Category Archives: baking

Baking Needs And Things

When we got our bonus last September, all I wanted was to gift myself with an oven. I got what I wanted and was happy with what I was able to bake, I was able to make my own cupcakes, bars, bread, and cake.

The best thing so far is that the electric bill is not so high, and I was able to make a small profit out of the goodies I bake. Aside from the tools I bought such as the pans, whisk, spatula and stuff, I also had to scour for more affordable sources of ingredients and baking items. You see, groceries and markets are always a convenience, however, there are times when the prices are higher that what I am expecting. Take for example the chocolate for melting, which usually comes in 500g to 700g content costing P99. The all purpose flour (APF) usually costs P70 – P80 for a kilo, whereas it’s only P40 in the market.

This got me thinking, if I plan to earn some with the goodies, I would have to sell them at a higher price, which is not that feasible. This led me to research and stumble upon 3 of the most prominent sounding names online. They are Sweet Crafts in Mandaluyong, Chocolate Lovers in QC, and Love2Bake in Paranaque. Mind you, I am from Cainta, so efforts in going to those stores should really be worth it. Anyway, here are my views. Pardon if there are no photos.

Chocolate Lovers – Situated in QC, this store is quite easy to locate due to the detailed instructions from their website. Aside from that, almost everybody in the area are familiar with the brown castle in the city. This is the store where I buy most of the ingredients I use, such as ┬áthe chocolate chips, confectioner’s sugar, and chocolate bars. This is where we buy the boxes we use for packaging as well. Compared to Love2Bake, their prices are a bit higher, however, the location for me is more convenient and accessible. Their staff is usually cheerful and helpful, and I can only remember one slight instance that the person I asked answered me with a half-hearted answer.

Love2Bake – They have a physical store in Paranaque, per the site, just across the BF wet market. Personally, I have not been there, but I already did 2 online transactions with them. They are usually quick to respond with a quotation and the packages always arrive on time. Their prices are lower than Chocolate Lovers, especially the ingredients, however, I don’t think it is wise to have the perishables delivered. My purchases with them are usually the tools I use, such as my rolling pin, oven thermometer, cookie cutters, cooling rack, and the frosting tips. It is still my wish to visit their store nonetheless.

Sweet Crafts – As this is the most out of way store for me. Just like Chocolate Lovers, they have a detailed instruction on their website on how to get there. Their place is near Boni, with a very prominent landmark (RTU). I went there out of curiosity since I was really curious about the feedback. Unfortunately, I was really disappointed. The store was really cramped, the prices are higher than of CL and sometimes grocery prices. The selections were also not that impressive for me, but they do have these big packages of oatmeal, confectioner’s sugar, nuts, and chocolates. All I can say is that given the choice, I would still go to Chocolate Lovers for convenience (they have a bigger space and more choices in terms of brands and variety).

For basic stuff like APF, bread floor, and cake flour, I go to bakery supplies stores. There is one in Rosario, Pasig, near the church along Ortigas Extension, and there is also one in Marikina Market, just along the entrance of the actual market. Based on price comparison, they sell the flour way cheaper than any of the stores I mentioned, except Love2Bake.

For references, you may reach them through their pages:

Chocolate Lovers:

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Chocolate-Lover-Inc/137166662963232

http://achocolatelover.com/

Love2Bake

https://www.facebook.com/love2bakeco

http://love2bakeco.blogspot.in/

Sweet Craft

https://www.facebook.com/sweetcraftph

http://sweetcraft.net/

 

 

Baby Boy Lambing And Some Frustrations

Note: This is a late post.

Yesterday was a holiday, thus, I stayed at home. I was initially planning on cooking a meal for some friends who insisted that they wanted to have lunch with us, but cancelled during the morning. I was okay with it since I was not in the mood to go out and buy anything from the market (and lately, I have been feeling lazy to do anything. MUST. DO. SOMETHING. ABOUT. IT.)

Anyway, since it was just me, Geoff, and the yaya at home, we did not do anything much. Just the regular routine of watching TV, lounging, and letting the balbon (an endearment I use for my baby boy) play all day. The baby boy was his usual naughty self, however, it was really the first time that I noticed that he is developing well in the logic division. He knows specific pictures if you ask him to point, he follows simple instructions such as get his shoes, blow his nose, give hugs, and kisses, and get whatever it is that I ask him to (LOL!). He was also extra sweet during our bedtime routine too. He was very generous of hugs and kisses and smiles last night. It made me wish that the moment won’t end (sigh!).

On another note, I am still getting over my failure with the red velvet disaster that I made last weekend. The cupcake itself was okay, however, the supposedly almond buttercream was so overpowering. I used the almond oil extract that I purchased the same day and honestly speaking, hindi ko natantya yung supposed measurement nya. Mas matapang pala kasi kapag oil based. So fail ang attempt. Should have stuck with an ordinary frosting. Having said that, I tried to redeem myself follow a recipe for a moist chocolate cupcake, but it was a half-hearted attempt since I was still mourning over the red velvet cupcakes.

Anyway, I followed a certain recipe (I forgot who I got it from, maybe Bake Happy? I.AM.SO.SORRY!) wherein instead of eggs and butter, I used mayonnaise. Result was not so bad. The taste was wonderful though the cupcake itself was not so pretty. Too much air maybe? I don’t know, but somehow, it made me feel a lot better with baking.

Oh. And one last note. The butter that I thought was butter eversince, turned out to be a great tasting margarine. The packaging itself says so. Maybe this was where I was doing wrong ever since.

New Hobby: Baking

On my previous post, I mentioned that I am now a proud owner of an oven. I wish I am the type who would name my stuff, kaya lang, parang mas masaya if I’ll pertain to them as MY stuff (lol!). So anyway, I have been quite lazy in posting my creations lately and I would say, that out of the 6 baked desserts I have created, 4 of them were a success.

Because of those hits and misses, let me just share a few things that I have learned along the way.

1. Always make sure that supplies are ample for the planned recipe. In my case, I tried making chocolate chip cookies. I knew I was short on butter but I also knew that there was a nearby grocery. My mistake was that I trusted too much that the grocery would have it. Too bad, they didn’t and I ended up with a batch with less butter than what the recipe called for. Epic fail tuloy.

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2. Review the recipe beforehand, and understand it well. When I tried creating a brazo de mercedes, the recipe said I will be needing a merengue, without checking if the procedure was already on the same page. I used a different peocedure for the merengue. The result, the merengue fell. I did not achieve the soft peaks I was supposed to have. Buti na lang, mejo kasing sarap pa din naman.

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3. Measurements are there for a reason. Bawal mag assume ng sariling sukat. The choco chip cookies failed because I was short on butter. In addition, one blog that I read before is that baking is an exact science.

4. Preheating the oven to the correct temperature and right time is also important. It was recent that I learned that the oven has to be preheated for at least 8 minutes. Sa lahat kasi ng na-bake ko na, as long as I feel that the oven is hot enough, sinasalang ko na yung materials.

5. Get the ingredients ready, both dry and liquid. It’s quite hard to put together everything if it’s not ready yet. Dapat within reach lahat to save you the time and effort, especially when the instructions call for you to do things simultaneously.

For now, ito muna. With a lot of things happening lately at home, this post should have been published one week ago. I admit, I want to be able to do great things through baking because I know deep inside, I haven’t figured out yet, what my true calling is (except for being a mom and wife to my boys). So hopefully, all will go well. Mental note to self, I have to work on my photography and design skills to take picture perfect photos of my creation.