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Transformers Birthday Cake

6 Dec

transformer_cake

You’re never too old for a Transformers birthday cake! This is one I made for a friend’s 30th birthday and, well, he was like a little kid when he saw it! This is one of the reasons why I love making cakes so much; because they can make people so happy!

transformer_cake

Christening Cake

2 Mar

Christenings are such lovely occasions for families; welcoming the newest member and getting everyone together to celebrate this. I decided to keep this cake nice and simple and fuss free.

I got to enjoy another beautiful Saturday morning as I rose early to complete the decorations – I wanted to have a steady to hand to write on it and I was too tired the night before to do this, I knew I would make a f*ck of it I even attempted it! I was pretty happy with how it looked, the writing wasn’t as even as I would have liked but it was in a straight line, hooray! I’ll just have to keep practising!

The cake was chocolate biscuit – I used milk chocolate, a mix of digestives and marietta and malteasers.

While I’m on the subject of christenings, I made these booties last night (please excuse the terrible photo, I’ll take a proper one later) as a possibility for my beautiful niece’s upcoming christening. I’m also going to try my hand at a tiered cake for it.

 

Christening Cupcakes

14 Feb

Christening Cupcakes

The order: lemon and vanilla flavoured cupcakes with lemon and vanilla   tops + 6 vanilla flavoured baby girl faces. I decided on pink and lilac coloured butter cream and some delicate decorations on top – tiny flowers, sugar balls and little tiny feet.

They needed to be delivered at 9.30 Saturday morning so in order for them to be at their freshest I started baking them after work on Friday night. I started at about 7.30pm and powered through til 1am, so I was quite weary by the time my head hit the pillow. Weary but happy 🙂

I iced the little faces on Saturday morning, a lovely early start, which I actually don’t mind at all. There’s something quite peaceful and relaxing about being up that early when no one is around. It takes 15 mins per face which I think was slightly quicker than last time, hooray!

The cupcake recipe I use and adapt is from a brilliant book called The Primrose Bakery.

A batch and a half of their recipe made 18 cupcakes (size wise, these are larger than bun cases but smaller than muffin cases). 110g unsalted butter, softened
225g golden caster sugar
2 large eggs
150g self raising flour
125g plain flour
120ml milk
1 tsp vanilla extract

– Heat the oven to gas mark 4 and line a 12 hole muffin tin with paper cases.
– In a large mixing bowl cream together the butter and the sugar until well smooth.
– Add the eggs one at a time, mixing into the mixture between additions.
– Sift the flours into a separate, smaller, bowl.
– Measure out the milk in a jug and then add the vanilla to this.
– Add 1/3 of the flour to the large bowl.  Beat well until combined.
– Add 1/3 of the milk and beat again.
– Add another 1/3 of the flour, then another 1/3 of the milk, then the last of the flour and then the last of the milk, beating well between additions.
– Spoon the mixture into the paper cases.  Fill about 2/3 full.
– Bake for about 25 mins until golden brown and a skewer inserted comes out clean.
– Remove from the oven and leave to cool in the tin for 5-10 minutes.
– Then turn out to cool completely on a wire rack.
– Decorate as you choose.

I had them boxed and delivered for their trip to Galway by 9.15am.

The only thought in my head when driving back to the house was the messy kitchen that I’d left behind me. I stepped into the kitchen and had to look again. Spotless. It was absolutely spotless. Himself had it cleaned it when I was out. It’s always the little things, or in this case slightly big things. How lucky am I 😉

P.S. Happy Valentines Day everyone!

Are ya goin’ for a Pint?

2 Feb

Chocolate Biscuit filled Guinness Cake

I think I’m happy with this cake.  Now I’m not a fan of chocolate biscuit cake so it was hard for me to judge how it tasted, I’ll have to wait for the verdict on that – it is to be served at a 50th birthday tonight. The black dye has just about washed off my fingers though I can’t say the same for the kitchen. It’s patiently waiting to be cleaned. The hardest part was the lettering and I have to thank himself for helping me out with that. I also need to invest in a proper mini scalpel for this exact purpose.

I really enjoyed the challenge of this cake and it was my first chocolate biscuit filling (chocolate, rich tea, digestives, malteasers, butter & golden syrup) – which I let set and then covered with ganache, let that set and then covered it with the black and white icing.

A 21st Birthday

29 Nov

Happy 21st

Another cake, another challenge and surprisingly not another destroyed kitchen! I’m gradually learning how to tidy as I go, much to the delight of himself! He arrived into a mostly tidy kitchen after this cake had been completed. I was up at 7.30am Sat morning to ice and decorate this cake, thunder over head and a flurry of snow and hailstones to keep me company. I love snow, it always gives me a lovely calm and peaceful feeling when I look out at it. Not so much when I’m slipping and sliding on the footpaths though! Which I did much of on Saturday en route to the Taste of Christmas (mmm Gino d’Campo!).

The only requirements for this cake was the size, that it would be chocolate and that the colour must be peachy pink and I think I delivered on all that. There were 21 bendy stars on it which were also edible and well, festive and fun. I was slightly concerned that the icing would crack as it was so cold but I think it went OK.

View from the top

Baby Shower Cupcakes

15 Nov

I made these cute cupcakes over the weekend for my lovely sister-in-laws baby shower. They went down a treat, though I do feel some of the little boy cupcakes looked like fishermen! I also wish I got better photos – I was in a rush taking them as I was running late. They were more time consuming than I realised, it took just under two hours to roll all the icing, cut and make the different pieces and decorate the cupcakes (vanilla cupcakes with chocolate ganache topped with the coloured icing). But, it was totally worth it!

Two Little Girls, Two Little Cakes

8 Nov

For the gorgeous twin’s first birthday their lovely Mum wanted them to have a cake each..Little Miss Wise and Little Miss Giggles…challenge!! I was very excited about these cakes and had more confidence doing them having gained some knowledge from the previous cake.

Little Miss Cakes

Little Miss Wise

The cakes were due Sunday at 1pm so preparation began on Friday night when I made the dark chocolate ganache to cover the cakes with. Saturday morning I then made the two cakes, both chocolate, in square shaped tins and left them to coll for the day.

Saturday night, when the cakes were both completely cool, I cut them to shape and covered them both with the ganache. Then the icing was dyed for the relevant colours, wrapped in cling film and left to develop over night..the colours get stronger when you leave them in the dark overnight.

Although I was up early Sunday morning , I had so much fun. Before the icing was placed on the ganache covered cakes they were hot knifed first to ensure they were completely smooth. Then came the fun task of icing them..and adding their individual features – hair, hands and faces!

Little Miss Giggles

The best tips I could give anyone who wants to create a  cake like this would be:

  • Cool Cakes – make sure your cakes are completely cool before you attempt to cut and shape them and especially when putting ganache on, it could slide right off…not something you want to happen.
  • Colouring the icing the night before – this allows the colours to develop properly over night so you know exactly what colour the cake will be.
  • This Roll out the icing on plastic sheeting or cling film – I did this when making these cakes and it was far less messy. It was also much easier to transfer to the cake, though there were times when I could have done with a third hand!

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