Flour Child Bakery opens in Virginia Beach!

My mom and I just opened a bakery in Virginia Beach!! "Like" us to stay updated! If you care to read our blog, it's flourchildbakery.blogspot.com.



Friday, December 31, 2010

An update about the bakery!

Hey guys!!! Long time, no post! I'm so so so very sorry it's been so long. I've met (or heard about) so many of you local readers who have actually come to visit the bakery! Even a few out-of-towners who were readers of HTEAC have come by to check us out! Thanks so much for all the incredible support. :D :D

There's a new post on Flour Child Bakery's blog! Go check it out! http://flourchildbakery.blogspot.com/ ;)

Thanks again and HAPPY NEW YEAR!

<3 Cassie

Monday, August 23, 2010

It's Not Goodbye!

Dear loyal readers, lurkers, fellow bloggers, that one girl who recognized me on the street at Greek fest, and everyone else who has ever had a part in making this blog what it is...

With great regret, I am writing this entry to admit that my plate is full. As much as I enjoy this blog (a.k.a. my outlet for making up excuses to bake and posting my successes and failures for your reading and recreating pleasures), it seems I am unable to make time for anything on the computer other than looking for wedding planners, shopping for retro lighting, multiplying all my recipes by 3, and organizing the gazillion resumes I received after posting an ad for Flour Child Bakery on craiglist. Who knew it would be so time consuming to start a business and plan a wedding at the same time? Hah! (Oh, did I mention Josh proposed to me on my birthday??) ;D

All I can say is thank you times infinity for all of the wonderful support, help when I was looking for a certain recipe, comments saying how much you wished I would start baking cupcakes again, and letting me know when I typed 2 tablespoons of baking powder instead of 2 teaspoons. I know I wouldn't be the baker I am today without this blog and all of you! I hope that you will continue to support me by following my other blog, http://flourchildbakery.blogspot.com. There, I will try my best to keep everyone updated on the progress of the bakery, as well as try to reassure other aspiring entrepreneurs that opening a bakery isn't the gauntlet some lead me to believe. It's been fun and fulfilling so far, especially because I'm doing it all with my mom by my side. :)

I'm not saying goodbye because I feel like this won't be my absolute last post on How To Eat A Cupcake. Think of it as more of a TTFN (or "ta ta for now" in case my mom ever reads this and doesn't understand internet acronyms)! :D I've enjoyed every minute of it!!

<3 Cassie Baker

Monday, August 2, 2010

Sorry for my absence, but...

... I'm a soon-to-be business woman!Well, folks! It seems my time as an unemployed baking hobbyist and part-time blogger is almost over! Soon I'll be a very proud co-owner of my dream bakery! If you haven't been following along, my mom and I are currently in the process of filing paperwork, hiring painters and contractors, buying equipment, writing recipes, etc. It's so much fun! We've already got a location and a name. Flour Child Bakery will be located at

1716 Pleasure House Road, Suite 104
Virginia Beach, VA 23455

We're shooting to open in late September or early October. I'm doing my best to document our journey on my other blog, flourchildbakery.blogspot.com. We're also on Facebook, facebook.com/flourchildbakery!

I haven't forgotten about this blog, though! I have two recipes ready to be blogged. Whole Wheat Sticky Buns are coming up first. Then, Brooklyn Blackout Cake is next! I've just been soooo busy lately, I hope everyone can understand.

OH YEAH!! Josh and I are going to NYC next week! We'll be there from August 12-15. Where should we go, and what should we do??????? :D :D :D

Until next time,
Cassie <3

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Italian Tri-Color Cookies

Not much of a story behind making these. They were way easier to make than I thought they'd be, and they were just as yummy as I expected!

I'm going to apologize ahead of time for my future absence from this blog. We're really starting to make progress at out bakery. Tuesday was our first day of construction. We're knocking down a wall to double the size of the kitchen. It was so exciting to take a hammer to the wall and destroy things! ;D I can't wait until we finish the build-out and get to see the big picture. BTW, there are pictures on my Flickr photostream. Here's a link: Building a Bakery!

And here's the recipe!
Baked Tricolor Cookies (from Baked: New Frontiers in Baking by Matt Lewis and Renato Poliafito)

For the cookie layers
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp salt
7 oz homemade or store-bought almond paste (recipe follows)
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp pure almond extract
1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
3 large eggs
Grated zest of 1 orange (I omitted)
Orange food coloring (liquid or gel)
2 tbs dark unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted

For the filling
2/3 cup apricot jam
2 tbs amaretto liquer (I omitted)

For the glaze
6 oz dark chocolate (60% cacao)
1 tsp light corn syrup
1 stick unsalted butter, softened

Preheat the oven to 350°. Butter three 8-inch square baking pans. Line the bottom of each pan with parchment paper and butter the parchment. Dust with flour and knock out the excess flour. (I used cooking spray in place of the butter.) Sift the flour and salt together in a small bowl and set aside.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the almond paste, sugar, and almond extract together until small crumbs form. Add the butter and beat on high speed until the mixture is combined. Scrape down the bowl and add the eggs, one at a time, beating until each is incorporated. Add the orange zest and beat until combined. Add the flour mixture in three parts, beating on low speed after each addition until combined.

