Summer in Snow

Yesterday, I was asked a very big question: Why do I bake? I was so stupefied in the moment that I wasn’t able to answer beyond the usual “because it’s fun and I enjoy it” mumbo jumbo. I woke up this morning with an epiphany of sorts – an AHA! moment. I know why I bake, and that is because baking to me is like creating edible art, which is, in my own humble opinion, the best kind. So if somebody out there owns something like that remote control from that Adam Sandler movie “Click”, I could really use it right now.

I promised myself to make something beautiful every week from here on out…unless something comes up. My edible art for this week is a layered berry meringue, which brings to mind the wonderful flavors of summer embraced in snow.

Ps. As you may have noticed below, I am attempting to write this blog also in (poor) Finnish. Please forgive any spelling and grammatical errors, my Finnish language skills are truly a work in progress.

Eilen minulta kysyttiin: miksi minä leivon? Olin niin mykistynyt, että mutisin vain tavallista hölynpölyä (”koska se on hauskaa ja nautin leipomisesta”).  Olin aivan vaivautunut koko päivän aikana, ja heräsin tänä aamuna kysymys edelleen mielessäni – sitten, yhtäkkiä tajusin miksi minä oikeasti leivon! Leipominen on minulle kuin taiteen luomista, ja tämä on jopa erityisempi taide, koska se on syötävää! Siis jos joku omistaa jonkinlaisen tv-kaukosäätimen Adam Sandlerin ”Click” –elokuvasta, voisinko lainata sitä sinulta?

Joka tapauksessa, minun tämän viikon syötävä taideteos (lupasin itselleni, että leivon viikoittaisin tästä lähtien) on tämä kuningatar marenki kerrokset, josta tulee mieleen kesä ja luminen halaus. 

layeredberrymeringue_1 layeredberrymeringue_2

It is only fitting because it’s kind of a winter wonderland here in Rovaniemi at the moment. See: view from my balcony

Tämä pikkuherkku sopii erittäin hyvin tämänhetkiseen säähän, koska Rovaniemi on tällä hetkellä täydellisesti lumen peitossa. Ks. Parvekkeeltani otettu kuva. 

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Recipe (using only 5 ingredients!) is found after the jump.

Reseptin löydätte alla oleva linkistä. 

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Parlez vous soufflé?

I have decided to take a break from unpacking my boxed-up life as we move into our new home back here in Rovaniemi by getting back on the blogging horse. I’ve been meaning to update more, but haven’t found the writing mojo– it’s buried deep deep down. But! It’s a new year (once again!) and my mom has oh-so-kindly gifted me with a hand-me-down in the form of a MacBook and hey, I’m not too proud to beg. : )

Anyway… we are back in Rovaniemi (funnily enough, in an apartment that is right across our old place) after 4 months in wonderful Helsinki and a month vacationing in Manila. In addition to celebrating my mom’s 55th birthday and Chinese New Year, the best part… okay, the second best part (nothing beats shopping) is having tasters around the house! Trust me, I took advantage… Thankfully, the tasters were willing participants and I had the chance to experiment on soufflés in various flavors. And much like most of my trial and error adventures, it was definitely a learning experience. Some soufflés ended up rather dense, others overcooked, one even heavy (how that is even possible is beyond me and can only be chalked up to my clumsy kitchen ways). However, I am quite happy and proud to present 5 different soufflés.

Soufflés after the jump, I promise!

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The Evolution of Cake

After a successful first attempt at opening a Restaurant Day stall yesterday, I am back on the blog (which I should update more!) with a post about… CAKE.

Talking to friends and customers yesterday, I realized something: desserts have come a long, long way. They are now (more than ever) pieces of art that are expected to be strikingly beautiful. Gone are the days when dessert equaled quickly mixing up a brownie, popping it into the oven and greedily cutting it into squares that go directly into hungry mouths — okay, well I still do that. But with TV shows like The Great American (or Australian/British, depending on where you are) Bake-Off on the air, the standard for presentation has risen leaps and bounds.

I could go on and on about these beautiful works of art – but for this post, I will limit myself to CAKES.

Birthday cakes during my childhood in Manila looked like this:

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(photo from Google)

…and I would threaten anybody who wanted to take my sugar flowers!

By the time my little brother was celebrating childhood birthdays, cakes looked this:

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(another photo from Google)

… and Goldilocks was the ultimate source of birthday cakes!

I celebrated my 12th birthday in New Jersey, and I was SO SO excited because I had an ice cream cake from Baskin Robbins! Mint Chocolate Chip! And it was a much bigger version of this:

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(yet again, from Google)

…and my dad freaked out because we had an ice cream cake fight with a bunch of people, using this very overpriced cake!

But cake has continued to evolve…and as I started to delve into baking and decorating, I beggggged my parents for a Spongebob mold and ALL the colors necessary to make this:

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(photo from Google)

…and I felt so accomplished and proud of myself. I thought I was the bee’s knees! 

But nowadays, cake decoration has gotten SO fancy and SO fondant-y. And I still don’t know whether or not I am a fan. Fondant just doesn’t taste as yummy. Unless it’s marshmallow fondant- but the normal fondant has no taste (best case) or YUCKY marzipan taste. 😦 In any case, my wedding cake was a fondant cake made by Martha’s:

Image(photo not from Google!)

…but as much as I wanted to eat that little snowman bride, it had no taste PLUS it had a weird aftertaste. 😦 which reinforces my doubts regarding fondant. My tastebuds yearn for good old buttercream….

And with all these fancy cakes going on, I have my heart set on a new project:

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(photo from Google)

…a CHECKERED CAKE! I plan to make this in more vibrant colors. 

Andddd, there is my little brief piece on the Evolution of Cake. 1986-present.

P.S. My older brother once celebrated his birthday in Brunei (where my Aunt used to live) while I was happily swimming around my mom’s belly. When asked what kind of birthday cake he wanted (there’s no Goldilocks in Brunei!), he said he wanted an ORANGE cake. This wouldn’t be a problem in this day and age, but in Bandar Seri Begawan 1985, it was a little bit of a hiccup. They ended up with:

Image(Google search: Orange Jell-O)

: ) 

 

 

Restaurant Day!

Baby Bites is joining Restaurant Day in Rovaniemi, Finland!

On 18 August (Restaurant Day), Baby Bites will be offering the following, all in miniature form:

– Meringue nests with fruit cream
– Chocolate cupcakes
– Blueberry cheesecakes

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These will be sold for 1€ each near the Church Pond from 11 AM to 4 PM. Hope to see you there. : )

Another First Entry

Hello! I am once again trying to start yet another blog, after so many futile attempts. I always think it’s about time to start one, yet I never follow through. But it’s a new year month, so here’s to hoping I can keep this up!

For now, good afternoon, good evening and goodnight!

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Gingerbread Christmas trees!

BABY PIZZAS : D

So easy to make and yet so satisfying! Homemade pizza is becoming more and more appealing to me… Still trying to come up with a few to change this up. Will figure it out and blog again when that happens.