March 23, 2009

Baking Class at Creative Culinaire

Having started this blog for about a year plus, and one year of home baking prior to that, I would say my baking 'experience' (in terms of the number and variety of goods I've baked) is pretty long but the definitely not good enough to be 'promoted' yet! LOL. I still encounter hiccups here and there, e.g. chiffon cake, piping skills, not soft enough sponge cakes or even the easiest butter cakes could get dense at times.

Hence, i signed up for a foundation cake making at Creative Culinaire. The foundation class comprises 4 lessons in total, each week focusing on a certain cake type. I've already attended 3 lessons so far (butter cakes, chiffon cakes and swiss rolls) and my last lesson would be sponge cakes.

Although the cost of the 4 lessons is not cheap, I enjoyed the lessons and I would say I have certainly benefitted from all the classes I've attended so far. Chef Judy Koh is a very approachable lady with a good sense of humour! She looks younger than in the photos (of her published books). This foundation class is definitely useful for newbies who had never baked before but had just started to have an interest in baking. It provides the basic foundation of what you need to know about cake baking but thereafter you should practice in order to master the technique. For me, I've already understand most of the theories and types of method but I've learnt some tips from Judy and hands-on techniques which I would not be able to grasp easily from books or online resources, such as whipping of egg whites and rolling a swiss roll. :D

I'm also much relieved to get the assurance that home-made cakes usually would never achieve the same softness as commercial-baked cakes because emulsifier is added most of the time to keep it soft and stay fresh longer. It also helps to stabilise air bubbles which is created and important in maintaining cake softness in any type of cake.

These are some of the butter cupcakes I made during my first lessons.

These were the wedding cupcakes they customised for a pair of couples who is a doctor (A vet if I remember correctly) and an accountant.

This was my successful pandan chiffon cake after attending her class. I overwhipped a batch of egg whites during my first lesson (for a walnut butter cake) and I guess I now know how does overwhipping of egg whites looks like. However, stand mixer and my handheld mixer is different so I'm still learning how to slow down and adjust to my equipment. :) Some tips for you people: - sugar helps to stabilize egg whites, hence feel free to 'shift' some of the sugar in the egg yolk batter to the egg whites for higher stability, but do ensure that the weight of the sugar in the egg whites should not be greater than the weight of egg whites.

I'm looking forward to my last lesson next week and shall be back to my home baking routine. :) I still miss the freedom of baking as a hobby and trying out new recipes. :P


Anonymous said...

i wish that there is such basic classes in kl too. i normally avoid recipes that calls for whipping egg whites cos i could never tell the stiff peak stage.

chiffon cakes are my fav, but i have yet to bake a successful one yet. so envious of your pandan chiffon cake.

youfei said...

hi aimei,

your pandan chiffon cake looks really yummy! I've tried many chiffon cakes, I guess they're not the best but still soft and light. BUT, somehow, I just don't have much luck with pandan chiffons! I refuse to use pandan paste, but i just can't get the pandan juice + coconut milk thing rite! I blended the leaves tgt with the coconut milk and the colour was really really nice but...the it smelled awful! I later read from auntyyochana that we cant blend it together. So, I tried blending with a bit of water, squeeze out and add to the coconut milk. The cake didn't bake well! it slid out of the tin which was HIGLY upsetting as of ALL the chiffon cakes i attempted, only this time, it actually fell out..sigh..=(

envious..hahah..sorry for the long comment..just had to "complain"


Happy Homebaker said...

Hi Aimei, it's good to be able to attend baking classes, at least you get to see the right thing! So far, I can't even tell whether I have beaten the egg whites to the 'right peak'! Most of the time I just try my luck ;) Looking forward to see more of your new bakes soon :)

Small Small Baker said...

Pretty cupcakes! I love that cute little tortoise. Haha! Looks like you are having fun with the classes. The pandan chiffon cake looks really soft and fluffy. Wish I can bake as good as yours too. :)

Passionate About Baking said...

Hi Aimei,
Good that you enjoyed Chef Judy's workshops. I've also attended several of her workshops. I enjoyed them too!

peachy said...

Those cupackes and cakes look so good.

Aimei said...

Skinnymum, yah till now i still couldn't tell when is it right for stiff peaks, and I really failed makng a chiffon cake many times. Sometimes could get it right but soetimes couldn't :P

Youfei, I also didn't blend the leaves with the coconut milk. I blend with some water and added to the cocobut milk. For this method, I failed once but had successful with it another time. I guess the failure is not due to the blending of juice, could be due to other reasons. Just my guess.

Thanks Happy Homebaker. But you are doing fine with all your chiffon cakes so far. They are really nice and i would say nearly perfect le. So envious! :) I believe also thanks to your patience. :)

Smallsmallbaker, no lah this is just one of my rare successful chiffon. Still a long way to go. :) your bakes are all very nice , you'll definitely can bake a good chiffon too!

Hi Passionate about baking, yeah i enjoyed her classes. Have you attedned the intermediate / advance classes? You think it's useful? Considering whether to continue with it.

Hi Peachy! Thank you. Haa but those fondant cupcakes not by me. :P

Gan said...

Hello Aimei! i was searching for reviews on her classes and came upon her site, the course seem v interesting for interested new bakers like myself, but i'm worried that i will not be able to learn much as the class size is up to 32. how is e class like?

thanks for sharing!

Aimei said...

Hi Gan,

I would say her classes are quite good, and I never regretted attending her classes! Though her class is big, its very hands-on. So you'll be able to learn. Try to ask questions so you'll learn more. :)

Ling said...

Hi can i check, when u go for the class, do you have to bring anythings? Like contianers to bring back the cakes etc... apron and cloths?