I’ve been planning this for a while and have wanted to share it with you for so long, but had to hold my tongue until everything came together. And with all the craziness of the home purchase I had to delay the announcement a bit, too. But now that everything is settling down I could not be more excited to share that this summer I am hosting a month-long introductory online food styling & photography workshop. The course focuses on food photography, food styling, and image post-processing. The workshop begins on July 12th and ends on August 13th and includes bi-weekly assignments due each Wednesday and Saturday. Each assignment features text, photo, and/or video course materials furthering the lesson plan. General course material will cover: DSLR camera maintenance, manipulation of natural lighting, creating depth of field, adjusting shutter speed, aperture, and ISO, lenses and their focal lengths, food styling, post processing in Adobe Lightroom 5, and post processing in Adobe Photoshop CC. Registration closes May 31st, and I would love nothing more than for you to join me this summer.
I’m really excited about the course because location won’t be a factor in whether or not many of you can participate, since I know most of you aren’t on the west coast, and I wanted to put something together that more of you could partake in. It’s going to be an incredibly fun and creative experience and, while there will be much to learn, the course load will be very manageable. I scheduled it so that there will be one weekend day in addition to several weekdays to work on each assignment to make it more doable for those of you who work full-time during the week. If you have any questions about the workshop, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me, I can’t wait to “see” you there!
Orange Almond Cake
4 cups plus 2 tablespoons flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 and 1/4 teaspoons salt
3/4 cup butter, softened
2 and 1/2 cups plus 2 tablespoons sugar
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons oil
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 teaspoon almond extract
3 tablespoons finely grated orange zest
2 egg whites 3 eggs
1/2 cup fresh-squeezed orange juice
1 and 1/2 cups full fat plain yogurt
1 tablespoon powdered sugar, optional garnish
3 tablespoons sliced almonds, optional garnish
edible flowers, optional garnish
edible flowers, optional garnish
Orange Blossom Buttercream
1 cup butter
4 and 1/4 cup powdered sugar
2-3 tablespoons milk
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon orange blossom water
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit, then lightly grease and flour three 8-inch round cake pans. To begin preparing the cake, mix together the flour, baking powder, and salt in a separate bowl and set it aside.
In a large mixing bowl cream together the butter, sugar, and oil at medium low speed until the mixture is smooth, about 2-3 minutes of mixing. Add the vanilla extract, almond extract, orange zest, egg whites, and the eggs and mix until incorporated. Add the orange juice and mix until smooth. Add the flour mixture in three separate additions, alternating with the plain yogurt, until both have been added and the batter just becomes smooth.
Evenly distribute the cake batter between the three pans. Place the pans in the oven and bake for 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Remove the pans from the oven and allow to cool for 10 minutes before removing the cakes from the pans and setting them on a wire rack to cool completely.
To prepare the buttercream, beat together the butter and powdered sugar until smooth, then add the milk, vanilla extract, and orange blossom water and beat until the frosting is light and fluffy.
Once the cake has cooled completely, spread the icing between the cake layers and then sprinkle the top of the cake with the sliced almonds and powdered sugar. Garnish with edible flowers and serve.