Thursday, 25 November 2010

Green and Gold Christmas Pops

Lots of cake pops for the Samaritans Winter Fayre this weekend in a Samaritans green colour with gold sprinkles and edible glitter - hope you raise loads guys!

Wednesday, 24 November 2010

Naomi's Really Easy Brownies

I made these brownies for my wedding to serve along side cupcakes, cake pops and macarons. This recipe is really easy, always seems to work and once baked, they freeze brilliantly too (very handy as I didn't have to bake them them the night before the wedding!) - my friend Naomi gave it to me in a lovely recipe book on my hen do. Thanks Nabs!

INGREDIENTS
100g butter
175g caster sugar
75g brown or muscovado sugar
125g chocolate (plain or milk)
1 tbsp golden syrup
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
100g plain flour
½ tsp baking powder
2 tbsp cocoa powder

METHOD
1. Heat oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4. Grease and line a 20cm square cake tin.
2. Place the butter, caster sugar, brown sugar, chocolate and golden syrup in the pan and melt gently on a low heat until it is smooth and lump-free.
3. Remove the pan from the heat.
4. Break the eggs into the bowl and whisk with the fork until light and frothy.
5. Add the eggs, vanilla extract or essence, flour, baking powder and cocoa powder to the chocolate mixture and mix thoroughly.
6. Put the mixture into the greased and lined cake tin and place on the middle shelf of the oven. Bake for 25-30 mins.
7. Remove and allow to cool for 20-30 mins before cutting into squares and serving stacked up on a pretty cake stand.

Adapted from BBC Good Food.

Tuesday, 23 November 2010

Wedding: DIY Thank You Cards

This week we're finally getting round to writing our wedding thank you cards. I can't believe it's taken us 3 months! After getting the photos back from our photographer we picked out one of our favorites and ordered matt finish postcards from Vistaprint. I love getting postcards - these are fun and not too formal plus you save on envelopes too!
For the backs I photographed the back of a blank old fashioned style postcard (this one is from the Penguin box of 100 that we used at the wedding instead of a guest book).
And I absolutely love these classic album cover stamps from Royal Mail. I went for the New Order, Power, Corruption and Lies design. I'm all for attention to detail and these stamps finish off our postcards beautifully and don't cost any extra than normal stamps.

Wednesday, 17 November 2010

Pudsey Pops

Pudsey yellow pops for Friday's Children in Need. Here's how to make 'em! Don't forgot to donate (or make these and charge a few quid a pop!).

Vintage Pink Birthday Cake

A vintage pink 21st birthday cake for twins Louise and Emily - happy birthday guys! This was a traditional birthday cake with vanilla sponge sandwiched with vanilla buttercream and raspberry jam. I decorated the top with chocolate roses, pink pearls and lettering piped with royal icing (my first attempt at icing words!)

I also made some cheeky pops to accompany the  big cake with coordinating mini roses and pearls.

Thursday, 11 November 2010

Big Nan's Fruit Cake Recipe

This recipe was passed down from my grandmother (‘Big Nan’) to my Mum and then to me and probably dates back to the 1940s. I love the idea of sharing recipes across generations as a little piece of family history and this one reminds me of tea at Nan's and after school at home with Mum.

There’s something satisfyingly untrendy about this cake and also very of it’s era – it’s cheap to make, the ingredients can be found in most kitchens and it’s a great staple to accompany a cup of tea if someone pops round. My favourite recipes are the ones with lots of taste but not a lot of ingredients. It's all in one pan which means less washing up too.

INGREDIENTS
12 oz mixed fruit
4oz soft brown sugar
4oz margarine
2 eggs
8 oz self raising flour

METHOD
1. Combine the fruit, sugar and margarine in a saucepan with ¼ pint of water, simmer for 20 minutes and leave to cool.
2. Beat in the eggs and flour
3. Transfer into a greased cake tin (I’ve used a 6 inch round one but you could use an 8 inch or loaf tin)
4. Bake at 150 degrees (gas mark 2) for 1 ½ hours

This post was inspired by Innocent 's Great Recipe Archive. Visit to vote for Big Nan's Fruit Cake and add your own!

Friday, 5 November 2010

Postcode Pops

Red and white cake pops with a red velvet centre to celebrate I Love My Postcode's birthday (a great fellow Shepherds Bush based company that help you show your local pride with their range of t-shirts and other fun clothes). These were won by a lucky customer from Greenwich (hence the postcode) - enjoy!

Cupcake Camp London


Cupcake Camp London was loads of fun last weekend. Lots of cupcakes (of course!), bands, celebrity judges and lots of cash raised for the North London Hospice. It was so hard to choose what to bake (and even harder to transport them all there on the bus!) but here's what I went for...
 
 
 
 
 
From the top:
Labels made from my favourite typewriter font rubber stamp set.
Rhubarb & Rose cupcakes (had be done!). These were the most popular of my flavours and you can get the recipe here.
Red Velvet Heart flavour (recipe here).
Spooky Ginger Fudge.
The 'Violet Beauregarde' - a Violet and Blueberry flavour cupcake which I entered for the unique ingredient competition category. 

See the website for lots more pictures and the competition winners.

Monday, 1 November 2010

Rhubarb & Rose Cupcakes

As you can tell from the name of my blog, rhubarb and rose are two of my all time favourite ingredients. In this recipe they meet up in the form of a pretty cupcake. I took these to Cupcake Camp London at the weekend and they went down really well.

INGREDIENTS

Cake:
Simply follow this recipe for Vanilla Cupcakes or use your favourite one.

Rhubarb Centre:
3 stalks of rhubarb
1 tbsp unsalted butter
2 tbsp caster sugar
2 tbsp water
1 tsp vanilla extract

Rose Butter Icing:
110g (4oz) unsalted butter (at room temperature)
225g (8oz) icing sugar
2 tsp rose water
A couple of drops of food colouring (I like this dusky pink one)

METHOD
Follow the recipe for  vanilla cupcakes as above and while they're baking and cooling you can start on the rhubarb centre and rose butter icing.

For the rhubarb centre, simmer all of the ingredients in a saucepan for 20 minutes and set aside to cool. You can adjust the amount of sugar depending on how 'tart' you like it.

Once the cakes and stewed rhubarb are cool, cut a small amount of cake from the centre, fill with a teaspoon of rhubarb and replace the cake that you cut out like a lid.

For the rose butter icing, beat the butter until pale using an electric whisk or freestanding mixer.

Add the icing sugar and rose water and beat for at least 5 minutes (this makes the icing light and fluffy).

Add the food colouring drop at a time until you achieve the right shade.

Pipe using a large star nozzle. I like this one from Cakes, Cookies & Crafts Shop. I also really like these easy to grip icing bags from Lakeland.

The chocolate roses that I've used to decorate my cakes are made from rose chocolate moulds (find them here) with a mixture of half pink and half red candy melts.
 
Makes enough for 12 cupcakes or about 30 mini cupcakes.

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