Wonderful Patsy from work asked me to make her mother-in-law's 95th birthday cake. I was very honoured, as (a) it was such an important occasion; and (b) no-one had ever asked me to bake a cake for them before; and (c) I was amazed that anyone thought my baking skills were good enough to be entrusted with such a task.
I made the Dinosaur Rock Chocolate Cake again at Patsy's request - it is both a large cake to feed crowds, and is very moist. However, it did not go smoothly this time - I ended up making two identical cakes, with the first one providing morning tea for the people at work.
Cake no. 1 was turned out too early and started to crack because I forgot to factor in the size of the cake to the tin cooling time. This of itself was not the deal-breaker for this cake, as I could cover up the crack with icing - it wasn't that major. However, I thought I would use ganache for the icing, not realising that such a large cake needs a longer than usual cooling time before being iced - when I woke up the next morning, the ganache had marbled from the heat. This could not be so easily fixed, so I started baking cake no. 2 at 7am before going to work, and went home at lunchtime (luckily I live really close to work) to ice and decorate it.
Happily, cake no. 2 went much better, although I skipped the ganache and used glace icing (which perhaps I should have done in the first place). Patsy said that the cake went down well, and she seemed happy with it (which is after all the most important thing).
As well as being remunerated for the cost of the ingredients, Patsy gave me a lovely box of Lindt ball chocolates for my efforts. Thank you Pasty for having faith in me (although I am not sure it was deserved!), and for providing me with my first commissioned work.