Dear Daring Bakers,

This time you’ve really outdone yourselves. Opera cake for your May challenge? Wow. Who knew SO many people could pull off an opera cake so well! All those elaborate layers topped with an even more elaborate musical decoration of some kind…it’s something I could never even fathom doing myself. It’s no wonder they call you “daring“.

(Sidenote for the readers: For those of you haven’t heard of Daring Bakers, they’re an ever-growing group of food bloggers who pull off a different baking feat each month. Every month, they’re all required to attempt to bake the same thing. There is a list of all of them here. And this post is essentially a tribute to them.)

I thought you guys blew me away with last month’s Cheesecake Pops, or even January’s Lemon Meringue Pie (because we all know I couldn’t make a lemon meringue pie quite as well). But now…these Opera Cakes have really “taken the cake,” if you will. I only wish I had your strength and your skills to bake things nearly as magical month after month.

And yes, I’ve thought about joining your group. But a flood of anxiety and questions always stops me in my tracks. What if I don’t have or can’t find the ingredients we need? What if my variation comes out terrible – do I still have to post them? How can I pretend to be a daring baker when I can’t even muster up enough courage to send the e-mail?

Maybe one day I will. But for now, I’ll instead pay tribute to the fine work you Daring Bakers put forth this month and leave you with a roundup of my favorite versions of this month’s challenge.

Could Channelle et Vanille’s Apricot Passionfruit White Chocolate Opera cake (pictured above) be any prettier?

Or what about Tartelette’s hilariously perfect rendition on the opera cake (pictured above)? She is always talented!

Bittersweet’s creations (both the cake and the foam! – pictured above) were beyond beautiful.

And props to LOR in the kitchen for their clever Mojito flavored-take on the opera cake! What a unique flavor idea.

And last but not least, an apricot-pistachio flavor combination never looked so beautiful! Bravo Pretty Tasty Cakes!

And bravo to ALL you Daring Bakers!

With deep respect,

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  • kellypea

    Sometimes, you have to jump off the high dive. It’s so much fun — especially the mistakes. Nice job on the tribute. Now, back to my opera cake reading…Cheers!

  • Hannah

    Thanks for the shout-out! It’s an honor to get the spotlight in the midst of so many amazing cakes.

  • Lore

    Hillary I believe your words and the photos you listed said it all. I think Hannah’s cake is my favourite, but is SO difficult to choose, I would like a bite (at least) of every single one of these cakes.
    I’m not a daring baker (lack of a decent oven) but I consider myself pretty daring in the kitchen. And being daring is really fun, I think you should join :)

  • Andrea

    Great choices in the opera cakes! The group really has some talented folks, and then they have folks like me who just want to learn and do the best we can. You should give it a try! Or at least try a couple challenges on your own and then decide. There’s plenty of DB recipes to choose from!

  • cookworm

    Thanks for the kind words! I was lazy this month and didn’t get around to that beautiful opera cake, but I love the ones you highlighted. I hope you’ll get a chance to join the Daring Bakers soon!

  • JMom

    Take it from a non-baker, you really should join! I didn’t get to do this month’s challenge (see, you’re not obliged to do it every time) because of obligations and the fact that I didn’t find one of the ingredients until two days after the deadline, but it really is a whole lot of fun. I can’t wait to do June’s challenge :)
    and believe me, every baking project is a challenge for me.

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