North Northamptonshire based food blogger who is obsessed with good food and proper cooking. I'm part of the Midlands Blogging team for the BBC Good Food Shows. This is where I share my own recipes and carry out recipe development and product reviews for brands, including food and wines. Please contact me using the link below.

Saturday, 30 June 2012

Dionne's mum's 50th cake

A last minute, day before order was this one. A cake for Dionne's mum's 50th birthday. Luckily I didn't have a cake order for the Saturday, so I managed to step up to the breach and make her a cake.

Pretty much free reign on this one. She wanted pink, purple, feminine & elegant for her mum.

It's an 8" vanilla sponge.

Friday, 29 June 2012

Papa's 60th birthday cake

This was a relatively simple request to make up. A vanilla sponge in the theme of a Real Madrid football shirt. It had to have Papa on the back and his age.

Google's a great tool when researching something in my eyes! It certainly helped me to make the shirt in the right colours with the 3 stripes down the sleeves!

Another surprised birthday boy got his cake!

Thursday, 28 June 2012

Gary's racing car

This was my first ever carved cake. It was made from a two layer vanilla traybake sandwiched together with jam & buttercream.

It was made for the brother of a friend of mine, who's sister in law is a truly amazing (but incredibly busy) cake maker who didn't have time to make this one. To say I was nervous was a true understatement; I've seen Fiona's cakes!!!

It was decorated on the afternoon I came out of hospital after having Glaucoma tests on my eyes. My eyesight was still pretty fuzzy when I piped it as you can see :-(

I also made a dozen gluten free cupcakes for my friend's husband & daughter who are both Coeliacs so they could have a cake too.

Wednesday, 27 June 2012

Emma's grandad's 90th birthday cake

Emma is a colleague of mine. Her grandad was going to be the amazing age of 90 and as a keen gardener in his youth, the theme of the cake had to include flowers, vegetables and a garden spade & fork.

It's an 8" square vanilla cake.

Grandad thankfully loved his cake :-)

Tuesday, 26 June 2012

April's thank you cupcakes

April wanted some cupcakes to share with her friends who had kindly gifted her presents for her birthday. My brief was 6 chocolate and 6 vanilla cupcakes, lilac & girly.

I think I'm grateful that I didn't have to do 12 mini Spongebob cakes!

Spongebob Squarepants Cake

I didn't realise just how far behind my blog was, so I'm now playing catch up with my commissioned cakes.

Spongebob Squarepants was the order of the day for April's 15th birthday. She'd previously told her mum that that was the cake she wanted, and us mums have memories like elephants when it comes to some things you know!

This was April's cake.

Monday, 25 June 2012

Savannah's giant cupcake

This cake was for Savannah's 16th birthday. A giant chocolate cupcake with duck egg, cream, blue & lilac decorations.

Makes you realise who're getting old when you're making cakes for old school friend's grown up teenagers!

Sunday, 24 June 2012

Summer Lavender Meringue

Such a simple to make dessert that anyone can make, though so many shy away from.

I've made one today using some lavender sugar that I made, and am sharing my recipe with you here.

4 egg whites (8tbs Two Chicks pasteurised egg white)
225g (8oz) lavender caster sugar
5ml (1tsp) cornflour
5ml (1tsp) white vinegar
2.5ml (1/2tsp) vanilla extract
Gel paste food colouring (optional)

Preheat your oven to 130C

Draw a 9" circle onto some baking parchment, then turn it over.

Line a baking tray with the parchment.

Whisk the egg whites until they form soft peaks.

Sieve the caster sugar to remove the flowers, return these to the jar to flavour more sugar.

Gradually add the caster sugar, a spoon at a time, whilst continuing to whisk.

Mix the cornflour, vinegar and vanilla together then fold into the meringue mix (add any paste colouring at this point too, if desired).

Spoon half of the meringue mixture onto the baking parchment and spread out to fill the circle you previously drew on the reverse.

Spoon 'dollops' of the remaining mixture around the edges of your meringue base to become a ridge.

Place in your preheated oven for 90 minutes.

Turn off the oven, leaving the meringue in there with the door closed until cold. This can take about 3 hours.

Serve with whipped double cream and and fresh summer berries.

Friday, 1 June 2012

Jubilee cakes for school

My daughter had a Jubilee party at school recently, like many children around the UK I think. The previous morning the request was made for mum's cupcakes to take into school so I dutifully fulfilled her wish. She's not a 'young' 11 year old (indeed she has a rather mature and sensible head her shoulders) so I didn't want to go childish or gaudy as she wouldn't have wanted them to be like that.

Some simple vanilla and chocolate cupcakes were made (18 of each). I striped the piping bag with red & white butter icing and, using my trusty Wilton 1M piping nozzle, I piped some roses onto the vanilla cakes. The chocolate cakes had a simple 'squiggle' of vibrant red icing (not a lot, you understand, because if you've ever seen the colour your tongue goes after eating "red extra" food paste you'll know why less is more!) each cake was topped with a simple blue or white flower to match the theme.

So, 36 cupcakes were decorated, 4 given as gifts to each of 2 neighbours, which left 28 cakes. Plenty for school, work and home.

The morning of the Jubilee Party comes around and how many did she want to take into school? Oh yes! 6!!!!!!!! 6 came to work with me and didn't survive past 10am which was dutifully declared cake o'clock. 4 were set aside for my parents but hubby forgot to give them to them. It turns out that she didn't even get one of my cakes at school because the teachers bagged them first! This means that she then went away on holiday with my parents for a week and hadn't had a single one of the cakes that I made for her.

How come then that, out of the 36 cakes, 20 were given away or shared, which leaves 16 cakes, there are only 11 left? Wonder whether that had anything to do with the hubby and the 16 year old both being at home!! At least they won't be going to waste though, eh?
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