These weeks when we bake from the Quick and Easy list are so nice. Everyone's happy and (most) everyone's successful. SugarMother baked hers in star-shaped forms as well as in a square pan; she doesn't think the stars look like stars, but when I clicked on her blog, I said to myself, "Oh, those stars are so cute!" Saira made hers in cupcakes, and loved them (despite not much liking gingerbread!). Rose's recipes can be pretty miraculous this way--people like her fruitcake despite not liking fruitcake; her gingerbread despite not liking gingerbread; her coconut cake despite not liking coconut. I also have to send you to Nicola's blog, if you haven't visited it yet. She starts out with a story about the New Zealand All Blacks and segues smoothly into her experience with the gingerbread cake, which she ended up liking (spread with butter) despite the fact that it erupted in her oven.
But the FEATURED BAKER
this week has got to be Patricia from Butter Yum, who managed to turn this simple, homey cake into ... homes! Mini-gingerbread houses, in fact. The thing I find most amazing about her description of making this little gingerbread cakes is that she says making and playing with royal icing is a "great way to relax during the pre-Christmas hustle and bustle." I have made royal icing a few times--the few times I attempted gingerbread houses, and I can assure you that I was not relaxed. But chacun a son gout, as they say, and thank goodness there are people like Patricia, who can show people like me what can be done with patience and a loving attitude.
Also props to Patricia for taking a black and white photo that made it to the finals in a photo contest on popular blogger, Pioneerwoman.
We're face-to-face with our most challenging cake yet: the dreaded yet awesome Holiday Pinecone Cake. Places, everyone. Do you have your half-sheet pan? Your Spectrum shortening? Your gelatin? Your glycerin? Do you have your courage? If so, get ready to bake!
And, whatever holidays you celebrate, and whether you're snowed in or basking in the sun, please enjoy these days and reflect on how lucky we all are.