Monday, January 23, 2012

Another Working Weekend

I had a lot going on this past weekend. That's good. The new year is starting off with some very creative projects and I couldn't be happier!

First up with the Beer Cake for my boss's son. He turned 30 this past weekend. When I showed up to deliver, I recognized a bunch of his friends. I went to school with a few of them and dated a couple back when I was in JHS. Why was this guy hanging out with such older people? Anyway, that was a bit of a shock. When my boss asked this guy Devon how he knew me, he said, "Kat was kind of a wild child back in the day."

I gave him this look like, "Pleeeeeeeeaaaaase don't say anymore!"

And he neatly tied it up with, "I always knew she would end up doing something creative. That cake is amazing!"


Here's the cake:

I know you can't really tell from this angle, but my wood grain came out AMAZING. I was fiercely proud of that.

From there, I had a birthday and I made one awesome Hello Kitty cake:

Pic has been cropped to protect the identity of the aging.

And finally, the cake pops. I had someone inquire about cake pops. I figured, why make a regular old cake pop when I am capable of making an AWESOME one? Then, I realized that the candy coating would not be as cooperative as I thought it would be. Fucking coating.

I'm not big on food trends. Anything trendy gets very popular very fast and the decent is just as quick and messy. Cupcakes. Cape Pops. Whatever it is; some person is on Good Morning America, claiming they invented it. And there are more than a handful of stores opening up in a hipster neighborhood near you.

Cake pops are not new. Bakers have been making them for YEARS with the leftover scraps from their cake work. It's basically cake crumbs mixed with leftover frosting, often with a shot of rum and then rolled in nuts, sprinkles, or cocoa. You may better know them as RUM BALLS. Fancier places coat them in melted fondant or chocolate. Neiman Marcus had the balls to try and sell a dozen for $50 a few Christmases ago. It's the invention of enterprising bakers who would rather NOT throw away food. They've been around for years.

The fanciness came about recently. They dip them in all kinds of crazy shit. Coat them in chocolate and then decorate the fuck out of them. This one lady "Bakerella" wrote a book about it and I must say her cake pops are quite spot on when she replicates characters. I went off her design to do Hello Kitty. Only, I painted on the face rather than using mini candy coated chocolate chips (because I didn't have any) and I used pink chocolate coating instead of white (because I didn't have anymore of that, either). Despite my animosity for the trendy, I will give credit where credit is due: Bakerella makes awesome cake pops.

Like I mentioned, the hardest part I had was the candy coating. It would not go to complete liquid form. It stayed lumpy and thick and even when I thinned it out with shortening, the fucking thing would not liquify enough for me to dip and coat the way I would with REAL tempered chocolate. It's fucking annoying. And I can see the problematic coating step in the finished product. It's not shiny and even AT ALL. See for yourself.

All in all, I know I still have a few things I need to work on and practice. Other than that, this year is starting off strong. I couldn't be more pleased.

I got stuck at a gig in Long Island Sunday and ended up missing my friend's art show. I was disappointed about that because I promised her I would be there, and I was meeting up with some people to grab a bite around that area afterwards. So, needless to say, I missed the art show and the awesome food after.

Work over play. Who would've guessed I'd ever have to make that decision? I feel like I lost a lot that one year where I didn't do much but be a "girlfriend". I made excuses NOT to work so I could lay naked in bed all day with my boyfriend and do nothing...but have sex and probably hit up a bar and get drunk....and then stumble home, get naked, have sex, and do it all over again. Ahh, what a life! LOL Seriously, if you asked me today if I'd rather have sex or stay up all night making a Hello Kitty cake, I'd probably pick the sex...(And then get up after to make the cake.)

All the momentum I built up while I was with Joel was stopped dead in it's tracks. But, I really needed that year off. I needed to understand what it is I really want out of this life. I had to find out what I really wanted out of a partner. I had to come to grips with my limitations and my potential as a chef. I know I need money to do all the fun things life has to offer, but I am not motivated by money. It becomes a tool to use to keep score. What happened when I finish off all the levels? Start a new game, I guess?

