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Eye Popping

29 Oct

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It’s close to midnight, and something evil is lurking in the dark…

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Oh, it’s only some Halloween cake pops, inspired by these by Bakerella

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Too scary to scoff?

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For more info on cake pop creation, have a look at my I ♥ Cake Pops post. This time I used a basic Victoria Sponge recipe, with buttercream icing. FYI, 3x Victoia sponge cakes will make 100 cake pops.

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Wedding Bake Off, Part 2

21 Jun

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Oh good, you’re back to see who came second in the bake-off? Well, you see that rather tasty looking offering 2nd from the back? The muddy, chocolatey, gooey cake with that “eat-me” creamy frosting on top? Can you tell what it is…? It’s a Chocolate Guinness mud cake. Bit of a gamble, I’m not usually one for chocolate cakes! But, put a bit of booze in there and add a creamy, cream cheese topping (it reminds me of carrot cake) and jobs a good ‘un.

Bake Off Wedding Cakes

Before we get to the details of the Guinness cake, how about some of the other entries? We did pretty well – look at this table full of treats, from the imaginatively titled ABCD cake (containing apricots, bananas and it’s seedy) to the opportunistically named Sicilian lemon drop cake (the middle of the cake sank when it came out the oven…)

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Wouldn’t you like a slice of one of these? A fruity citrus-y cake (so ZINGY) decorated with cake pops!!! Or this beautiful chocolate cake, decorated with smarties and Cadbury’s fingers – like something straight out off Christmas c.1986

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OMG! Look at this little lady – Barbie Wedding Cake, absolute genius!

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Mmmmm, and these fluffy clouds of coconutty, creamy delight.

the day after cakes

We had so much cake, we had to invite everyone back again the next day to help us polish it off. What great hosts are we?

Back to the Chocolate Guinness mud-cake. My goodness, it was divine – so moist and dense at the same time, like the best brownie you’ve ever tasted but better and almost sandy, no muddy in texture. The icing on top was, well, just the icing on the cake. Cool, smooth, creamy and tangy. Try this recipe – Nigella’s Chocolate Guinness Cake and wish that it comes out half as well as the bake-offering. What we didn’t realise when judging that there was a picture of us both underneath.

Finch & Ford

I think had we seen it, the cake would have won….no?

Thanks again to Dave Johnson for the faberooney snaps!

Child’s play

17 Mar

candy meltscake pop sprinkles
wilton candy meltsmelts and sprinkles

Cake Pops are so easy to make, even children can do it. Which is a very good thing, as the cake pops I had planned to make for some chums and their kids weren’t quite done when they turned up for dinner. “Hi gang, good to see you! Now, I’ve got a job for you to do….”

We ate dinner, let it go down (for about 5 seconds, can we make them noooooooooowwwww?) – and then got busy with the cake pops. The day before I had already prepared the cake (an orange sponge that didn’t taste very orangey, must try orange essence next time), mixed the cake crumbs with icing and rolled into balls in the usual fashion. All that was left to do was decorate the little fellas.

It was good family fun, as long as you don’t mind your star sprinkles getting mixed up with your confetti sprinkles, and your confetti sprinkles getting mixed up with your star sprinkles, and your hundreds and thousands getting mixed up, well, everywhere! But our little cake pop designer had some pretty interesting ideas – like “lets use all the colours at once” which is how we ended up with the swirly 2 tone cake pop below.
ottos cake pops

This time, I discovered that your cake pops should come straight from the fridge before you coat them in chocolate. If they’re room temperature they won’t be hard enough to take the chocolate coating, and they’ll fall of their sticks (and right into your little cake pop-skateer’s mouth!)

That is all.

Bikes and Bakes

14 Mar

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I love a good, productive evening. Tonight I got home and first fixed a puncture on my bike

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Getting all grease-monkeyed in the process

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And then I just, y’know, baked an orange sponge cake (which will soon be made into cake pops!)

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And the whole time, the picture of domestic/mechanic goddess-ness in a flowery dress. Win!

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I ♥ Cake Pops

14 Feb

Valentines pops

Happy Valentines y’all. As promised – red velvet cake pops to look at. I first came across the cake pop concept via Rhubarb and Rose (I was actually looking for a bunting tutorial…and got sidetracked by cake, strange that!) Check out the cake pops tutorial from this fantastic blog.

They’re quite simple really. Just bake a bright red cake and then go against all your instincts and turn it into crumbs and mix it with some frosting. This will feel strange. We’ve evolved to protect our cakes, not mash them up. Fight the urge! It’s worth it.

red velvet cake

Roll into balls, or shape into hearts and chill for a couple of hours in the fridge (the pops, not you)

balls and hearts

Then put on lollipop sticks,

balls on sticks

and cover in chocolate and sprinkle with decorations.

valentines cake pops

or just cover with chocolate

heart cake pops

And, if you don’t think you have enough for everyone (you lucky people coming to the CoMA London rehearsal tonight), make some cupcakes and ice with bright red buttercream. YUM!

red cupcakes

Here are my top tips for cake popperage…

1. As a rule of thumb 300g and 100g frosting seems to give a good consistency for your cake base.
2. Get creative with your cake innards. At Christmas I used some Christmas Cake offcuts to make some christmas pudding cake pops and christmas tree cake pops, they were pretty good!
2. Wilton’s candy melts have a good flavour, good colour and coat well. You can get them from Jane Asher’s Sugarcraft Shop. Other brands are available. They don’t taste as good!
3. Put your chocolate coating once melted into a small cup to dip your pops in. This will ensure a smooth even coating of chocolate. I’ve tried it other ways, it doesn’t work. Check out what Rhubarb and Rose have to say about dipping
4. Have a go! They’re ruddy good fun, look flippin fantastic and taste great too.

P.S. I’m already thinking ahead to next year, when this fella might have to make an appearance…

Hidden heart cake
If you fancy having a go, I found this Heart Cake on the beautiful i am baker blog.