I take pride in the fact that I have elevated the level of my craftsmanship through my hard work, perseverance, and determination. I am very proud and happy of everything that I have achieved on my own. 

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