My Experiments with Baking – 2

Have you read My Experiments with Baking – 1?

If I had failed in my very first baking attempt and then subsequently too, I would have shunned the thought of baking, long ago. But since I had met with success in my first attempt and failed repeatedly after that, I was determined to recreate the magic of my first baked cupcakes.

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Our Cookery Books

KG and I, are pro in cooking from cookbooks. I mean, we try brand new recipes from cookery books even on a very important get together and they turn out great, always. Following recipes from Nigella or Jamie or Tarla Dalal or Chefs from Star Hotels is the order of the day in our kitchen. So, following cake recipes should be just the same. But it was not happening that way! Then I also read that baking is a science. Now, I was a distinction holder science student, I was good at lab work, so why was I failing in this science project called baking a perfect cupcake?

Internet was my guide and counsellor. Step by step, I worked on the possible causes of my erupting-like-volcanoes-cupcakes. Despite my inner voice admonishing me for considering the oven as the culprit, I decided to challenge it. I asked my friend K to bake the same recipe of cupcakes in her oven. She didn’t have a muffin tray so she baked a cake instead. Like a stubborn child, I wanted only cupcakes. I was getting restless and was desperate to taste success.

Next day, I sifted and weighed all the ingredients, packed them in containers and finally in a bag along with the other baking paraphernalia and headed to my Mom’s home. She has a Convection Microwave while I have a Microwave with Grill which is not suitable for baking. I baked ‘my first successful attempt’ cupcake recipe. And….

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It is photographed poorly!

… it turned out just like the first time. My happiness knew no bounds. I returned back home and kissed my oven. Yes, kissed it for 2 reasons. a) Because of it, I experimented so much and learnt so much in the process and b) it was time to bid it farewell.

Seeing me talk so crazily passionately about cakes and cupcakes, the experiments and the learnings, all this while, KG knew what would be an ideal birthday gift for me. Of course, an oven.  I know ovens behave erratically sometimes and an oven thermometer usually helps, but who can resist a brand new oven and that too a big one!

We went to the store and looked at 32-40 litres ovens, but KG had bigger plans. He pushed me to go for the biggest available option, the Morphy Richards 60 litres OTG. Of course, he had something of his own on the agenda too. He wanted to use the big oven to grill and roast a whole chicken in the Rotisserie mode!

Since the new oven has entered our kitchen, sweet smell of baking cakes has been wafting in our home. I am trying newer recipes and thank fully they are turning out good.

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Chocolate Cupcakes with Sprouts for a Farmer Husband

These are chocolate cupcakes with fondant sprouts for the new age farmer, KG.  Thank you Uma for your recipe and also for all your tips and suggestions over phone and whatsapp messages. Appreciate it a lot! ♥ Thanks are also in order to the master baker Gauri and Ashwini. You girls rock!!

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I never knew that what would start as ticking something off from the bucket list would end up as a passion. I am forever looking at recipes, YouTube videos and reading all that I can about baking cakes, cupcakes and cookies. I am finding so much joy in baking. I am glad of the initial failures that I encountered in my baking journey. They gave me so many sleepless nights and of course a lot of lessons too. Failures are truly the stepping stones to success.

As I type this, Aaryan is flipping through a cake book and selecting what we should be baking later this afternoon.  And I am smiling with pride and happiness. He is home these days for his winter vacations and has been helping me in baking and demolishing the baked goodies too. What will I do when he leaves next week for his school! Probably bake a cake and eat it too! 😉

Next item to tick off from the bucket list is Food Photography.

Edited to Add : Our this afternoon’s experiment…

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24 thoughts on “My Experiments with Baking – 2

  1. I have been looking forward to this post since the first in the series. And it’s SO worth the wait, Shilpa! Congratulations on your success in baking and your new oven! (We are getting a new one too, as our oven has just plain stopped heating, but then it is rather old.) Also, as a farm country woman, I a.d.o.r.e. the little sprout cupcakes! :O)
    LuAnn Braley recently posted…Book Review: Scent of Butterflies by Dora Levy MossanenMy Profile

  2. Great spirit Shilpa! Good that you kept going else, we would’nt have got to see that visual treat of fondant sprout cake! looks lovely. And is that puzzle cake also by you?

    I too try my cakes in my 10 year old microwave with combi mode and it turns out great. So far so good. even y’day i tried ragi jaggery cakes (eggless and butterless), it turned super soft and moist. I am scared to change it for a convection mode oven.

    And you know Gauri Kekre of Lil Oven? A great cake artist!!You have best guidance. Her barbie cake is the best i have seen.

    ( I hope this comment goes through, typing it second time)
    asha bala recently posted…Shattered dreams – a book reviewMy Profile

  3. Everything looks delicious, Shilpa. I started baking 2 years back with no prior experience in baking. Fortunately there hasn’t been much disaster, the credit of which I give to internet. 🙂 After shifting to UK, I haven’t baked much, just twice in the last 8 months. Seeing these snaps all I want to do right now is to bake a cake. 🙂

  4. Pure awesome! I love to bake…simply love it even when I fail miserably! lol. Lately I have been into baking breads. It makes the house smell so good!! Oh and cookie bars…and cakes! Well you get the idea! ha ha Unfortunately it started going straight to my butt so I had to lay off a bit because I had to hold my breath and lay down to get my jeans on! 😛 lol!!!
    Kathy S Combs recently posted…Point HaikuMy Profile

  5. i know nothing about cooking.
    It’s interesting.You mentioned Tarla Dalal here.
    Once I was involved in producing a video with Tarla and Amit Khanna which was titled ” What’s Cooking”.
    We had Benjamin Gilani acting as the main chef .
    It would still be available in music stores….
    B k chowla recently posted…DEMOGRAPHIC CHANGESMy Profile

  6. Those cupcakes look yummy!! 🙂 Good that you somehow figured out what the problem was. Congrats for the new oven! I had a tough time when I tried making cakes for the first time, mainly because I was trying to make eggless ones.
    And what a great collection of cookbooks you have. I have collected many cookbooks too and I like cooking from them often.

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