Inspiration

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A few weeks ago I discovered Katherine Sabbath, a high school-teacher and baker from Australia,  and it was love at first cake. I spent days poring over her instagram and came away completely inspired. I knew I had to make something. So, after a brief brainstorming session I came up with this baby. Spiced pumpkin cake (with home-grown pumpkin!), cream cheese frosting, caramel, and pistachio brittle. I’d never made something so outrageously decadent-looking, but now I’m hooked! If you aren’t familiar with Katherine Sabbath, I urge you to check out her instagram. She has opened my eyes to so many new possibilities, I can’t wait to make more crazy bakes!

Daisy, Daisy

I’ve been dying to make pretty layer cakes for ages, and when I finally let myself do it I ended up making two in as many weeks! Of course I made the chocolate cake featured in my previous post, but before that I also made this beauty:

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A lemon sponge, filled with lemon curd and covered with lemon buttercream. I tried to make is taste as lemony as possible, so I added in extra zest, juice, and lemon extract.

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I had been putting off making layer cakes, as there are just not enough people around and I would probably end up either eating the majority of it myself, or wasting it, neither of which I wanted to do. I found the solution when I popped into Lakeland and found they were having a 40% off bakeware sale! I treated myself to some 6-inch tins. This meant I could stack the cake high, while only using a 3-egg sponge mix.

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This was my first attempt at properly icing a cake, and I think I did pretty well! I’m proud of it anyway, it was certainly the prettiest cake I’ve ever made.

If you are thinking of trying something like this, I found these videos a great help.

A Special Message

This post is dedicated to my lovely friends. Over the past few weeks some of you have graduated from university, got into medical school, won awards, found jobs, and just generally been awesome.

This post is also for my friends who are having a bit of a rough time at the moment, whether you’ve been having a hard time at work or uni, you’ve been rejected for a job, or you’ve recently broken up with someone.

This message also goes to all my lovely readers – yes, you – and it is:

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Devil’s food cake, fluffy chocolate frosting and bronze sprinkles. Go for it. You deserve it. You’re awesome.

TREAT.

YO.

SELF.

(if you don’t know what I’m on about)

Sadly I wasn’t the first to come up with this, I got the idea here

Wilsoooooooooon!

Today I thought I’d share one of my recent bakes with you. Although I don’t have too many photos of the cake, I thought it was pretty fun and worth sharing!

A couple of weeks ago was my sister’s birthday, and she requested a cake for her Tom Hanks-themed birthday party (don’t ask). After lots of pestering on my behalf, she finally came up with an idea for it – she wanted a Wilson cake.

If you don’t know, Wilson is a “character” in the movie Castaway, a volleyball that becomes one of Tom Hanks’ companions on the desert island he is washed up on.

I have to say that I was terrified at first, and continued to be worried until I’d finally finished with it. The only way I could think to do it was to bake a cake in a bowl and then cover it with fondant icing, and I’d not had much luck with that before. My sister and quite a few of her friends work as costume designers, ie. are artistic, work with their hands and pay great attention to detail. It felt like a lot of pressure to get the cake to look right.

The cake was a chocolate-Malteaser cake with white chocolate icing. I baked the cake in advance and froze it, as we were going on holiday and getting home on the day before the party. When I was ready to decorate it, I sliced the cake into layers, filled and coated it, trying to get the buttercream into a hemisphere. I then chilled it, covered it with the fondant, and got to decorating.

Unfortunately my camera was out of action that day, so I only have phone photos.

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I then decided to add blue royal icing to make it look as if he was floating in water. I don’t have a good photo of that, unfortunately. Here’s a photo of poor Wilson during the party though.

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My first Commission!

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I completed my first cake commission today! My Mum’s friend asked me to make a cake for her birthday party, and here it is. I got the decoration idea from the Great British Bake Off book I have. Mum’s friend asked for a cake with fruit, so I thought this would be perfect, particularly as I am useless when it comes to decorating with icing. Coincidentally, it also looks like a Danish flag, and the birthday girl is Danish! It is a white chocolate cake, filled with white chocolate mousse and raspberry purée.

Keeping my fingers firmly crossed for now, as I have to take it in the car to the party venue. Praying it doesn’t get dropped or smashed!

Banoffee Birthday Cake

Today is my Mum’s birthday, and as she has some friends coming over, she requested a cake. She went for one from the most recent Waitrose magazine (March 2014), a peanut butter banoffee cake. It is a banana sponge filled with caramel sauce, bananas, and cream, topped with peanut butter buttercream. There is crushed peanut brittle in the cake batter and sprinkled on top.

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I’m a fan of the Waitrose magazine, whenever I use the recipes, the results are always great. I think they must put a lot of effort into the content, unlike some other food magazines…

If you want the recipe just let me know.