Monday, 7 November 2011

Chocolate orange cupcakes

My housemate had asked me to make her some cakes for an event she was going to and decided upon chocolate orange cupcakes. I am a big fan of chocolate orange, whenever somebody in my office has an orange I crave some! These cupcakes were topped in a cream cheese based frosting which I had to adapt slightly to be able to pipe as cream cheese frosting is notorious for going too sloppy and being hard to work with. Anyway they looked and tasted great so here are some pictures:

Baby shower cupcakes

So, a girl I went to uni with asked me to make her some cupcakes for her friends baby shower. The friend in question is having a little girl so of course the colour of choice was pink! I made plain vanilla cupcakes and iced them in baby pink butter-cream, to finish the cakes off I made little booties and dusted them with coloured lustre. This was the end result:

Sticky Toffee Cupcakes

Sticky toffee pudding is one of my all time favourite desserts so when I came across the recipe for sticky toffee cupcakes in the Hummingbird Bakery's 'Cake Days' book I had to make them and what better occasion than for bonfire night? These cupcakes are simply delicious and are exactly like a mini sticky toffee pudding topped in an ultra-light frosting:

Monday, 31 October 2011

Mad about cupcakes

Cupcakes are a firm favourite of mine, I like eating them but I love decorating them. I especially like how you can choose to stop at one or eat as many as you like. Most of what I do is self taught from piping to now making more and more intricate cupcake toppers. It's so easy to whip up a batch and spend a good few hours messing round with the decorations and trying new things out. This post is a dedication to the versatile, underestimated favourite of mine:

Made for my friend's 23rd birthday this year. Plain vanilla with butter cream icing and hand made butterflies:

White chocolate chip and raspberry cupcakes:

Plain vanilla with rainbow icing:

Plain cupcakes covered in fondant icing and decorated with hand made flowers:

More plain ones, just practicing my icing:

Halloween cupcakes made for a friends birthday. Finished off with hand made toppers which I painted:

Monday, 10 October 2011

Cinnamon & blackberry cake

Continuing on the blackberry theme (I still have two bags left in my freezer to use up) this week I chose to make a cinnamon & blackberry cake from Sainsbury's magazine. Cinnamon is such a lovely spice and reminds of dark nights and Christmas time. This recipe used wholemeal flour, which is not something I have come across before but it goes very well with the cinnamon and lovely filling of; cream, blackberries and blackberry jam. My cakes rose massively and I almost wish I had made 3 layers instead of two, it certainly would have looked more impressive!

Somebody at work declared it was of the best cakes I had made yet, it was gone in around half an hour but then again cake always makes Monday just that little bit better.

Anyway here's the pictures:

Monday, 3 October 2011

Blackberry & apple crumble cake

So a few weeks ago me and a few others at work picked blackberries in the lane near our office, I therefore ended up with 800g of frozen blackberries so started looking for recipes to use them in! I'll admit, I'm not a huge fan of warm fruit or indeed fruit in cakes but this recipe sounded nice and I thought I'd just make it for the people in my office. I found it on the BBC Good Good website and although the reviews are mixed I didn't find it too difficult to make after a bit of logical re-arranging to the recipe! Anyway, here's the finished product:

Monday, 26 September 2011

Strawberries & Cream cheesecake

As well as making muffins yesterday I also made the Strawberries & Cream Cheesecake. This is a baked cheesecake and they always intimidate me slightly (especially as the oven I'm using at present is awful!) as I'm scared about over or under cooking. Nevertheless with strawberry season coming to an end I wanted to make it whilst I could get my hands on good, flavoursome English strawberries.

You start off by almost making some strawberry jam! Once this is entirely cooled you mix it together with cream cheese and a bit of sugar. This is then put onto the biscuit base you prepared earlier and baked in the oven using a waterbath (also tricky). Once it's sat in the fridge for a couple of hours the final layer is added comprising of mascarpone , cream and icing sugar. Mine then sat in the fridge overnight to set properly. When ready to serve, garnish with a few strawberries and find some willing victims to eat it (thankfully my office is full of willing victims):

Sunday, 25 September 2011

Hazelnut Praline muffins

This lovely recipe is from the second Hummingbird Bakery book entitled 'Cake Days'. Usually I'm a cupcake sort of girl but I have a penchant for praline and these beauties caught my eye. Also, muffins do not require intricate and careful icing so are perfect when you don't have as much time to spare.

The recipe is very quick and simple to make, it took me about 20 minutes from beginning to the muffins being in the oven. I was a bit dubious about the amount of sugar they suggested you sprinkle over the top of the muffins before baking but as it turns out it has made the tops lovely and crisp.

My office are in for a treat tomorrow!

Thursday, 22 September 2011

Raspberry Ripple Cake

I often buy good food magazine, attracted by the lovely photos they have on the front and also I often grab it whilst stood in a queue at the supermarket. This month's has some gorgeous cakes in it so I have been working my way through them.

Last weekend I decided to try out the Raspberry Ripple Cake which actually comes from this book.
A triple layered cake covered in a light and smooth meringue icing, it sounded amazing so I made the sponge up on the Friday night intending to decorate on Saturday morning.

The meringue icing involves whisking egg whites until they form stiff, glossy peaks and then the addition of a sugar syrup
. Once this is done you sandwich the three layers together with raspberry jam and white chocolate meringue icing.

To finish off you coat
the sides and top of the cake with the raspberry meringue icing and added some of the remaining white chocolate icing to create the 'ripple' effect. I also added touches of raspberry jam to add further colour and depth. Once finished it looked something a little like this:

And finally a lovely cross section which shows you what a beast this cake was!