13 comments:

  1. Yes, you start a new game. You were never one to settle on one thing. You like to think you're loyal and dedicated and decisive. And as a friend you really are, but you get bored once you "master" something and you're constantly looking for the next challenge. I think that's why you butt heads with all your exes. Your personality doesn't allow for complacency. You need the adventure. There's not anything necessarily wrong with that. Maybe the IDEA of marriage, family, and kids are more of a society norm that you feel compelled to want. maybe you're one of the rare people who can be perfectly happy to stay free and unshackled to any one person or thing. I'm not saying you wouldn't be a great wife or a mom or run a kick ass bakery. I just think it would all bore you after a couple of years and you'd be itching for something new. And that doesn't make you a bad person, it just means you like to skip to the beat of a xylophone instead of a drum.

    I don't know why I read this post and came to this conclusion. I think I've been wanting to say it for a while and it all just came out now.

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    1. You tend to veer off the topic. You didn't even mention any of my awesome cakes. I would have to disagree. I'm not decisive at all. That's my biggest problem. I would love to settle down and have babies and adopt pets,BUT that all depends on being with the right person at the right time. There are a ton of factors involved and all the planetary alignments and stars and phases of the moon or what have you....None of that ever seemed to be lined up right for me. If I end up alone, I'll be ok. I'll be fine flitting from person to person. The more the merrier. For once, I'd love a little stability. Maybe that's my white whale.

      As far as not being satisfied, maybe you're right. I need to constantly be learning. I need to know something I didn't know every single day. That's something that will never change. If I ever master cakes, I'll look for a new skill to try and do well. I don't think there's anything wrong with that. It's what keeps life interesting.

      Hey, dude. Humor me. At least attempt to comment on my actual topic, would you?

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  2. #1- Those cakes are amazing and I can really see your skills being honed cake after cake. High 5, Kat!

    #2- You had said once that you learned a lot that year you took off from cakes. Do you feel it was a life lesson or a relationship lesson? Do you owe those realizations to the situations you opened yourself up for or to the people you were hanging out with or the man you were with? Are you blaming them for neglecting your business?

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  3. Hey!! Thanks for the compliment. I'm going to order my airbrush set next week, so I'm really excited for that. New techniques to learn. I hope it saves me money in the long run.

    I don't blame anyone for my hiatus. It was my choice. The whole time I was with Joel, it was non-stop learning and working. Financially, I was doing great. We were really flourishing with the business and I was climbing out of the debt hole at breakneck speeds. But it wasn't enough for me. I was content, but miserable. I had to fight to take a vacation, and all our vacations ended up being working vacations. We worked every holiday, every anniversary, every weekend. I did that for 5 years and I was tired. And our relationship suffered for it. I was suffering for it. I blamed him for my de-motivation after we broke up, but I should thank him. I got to be a normal 29 year old. I crammed everything I didn't get to do all about two years.

    I should have gotten back into the swing of things after a year off, but I was in a new relationship. I was with a good group of friends. I was pushing myself as a person to experience as many things as I could, as if my life was going to run out by my 31st birthday. I don't regret it. Yeah, it all turned to shit and I was really hurt, but I don't wish I didn't experience all those good times. I have great memories that I'll cherish forever. I've formed friendships that never would have come about if that year didn't happen. I've learned new things about myself- good and bad.

    You don't grow strong by never being challenged. The strongest foundation is often formed during adversity. I think I still have a ways to go personally and professionally, but I'm a lot more flexible and open-minded than I was a couple of years ago and I know that can only help me get to where I'm going.

    I've learned things from EVERYONE I've met- even the people I no longer associate with. If you don't take advantage of the opportunity to learn from the strengths and weaknesses of the people around you, then it's just wasted time and space.

    I don't waste anything. So, I hope that answers your question. Wow, that was very thought-provoking. Thanks!

