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Michelle Anderson

Wide Awake when Picking Ingredients

By January 29, 2013

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Coffee Beans Coffee Beans by amanda28192, on Flickr

As a chef I am a coffee junkie who drinks about 6 cups of coffee a day (gasp!) or more. I don't really go in for caffeine energy drinks because I drink coffee for the rich flavor but I can see how some might like the jolt these produce. I was a wee bit taken aback recently when I got the opportunity to sample a birthday cake covered in cute molded fondant animals that hid an interesting ingredient. This cake was made using a so called functional product called Awake Chocolate which a candy bar packed with twice the caffeine found in a serving of Red Bull.

The cake was very nice but I found myself wondering about including ingredients simply for their trendiness or element of originality. I guess the question of creating your cakes with these types of ingredients is entirely up to you and your needs but I think cakes should have integrity as well. Do not use anything that is not of the highest quality or does not fit sublimely with the whole vision of your cake. Some cakes are mean to shock with their decorations or flavor. For example, I have seen disturbing zombie baby cakes complete with blood and entrails as well as tasted a confection that celebrated roasted garlic! That being said, let your creativity flow but don't cave to the pressure of using ingredients that don't add a little something special.

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