Sunday, April 30, 2006


It started out as a rather dull & dreary place to go & nothing to do. I went out onto the back porch to steal a moment for myself when I noticed some mushroom cookies growing in the yard.
I decided to eat one.

"MMmmmm....these are the best cookies I've ever tasted!"

I had to have more, but as I bent down to pick another one I started to feel a The world started to spin around me rapidly, I seemed to lose my balance,
starting to F




I seemed to float after the tumble, as if I was on a soft, fluffy
but it wasn't really a cloud at all! I was laying on a tray of Coconut Meringue topped Mandarin Orange filled Almond Tartlettes! They were as big as an airplane! As soon as I realized what they were, they started to dissipate one at a time.....POP!.....

I quickly jumped onto the last remaining tartlette & tried desperately to keep my balance..... I couldn't see anything above or below.....when all of a sudden.....the meringue started to break arms flailing wildly to stay on top.....


.....I'm falling fast....faster....& faster....& even faster....... ZOOMING out of control until

THUD!!! WHOMP!!! POUFffff!!!


My fall is broken by a mysteriously gigantic assemblage of Solid Chocolate Cups filled with Cappuccino Ganache & topped with Cinnamon Whipped Cream! How lucky I am that they were there! Such a wonderful tasty treat to break my fall! I simply have to take a lick! I dive inside one of the cups & start to swallow as much chocolate as I can. I am covered from head to toe with cream & chocolate & cinnamon & it's SOOOOOOOooooooo YUMMY!!!!! As I eat my way to the bottom of the cup I feel my toes grasp onto something like a staircase.....

I look down to see

Lebkuchen stairs leading all the way

down to my backyard. I start to follow them. The cappuccino cups are gone without a trace. Not even a speck of chocolate or cream left on me, either. It seems to matter not. Onward I follow the steps.....




Until I am standing at the back door of the shoppe. But, WAIT! The pastry shoppe looks incredibly different! It looks like.....
*I go up to it & smell the building*
"Smells spicy!"
*I touch the brick*
"Feels like flour residue!"
*I slowly lick a small section of the house*
"It tastes like Icing!"
*A scream begins to build inside of me.....*
".....It's turned into a Gingerbread House!!!"

Reluctantly, I commence a walk-around of the premises. This is what I see:

the back of the building,

a glance at the East attic window,

the entire East side view,

the front of the building &

finally, the West side.

The trees aren't even pine anymore....they're frosting, dragees & confectioners sugar! A snowman? In the middle of summer? I'm so confused!!! I close my eyes for a moment, just a moment & maybe all this will be gone.....I reluctantly open them, focus in on the back porch & see that a basket of something is sitting there.....I'm SURE it wasn't there a minute ago? All of a sudden ZOOOOOMMMmmmmmm......Without moving my feet, I'm standing right next to

more mushrooms!!!

MMmmmm.....I am totally will-power-less!!! I have a very faint recollection of something to do with mushrooms & this whole situation, but I can't quite remember......anything!? With reckless abandon I fill both my hands with these delicate, crispy, sweet, nutty, chocolaty Meringue Mushrooms & GORGE myself!!!
*until they are all gone*

Feeling rather odd, again, I float inside the building.....hmmmm.......that's SO bizarre! I swear there used to be many rooms in here......there's just one corridor leading to a ... it almost looks like ... a ballroom? All of a sudden I am accosted by approximately ten million, seven hundred thirty five thousand, eight hundred & seventy two

Chocolate Dipped Hazelnut Truffle Mice
screaming, "We'll eat you before you eat us!!! SQUEAK!!! You can't kill us!!! SQUEAK!!! Don't try!!! We'll eat you before you eat us!!! SQUEAK squeak!!! You can't kill us!!! SQUEAK squeak!!! Don't try!!! squeak squeak squeAK!!!"

I jump over them with all my might & land in the middle of the corridor floor. It is paved with
Cappuccino Flats (a Christmas Cookie).

I follow the cookies until I reach the "Grand Room".

There is a painting I MUST see!

He jumps out of the painting, grabs the plate of cookies & runs off!!!
Whew! That was a close call, he was only a Zwieback Zombie.

There is one more painting left to see.
I tentatively turn towards it.
I stare in AWE...

...for it is a painting of me, in the back garden, reaching for a mushroom...
isn't that how this all began?
I'm so sleepy now.
So very tired...

