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Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Destination Weddings

Hi everyone! Soooooo this episode... Yeah. Well, let just cut to the chase of things and just move along with our cake.

We got New Orleans with the black team Al and Manny. I was pretty stoked to work with them because of the excellent cakes they did in the last two challenges. I mean personally I felt like they deserved to win the first episode. So in my mind I had a sure win going through it. Once buddy told us about the curveball with the switching partners B.S. I was like FAK! I was more worried with Aimee working with someone else because I just didn't want her to get into it with that person or whatever. So we all agreed to split Al and Aimee then Manny and myself. Not saying Manny is second to Al but since I notice Al takes the leadership role between the two I though it would be good to have Aimee be led by Al and I would guide Manny since really Al designed the cake so he can guide Aimee.

So first thing first. This was the game plan from the get go. When it would be Aimee and Al's turn, Aimee would bake the cakes we need for the tasting (never got aired), and Al would be in charge of icing and covering cakes with fondant. When it was our turn I would be in charge of feathers, masks, and cake toppers, and Manny would either carry on with Aimee's project or Al's project. Then once everything is done, we can start decorating!

So we started by Manny prepping a cake batter and creating the bottom tier to make a giant round because there was no big round cakes available, and I work on the detail since the need to harden to keep their shape, ok cool. Our time is up and we go. Then back on it again.

So we come back and I'm sorry but it was bad. I really wish their telepathy would of worked because Al didn't really continue Manny's steps but skipped a step and covered the big oval that was suppose to be turned into a round then frosted then covered. And to add more, he has already started piping on the tier! The thing we all said to each other was first get all the cakes nicely covered and stacked, THEN you do final touched like piping and assembling the details. The fondant wasn't great at all, sloppy dirty and bulges everywhere. The reason why I had to rip off the fondant was because we weren't gonna leave it into this oval with dirty white fondant. I'm sorry of it was a bi***y move but if it was your wedding cake you would of peeled the flesh off our faces for not peeling the fondant and doing it again. Plus we needed clean white fondant because we weren't planning on doing much accessories to avoid it looking like a sweet sixteen. Make it look like a tradition wedding cake first THEN add the destination.

With all the switching bullsh** we finally get to work together. The covered cake were so bad with rips and stuff at this point it is the game of covering imperfections. We busted out the molds of scroll work to cover the cracks and rips and my moral just went down but we had to get something done. We were so busy with playing the cover up game I didn't even have time to make the fleur de lis look like a fleur de lis... It looked like a damn harpoon! Trust me I don't blame them completely for the look. Everyone was calling them leaves, they were feather. Shi**y feathers apparently, so be it. I do own up to my bullsh** and that's fine. I know I was being a b**** because I'm sorry if anyone was in our position where we came so far from applying, auditioning, and being this far on a competition to win $100,000 and to run a store for Buddy you too would b**** and not allow another teams work end your chances of winning, STRAIGHT UP! I do apologize for being harsh to them but 8 hours with no food and trying to fix problem after problem calls for this guy to bring the diva claws on. These guys are super talented and to see the fondant work was very frustrating and the bigger disappointment was not doweling a cake, sorry that is just the basics of 101 in cake decorating. I'm sure it was a V8 moment for them to not dowel it because of time, but that's created the "leaning tower of crap"

I was SUPER surprised we got second place, luckily we still kept somewhat of the traditional wedding cake. Al did mention that but I just didn't want to hear it at the time. I was just like get me out of here, b**** gotta eat!

Now that I got a chance to keep staring at the cake in the photo, our concept was great. It wasn't the sketch Al had at the beginning, but for the time constraint we improvised well. I was more furious of the basics of fondant covering and doweling. If that isn't flawless, the rest fails. End of story. Overall, I know they are two very good talented (too crazy at times) guys with good hearts and even greater families that I had the pleasure of meeting. Maybe they're still pissed at my diarrhea of the mouth comments, but oh well it was me at the moment, sorry. People can comment all they want that I have a bad attitude and I'm a b**** or if I have nothing nice to say then say nothing at all, well guess what boo boo, PRACTICE WHAT YA PREACH, Boop! I only care about my family and friends opinions and not a brave person behind a keyboard. We are ALL giving everyone a show and a hell of a good show if you ask me.

