It’s Always Good To Have A Plan B

Many moons ago, when I hadn’t been out of culinary school that long, I was making a cake to take to a party. I was trying to show off and was attempting this very fancy cake. Well, the cake just was NOT cooperating with me at all, so I went and bought a cake mix for the cake, but still created a beautiful cake with elaborate decorations. One of the guests was just raving about the cake and how she could always tell if a cake was from a box or made from scratch. My mom and I were doing our best to keep from busting out into a fit of laughter the whole time. We had a secret that we weren’t willing to share at that point. We were having to much fun listening to this lady brag about her culinary skills. Needless to say, she wasn’t as gifted as she thought. Luckily, I had a back-up plan called Plan B.

Jump to present day with a similar situation. I was following a recipe and trying to make something for my coffee cart. The first go-around just did not work at all. I had a giant mess, though a tasty mess, on my hands. Again, I went for Plan B. Again, I went to the store and bought a cake mix, and then added my mess to the cake to create something totally different, that was actually oh so good. Success once again. The cake all disappeared. PHEW!!!!

Today’s selections for the coffee cart were my macaroon surprise cake, my mini Clementine cakes and some mini key lime cupcakes.

My Plan B started off as mini macaroon cupcakes. Well, as I mentioned above, that just didn’t work out. Instead of having mini cupcakes, I had one big layer of macaroon topping and all the brownie centers broke apart as I tried to remove them from the pan. There was no way I could serve them like that. Plan A was a bust. Time for Plan B.

The brownies were from a mix too, and the recipe that I actually followed, was on the box, so you would think this would have been a no-brainer, right?! This is what happens when I follow directions. Everything goes awry. My moral of the story … don’t follow directions. šŸ™‚

So, Plan B now goes into effect. Again, I went to the store and bought a cake mix and decided to make a layered bundt cake using the macaroon brownies for the center. I broke them all up and crumbled them into pieces, then added everything to the cake mix.

I baked the cake according to the directions on the box. Once it cooled completely, I made a chocolate ganache and added more of the macaroon crumbles on top.

An easy chocolate ganache recipe is equal parts chocolate and heavy whipping cream mixed together and cooked over a medium heat until all the chocolate is melted and you have a shiny, smooth coating. Stir constantly. Chocolate chips work just fine when making a ganache.

This was a very rich and decadent cake, but that didn’t seem to matter much. It was quickly devoured and enjoyed by all.

Now, be honest. If I hadn’t confessed to my mishaps, would you have known this was not my original intent all along? I still make plenty of mistakes, and I have mishaps all the time too. The only difference between me and you is I have learned how to cover up my mistakes really, really well. šŸ™‚ It’s only a cake after all, not rocket science. Who cares if we make mistakes. Most of the time, no one will ever know. The most important ingredient to any recipe is always LOVE.

So once again, I say play with your food. It will still taste good and you will be having a good time, and good stories to tell after. We also learn from our mistakes, and believe me, I have made many.

Stay safe and stay well Everyone. ‘Til next time.


Author: ajeanneinthekitchen

I have worked in the restaurant and catering industry for over 35 years. I attended 2 culinary schools in Southern California, and have a degree in culinary arts from the Southern California School of Culinary Arts, as well as a few other degrees in other areas. I love to cook and I love to feed people.

13 thoughts on “It’s Always Good To Have A Plan B”

  1. It definitely takes practice and time to develop such confidence that you have (and skill). There are times when I get easily frustrated in the kitchen and if it’s not 100% perfect, I get rid of it. Other times, though, I improvise. It can be quite fun to do that.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I grew up watching my mom bake without recipes, win cooking contests, etc. We owned a small ice cream business. I am grateful she left me a few recipes on index cards but I improvise all the time. Since we are keto, it is a little more challenging in the beginning to figure out the measurements but I am getting it down.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. It appears to be a good life style choice for my husband (cancer) and myself as I need to lose a few pounds for my right hip (easier movement). Yes, making recipes from the heart with a touch of this and a pinch of that and what you have on hand is the way I go! Enjoy the day.

        Liked by 1 person

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