...I think

I'll just rest

for a





***JUMPS UP***


"Oh! Hi blog readers! How long have you all been here watching me sleep? I can't believe you didn't wake me. You really should have. Then I could have told you a story. But now it's too late. I have to go. Maybe I'll post something tomorrow. I don't have a very good imagination, you see. It's difficult to think of new & interesting literary adventures. Maybe if I received more comments it would enable me to create new & exciting fantasies. I'll sleep on it. Good night everyone! "

Friday, April 28, 2006

Seriatim Explication

So here's how a Uniquely Yours Open House works:

You see this sign near the street in front of our shoppe. Park your car, walk up to the front door & come right in! You will notice an aroma quite unlike any bakery you've been in before. That's because we don't deep-fry anything. No yucky donut grease smell. Just cinnamon wafting past your nose, with a hint of toasted almond, fresh raspberry undertones & finally, an unmistakable barrage of Belgian bittersweet chocolate.

You follow the passageway to a new world. A place that is full of happiness, laughing & banter. In this place, no depression, inferiority or injustice is ever allowed.

You start to veer towards your right; there is a doorway.

As you walk through this doorway you forget all that you left behind...(Except for your wallet. You'd better have your wallet!) start to take it all in: the hand-made cards with photographs of area birds & flowers, hand-sewn doll clothes, tarot decks, various wine cork trivets & a sprinkling of locally framed photographs.

You are now in our front room/reception area.

Turn slightly to your right & you will see this...'s one of Ruth's paintings.

Next to that is...
...our "Wall of Biscotti" & locally harvested honey.

Why don't you have a seat, here...
...right next to the...

...hand-crafted, 7-foot tall, seasonally decorated, faux tree.

Unless you'd rather go right to the coffee & pastries!

Help yourself to a steaming cup of coffee, freshly ground beans, it's just been brewed...I'll warn you, though...I make it pretty strong. I don't think there's much use for a watery or bitter pot of coffee...we don't allow that in THIS paradise. Help yourself to a few samples while you browse.
Don't be shy.
(The more you taste, the more you'll buy!)

Awaiting you on that counter (alas! only a couple times per month) you may notice something you'll never observe again. You see, each open house is different. There are always a few definites. The usuals, like muffins, scones, bars, cookies & breads. But it's the pastry du jour that most people can't wait to savour. I try to have at least 5 new items every single time. Although, it is not impossible, to be bombarded by up to 20 new creations at once!

If you feel the need to step back for a moment, or just rest those weary bones of yours, DO sit down for a spell. Fancy an intelligent conversation?
This chap...
...would LOVE to oblige.
Ask him about the delicacies of the day & he'll give you unparalleled advice on which types to purchase. Interested in birds & wildlife? He will whisk you away to the back garden before you can say "Sooty".

But, before you go, check out my pastry clock...
...because in this perfect new world, time stands still. When you leave our shoppe, it will be neither sooner, nor later, than now. How's that for "unique"?

Did you enjoy your visit?

Thursday, April 27, 2006

even the most finicky of eaters

"A lemon zested shortbread,"
is exactly what jin said,
"Have a nosh,
they're really posh,

the jasmine tea glaze

will delight & amaze

even the most finicky of eaters."

Whippy cream cheese frosting

With cloves for extra zing.
Our molasses are the best
we put to shame all the rest.

The softest, spiciest dough
leaves your face all a-glow

even the most finicky of eaters.

Chunks & chips of cho-co-lat

satisfy the proletariat.

Pecans, walnuts, almonds too

made from scratch just for you!

Not much dough to bind this one

all do say they're second to none

even the most finicky of eaters.

These cookies are made with butter not lard.
They are light & crispy, not ever hard.
Pure almond flavour builds your desire,

creates a Chinese Almond Cookie Mire.

The shiny egg wash that we brush on top

will make you keep eating & not ever stop.

Even the most finicky of eaters.

What's your favourite cookie?

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Carnal Cakes


Below are pictures of cakes ordered by practical jokers, crazy giggling women planning bridal showers & individuals with really sick minds. Be warned, some are in 3D. Don't lean in too close, you could probably lose an eye.

By scrolling down of your own free will, you assert that:
1) You are old enough to view dirty cakes
2) If you ever need to order one you must get it from me
3) I cannot personally be held liable for damages incurred by anyone that laughs so hard they pee in their pants.

If you agree to all the terms listed above, by all means, scroll down!

You want to know the funniest thing?

Most women send their boyfriends/husbands in to pick these cakes up.

The poor fellows are, most always, embarassed beyond belief.