Enough of New Orleans, on to the next peeps:

Don, Meredith, Jennifer, Bethany. Their cake was fun and colorful. I loved it, it was totally Hawaii. But the bamboo comment, ouch! And my Mer! She was bashed for her cake. I still love them all and it wasn't a bad cake at all, but ok, it wasn't a "traditional" wedding cake.

Kai, Rox, Danielle, Julie. I actually got the cake and I loved it. Ok it wasn't romantic, but it was Vegas, new Vegas. It was modern and sexy. Something you would see in the lobby of one of the chic hotels in Vegas. Ok I wasn't a fan of the sign, but I loved the modern look of it. I disagree with the judges, but again, non traditional.

Al, Lia, David, Eliane. You guys are jerks! Why the hell you gotta show us up like that?! Yeah the Eiffel Tower looked more like the Eiffel Tower's and the Aztec Pyramid's love child, but it was beautiful and romantic looking. This is what I would of LOVED our cake to look like. Clean, simple, with the hint of the destination. Oh well. Can't win them all. Congrat on the victory!

On to the elimination challenge. Kai is devastated. I'd be too with Julie being an excellent baking queen. But an edible centerpiece? This scream Kai and Rox all the way! Yeah a piece broke off, but it still looked great! My hats off the them. Julie and Danielle, love you girls. You brought such innocence to the show, and I hope we corrupted you a little bit. Kidding!

So this is my blog of last episodes craziness. Maybe in the future we can get along with the black team and be able to keep the peace. Love you all. Thanks for reading. Now I gotta get ready for Vegas this weekend! Kai, pack that cake up for me! ;)

Monday, July 7, 2014

Sugar High!

Hi everyone!

So last weeks episode was Sugar High! Buddy asked us to make a cake using 100 lbs. of candy for a kids party at Dylan's Candy Bar! How exciting was that! The only catch was that WE had to choose our own partners, ugh. Back to school we go. I told Aimee to back up to the last table and let people choose us and even before we got a chance to get to the back I see Lia reaching out for my hand and, of course, I reach out as well. I love her's and Al's style of buttercream and airbrushing work that they were very essential and important in this group. Then, Don and Meredith come and join in which was even more perfect!

It did make me feel bad at first because David and Elaine (Our back 4 peeps) didn't get to join in and were left with the other teams. Just out of pure strategy (No offense to the other teams) we told David (As did Kai) to join her group with Rox, Al, and Manny. They were the top competitors last week so of course we think David and Elaine have a greater chance of advancing. Either way this challenge was gonna bring everyone's child at heart so it will be a neck and neck battle.

Once we were allowed to run an collect our candy I introduced the idea of doing a cake inspired by... here we go... see if you all guessed it right.... Wreck it Ralph! Of course they cant say that because of copyrights and their is no character likeness at all but this is something I loved and had me thinking about my godson the entire time. Thankfully no drama with the idea initiative with the team because they rock, but we all knew what we had to do with the cake.

Al and Don created the base and built the mammoth mountain and iced with with perfection since Al is a crackhead when it comes to buttercream. The girls started sorting candies out (this was a time eater, and Aimee a candy eater) Lia was pulling sugar from the lollipops, Aimee and Meredith were making fine details with smaller pieced of candy. The cake turned out amazing once we all united, everything fell in perfect place... except my turntable, F***!!! Oh well, hope we don't lose points for that.

David, Elaine, Kai, Rox, Al, and Manny's cake was unreal. Again, another wonderful piece. It sucked Buddy got irritated about the not enough cake, but I understood because last week majority relied on but wood piece so he wanted more cake. I learned my lesson about backs exposed so I made sure everything was encrusted with candy in the back. Also the only bad thing was there wasn't that much actual candy used. But it was a very gorgeous candy inspired cake and reminded me of somewhere the Ninja Turtles would go to and fight a candy monster.

