Monday, August 30, 2010

Nerves of steal

It's been a busy weekend so far with two challenging cake requests to tackle.  I always love a challenge as turning an idea into a cake is half the fun!  This weekend has taught me that no matter how well thought through the idea is, how planned the plan is, it's not until you've got that fondant in front of you that you know how it will turn out.

And the clock's ticking.  From the moment the cake's baked you're on a countdown until the cake is collected.  Usually there's an event for which the cake is a key ingredient.  When thing's go wrong (which is usually at half past midnight, let's be honest!) you can either give up or press on.  The thought of giving up can often be the thing that spurs you on.  It did for me last night.  The thought of ringing a customer to say "I'm sorry but..." doesn't bear thinking about!  So I pressed on.

And it wasn't quite as disastrous as I'd first thought.  Half an hour later I was ready to leave things for the night and was pleasantly surprised to see that nothing had collapsed while I slept.  Some last minute tidying up first thing and a cake subsequently collected and hopefully well received.

To me my cakes are a labour of love; I enjoy making them and love the challenge of decorating them.  But their life-span is relatively brief - sometimes even a fraction of the time it took to create them.  Within hours they are reduced to crumbs and committed to memory.  They become part of a birthday, a retirement, a childhood recollection.  Which is as it should be.

Once a cake is collected I never relax until I know the occasion has taken place.  I hope the has cake lived up to expectation and I can begin to nurse my rattled nerves and start planning the next creation.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Ladybirds and the bees

Had fun making these little fellows last night.  Once again I was up until all hours accompanied by the swing bands on Radio 2, throwing icing sugar around.  These lovely chaps are currently winging (well not literally!) their was to my cousin for her daughter's birthday cake or birthday cupcakes.  I wasn't able to make the cake due to other commitments but wanted to do these chaps by way of a contribution.  Packaging them was a challenge, but I'm hoping they will survive the journey from North Yorkshire to South Wales.  Fingers and wings crossed!

If you'd like to order some toppers for cupcakes please do let me know.  Ooh, I've just reminded myself about some I'd like to try to create so watch this space.  Dreams come true!  Well, they can do if the involve cake!  If there's something you'd like for a special occasion, please complete the form to the right or email me at

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Last Rolo Cupcakes

Had another cupcake baking day today, which seem to be becoming quite regular these days!  I made some chocolate flavoured cupcakes with my son, who's attention throughout is sustained by the promise of being allowed to lick any chocolatey spoons once there are no longer needed!

The buttercream topping was flavoured using melted milk chocolate which gives it a lovely pale colour.  I improvised on the decoration and used a Rolo on top of a swirl of icing!

Make sure you save the last one for the one you love!  I did - honest!

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Teatime '99's

Decided to have some fun today and experiment with some ideas for cupcakes.  I had a batch of buttercream left so obviously some swirly cakes were required.  Just fancied baking something simple so opted for some plain vanilla sponge cupcakes (though slightly more vanilla essence than usual - and making a mental note to get some vanilla pods in for future batches).  I wanted to keep the buttercream icing uncoloured as it looked so perfectly crisp and white.

I think I must have been hankering for some sunshine and sea air as I immediately thought of Mr Whippy ice creams and that classic, the '99.  And if you're having a '99, you've got to have a Flake, and why not add a few sprinkles on top too?

It's the perfect excuse to put your feet up with a hot mug of tea when it's raining outside, so why not reclaim some of this lost summer and indulge in a scrumptious Vanilla '99?  Stick the radio on and daydream about sun, sea and sandy feet.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Cupcake Creations for Dainty Do's!

I'm so excited about the range of cupcakes which are slowly emerging from the kitchen lately.  I never really set out to make cupcakes as part of this venture but they're so appealing it's hard to resist really.  Having perfected my 'swirling' ability I'm now confidently able to start introducing these little lovelies!

Whether you fancy a dozen lemon drizzles or a mixture of chocolate and coffee, they're hard to resist.
(Mental note to try out some chocolate/coffee cupcakes again soon!)

I was really excited to be asked to create a mass of cupcakes for a friend's wedding, but unfortunately due to being away the weekend of the big day, I has to decline.  Would have been great to produce an array of pretty cakes for the do.

My enthusiasm is ignited so expect to see more creations very soon!  My obsession with books is unending too.  I'm using Cupcakes from the Primrose Bakery one a lot at the moment but I keep seeing so many other great ones out there!