Monday, July 8, 2013

And Student Cake Month is off and running

Today was the first entry for student cake month aka the month of July. Once again we have the....pleasure..of hosting several students during the summer months.  These students do summer projects to dip their toes in the endless ocean of research so that they can gain experience in preparation for a stellar career in the field.  We have student cake month in July so that they can display their other talents. It is intended to be a fund social event but it has happened that a student decides that despite their parents spending a fortune getting them a science education, they preferred to become bakers. That's not the intent but whatever makes them happy.
An east side bakery cafe that we hadn't tried before!
Some interesting flavors for sure!
This year's student month got off to a start with some treats from The Duck and Bunny. This is  a coffee house type place on the East Side of Providence where they serve up crepes, pastries and...surprise....cupcakes!  Cupcakes are the trend, you know.  It is actually a surprising trend that has lasted longer than you might have expected.  Something is to be said, however, for small cakes flavored more creatively than standard American gateaux.  There were several interesting flavor combos in this grouping including honey lavender, red velvet, lemon raspberry and mocha. 
Almond chocolate something or other!
I wonder if this is red velvet??
Mocha with chocolate drool!
Lemon raspberry!
Or maybe this is the mocha one, hmmm!
This must be carrot cake!
Our provider today brought in about 13 cupcakes - a baker's dozen - for about twice that many people so it was half a cupcake time!
Showing off her contribution to student cake month!
So many people, so few cupcakes...everyone gets half!
The first attempt at slicing was a bit of a disaster.  Instead of a clean cut the cupcake kind of fell apart.  This particular one was a bit on the dry side. We don't know for sure what it was but the cake part was brownie like. Maybe it was intended to be less moist or maybe it was because they were bought the day before.  Day old cupcakes may indeed be drier than fresh ones and we noticed that a few more tended that way though were not as dry as the one that disintegrated.
This did not cut it!
Another issue one has to remember with cupcakes is that it is a very good idea to leave them out of the refrigerator for about an hour before serving them.  This is mainly to avoid the frosting staying congealed together with the consistency of a stick of butter.  These are much tastier when the frosting has softened. Since these came right out of the fridge we were more on the stick of butter end.  Frequently this leads to a good amount of frosting staying on the plates.
This honey lavender cupcake tastes better when that purple glob is not chilled!
We had a few presentation problems also. Judging by the condition of the box things got moved around a bit with a few of the cupcakes looking damaged.  This it not a good thing when you are trying to impress people! On balance these Duck and Bunny selections were fine. Not bad but nothing to rave about.
The red velvet cupcakes took a beating!
The box was a tad greasy!
The overall rating is 2.5 stars - middle of the road - as there were points for creativity of the flavors and and for trying an interesting baker.  On the other hand the mediocre taste, serving and presentation issues did nothing to help the final score.
I hate chocolate cake...but I'm eating it!

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