My taunting personality always prompts me to open the cake box & ask them if they are pleased with how it looks.

Heeheehee!!! :-D

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

An Epic Saga Scrawled In Buttercream

After yesterdays post I thought you might enjoy a tale of happy customers! This gracious lady reserves her visits to once every few years, but when she comes in I know I'll have a special cake coming up!

I can't take credit for the design of these cakes; she always has everything sketched out for me, down to the last minute detail! I simply take her vision & apply it to the cakes with my trusty piping tubes & steady hands.

This cake was in celebration of her husbands 60th birthday. It chronicled his entire lifetime. She had it displayed so you could literally follow him around on all of his worldly travels. Every inch of this cake told a story.

This cake was for two sisters on their 90th birthday. It had substantially less story-telling than its predecessor. That's only because they had a lot less guests!

If someone made you a cake like these what would you want it to say about your life? Is there anything you wouldn't want on it? Most importantly, what flavour would you like it to be?

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Customers From Hell Volume I
"WTF were they thinking?"

Customer #1
A cake something* like this one:

Wife calls to place order. Recommended size for amount of servings she needs is a 10" or 12" round. She insists on an 8" round. She is being quite obviously cheap. She says her husband will pick up said cake on Saturday after 2:oopm. Husband comes in at 9:00am on Saturday for the cake. He is (very loudly) upset that his cake is not done. I have a shoppe full of people. He steps up to the counter, in front of numerous customers, & says, "Gimme one of those" while pointing at a peanut square. He is told that will be one dollar, "You mean you want a WHOLE dollar for that thing? I can get it somewhere else for a quarter!" Thankfully, a couple of my regulars pipe up & tell him it's really worth it, our bakery is very good. He takes the peanut square & storms out while mumbling something about having to come back again.

Husband is back at 1:00pm for cake. It is finished, he pays, he leaves, we think YAY! No more from them. HA!

Monday afternoon a phone call from the wife, informing me that she served everyone a piece of the cake, they all said it was awful & she still had 1/4 of the cake left. Remember when I said before that the cake could NOT physically serve that many people? Yet she had some left? I think not. But me, trying for that good old customer service says, "Bring back the leftover cake & we'll take care of it."
She says, "I can't."
"What? Why not?" I am dumbfounded.
Her reply, "Because my husband said he wants to eat the rest of it."

Uh-huh. Bad cake my arse!!!

I end the conversation by promising we'll even up with her next time she places an order, knowing full well that she'd never call again!

Customer #2
A cake something* like this one:

Wife calls & orders a half sheet cake for husbands surprise 50th birthday party to pick up on Saturday. On Monday morning wife calls & complains that the cake was very dry & basically terrible. None of the guests ate it. She insists she doesn't want her money back or credit for a future purchase. She is just letting us know so that we are aware.

On Monday afternoon a new customer calls. They tasted our cake at the aforementioned 50th birthday party this past Saturday. The cake was so wonderful she orders one for later in the month.

On Tuesday another new customer calls. They tasted our cake at the aforementioned 50th birthday party. They also order a cake.

Would you believe, one more time, a third new customer orders a cake who was at that very party.

A year or two passes & all is forgotten. I have a shoppe full of customers & my Mom calls me over & whispers, "Make sure you say hello to that woman." Well, I have no idea who said woman is but I know my Mom said it for a reason, so I went out of my way to flash her a smile & wish her a wonderful weekend. The woman says, "I haven't had one of your cakes in so long! I need to order one! If I bring in a picture of a cake shaped like a hat can you do it?"
"Certainly," I reply.

After she leaves I ask Mom who this lady was...yes, you guessed it. The wife mentioned above!

Customer #3
A cake something* like this one:

Daughter comes in to order a surprise birthday cake for Mom. Cost is no object, she knows just what she wants. She proceeds to order a VERY LARGE round cake with really cool decorations! We actually tell her she wouldn't need to go that large for her estimated guests, she would have plenty with a smaller size. "No, no..this will be good. We like left overs." Daughter says her Dad will pick up the cake after 1:00pm on Saturday.

At 9:30am on Saturday Dad comes to pick up the cake. It is not quite finished. I inform him I can have it done in less than a half hour. He is not pleased he has to come back. I apologize, but I tell him that I finish the cakes in the order of their pick up times. Since his wasn't supposed to be until 1:00pm, I finished the morning cakes first. He admits his daughter did not tell him 1:00pm. He asks to pay the bill now, so he can just run in & get the cake later. I give him his bill. Evidently, his daughter did not tell him the cost of the cake she picked out either. His eyes grew much larger than their sockets as his jaw flopped to the ground. (Ok, maybe that's an exaggeration, but you get the idea!) He pays by credit card & leaves.

