Gastronomically Terrific

June 12, 2015

Easter bonnet cake

Filed under: Cake, Easter, gift — Tags: , , , — lawsonanna @ 9:37 pm

Easter bonnet cake from front sideAnother recipe that I made for my mum’s birthday, even though it’s officially an Easter recipe. I’ve been wanting to make this for ages (it looks good in the photos, and sounded pretty easy to make considering the potential end result), and messing up the rest of my mum’s present (basically I ordered the wrong thing) meant it was a good excuse to make this.

The cake itself is simple – it’s just a basic lemon sponge cake. The only difference is you bake it in a Pyrex dish so that it gives the right shape for a bonnet. It’s the decorating that takes time. You place the cake on a circle of icing, then cover the cake with icing after you’ve used a cake cooling rack to mark out squares. You then make flowers out of icing to place around the edge of the cake, and tie a ribbon around the bottom of the cake (which is a great device for hiding the joins in the icing!). Finally, you can create some icing butterflies to add to the cake. All relatively easy if you have the right cutters – which, for the most part, I did. And I was relatively pleased with the end result.

Unfortunately however, unlike the Mothering Sunday sweets, I didn’t get to try any of this (when offered, I foolishly went for the flapjacks. Yes, they were good – but I know what flapjacks taste like), so I can’t say if the cake was tasty or not. My mum told me it was good though, so I guess I’ll choose to believe her.

Who made it: Anna

Recipe: Hallelujah! Easter, Wendy Dyer, Honor Harris, Judith Merrell, pg. 38-39

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June 12, 2014

Teach Me Sugarcraft cupcake decorating class

Filed under: Cake — Tags: , , , , — lawsonanna @ 1:02 pm
14 All my cupcakes

Dogs, hedgehogs and flower decorated cupcakes

OK, so, for my birthday, my husband bought me a voucher to attend a cupcake decorating class with a friend. He said he’d be happy to attend, but equally happy to look after the little one if I wanted to go with a friend. I chose to go with a friend I hadn’t seen for ages – partly because I thought she’d enjoy it more, partly because I thought it would be a good chance to catch up, and partly because I know she’s good at the practical stuff and could help me out when I messed it all up!

I have to admit, I did have a bit of trepidation about going. I wasn’t really sure what to expect, and it’s not something I ever really would have considered going to if it hadn’t been a present (not that I don’t love baking and decorating; I do. But it’s a bit like sport. I’d much rather do it in the privacy of my own home than as a team with an audience).

Luckily, overall the session was really enjoyable. 15 Flower cupcakes CUDecorating the cakes was great fun (you don’t get to bake them – you’re given 12 cupcakes and you have 2 hours to decorate them, with the leaders showing you what to do. Don’t worry, they’re not judgmental. Just encouraging). I was super proud of my cakes, and actually seemed to be a bit more confident than my friend – not that she didn’t also do a fine job (notwithstanding the fact that she then dropped her cakes when we were walking back – which was in equal parts distressing and heartbreaking after 2 hours worth of work). There were a couple of issues with the class – mainly that 2 hours isn’t really quite long enough when you have to share equipment and cut out billions of little sugar flowers for your cakes.

Whilst the class did have some good tips (did you know you can freeze sugarpaste?), I felt that the majority of my problems at home come from not having the right pieces of equipment, not a lack of knowledge. For example, I buy sugar flowers because I think I’d be rubbish at making them. With a flower cutter I didn’t have a problem. But I don’t own one. To be fair, if I’m serious about creating these items in the future, I can always just go and buy these things!

Anyway, if I was proud of those cupcakes with rose icing, I’m really proud of these 12 cupcakes. Especially the dogs!16 Dog cupcakes CU

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