Just dropping by to check in with the Heavenly Cake Bakers (HCB), a group of us baking our way through Rose Levy Beranbaum's book Rose's Heavenly Cakes. Oh, I had such a long list of things to make from the book for the next free choice week, because I have been busy planning the launch of Milkglass Baking and have missed some of the ones I was most eager to try. But this week came along, and the occasion (with a chocolate allergy providing a wonderful constraint in which to create) simply demanded I repeat the fabulous Pumpkin Cake, but this time conquering the Burnt Orange Silk Meringue Buttercream. There are a lot of components to this buttercream, including Creme Anglaise and Italian Meringue, which are combined with softened butter and orange. (I used the zest and reduced juice of the wonderful Mandarin Oranges from my CSA, Terra Firma Farm, with a few drops of orange oil.) While this buttercream ranks high for flavor with its notes of caramel and citrus, it is rather labor (and dish) intensive for a buttercream. But I am glad I finally tried it.
Inspired by Eat the Love's list of unfinished business, I wanted to post the list of the cakes the HCB have made that I have missed out on, in the hopes that I will come back and cross them off:
- Lemon Meringue Cake - Lemon meringue is my all-time favorite pie, and like Rose, I have often imagined seeing it transformed into a cake. (Monica earned a proposal for this one!)
- The Bostini - Not only because this dessert is a San Francisco classic (pastry chef Kurtis Baguley had it written into his contract with Scala's that the recipe followed him) but because orange chiffon, pastry cream, and ganache glaze sounds like heaven.
- Apple Caramel Charlotte - I can admit it. I just want to do this one because it looks really hard. There are SEVEN pages of instructions.
- Zach's La Bomba - Uncharted territory, beautiful, shiny (HCB has not picked this one yet....)
- Woody's Lemon Luxury Cake - I love lemon.
- Golden Lemon Almond Cake - Rose has said several times that this is her favorite non-chocolate cake in the book. Plus, it's made in a bundt pan.
- Chocolate Apricot roll with Lacquer Glaze
If you are looking for a recipe to try from the book, a good place to start would be Marie's post rounding up the favorites among the HCB. Actually, knowing the St. Honore trifle got so many votes, I am wondering why I didn't choose it?