Friday, August 1, 2008

Hazelnut Praline Gateau...Daring July

Step outside my comfort zone' has been one of my goals. This Daring Bakers challenge cake accomplished that with gusto. 6 steps before even assembling it and then decorating which I never do. Bowls and spatulas and pots and pans up the tushy. Reading and re-reading the recipe and then probably doing it wrong anyways. Comfort zone? At times it became the twilight zone. I had the best time! Give me rich and creamy and chocolate and nuts and you have my heart.

Now let me share with you an afternoon of fun with Dick and Jane in the kitchen (you have to be older to get that)...

July 25
I am a big fan of multi-tasking. I know there is a sort of Zen belief that you should concentrate on one thing at a time and give it your focus. Yeah, whatever. I finished my simple syrup with Frangelico and was filling the dishwasher while putting away groceries when, BAM, a bottle of Gatorade came crashing down from the top shelf and onto my counter knocking the simple syrup on the counter, down the cupboards, the stove and all over the kitchen floor. Yay! So now I am remaking the syrup, while I toast the nuts, and clean the counter etc., and mop the floor twice, which was not enough, and am trying to keep Sophia from becoming an alcoholic as she attempts to lick the floor. Oh, and typing this. Zen shmen.

My feet are now sticking to the floor that a moment ago they were sliding around on because of the mess and I just burned four of my fingers pushing the hot rack back into the oven without a potholder after taking out the hazelnuts. Time to really rethink extreme multi-tasking.

The simple syrup tends to crystalize on my floor in between moppings. Note to self: wet drunken sugar on floor is not a good thing.

I am now busting up laughing because I just reached to scratch my elbow and it is a sticky mess also and so I went to the sink to wash it and yes, the floor is stickier than ever and I had to rip my feet upwards with each step. How did my elbow even get involved.

This cake may not get done today, ya think.

And now the flies are here.

This is a really fun cake to make!

Then I went to take a tray of nuts out of the oven when one, one little nut fell to the floor, and dog hearing must be as good as they say because Sophia came flying from out of nowhere and through my legs to get it. So, trying to protect her from blistering her little esophogus I went for the nut and I beat her to it, but ended up with a hot cookie sheet in my upper arm. I have a four inch 6th degree burn and Sophia is mad at me now.

Was it all worth it? Oh yeah.

And people let us not forget that Amber does not know how to pipe buttercream. Amber does not have piping tips. And there was only one arm involved due to my neck having labor pains, aka muscle spasms. I think it looks like a morrocan hat.

So...Ta Da
Hazelnut gateau
Frangelico simple syrup
Apricot glaze
Hazelnut praline buttercream
Whipped cream
Bittersweet chocolate ganache


una donna dolce said...

Yeah girl! Lookin good! Did you get my email? I didn't get the package out this week - so sometime early next week then.

Lis said...

HAR! Geez, you made my experience sounds like a walk in the park compared to yours! heheee!

Now please tell me it wasn't the cake that screwed up you neck, right? :D

Well that was definitely a story full of true Daring Baker spirit! And your cake turned out lovely - who says you don't have any piping skillz?! Way to go sweetie.. I hope your neck feels better soon!


Madam Chow said...

It looks like your cake turned out beautifully!

Anonymous said...

Hey, it looks great! I'm glad it came together despite all the difficulties.

ingegerd said...

your cake looks greate!!This was mine second challenge at the daring bakers and i like it!!The recipe some times are little hard.but i like the challenge.Mine english is little bad,but i hope you understand!

Nidhi said...

Wow! you made it! Cheers for the baker spirit which lets us overcome everything to bake............., honestly, the cake looks lovely.

Sugar Plum Vegan said...

beautiful cake! It looks like a fluffy cloud you just want to sink your teeth into.

Anjanette said...

Love it! And love the story! Thanks for the comment on my blog. I had never heard of Mary Engelbreit, so I'm looking her up now. I did the mini cake the day after the big cake, so I was well-rested and feeling more creative. For some reason it reminded me of a hat box, so i imagined this hat with flowers and a veil with little dots....hence the decorations.

Ruth said...

thanks for the comments you left me. despite all the issues your cake looks great. Now we just have to get thru the next challenge.

Kate / Kajal said...

Amber your cake looks so wonderful. Love the 2 layers of buttercream frosting. Double the goodness !

Lauren said...

Mmm, your cake looks great!!

Kevin said...

Stepping outside my comfort zone was the main reason that I joined the DB's as well. It has been loads of fun so far. It sounds like you had some trouble but the cake looks great anyways!