Monday, November 17, 2008

Two years of blogging and a polka dot cake to celebrate it

 Two years of blogging and a polka dot cake to celebrate it

Lots of recipes and photos. Tons of comments and emails that have put hundreds of smiles on my face. So many wonderful people I have lost track of.
These are the results of 2 years of blogging – one of the most positive things I have ever done.

I read “The Hairy Ape” almost ten years ago and that book kept me thinking about several things. One of them was the feeling of “belonging”. That is something I used to have trouble with – I just did not fit in. The people I knew were very different from me – we did not have anything in common. I felt like a stranger most of the time. And my love for cooking and the idea of having fun in the kitchen were considered weird by others.

Blogging has opened an entire new world to me and knowing people who share my passion for cooking and baking has changed my life in many levels. I do feel like I belong now. And you, my dear readers and fellow bloggers, are responsible for this.

Thank you for standing by me for so long. I wish I could send each and every one of you a slice of this cake, with a big hug on the side.

 Two years of blogging and a polka dot cake to celebrate it

Polka dot cake
Cake and filling recipes adapted from The Whimsical Bakehouse; buttercream recipe from Sky High: Irresistible Triple-Layer Cakes

Golden butter cake:
170g (1 ½ sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 ½ cups (300g) sugar
4 large egg yolks
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 ½ cups + 2 tablespoons (370g) cake flour*
1 tablespoon baking powder
generous pinch of salt
1 cup + 2 tablespoons (270ml) milk

Grease two 20x5cm (8x2 inch) round pans. Preheat the oven to 180ºC/350ºF.
Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat butter and sugar at high speed until light and fluffy. Add the yolks and vanilla and beat on medium speed until fluffy.
At low speed, add the dry ingredients, alternately with the milk, beating until incorporated.
Divide the batter between the prepared pans and bake for 30-35 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
Cool the cakes on a wire rack for 15-20 minutes before turning them out of their pans. Let them cool completely before continuing with the recipe.


Syrup:
½ cup (120ml) water
2 tablespoons sugar
¼ teaspoon vanilla extract

Place water and sugar in a small saucepan and mix well to combine. Heat over medium heat until it boils. Remove from heat, add the vanilla and set aside to cool.


Cookies and cream filling:
450ml heavy cream
3 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
15-18 chocolate sandwich cookies, such as Oreos, crushed into medium pieces (place them inside a thick plastic bag and crush them with a rolling pin)

In the bowl of an electric mixer at high speed, whip the cream, sugar and vanilla until stiff. Gently fold in the crushed cookies.


Vanilla buttercream:
1 cup (200g) sugar
¼ cup (60ml) water
3 egg whites
1 ½ cups (340g/3 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

In a small heavy saucepan, combine the sugar and water, stirring to dissolve sugar. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Continue to boil without stirring, occasionally washing down the sides of the pan with a wet pastry brush, until the syrup reaches the soft-ball stage, 238ºF (114ºC) on a candy thermometer. Immediately remove from the heat.

In a large mixer bowl, with an electric mixer on medium speed, beat the egg whites until frothy. Continue beating while gradually adding the hot syrup in a thin, slow stream, pouring it down the sides of the bowl; avoid hitting the beaters, or the syrup may splatter. When all the syrup has been added, raise the speed to medium-high and beat until the mixture is very fluffy and cooled to body temperature.

Reduce the mixer speed to medium-low and gradually add the softened butter, 2 to 3 tablespoons at a time, beating well between additions. As you're adding the last few tablespoons of butter, the frosting will appear to break, then suddenly come together like whipped butter. Beat in the vanilla extract.


To assemble the cake: using a long, serrated knife cut each cake in half. Place a cake layer, flat side up, on a cake stand or serving plate. Brush it lightly with the syrup and spread 1/3 of the cookies and cream filling. Repeat the procedure with the remaining cake layers and filling, brushing all the cakes with syrup and finishing it all with a cake layer. Frost the sides and top of the cake with a thin layer of vanilla buttercream frosting. Place the cake in the refrigerator until the crumb coat firms up. Frost the cake completely with more buttercream.
Tint the remaining buttercream with desired colors and decorate the cake as you desire.

* there’s no cake flour here in Brazil, so I used the following: 1 cup cake flour = 7/8 cup (123g) all purpose flour + 2 tablespoons corn starch

Serves 12-14

 Two years of blogging and a polka dot cake to celebrate it

67 comments:

Mary Coleman said...

Congratulations Patricia!! You bring great food to all of us. And this cake looks divine. I could eat just the filling and be so happy!
Mary

Manggy said...