Divide the batter among three small mixing bowls. In the first bowl, add a few drops of orange food coloring to the batter, and mix well. Continue to add a few drops of food coloring and mixing until the batter is medium orange in color. In the second bowl, add the cocoa powder to the batter and whisk until fully incorporated. Leave the third bowl plain.

Pour each batter into a prepared pan and smooth the tops. Bake the layers for 12 to 15 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of each layer comes out clean. Transfer the pans to a wire rack and cool for 20 minutes. Invert the cakes onto the rack, remove the pans, and let cool completely. Remove the parchment.

In a small saucepan over low heat, stir the jam and amaretto until warmed through and completely blended, 3 to 5 minutes.

Place the chocolate layer on a serving rack and evenly spread half of the apricot jam over the top. Top with the plain layer and spread with the remaining apricot filling. Top with the orange layer and let the layers sit in the refrigerator for 5 minutes (or while you make the chocolate glaze).

In a large nonreactive metal bowl, combine the chocolate, corn syrup, and butter. Set the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water and cook, stirring with a rubber spatula, until the mixture is completely smooth. Remove the bowl from the pan and stir for 30 seconds to cool slightly.

Spread the glaze over the top of the bar cookies, completely covering the orange layer (some glaze may spill down the sides of the cake). Place the tray in the refrigerator until the chocolate topping completely sets (about 1 hour). Remove the tray from the refrigerator, wait 30 minutes for the chocolate to warm up, and cut into 20 individual squares or use a small cookie cutter to cream your own shapes.

The bars can be stored in the refrigerator, tightly covered, for up to 4 days.

Almond Paste
1 1/2 cups finely ground almonds
1 cup confectioners sugar, sifted
1/2 tsp pure almond extract

Put all the ingredients in a food processor with 2 tbs water and process until a paste forms. Remove from the processor, wrap tightly in plastic, and refrigerate until ready to use. Extra almond paste, tightly wrapped, keeps well in the freezer.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Oatmeal Cream Pies

You know those little oatmeal cream pies you get at the grocery store? Made by Little Debbie or some other snack cake peddling hussy? Flat like they've been sat on and getting smaller and smaller every year? THESE-ARE-NOT-THOSE-PIES!!! These are the best oatmeal cream pies you've ever put to your lips. Your kids will thank you for replacing those fake @$$ cream pies with lease luscious gifts from heaven in their lunch box! I initially saw the recipe in The Amish Cook's Baking Book, but I didn't like their filling recipe. I remembered the most popular filling I've seen for whoopie pies has been a marshmallow fluff/Crisco mash-up. Not having any marshmallow fluff on hand, I made my own! Mixed in a little vegetable shortening (which you can't even taste! no greasy film on the roof of your mouth!) and TADA!The filling sets up to be very marshmallowy. Waaayyy better than storebought marshmallow cream. The cookies are somewhat soft at first, and thanks to the brown sugar in them, they get even softer as they sit out. I can say with no doubt in my mind, I'll still be making these when I'm 72!!Oatmeal Cream Pies (from “The Amish Cook’s Baking Book”)
Makes about 24 pies

3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
2 cups packed brown sugar
2 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 cups quick-cooking rolled oats
2 teaspoons baking soda
3 tablespoons boiling water

Filling (adapted from “The All-American Dessert Book”)
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon unflavored gelatin (about 1 1/2 packets)
1/3 cup plus 1/4 cup water (divided)
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup light corn syrup
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup powdered sugar
8 ounces vegetable shortening

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Lightly grease a baking sheet and set aside (or use parchment).
Cream the butter, sugar, and eggs in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, sift together the salt, flour, and baking powder. Add to the creamed mixture. Add the cinnamon and oats. Mix well. In a small dish, add the baking soda to the boiling water, and then stir the mixture into the rest of the batter. Mix well. Drop by the tablespoon (I did 2 tablespoons) onto the baking sheets about 2 inches apart and bake until the cookies are firm and just starting to turn golden around the edges, 10 to 15 minutes. Cool the cookies on a wire rack or a plate.
For the filling, in a small measuring cup, sprinkle the gelatin over 1/3 cup cold water. Let stand, stirring once or twice until the gelatin softens, about 5 minutes. In a heavy 2-quart saucepan over medium-high heat, stir together the granulated sugar, corn syrup, and 1/4 cup hot water until well blended. Continuing to stir, raise the heat to high and bring to a full boil. Continue boiling for 30 seconds. Immediately remove from the heat. Stir in the gelatin mixture until it dissolves completely.
Transfer the mixture to a large bowl. Add the vanilla. With a mixer on medium speed, beat for 20 seconds. Gradually raise the speed to high and beat until the mixture is stiffened, white, very fluffy, and cooled to barely warm, about 5 minutes. Reduce the mixer speed to low and gradually add the powdered sugar. Add the shortening and beat until completely smooth. The filling will set up as it sits, so wait until it is thick enough to spread or pipe before filling the cookies.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Cinnamon-Swirl Bread