The last cake was DRAMA DRAMA DRAMA!!! The vision could of been executed perfectly, but the problem was that if someone takes the leadership position, the agree to oversee the entire operation. It's not babysitting because they keep asking you questions or have trouble with something and they want you to go and show them how its done. They just want you to approve everything since you designed it. I did see Bethany take a semi leadership position with hesitation because the time is almost out and the cake wasnt up to par with their skill work. I don't blame her at all but I was glad she continued on to complete the work with her teammates. Props to Julie for calming Danielle down before she would continue an argument with an already mad Jennifer. Jennifer is a sweetheart but everyone has to understand that we signed up to win big money to help with our careers and our personal lives so of course we will have a tiff and collide with other teams. Fred's sugar piece was amazing, but I wish he could of done something that goes in sync with the rest of the cake, maybe like a giant sugar lollipop that replaces the one that got ripped off???

Delivery was a B. I. T. *. *. TRYING TO DELIVER A CAKE ON SPIRAL STEPS IN NEW YORK WHILE PEOPLE WATCH AND GET IN FRONT OF YOU TO TAKE PICS IS NOT COOL! Lucking ours arrive in one piece and so did everyone else's! I think this challenges most rewarding part was watching the smiles on all the kids faces. I think we all enjoyed this challenge because we got to act like kids but we all kids (cousins, nieces, nephews, sons, daughters, etc.) that are important to us at home and this challenge for me reminded me of them when I bring them their birthday cakes and their reaction was the same as their. Totally worth it!

On to judgement... We WON!!! We won both judges and kids vote. It was a great feeling and couldn't be more proud with the teams Aimee and I paired up with! Unfortunately, Teal, Pink, and Purple were in the chopping block.

All I have to say is WOW. Loss due to time... I would have never expected that to happen. They tried to impress by tempering their own chocolate (which it was) but for an elimination challenge, simple coating chocolate would have saved you. I wish Fred and Barry much luck. They are great guys. Hopefully I see them this week when I head out to Vegas!!! Get the fancy dessert ready for me guys!

Hope you all enjoyed this episodes blog. Don't forget to see next episode! I'm sure I'll have plenty to blog about after watching the preview of this coming episode. Peace!

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Empire State of Mind

FINALLY!!! The first episode of Next Great Baker premiered! As promised, I am gonna blog about the first episode. Sorry I am a week late! Didn’t really get a chance to listen or watch during the premier parties Aimee and I hosted, was more mingling and drinking with loved ones. So I barely had time to finally watch my DVR recording as I was baking my butt off for my brother’s baby shower. Now, as Buddy likes to say, “It’s go time!”


The episode starts with all the cast walking into what is called “the arena”... WOW! This place is AMAZING! Full kitchen, cake decorating products I have only heard of, ingredients galore! This place is Disneyland for cake decorators! Just looking around my mind was running a mile a minute thinking of the great cakes we are gonna make for Buddy. Scoping out the competitors “judging by their cover” I’m thinking Aimee and I got this. Everyone seems to have their guard really high up, using their personalities as a cover up for their nervousness, nothing wrong with that, we were exactly the same. I honestly felt like we were in the Hunger Game (me being Katniss of course). Out of all of the competitors the New York team caught my attention. They were appointed the table right behind us which I always hated in school because 99% of the time the bully always stood behind me, and with those accents, FML! I’m thinking that Meredith chick better not attack me, hahaha!


Then in walks Buddy Valastro himself! He makes us make out hometown dessert in 45 minutes... That’s it. No hi, no wassup, just shut up and feed me type deal. OK! Aimee decided on doing tres leche cake. Chula Vista was known for being the lemon capital, but recently I have seen no lemons with the exception of the annual Lemon Festival. So we decided to create something that remind us of the Hispanic community because that for us, is home. I mean, Aimee is now the minority in the city, lol. We put it in a martini glass because our original design to make an all edible tres leches cupcake with chocolate being our “liner”, unfortunately the chocolate wasn’t setting so Aimee had a great idea in presenting it in a martini glass, genius! My heart broke when David and Elaine’s cake didn’t bake, it looked like chorro! Time ended and it’s time to present!


