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  1. I freeze cakes all the time and do a " bootleg" vacuum seal. I wrap them in plastic wrap, place them in a 2 gallon Ziplock bag, suck the air out with a straw, and quickly zip it closed. This ensures a nice seal without crushing the cake.
  2. I will be using them primarily for custard-type dishes (e.g. creme brulee, ice cream) so this shouldn't be a problem.
  3. A friend bought a case of 15 dozen eggs but only needs the whites. Can I freeze the yolks and what is the best way?
  4. Thank you all so much. It's easy to look back and try to figure out how I could have done it, but if I had, I would be cursing at myself right now. Gap, you're absolutely right. Any problems would have been seen as a lack of skill and organization on my part. If my friend knew a month out about the event, what would it have hurt for the woman to contact me? I know that I was right to walk away from this, but I wish she had given me more time, if not for my sake, then for the next person she asked. If I only had nine days, they had even less. My husband will be grateful to you all for helping me stop beating myself up about this, but he'll still wonder why I didn't just listen to him in the first place
  5. I am a former pastry chef but still do a little pastry on the side by request. Recently, a friend of a friend of a friend needed someone to cater an event. About a month prior to the event, my friend told me that I might get a call. About a week later my friend's friend left me a message that I might get a call. About one week later, the person in charge of the event called. I was on vacation at the time and asked that she call me back in a few days when I got home. I actually ended up calling her back the day before she was supposed to call me but she was walking out the door and said she would call me back later. She did not call for two days. These were the details: This event was for the annual convention of a national organization Mini (1-2 bite) desserts for 300, at least 4 varieties, around 1200-1500 pieces She wanted me to provide punch to drink I had to bring all napkins, plates, cups, etc. She wanted a tasting before the event Once I received all the details, we finally started talking about price. She said she didn't know the budget and would call me back the next day. She did not call for three days and only did so after I sent a message saying that I could not do the event due to the time constraint. With only nine days until the event, I did not feel comfortable committing to this job (for many reasons). She said she did not receive my message, but I don't believe that. I feel bad for not taking it (not for her, I could use the money) and I have beat myself up about it ever since. Can anyone out there ease my guilt? Or, should I have bitten the bullet and taken the cash?
  6. I ended up not doing this event. Thank you all for your tips and suggestions.
  7. Thank you so much Pastrygirl, your information was extremely helpful. The dessert reception is following a dinner for an organization's conference. They are eating someplace else then having the dessert. One other question: How many varieties of desserts should I offer? I was thinking of 4-6. Is this a good number? Thanks again.
  8. I have been approached to cater a dessert reception for around three hundred people. I need some advice on how many 1-2 bite items I need and what to charge per person. While I have done wedding cakes and other items before, I have not done smaller items. Thanks.
  9. Since I also take grocery store produce bags, my ethical stand is obvious, but I will offer a good use for them. A number of years ago, while reading a cookbook, the author suggested using these bags for rolling out pastry doughs. The bags are foodsafe and because they are non-stick, you don't have to add extra flour to pie crusts, butter cookies, rugulach, biscuits, etc. They also make clean up easy (but I will fold them up and reuse them if I can). I especially like the ones from the meat dept. at Costco because they are larger and thicker than standard produce bags. I bake regularly so I keep a supply in my cabinet at all times. I guess I justify taking them because I bring my own bags for regular groceries.
  10. My sister wants to make Pina Colada flavored cupcakes. I have a great coconut cake recipe which calls for 1/4 cup of water and she wants to try substituting pineapple juice. I told her I wasn't sure because of the bromelain enzyme which destroys proteins and might cause some issue with the eggs. The recipe calls for 1 whole egg and 5 whites, so there is a significant amount of protein on the line. The enzyme does break down when cooked, so would heating the juice up be the answer? Or, is the amount small enough not to interfere with the protein structure of the eggs? Or, is canned juice already heated/pasteurized, making the enzyme issue irrelevant?
  11. You can even make your own mascarpone, which is much cheaper and very easy. By reducing heavy cream, you take out alot of the liquid, so there isn't any weeping. Once it's done you can decide whether or not you want to add cream cheese.
  12. Uh...what did you expect? ← That is a pretty negative response considering some really great culinary programs are at community colleges: Orange Coast College in Southern California and Kapiolani Community College in Hawaii to name only two. Both of these schools could put many overpriced culinary schools to shame. School, in general, is only as good as what you put into it. I mean, we don't shun Yale because of a certain someone who "graduated" from there. ← This also a little insulting considering that not everyone has access (geographical or monetary) to the more "worthy" institutions. As a community school grad, I have worked alongside CIA, LCB, AI and J&W grads and they are no better or worse than my former classmates. I agree, you get out what you put in, and I'm not just talking about the money.
  13. Uh...what did you expect? ← Wow, really?
  14. Try this link. It has a great deal of information about macarons. The recipes are by weight and scalable.
  15. My suggestion would be to tell customers that you have a policy of not tinting icing. While you are under no obligation to give the entire reason, if they ask I would say that artificial colorants, waste and costing made it unprofitable for you. However, I do agree with Emmalish about the purees. Tinting with purees is a great way to get color and flavor in a frosting. You could offer a limited number of options and of course the purees could be used for other applications. I would suggest one of the cakes you sell along with a way to customize it that is in keeping with your style and still gives the customer something they will be happy to present at their celebration. The customer may even be happier with your suggestion than their initial request. However, if they have their heart set on colored frosting, just let them know you will be unable to accomodate them. I would just do it in a way that doesn't sound like you are insulting their personal taste, you never know when she might want something right up your alley.
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