YAY! Happy blogaversary! Thank you for making our blogs brighter with your presence! :) (gosh... I remember you're one of my first ever commenters, after solitary Graeme!) Here's to more years of opening doors and discovering the world! Hugss!

MiNDY said...

congratulations, Patricia on your second blogaversary. the cake looks divine.

The Food Librarian said...

Happy Blogiversary! I so enjoy reading your blog and all your yummy creations! Thank you for making my day better!

MeetaK said...

Hey! happy Blog anniversary. It's been great getting to know you through your blog! Here's to wishing you all the very best for the future, my friend! Now may I have a fork?

Marianna said...

Happy Blog 2 Year Birthday!! Its been a pleasure discovering and following your blog and lovely creations! The cake looks delicious!

Snooky doodle said...

Congrat for the 2 yr anniversary :) I m glad you decided to join the blogging world. You make such nice recipes. This cakes looks so nice and delicious. Wish I could taste it :)I think like you regarding blogging its nice to shae the same thoughts on baking any person not interested in baking cannot feel the same passion like we feel when baking or cooking :)

sweetalmond said...

Happy anniversary!! The cake looks delicious and super cute!

Magnolia Wedding Planner said...

Congrats Patricia for these wonderful two years of blogginG1 Wow that cake is absoloutely fantastic! ;-) can I hire you for my weddings dear! :-D you are too good!!! blog princess!
Kiss
Silvia

Lydia (The Perfect Pantry) said...

Happy blogiversary, Patricia! It's such a huge accomplishment to blog for two years. I'm looking forward to Year Three in your wonderful kitchen, with more delicious recipes to bookmark and try.

Candace said...

Happy Blog Day! Love this cake... adorable!

eatme_delicious said...

Congratulations on 2 years of blogging! =) And what a beautiful cake to celebrate it.

May said...

Beautiful cake Patricia!
Happy blog-anniversary! Please don't stop- your blog is simply ace :)

Katie said...

Congrats on two years of blogging! What a nice way to celebrate.

Emily Rose said...

happy anniversary- I always enjoy reading your blog! The cake looks delicious- especially the cookies and cream filling!

Deborah said...

Congrats on 2 years of blogging! I'm so glad I've found your blog, and I can't wait to see what the future brings! Beautiful cake!

Baking Soda said...

Happy blogoversary! Don't doubt it, you fit in here (as if I have anything to say about that -smirk- I know the feeling all too well!).
Love this cake, the polkadots resemble your background! So nice!

nicisme said...

Happy blog birthday, and thank YOU for 2 years of fabulous recipes and amazing posts!
The cake is beautiful.

Vanille said...

Happy blog anniversary !
Sure there'll be a slice for everyone ? I guess we are many ! ;-)

Sophie said...

What a sweet post :). Thanks for sharing, this cake looks so cute -- the filling is delicious too!

Lucy said...

Congratulations on 2 years blogging!! Happy Blogoversary

and OMG i love that cake so much it has the best things: oreos and lotsa funky icing :D :D

x

Cynthia said...

Hearty congratulations!

toni said...

2 years? And here I thought you had been doing this MUCH, MUCH longer than I have! Happy blogaversary, Patricia!!! I've been savoring your blog for 2 whole years - wow!!

And I so understand what you mean when you speak of our amazing food community.

Suzana said...

Happy blogaversary, Patricia!! What a lovely cake to celebrate a couple of years of pure joy, and stunning food. :)

Tartelette said...

COngratulations on your second year blogging! You know I am a sucker for polka dots so here I am with my plate!!!

Tartelette said...

COngratulations on your second year blogging! You know I am a sucker for polka dots so here I am with my plate!!!

Lorraine E said...

Congratulations Patricia! A fantastic 2 years creating beautiful desserts and delicious savouries. May there be many more to come!

Gorgeous cake by the way! I love polka dots too! ;)

Mansi said...

its been 2 years already??!! wow, congrats Pat, and wish you many more! the cake looks lovely, and perfectly "girly":)

Elly said...

Happy 2 year blogiversary! This cake is so pretty and no doubt tastes delicious. I love polka dots!

Peter G said...

Happy bloggiversary Patricia...and what a wonderful cake you've made for the celebrations! Obrigado for all the great reading and recipes!

zorra said...

Happy bloganniversary! Thank you for all the wonderful posts and recipes! The cake looks awesome, too beautiful to be eaten!

canarygirl said...

Happy Blogiversary, Patricia! Your cake is so cute, all matchy matchy to the blog. :D Wish you the best, and thank you for all of your beautiful posts and photos!

Y said...

Happy 2 years! What a pretty cake!

Debbie said...

I love the polka dot cake! You have a wonderful blog with great recipes that I enjoy very much!

