Saturday, December 3, 2011

Cake Boss: Catch-Up on 2 Episodes & 2 Specials

by Amy K. Bredemeyer

Boy, was I surprised to come home and find four different Cake Boss recordings while I was away! Two half-hour episodes and two hour-long specials were all waiting for me, and they were all fairly interesting. I'm not sure what made TLC decide to run all of that so close together, particularly the "Family Secrets" special, which didn't have any timing-specific bits as far as I noticed. My overall thoughts are all over the place because this post covers so many different things, so I'll just leave this at that and move on...

Cake Boss "Church Cake, Carats, & a Castan's Pool Party" (S04E35): The guys at the bakery are recreating Joey and Grace's wedding cake for their 20th anniversary, as surprise for Grace. It was a big cake that resembled a church. "Church cakes" got trendy for a while, but they haven't really done any in years. Grace puts on her wedding dress, though it's pretty tight. [How did she show people in the bakery the dress without seeing the church cake?] Grace thinks that she's having a private dinner with Joey, but it's really a big party with the cake. Joey's son is there, too. [he's back from Syracuse again?]

Mauro & Madeline's son, Buddy, is having his first co-ed party, for his 12th birthday. He has a "girlfriend," Nicole, the daughter of one of Madeline's best friends, Daniela. He wants a life-size cake of himself, but Mauro tells him he's getting a pool cake. [hahahaha!] Buddy wants a hot tub cake with girls. He ends up with a vanilla cake with chocolate fudge. that has a pool and figurines. Mauro tells the workers not to make the girls at the party "too hott." [haha] They make Buddy a little more fit than he really is so as not to embarrass him. [It's a cute little cake.] The mothers get involved a little and have Nicole feed Buddy a bite, then vice versa.

Buddy and Lisa shop for a new, magnificent wedding band. Lisa thinks it's bad luck to swap it out, plus the original has sentimental value, so they decide to just add some diamonds to the original. 

Cake Boss "Bling, Barbecue & Blueprints" (S04E36): Devorah wants the most expensive cake ever made, including real diamonds and jewels, and her favorite ($7M) necklace. She brought her jeweler to the cake consultation, along with two guards. There are $20-30 million of jewels to go onto the cake, and one of the security guards will stay around for "insurance." [this whole thing just sounds like a horrible idea!] The security guard worries about the jewels getting icing on them. [hahahaha! how else would they stick them to the cake? On the whole, I thought that the jeweled cake was pretty ugly. what do you think?]

When Anthony won't help Frankie move some boxes, Frankie enlists some of the others to fill Anthony's jeep with packing peanuts, but it was all a big joke. [slightly funny but totally annoying! geez!] Buddy talks to the jeweler about a possible gift for Lisa... eight carat diamond earrings... which would be $500,000.

The party puts Buddy in the mood to have a party of his own (remember, everyone moved to Lackawanna this year, plus the original bakery on Washington Street is being remodeled with Grace's ideas), so the guys of the bakery plan a barbecue in the parking lot.

Cake Boss
"Family Feast" (Series Special): Thanksgiving is a busy time of year for the store. Not only are they rolling out tons of pies, cookies, and pastries, but they also have a big feast of their own. Actually, everybody does a little cooking, they close the store, and have a big Thanksgiving dinner. [Nice to see people besides Buddy talking in the interviews.] They do thousands of cookie trays each Thanksgiving, and Mary gives a demonstration. Grandma Grace - Buddy's dad's mom, was the cookie tray queen... Mary and Grace now argue over the title. [LoL!] Joey handles all of the pies, which are quite labor-intensive, and we hear from many of the family members on what their favorite pies are. They use corn syrup in their pecan pies instead of molasses to keep it a little lighter. Eclairs, creme puffs, cannolis are the main pastries they sell during Thanksgiving. They also do wheat pies, which are an old tradition. It's an old Italian recipe that takes days to make - the filling is ricotta, wheat, butter, lemon and orange zest, eggs, sugar, orange blossom water.

