Monday, 18 July 2016

Floral Teapot Cake - Tanya Bakes Chocolate Cake Recipe


Being British, I love a good cup of tea and so does my Grandmother, so when her 79th Birthday was approaching I decided that there was nothing better to make her than a teapot cake. Actually, when I brought it round to her [you can imagine the car journey holding the cake] she thought it was a real tea pot... whether she was wearing her glasses at the time I'm not sure

I recently bought 'Tanya Bakes' by the lovely Tanya Burr and it currently is my baking holy grail, every single recipe I have made from it has been wonderful - so thank you Tan for this beauty of a baking book. You can find it on amazon here
The recipe is actually her chocolate loaf cake but I made more of the mixture to fill my hemisphere moulds which I actually discovered are reduced in HobbyCraft if any of you want to pick up a bargain - link. 





On to the recipe:
Ingredients to fill 2x 6 inch hemisphere moulds - 
Chocolate Cake:
375g soften butter
150g white chocolate
150g milk chocolate
150g caramel filled chocolate [or any you may have]
300g caster sugar
6 eggs 
2 1/4 tsp baking powder
225g self raising flour
90g cocoa powder

Vanilla Buttercream: 
500g icing sugar
200g butter [soften]
3tsp milk
2tsp vanilla extract

Decoration:

Purple fondant 500g
White fondant [100g] with blue and red colouring for flowers
Edible glue

1. Preheat oven to 180C, 350F, Gas Mark 4 and line tins with baking paper and butter
2. Chop all of the chocolate into small chunks
3. In a large bowl cream together the sugar and butter until light and fluffy 
4. Add the eggs and fold in the baking powder, flour and cocoa until you have a smooth batter [electric mixed is preferable unless you've skipped arm day at the gym] 
5. Mix in all of the chocolate chunks
6. Pour evenly into both of the tins
7. Bake for 40 - 50 mins [if using a hemisphere mould the cake will need to be in for around 1hr 10 mins] but keep checking incase baked earlier.
8. Allow to cool on a wire rack and start to make the buttercream. 
9. Cream the butter until smooth, add the icing sugar and vanilla and beat until a smooth, light paste forms, add the milk to loosen the icing. 
10. To learn how to level, ice, crumb coat and cover this gorgeous cake with fondant visit Yolanda Gampp's Youtube Channel How To Cake It where she will give you ever tip you will need to know regarding this cake, and she's hilarious - link here. 





There you have it, a beautiful and delicious teapot cake, I hope you're all loving the weather here in the UK, Enjoy Xx


Thursday, 30 June 2016

Butterfly Royal Icing Berry Compote Cupcakes


These little delectable cupcakes are one of my favourite summertime treats to bake, although they take a steady hand and a lot of patients the results are gorgeous. Of course of could always not add the butterflies and eat these cupcakes just with the berry compote; they didn't last long in my household; let's just say I baked them in the morning, went to work and by the time I got back there wasn't any left!





Vanilla Cupcakes: 
  • 110g/4oz butter 
  • 110g/4oz caster sugar
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 110g/4oz self-raising flour
  • 2 tbsp milk
-Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4 and line a 12-hole muffin tin with paper cases
  • 1. Cream together the butter and sugar until smooth and light in colour
  • 2. Lightly whisk the eggs with vanilla and gradually mix into the butter mixture
  • 3. Sieve in the self raising flour in 2 parts 
  • 4. Mix until a smooth batter forms and thin out with a little dash of milk
  • 5. Bake for 10 - 12 minutes until golden brown and place on a cooling rack to cool
Berry Compot filling: 

50g frozen/fresh berries
1 tsp water
1 tsp caster sugar

1. Place all ingredients into a small pan and place on a low heat for around 10 minutes until the berries have slightly softened and the berries are submerged in a bit of liquid.
2. Take off the heat and cool 
3. Using a knife cut out the middle of the cupcake and place a tea spoon of berries in the center
4. Repeat until all cupcakes are filled with this delicious mix

Buttercream:
  • 140g/5oz soften butter
  • 280g/10oz icing sugar
  • 1-2 tbsp milk
  • a few drops red food colouring
  • Star nozzle and piping bag
1. Cream together the butter and icing sugar until light in colour
2. Add a few drops of milk so the icing is slightly easier to pipe
3. Add red food colouring to create a light pink shade
4. Place into piping bag and swirl on top of the cooled cupcakes

Butterfly royal icing topper: 
1.5 oz warm water
1.25 tablespoons meringue powder
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
225g icing sugar (powdered sugar for the Americans reading)
piping bag

1. Whisk together the meringue powder with water for 30 seconds
2. Add the cream of tartar and whisk for another 30 seconds 
3. Sieve in the icing sugar and whisk for 10 minutes 
4. Place into a piping bag and cut a little slit at the top small enough to pipe fine lines
5. Print a butterfly template or pipe free hand on a piece of parchment paper on silpat mat butterfly designs.
6. Allow to dry out over night
7. Carefully remove and place on top of your beautiful cupcakes.



