Just felt like taking a photo of the Cappuccino Velvet Cheesecake which I baked for Diliana. If you are a cheesecake fan, this is cake is a must try!! It also captured the hearts(or tongues?) of non-cheesecake lovers.
Instead of the traditional biscuit crumb base, I opted for a Vanilla-Lemon sponge which compliments the bursting richness of coffee in the cheese filling. The cake as a whole, has an extrememly smooth, satin-velvety texture that simply melts in the mouth. Quoting a customer's response after receiving a Petite Velvet as a present, "It's a cheesecake to die for!"
Caledonia offers the Velvet in two sizes. Grand (2kg) for RM100 and Petite (1kg) for RM75.
[Photo: A Grand (2kg) Cappuccino Velvet Cheesecake - RM100]
Three days ago, I decided to experiment on making mousse for the first time. Since Kim had to go to Indonesia for 3 days, I invited Ruby and her cousin, Wani, to stay over while Kim was away. That was when I said to Ruby that I'm about to experiment on making mousse and needs her opinion (plus tummy!) on the invention on Friday.
This new 'cake' that i made, consists of 4 layers. Working from the bottom as the 1st layer, bottom layer - Oreo cookies crumbs as a base, like in cheesecakes where you have the biscuits crumbs. 2nd layer - Caramelised chopped pecans. 3rd layer - a generous amount of bitter-sweet chocolate mousse. 4th (top) layer - Pecan halves with layered with more caramel.
I wouldn't want to call it a cake as it could be misleading, hence, torte. It is very different from my 5 cakes sold, especially in terms of texture. Kim says it's very un-cake-ly. Well, that is true as it isn't a cake. It's mousse! Ruby had the honour to have the first taste. 5 seconds later, I couldn't get anything out of her as she was in some orgasmic/out of the world state, with eyes shut and all! Verdict was good! with a few alterations of course. The top layer could do better with less caramel. Perhaps just glazed. And the Oreo base needs to be less crumbly, more intact. Both aren't hard to adjust =) So I was a happy baker and concluded that the torte passed the QC stage and will be included in the flyer at some point.
My initial concern was it might be costly due to the expensive ingredients used - Pecans, good quality chocolate, and Oreo cookies to name a few. I don't believe in substituting for inferior ingredients just to cut cost as it will definitely alter the quality of the torte. If I were to substitute, maybe the pecans to slivered almonds? Slightly cheaper, maybe still yummy although I'm a huge pecan lover =) I managed to work out the cost and came to a price of RM85 for a 1.2kg Choc-O-reo Mousse Torte. Ideally, it should be sold at RM90. But, I am unwilling to cut costs of ingredients, therefore I'll cut a bit on my profit for quality's sake.
I'll upload a photo of an eaten Choc-O-reo Mousse Torte. I might look a little messy but it'll give viewers an idea to what nonsense I'm talking about =) I will not include it on my flyer just yet. But orders are open to Caledonia's blog readers plus to those who know about it.
I initially thought that I could get away with decorating but still continue baking lovely cakes. I was wrong. I was able to avoid fancily decorating my cakes only up to a certain point until you keep selling more cakes and customers keep asking whether or not I could possibly decorate for special occassions e.g. Birthdays/Anniversaries/Weddings and list list goes on.
Doing the simple touch-ups e.g. smoothing the sides of cakes/dusting icing sugar or cocoa powder/chocolate shavings/sprinklers isn't a problem for me as it doesn't take too much time to do those things. BUT. creating flowers/patterns and icing the whole cake is not really my cup of tea. I find it too time consuming plus I myself am not a huge fan of heavily decorated cakes. To me, cakes have to satisfy my palate, not the eyes. I could eat the simple buttercream icing/ganache but never ones with Royal icing/fondants. Too stiff not to mention sweet!
Having said that, ever since opening Caledonia, I think I will have to put aside my personal preferences and try to fulfill customers' needs/requests. Perhaps I need to give myself a chance to venture into this whole decorating area. Who knows, I might get hooked? So that was what I did yesterday, trying to find a good book in Decorating in Borders, The Gardens. The thing with Malaysia, we don't actually have a huge selection of good books on anything for that matter! I always find myself ordering online from UK/US and getting them posted over to KL. I think I will have to ask my brother, Reza, to post over a good book by Wilton at some point.