They are, in fact, MAGICIANS.
To explain: I messed this up in more or less every possible way. The thing was, I'd decided to halve it, cause the original recipe made such an epic sized cake. So as I went along, I used half quantities of sugar, flour, butter... and then my brain malfuctioned (#1) and in went ALL the almonds (I seem to have an unconscious desire to waste ground almonds), all of whatever else, full quantities of buttercream for a half sized cake... you name it, I messed up the amounts of it.
The cake came out of the oven looking suspiciously All Right. I eyed it pensively, decided this must be Daring Baker magic, and continued on my merry way.
Brain malfunction #2: Deciding it would be a good idea to colour the syrup (oh yeah; full quantities of that) pink rather than the actual cake. Meant my cake was kind of marbled in places where the syrup had been poured over the sponge. Does that sound pretty? It was actually kind of crap.
I just like to shatter your illusions there. Sorry.
Then there was #3: Mixing the buttercream, putting it in a tub to be assembled the next day, and then remembering I'd wanted that to be pink as well, scraping it out, colouring it, and piling it all back in again.
#4: Deciding reading the recipe was once again not for me when it came to the mousse, and instead of melting the white chocolate with a couple of tbsp of the cream, chucking it all in. My mousse was not so much mousse as sauce. It tasted fantastic. But it was sauce. I left it in the freezer, hoping it would solidify a bit (I'm an optimist) but let me just say that recipes? Are written down for a reason. Oh Daring Bakers, you teach me so much.
#5: Actually I don't know if this was the fault of my brain or of my culinary skillz (which is worse?) but I had serious issues with the white chocolate glaze; everything started melting and dying and seizing up left right and centre. I made full quantities of that (on purpose this time!) and had to glaze the entire cake rather than just the top to try and hide the sorry state of affairs.
And this is where the Daring Bakers show their true colours as practioners of the magical arts: this cake was gorgeous. Despite the mad quantities, and the failure of my mousse, and my lack of recipe-reading, and the travesty I made of the glaze, this really was delicious, and a massive hit with my mum especially, who requested it as her birthday cake (me: 'O NOEZ!! NOT AGAIN!! DDD='). Looks like the Daring Bakers were watching over me XD.
I might go and sacrifice a lamb or something to them now. Or at least a batch of cookies.
Daring Bakers' Opéra Cake
(white chocolate & rosewater)
Recipe is here. I used half quantities. Mostly.
Anyone got any ideas what else I can make with rosewater essence? I loved it in this, and am dying to use it in other things. Expect rose flavoured everything for a few weeks, until the novelty wears off XD.