We’re Turning 5 Today So We Celebrated with a Custom Cynfully Sweets Ground Pepper and Ginger Chocolate CakeApril 20, 2017
For our birthday, we tapped home-baker extraordinaire and former baking show host Cyn Patos to create a cake with our namesake ingredient as the star. With 10 years of self-taught baking experience under her belt, and the top prize of Lifestyle Network’s reality baking show entitled “The Clash” (2014), Patos’ creative vision grabbed our attention and tastebuds with her high-stacked, whimsical, and daring cake designs. We thought that there was no one better who could dream up a cake to celebrate this milestone for us than Patos, who is as sweet and spunky as her own creative confections.
Patos says that baking has taught her to trust her gut. In her decade of being a baker, she has felt the fear of failure, apprehension of approaching the unknown, and so much more, but has truly found that when she has find yourself lost in the moment of creating, she has surprised herself.
The ground pepper cake is enhanced with freshly grated ginger and ginger beer to give the dark-as-our-soul chocolate an after-burn that our writing certainly strives for. In between the stacks of cake are layers of orange and pumpkin spice icing, whose fruity sweetness playfully challenges the spicy, bold cake. The cake also offers one of our food trend bets for 2017 and current favorite local ingredient and snack: pili nuts! Covered in coffee crumble, the pili nuts that Patos cooked up are delicious enough to eat by themselves. Hold your reaction until you meet its black choco-truffle frosting (and that’s truffle oil, not chocolate truffle) and toasted meringue, that wraps the tastes together in a neat figurative bow.
I’ve always appreciated about baking that you can get the right product if you follow instructions. I do like to go off the wall and play mad scientist once in a while, so I like that I’m able to do both with it.
Is that a lot of flavors? Yes. Is it too much? We wondered the same when Patos first proposed the piece, but with a little trust and cocoa dust, she had us flitting our eyelids in ecstasy with each bite. Each note positively sings when you hit it, then takes a bow for the next one to come in and do its part, like an orchestrated opera in your mouth.
We watched Patos at work, mesmerized by how she had fallen in the zone once she reached her favorite part of the process, telling us, “When I finish stacking the cake, and you have kind of the blank canvas and you can go crazy and decorate—that’s my favorite.” Working without an electric mixer in our studio (our bad!), she worked up a gooey meringue at arm-strength lightning speed, taking turns with her husband Rob (a writer for Hype Beast because they are the coolest couple ever) to inspire our marriage goals, baking goals and exercise goals all into one.
The final result was an awe-inspiring dark chocolate cake dripping with toasted meringue, sprinkled with pili nuts, and topped off with a chocolate sail painted gold. Patos jokes that people are always afraid to ruin her creations by slicing into it, but tells us just to dig in because that’s what cake is for. So we do.
Cynfully Sweets offer made-to-order custom cupcakes and cakes, specializing in sugar flowers.