Amanda at Little Foodies said...

Congratulations Patricia! Sorry it's been so long since I last visited. It look like a perfect polka dot cake and I think you would fit in anywhere (especially if you took food!). Love the blue gingham ribbon tied cookies against the blue polka dot background. I'm love gingham and polka dots.

Akemi said...

Já que o aniversário é do blog em inglês vim para cá dar meus parabéns!!! Seu bolo está muito fofo, como sempre seu capricho e sensibilidade salta aos olhos! Bjs e vida longa aos dois blogs! ;-)

Bjss

Me said...

Wow! Congratulations!!! :)

cindy* said...

the cake is so cute! and a happy two years to you!

RecipeGirl said...

Many happy congrats on your two years,and what a pretty cake to celebrate. I can assure you that you've put many a smile on our faces these past couple of years too :)

Marysol said...

Love the pastel polka dotted cake. I'll be waiting for my slice with great anticipation.

Feliz Segundo Aniversario Patricia!

Pam said...

Congratulations! I love your cake, and I wish you could give each and everyone of us a slice too!

Julie said...

Happy blogiversary and congratulations on reaching the two year mark. The food blog corner of the blogosphere is brightened by your presence.

Your baked goods are always beautiful and this cake is no exception -- it's beautiful and festive. Perfect for the occasion.

Arfi Binsted said...

Pat, that looks delicate and perfect for celebration! Congrats! Keep up the good work :)

Elle said...

Congratulations on your 2 year milestone! That is one gorgeous cake. And thanks for brightening the blogging world with your creations. :)

cookworm said...

Congratulations! What a beautiful cake. I'm always glad to read about your creations (even if I don't always have time to comment) and look forward to more years of your scrumptious blogging!

Susan from Food Blogga said...

It's pretty easy to stand by you, Patricia. Congratulations! And that polka dot cakes just makes me smile.

Bakerella said...

Congrats Patricia - I'm happy to be blogging with you.

kickpleat said...

what a beautiful cake! happy blog anniversary!!

linda said...

Happy blog anniversary! Pretty cake, I love polka dot decoration on baked stuff.

breadchick said...

Let me add my belated congratulations to the long list of readers. I've enjoyed baking and cooking with you through most of the time we have both been blogging. Hugs!

Elle said...

Happy belated blog Birthday! Love reading your blog and that cake is spectacular!

ChichaJo said...

Belated happy blog anniversary!!! That cake is fabulous! And so are you :)

Aimée said...

Happy happy blogaversary! It just wouldn't be the same with out you around!
I love your darling cake, but doubt I would be happy with just one piece.

Sarah said...

Patricia, you have brought joy and light to many other bloggers with your always positive and kind comments and delicious food. This cake is just more of the same--amazing!! Happy Blogiversary to you!

Shari@Whisk: a food blog said...

Congratulations on your blog anniversary! I love the polka dots! Thanks for visiting my blog and making me feel part of this wonderful food blog community. You are a very special person!

Paz said...

What a wonderful-looking cake with which to celebrate. Happy Blog Anniversary! Always happy to visit your blog.

Best,
Paz

sunita said...

Congrats, dear Patricia, on your 2nd blogversary...wishing you many , many more. It's been a pleasure to have known you :-)

Alexa said...

Congratulations! Your cake is stunning... very professional.

Kristen said...

I am so proud of you, Patricia! Congrats on your 2nd year :) You and I started at right around the same time, and you seem to have balanced blogging life so well. I admire you a lot!

mycookinghut said...

Love really cute!!

Peabody said...

Happy blog birthday to you!!! That cake is just too cute. It matches the cute polka dots on your blog.

Dragon said...

Congratulations on 2 wonderful blogging years!

LyB said...

Hi, Sweetie! Sorry I'm so late congratulating you on your 2 years of blogging. I'm so happy you were one of the first people to comment on my blog, it was so encouraging and fun! And I've had a great time reading your posts and bookmarking so many mouthwatering recipes from your archives. I'm looking forward to reading your blog for many more years! :)

Sarah Jane said...

I'm a lover of polka dots. This is such a stylish looking cake. Just great. Looks like it took a lot of uninterrupted time to make it. The very dainty, pale dots are a refreshing change from the normal loud and bright dots I've seen on cakes.

ilingc said...

Hi Patricia,

What a gorgeous little cake! Happy blog anniversary :)

Curt McAdams said...

I'm sorry I missed this... But happy belated blogoversary! And the cake looks amazing, really.

Lisa Choo said...

Was surfing the net for food blogs and so glad I found yours! your blog is an absolute gem, love your food photography too!

Lisa

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