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  4. Why don't you compliment my brainy use of capital letters and punctuation??? You've asked for it enough! You know your cakes are amazing. You don't need me to tell you that. I think you have enough feeding your ego right now. :-P

    You took the question I posed and danced around it. You gave me an answer but not an answer for the question I asked. As long as I've known you there aren't really many failures on record. Relationships aside, you've kicked ass at every job you've had and always left on your own terms. Even in school you were really good. You didn't challenge yourself, but you never had to work hard so you never failed. You walked into the SAT cold and fucking annihilated it.

    You didn't dream of being a chef when you were young. This wasn't what you wanted. I think you never really had your own dream so you adopted the whole, I wanna get married and make babies and vacation in the fucking hamptons shit. Your mom put this cooking thing on you and you ran with it.

    Piggybacking off Josh's thing(Hey, Josh, nice to see you again!)you've written angry before and essentially BLAMED everyone around you for the problems you have now. I know it was your frustration talking but let me pose the question-

    If you could've done things differently, what would you have done? Who'd you still be with? Who'd you have wished you never met? Don't pull a politically correct diatribe about loving life and shit. I respect you for trying to be mature, but I don't want mature. I want an honest answer.

    Your at this precipice, things are about to go really well or go straight to shit. I'm just trying to understand where your head is because I sorta miss my old friend and I'm a little wary of this girl that took her place.

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    1. lol....I was trying to find a nice way of saying that, man! Happy New Year, Mike.

      With all due respect, Kat, you mentioned that you're out dating again & I support that but I read your words and they don't match your tone...I wonder if that's the right word to use (tone). Its like looking at someone grinning really wide but the smile doesn't reach their eyes.

      Are you really in a better place now? Are you still trying to expand Queenie Cakes or do you still want to pack up and go?

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    2. Not trying to beat a dead horse, but your answer to me is a little TOO pc for you. What I love about you is I can tell exactly how you are when you're writing based on the tone, the words, the punctuation, and whatever...It's just us friend here...c'mon be honest. Any residual animosity?

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    3. I think you're both looking for something that isn't there. I know you're expecting a more in-depth answer and all, but my uncle just died and I'm headed to VA to be with my family.

      We can discuss this further when I get back.

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    4. I'm so sorry Kat. Call me if you need me.

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    5. I'm sorry for your loss. You don't have to come back to debate me or Mike. I think the point we were making was that you seemed to go back & forth about things, and you haven't seemed like yourself.

      Honestly, facing a death in the family is a lot more important than debating details. Just be there for those most important to you. I know you had said your Uncle Ray was like your 2nd dad. I hope you're holding up as best you can, and when your family becomes overwhelming, take a step back, take a deep breath and remember that you're there to say goodbye to the memory of your uncle and not for anyone else.

      I'm here if you need me, too.

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    6. Thank you, guys. My uncle's immediate family wasn't able to book the place right away for financial reasons. So, I'm not leaving for VA till Wed morning. I ended up going to Vermont last Friday and I just got back this morning. Despite the impending funeral, it was a very good weekend for me personally, and I'm looking forward to all the changes the new year brings.

      If I haven't seemed like myself, it's because I'm not. I've finally managed to let go of a lot of sentimental junk and I've learned to just move the fuck on. My uncle was awesome in the sense that he had a very simple philosophy; no one gives a shit whether or not you're happy so you better work on making yourself happy.

      I feel like an asshole for going on the trip, but my mom said I have a long week ahead of me dealing with the rest of my family so I might as well enjoy myself before then. I'm glad I went.

      And I'm glad I have people like you as friends. =) The massive people-cleaning I did last year was well worth it. I'm glad you made the cut.

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  5. They all look amazing and appetizing! And now I'm hungry.

    Also, please please make a youtube baking video where you go "And next we're gonna decorate the FUCK out of them!" :D

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    1. I wouldn't know where to begin with the YouTube videos. I'll see what I can come up with. ;-)

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