HOLY SH**! Jacques Torres and Bobby Lloyd! I remember watching Jacques TV, guy is amazing! Pretty bummed they didn’t like our dessert. We hesitated in not drenching all the cake because when I have introduced a tres leches cake to someone who hasn’t tried it, the tend to freak out, but usually the like it when its reduced in drenching it. Little did I know Buddy sells it at his bakery, ugh!


So our cake challenge was to pick a destination in New York and create a cake inspired by it. Aimee pick Central Park, I’m just hoping is not shoveling horse sh**. Turns out it was a very glamorous task with the lovely Mary! I felt extremely bad about Kai and Rox’s car accident, we actually encountered it on out drive to New York. Thankfully they were safe as for everyone that was associated with the accident. Once we got back I noticed that everyone arrived and were able to work for a bit with the exception of Kai and Rox, =(.


The next day it was crunch time. Everyone was giving it their all to make an awesome cake. When I saw Kai and Rox working on a huge piece I though, “bye girls”. We developed a friendship with what we called “The back four” consisted of David and Elaine, Lia and Al, Don and Meredith, and Aimee and myself. These people are awesome! I was sure everyone else were cool people, but since we were so close to the other three tables, we were able to talk and laugh throughout the challenge.


Once all the cakes were done, I loved most, and confused about some. Brandy and Gingers was very confusing only because it did look like a cake one person can decorate in four hours. Since they were across the room I obviously could see them working on their cake, maybe they had a few disagreements throughout the challenge? Aimee and I had a lot more details planned for our cake but unfortunately the time crunch we had to scratch some ideas, that included the back, bad idea. Kai and Rox’s cake was very impressive and absolutely gorgeous, BUT on thing I have to comment on was that if someone walked in and saw that cake, they wouldn’t have known it was the Statue of Liberty, which was the main challenge. Other than that, they are both terrific artists. Al and Manny’s cake was very very good! They really surprised me on their work, my respects for them. Lia and Al’s as was my fellow back four cakes were really great. Bethany and Jennifer was really good, yes it was a small cake, but I enjoyed the detail. Fred and Barry’s was another confusing cake because when I saw them working on it I was like “F**k they are going to KILL this challenge” but I guess Fred injury got the best of him. Danielle and Julie’s cake wasn’t the greatest, but I felt it was one of the most ambitious one due to their skills. They loved our cake, but they tore us a new A because of the back. Lesson learned.



I was really shocked that David and Elaine were in the Elimination Challenge. It was a WTF moment. I seriously thought it was going to be Julie and Danielle. But because they won the previous challenge, they were safe. But I was extremely glad David and Elaine came back in the lounge. I guess Ginger bark was bigger than her bite. But I wish both ladies the best of luck. I have seen both of their work and they are amazing cake artist and they shouldn’t let this hiccup discourage them or make them feel bad.


I hope this blog wasn’t sloppy, most likely it was, but I’m sure I will improve in the next episode blog. Until next time my lovelies! Enjoy episode two tonight!!!

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Rising From The Ashes Like A Dark Phoenix...AGAIN...

Hello lovelies!
   Yes, I know. The last post I posted I was blabbing around how this cool guy was making his blogging return. But just like everything I do in life, I got bored easily and gave up...Kidding! But truth is I did get quite busy with work so I used my free time to relax and not think of work.

ANYWAYS, guess who is in the new season of the Next Great Baker?! This guy!!! I am super excited to bring drama to the show with my fellow teammate Aimee Anderson! There is a lot of stress and drama in this show and I will be exclusively talking shit after every episode (Or everyone maybe?) in this blog! I will also be live tweeting during the show in my personal twitter account @josebarajas, not the business one which you should be following as well, @mmmcakes86.

I have attached to this post our official press release so you guys can get an insight on what to expect on the show and a little intro on the two new permanent judges and also a bit about the competitors.

Hope you all have a lovely week and I shall talk to you soon!

Seriously, soon means next week, not in one year like last time. =)

Click Here for Official Press Release