This week’s obsession: Easter Baskets
Happy Quarant’Easter! How are you celebrating today? Personally I just finished live streaming Mass from somewhere in Honolulu and photographing my faux Easter Cake (that’s right. I made another dummy cake in the interest of my waistline). What a time to be alive!
It kind of broke my heart to not create a huge masterpiece for this Easter, but we are existing in weird and different conditions which call for adjustments to be made. Nevertheless, Easter is one of my favorite holidays to bake for. Something about it always makes me want to make a cheesecake and cover it with fruit and flowers to represent the freshness and new life spirit that I always feel. (Hence the photo of the Japanese cheesecake I made a few years ago and topped it with chocolate ganache and macerated fresh strawberries!)
Last year I made an Easter Bunny cake that was a light and airy vanilla cake filled with lemon cream and frosted with American buttercream. Oh so good! But I didn’t do that this year. I actually did something I swore I would never do...
A basket weave.
I know, you’re probably thinking why on earth would someone swear off a piping pattern. It’s a piping. Pattern. What’s the big deal? And actually I can’t even call it swearing off because I had never done it before, so it was more like avoidance. But really, I never liked basket weaves because they look so dated. I feel like every cake I’ve ever seen from the late 80’s through the 90’s had a basket weave or other atrocious piping pattern and became adverse to them pretty quickly - as in before I went off to pastry school.
Cakes like this:
And whatever the frack this is:
(Side note: I won’t even watch “old movies” because they’re too visually out of touch. There are other reasons, too, but that’s one of the main reasons I never got into classic flicks from the 70’s and 80’s that everyone tries to force me to watch.) When it comes to cake designs, there are trends just like in every other art field, and I like to keep moving forward with them. But this year when I was considering what trends I wanted to work with for Easter, I kept coming back to the Easter basket idea.
I don’t know about you guys, but growing up I thought Easter baskets were the best thing about Easter morning. I always loved getting a huge chocolate Easter bunny surrounded by chocolates and trinkets and plastic eggs filled with goodies. The Easter bunny was always so thoughtful about the things she put in my basket and it absolutely made a lasting impression on me. (Thank you, dear Easter bunny, for the years of delight you brought me!)
For this Easter basket, I had intended to fill it with Cadbury eggs (both original and caramel. YUM!) and Reese’s peanut butter eggs (the perfect ratio of peanut butter to chocolate IMHO) but I couldn’t find them at the store #IslandLiving and to reduce potential COVID spread, I chose not to go to more than one store. So instead I have these cute little Hershey’s eggs to top it with :) But that was the easy part. First I had to pipe every single basket strand and then pipe faux grass before pouring a bag of chocolate eggs on top. So back to this whole basket weave thing we go. I recorded a short video to show you how I did it.
Truth be told, my hands shake so badly when I’m on camera that I scraped all of the piping that you see here off of my cake and redid it so that I could have steady hands and straighter lines. But you get the idea.
Lastly I would like to share with you my Easter bunny cake from last year since I mentioned her earlier. This is probably one of my most favorite cakes ever. and you’ll most likely see her every year from here on out. I hope you’re ok with that.
Anyway, please have a super wonderful (and safe) Easter.
Hoppy eating, y’all!