This is the first year that they're cooking at Lackawanna. [ewww on wife Lisa's hair in the interviews.] They talk about turducken - Lisa's mom, Gloria, makes it every year. Grace and Buddy also make turkeys, even though Grace is the weak link in the family when it comes to cooking. Around the holidays, Buddy makes lunch for the employees, and this year he does a tomato vodka sauce with pancetta for the pasta, plus some hams. [sounds great!] He also cranks out a turkey cake on which Maurizio, Ralph, and Juan help. [looked awesome!] Also for Thanksgiving, Joey and Grace organize all 14 grandkids to make cookies as part of what will go on the Viennese table as well. Lisa's father teaches Buddy Jr. to make mozzarella. [I guess that was cool...] Joey and Buddy play Wii, along with some other family members. Everyone talk about their favorite turkey dish. 

Cake Boss "Family Secrets" (Series Special): They talk about how small the family world is.

Grace and Joey have Robert and Bartolina. Joey's about to turn 44, and met Grace when he was 20. The church wedding cake was a big surprise. Joey and Buddy went to deliver a church cake once and it got messed up in the delivery, and Buddy became the first person to be in the back of the truck to ride with a cake. [I guess that's an interesting story...] Joey and Grace lived above the bakery when they were first married. Grace gained 42 pounds with her first pregnancy. [The love that Joey has for Grace is just so beautiful!]

Madeline and Mauro have Mary, Dominique, and Buddy. Madeline and Mauro met in the bakery. Buddy's dad set them up... Mauro was working construction for the bakery remodel at the time. They started dating a little while later and married two years later. Madeline was the wild one in the family when they were growing up.

Mary and Joe have Joseph Jr. and Lucia. Mary got into the most trouble growing up. Mary was engaged six or seven times - three times serious enough to order wedding dresses. [you're kidding me! How easily do people propose in Hoboken?? And why isn't she even sure how many times it was??!?] She just felt bad saying no. [...omg.] Joe comes in and we see him. They met because Joe was a customer at the bakery. [neat to see Joe, as he's very rarely in the bakery, or so it seems.]

Lisa (no Remy) has Teresa, John, and Isabella. She was (and still is) the most mellow of the sisters. She was really into Barbies when she was a kid. She had really big hair. [in a special called "Family Secrets," there's no mention of her ex-husband, Remy, at all... anyone else find that strange?]

Buddy and Lisa have Sophia, Buddy, Marco, and Carlo. Buddy was best-dressed in Kindergarten. [...what? We didn't have superlatives until 8th grade! Also, I had never noticed how "large" Buddy's ears are.] Lisa clips Buddy's toenails. The guys joke that Buddy takes two hours to get his hair cut every week, and that he uses a lot of gel. Buddy's had the same hairstyle since his wife met him. Her best friend grew up next door to Buddy, and when the Valastro family had some family visiting from Italy, Buddy and other family members went out to a club. Lisa accompanied her friend with them, and she and Buddy pretty much became inseparable after that. Buddy was really into working out when he was younger. Buddy worked on his own wedding cake, and it took him about three weeks to make the sugar flowers. [dang!] Cake Boss did affect Buddy and Lisa's relationship in the beginning... the celebrity aspect was hard for Lisa - she didn't want to share Buddy that much. Sophia is a real mix of the two of them. Buddy is very Buddy. Marco looks like Lisa but acts like Buddy.

Buddy's mom remarried. His name is Sergio. Buddy's parents met, working at the bakery. She was 15 when Bartolo (Buddy Sr.) bought the bakery. She was 16 when she got engaged and 17 when she got married. Frankie, Buddy's second cousin, has been called LittleFrankie because his dad was BigFrankie. Frankie used to eat two dinners - one at 5pm with Buddy's family and one when he got home with his own family. [hahahahaha!] Frankie dances, especially with his butt. [ummm.... okay.] Anthony is good at impressions. [agreed.] Buddy Castano wants to be a baker. Anthony wants to run the shop someday, like Joey.
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