1:00pm rolls around & he comes in. (Take note: I am pretty pleased with the way the cake looks, it's really cool!) He picks up the very large box & says the cakes looks great. I walk ahead to hold the door for him & as he passes me he says in a not-too-friendly tone, "It BETTER be WORTH it!"

I silently wish his nice daughter would have picked it up. Ah well. I know once they cut into it all will be right with the universe as I knew this cake would taste awesome!

Monday rolls around & the Dad calls to complain that the cake was over baked, none of the guests ate it & he thinks he should get a partial refund. Now, do you remember, I mentioned this was a really big cake? Way too many servings for what they needed! But the daughter did not have a problem with that. When asked how much he had left, he replied, "None. My wife took the left-overs to work for her birthday treat."

Yeah, right. Another one bites the dust!

*The cakes pictured above were not the actual cakes in question.
However, the story below IS the photo of the cake being described.

Customer #4
This was her cake:

An older lady comes in & wants a 'unique' cake made. She wants it to look like a big tequila worm, 3D style. This was many (many!) years ago, I thought it would be fun to do & would add some great photos to my portfolio which was sparse at the time. I told her I would only charge her $60.00 which was an absolute steal! She thought that was way too much (!) & would have to think about it (read: see if she could get it cheaper somewhere else).

A few days pass, back in she comes, with her leathery skin, hacking like a smoker of at least 50 years. With her deep rattling voice she says, "Ok, I'll order it, but he'd better DAMN WELL appreciate it!" I also deem it appropriate to mention that I do deliver, for an extra charge, if she doesn't want the hassle of picking it up. Surprise, she's not interested if it costs more.

She came in to pick it up on a Saturday at 1:00pm. She seemed to be pleased with how it looked, surprised it was that tall & said, "It sure as hell didn't have to be that big!"

I figure she is one of those people that simply bitches about everything so I smile & ask if I can carry it to her car for her. "Yeah, I'll let ya 'cuz if ya drop it I git my money back!"

We get to her car & she tells me to put it on the back seat. I tell her I don't recommend that, as her back seat is slightly slanted & the cake should really be placed on a totally flat surface, much like her trunk, or on the floor in the front seat. "Nah, It'll be fine! Put it there!", she seems incredibly annoyed with me. So, I put it on the back seat & try to tie the seatbelt around the box so there is a bit of stability. I turn to face her & say, very slowly, "You NEED to drive carefully. Easy on the corners!" I felt I did all that I could do.

I turn to walk back into the shoppe & hear her squeal (Yes, SQUEAL!) her tires as she zooms around the corner. I knew there was no way that cake was still standing. But what more could I have done? It was 100 degrees outside, a beautiful Saturday afternoon & only 1:00pm. That was my last pick-up for the day. I closed up the shoppe & didn't return until Monday morning.

There was one message on the answering machine. It was recorded at 2:30pm, Saturday. It was that woman yelling that she just arrived at her destination & the cake was completely ruined, so badly, you can't even see what it is. Frosting is everywhere.

Hmm...let's check the facts, shall we?
She left our shoppe at 1:00 on the dot.
Her destination was less that 10 minutes from our shoppe.
It was 100 degrees outside. (French Buttercream, anyone? You are aware that butter does, in fact melt, right? Of course you are!)
Her call was at 2:30...exactly 1-1/2 hours after she left our shoppe.
I think all my dear intelligent readers can visualize exactly how this turns out.

My partner loses the drawing of straws on this one & rings the psycho. (Confession coming up here...I make sure she almost ALWAYS gets that straw! *Giggles* I don't mind dealing with those bastards in person, it's when they're on the phone that I can't stand it!) I'll spare you the majority of uninteresting drivel spewed forth from, clearly, one of Satan's spawn. The part that hurt us deeply came just before she hung up when she informed us she would, "Never set foot in your store again!"

YAY! A happy ending. Just like in the fairy tales.

Copious Cornelli

cornelli coifed cakes
too numerous to mention
this particular design
requires so much attention

a piping technique
so frequently used
once was beautiful
now seems abused

well over one hundred
have already been done
i'm sick of piping
the design on this one

well over 200
if you're keeping score
my silent response
i can't do anymore

of course, i don't say that
the business i need
they ask, "will you do it"
I say, "indeed"