There's not much of a story behind this post. But just for fun, let's see how much I can say about it. I woke up one morning this week and decided I had to have cinnamon-swirl bread. I parked my butt on the carpet in front of the bookcase and started browsing the index of all 5 million of my baking books. After about 11 books, I finally found a recipe for cinnamon raisin bread in Joy of Cooking. The basis of the recipe was their milk bread, which I use for hamburger buns, so I already knew it was good. I made the recipe sans raisins because I have to be in the mood for raisins.

The end result was this incredible-smelling, light as a feather, beautiful loaf of cinnamon-swirl bread. It was exactly what I was craving. My mom can't ever stand to wait the proper time for bread to cool. She forces me to ruin my breads all the time by slicing into them while they're hot. But this time, I was so glad she did! This is the loaf of my dreams! Slightly sweetened, cinnamon-y, with a nice crust. Ohhhh I LOVE IT! :D :DCinnamon Raisin Bread (from Joy of Cooking)
Yields 1 loaf

Ingredients
1 package (2 1/4 teaspoons) active dry yeast
3 tablespoons of warm (105º to 115ºF) water
1 cup whole or low-fat milk, warmed to 105º to 115ºF (I used skim)
5 tablespoons of melted unsalted butter
3 tablespoons of sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon of salt
3 1/2 - 4 cups all-purpose flour or bread flour

Filling
1/2 cup raisins
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 teaspoons cinnamon

Finishing
1 egg
Pinch of salt

Mix yeast and water together in a large bowl or bowl of heavy-duty mixer and let stand for five minutes until yeast dissolves.
Add the remaining ingredients except for the flour and mix for 1 minute on low speed. Gradually add 3 1/2 cups of flour. If needed, slowly add remaining 1/2 cup flour, 2 tablespoons at a time, until the dough is moist, not sticky. Dough should clear the sides of the bowl but stick to the bottom. Knead for about 10 minutes on low to medium speed until the dough is smooth and elastic.
Transfer the dough to an oiled bowl and turn it over once to coat. Loosely cover with plastic wrap and let rise for 1 1/2 to 2 hours or until doubled in volume.
While the dough is rising place raisins in a small saucepan with enough cold water to cover by 1/2 inch and bring to a boil. Drain well and let cool. Stir together sugar and cinnamon.
Grease an 8 1/2”x4 1/2” loaf pan. Punch dough down. Roll the dough into an 8”x18” rectangle about 1/2” thick. Brush the surface of the dough with 1 1/2 teaspoons of melted butter. Sprinkle all but 2 teaspoons of the cinnamon mixture over the dough and spread the raisins evenly over the surface. Starting from one 8” side, roll up the dough and pinch the seam and ends closed. Place seam side down in the pan. Cover loosely with oiled plastic wrap and let rise until doubled in volume, 1 to 1 1/2 hours.
Preheat the oven to 375ºF. Whisk egg and salt together and gently brush over the top of the loaf. Sprinkle the top of the dough with the remaining cinnamon mixture. Bake until crust is deep golden brown and the bottom of the sounds hollow when tapped, 40 to 45 minutes (or until the internal temperature reaches 195ºF or above). Remove loaf from the pan onto a cooling rack. While the bread is still hot, brush the top with: 2 teaspoons of melted butter. Let cool completely before slicing.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

"Baked" Red Velvet Cupcakes

My mom asked me if I'd make something sweet for her to take to her very last meeting at her job of 31 years. She's leaving to work with me as we open our own bakery. I hadn't made red velvet in a while, so it was time to break out the red food coloring. At first, I foolishly tried a recipe other than my favorite. I tried the one in Southern Cakes by Nancie McDermott. MISTAKE! The cake had almost no flavor, and the tops stuck to the cupcake pan. Never fear, for I see lots and lots of cake truffles in my future. After that bomb, I ran back to my copy of "Baked: New Frontiers in Baking." I've made their red velvet cake as cupcakes before, and they were 100% perfect. Their frosting is the best I've ever tasted! I'll never stray from the red velvet path again!
Recipe here!