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Friday, June 3, 2016

Perfectionism: Practice Makes Perfect

So one of my other hobbies, that maybe if I can get good enough I will land a job, is cake decoration. Well, mostly cupcakes. Big cakes are an elusive creature for my skill level. But my cupcake rock. And that was enough to make me think that I could do this when I saw it.

Let's just say that the first attempt is less than flattering. And more than a little annoying. Annoying because I used to have the ability to pick up an instruction and duplicate the process nearly perfectly. I have noticed since the heart issue began that several skills have been diminished. Fine motor skills are nearly non existent. I tried putting together a bracelet and could barely thread the large holed beads onto the thread. And now, there is this mess.

It isn't all me. The technique is fabulous. But I started with a frosting that was too thick. I needed to add either more cream of whip it longer. And I didn't have the flat edged scraper that she had. It is in my case of cake decorating things that I sacrificed to avoid my brother. Long story that I might tell later, The frosting was so thick it kept pulling away from the cake. And it was a recipe that another chef called a crusting frosting. Which means that it is great if you are using a texture plate not so good for blending those shades so subtly. With my diminished fine motor skills I couldn't do much to fix it.

And then there is the ganache.  It definitely ran too much. And there is nothing to do about it. I've never made ganache before. I have avoided the german recipes that call for a layer of ganache over a cake. That was a mistake. Practice with a standard ganache application would have taught me about the proper consistency instead of thinking I'd start out of the gate with this technique.

Walk before you Run.
I've never really had to worry about getting ahead of myself before. Like I said, I used to be able to pick up and do. Now I definitely have to practice. It is frustrating. My cupcakes have been perfect all along. The last ones I made about 9 months ago, perfection. So this lack of coordination in my hands is rather new. I don't like this. I like being the genius. Or the Magician. I am not used to this. It feels like I am moving through mud. This near heart attack has been my kryptonite. Now I'm just a regular human. I'm not sure how I feel about that.

Use it or You Lose It
Another part of the problem is that it has been a long time since I've done anything creative. I spent the Winter working crazy hours and was too tired to do much of anything like this. Thus, it's been 9 months since I've made a cupcake. Though I am not sure that Anything would have helped this mess other than practice.

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