Monday, July 6, 2009


For Nadia

There has been little activity in the home kitchen lately because of our recent vacation to Chicago and New York, compounded by the unpredictable timing of our hard wood flooring installation. Despite having a large 4-drawer lateral filing cabinet smack in the middle of my narrow galley kitchen, I managed to produce this cherry blossom-inspired bridal shower cake for my dear friend Nadia.

view from the top
We met sixteen years ago as summer students working in the same research lab at UBC, spending many entertaining hours together growing fungus, bubbling agar, and inadvertently killing plants that summer. She even drove me to the police station once so I could file a police report (don't worry, it was nothing serious). Years of pharmacology classes and medical school followed and despite being in different cities during residencies and fellowships, we have always stayed in touch, making Nadia one of the most considerate and reliable friends I have (and without question, the smartest person I know although she will hate me for saying that).

a slice

Knowing that Nadia likes pistachio, I featured a pistachio mousse and pistachio sponge with layers of vanilla panna cotta, milk chocolate mousse with cocoa nibs, and chocolate cake. Cherry blossom decor consisted of chocolate rolled fondant branches and pink marzipan blossoms. Vancouver has been unseasonably warm lately and I was convinced that the cake would melt en route to the restaurant in my un-air conditioned black car which normally bakes outside on the street. Luckily, no melting occurred and following a delicious multi-course Italian luncheon, the cake was served and enjoyed (although, thankfully, I was not present to witness its consumption since I had to leave early). Congratulations Nadia!

cherry blossom detail


Patricia @ ButterYum said...

Absolutely adorable - I love everything about it, and it sounds utterly delish!

Jabulani said...

As a cake-maker myself, I can see just how beautiful this is. Congratulations! I'd love to have a friend who made me something so thoughtful.

Stacy Hoover said...

You did an amazing job! I love how delicious and beautiful it looks! Classic elegance and amazing flavors all together in perfect harmony!

Nurit "1 family. friendly. food." said...

What a beautiful friendship and cake! Lucky! Both of you.

wen said...

hi charmaine, i'm from malaysia and i like ur artwork very much. would like to ask u more about the NWCAV u attended but couldn't find ur contact email. could u please let me know how to contact u? thanks alot:)

Sakorarox said...

that looks soooo amazing and SOO yummyy!:) You should really post recipes on how to make these multi-layered cakes! I would LOVE to make something like this!

Jenn said...

Thank you for the amazing truck cake for my son Luke's 4th birthday. In his words it was "perfect". Not only did it look amazing but tasted wonderful. You are a true artist.