There you have it, delicate butterfly berry cupcakes; I hope these impress guests at summer garden parties or just indulging them at home watching Netflix... whatever you want, Enjoy xx

Sunday, 29 May 2016

Chelsea Flower Show - Floral Printed, Sugar Paste Dahlia, Orange Cake



In honor of the RHS Chelsea Flower show this week, I desired to create a blooming beautiful orange cake decorated with sugar paste Dahlia's. Although the sugar paste flowers are a little fiddly they sure make for a elegant looking cake; perfect for summer garden parties.


On to the recipe: 
Orange Cake 
Ingredients - 
225g margarine/butter
225g self-raising flour
1 tsp baking powder
100g caster sugar 
100g brown sugar 
4 eggs
The zest of 2 oranges 
1tsp vanilla extract

Buttercream icing - 
500g icing sugar 
150 g butter 
50ml orange juice 
zest of 1 orange 
Fondant paste

1. Preheat the oven to 180C / Gas Mark 4
2. Line 2 victoria sponge tins with butter and parchment paper
3. Cream together the caster sugar, brown sugar and margarine 
4. Whisk the 4 eggs lightly with vanilla extract
5. Gradually add the eggs to the margarine sugar mixture - don't worry if it looks curdled it will be corrected when you add the flour
6. Add the flour and orange zest to the mixture until combined and smooth
7. Fold in the baking powder 
8. Divide the cake mixture in half and place in tins smoothed on top
9. Bake for around 25 - 30 minutes.
10. Allow to cool down and then make the icing
11. Whisk together the icing sugar, butter, juice and zest until it makes a smooth paste
12. Smooth over the cake in between the layers and all over the side using a spatula so the cake is 'crumb coated' 
13. Roll out the white fondant using cornflour so it does not stick to the surface, once thin place over the cake and smooth over the buttercream. 
14. To make the Dahlia I read instructions through an absolutely amazing book called 'Cakes in Bloom' by Peggy Porschen; I'd highly recommend the book if you'd like the opportunity to make some amazing flowers
15. If you'd like to decorate the fondant with the intricate pink flower design, simply combine icing sugar, a little water and red food colouring and place into a piping bag with a small nozzle and make up a freehand flower design. 





I hope that you enjoy making and eating this beautiful flower cake, Enjoy Xx 

Monday, 25 April 2016

London Coffee Festival 2016


My love for coffee exceeds the standard brown gloppy wake me up fix most people seek in the early hours of the morning. My love for coffee exceeds bitter instant powder leaving grit in your teeth and a sensation of burning ash. My love for coffee was finally matched in what I like the call the mother ship of Coffee Festivals, the haven for coffee enthusiasts... or even toughs who are partial to the odd brew. 



The London Coffee Festival held in Truman's Brewery near Brick Lane was the epitome of hipster chic, you know, that rare breed of hairy vegans with a penchant for anywhere but Starbucks. 



There was a buzz of contagious caffeinated energetic enthusiasts all enjoying repeated conversations of how their brand offers different blends of arabica and robusto beans with the cherries being dried differently. 


It was thrilling to see all the stall holders with such passion for what they were selling, my favourites among the blur of latte art and french presses, were a company called T2 and Brewed in a Bag. Surprisingly, my favourite stands were the ones selling tea; they were a refreshing, literally, change to the caffeinated energy erupting in the rooms.  


As well as the sellers, there were coffee competitions held throughout the day, it was interesting to see how invested people were in coffees and passionate about different blends; it's a whole different world. 


I would definitely recommend the London Coffee Festival if you get a chance to visit next year, Enjoy Xx

Saturday, 12 March 2016

Bluebird Chelsea

My friends and I have been meaning to go and visit Bluebird in Chelsea for a while now, not just because it has made a few appearances on Made in Chelsea, but because the food and atmosphere is meant to be sublime. As chef students you can imagine that all of our friends and family are now reluctant to go out for a meal with us because we are rather judgmental about the food. So on a cold March afternoon we marched down Kings Road in our heels and finally got a table at the beautiful Bluebird. 





The outfit I wore was inspired by the lovely blogger Arabella Golby [http://www.arabellagolby.com/] and consisted of a trench cape coat, white pussy bow blouse and some vintage lace up boots which have been in my family for years. Feeling like Blair Waldorf I felt at ease in Chelsea, a place renowned for it's sophistication and opulence. 

Blouse: Warehouse link. Trench Cape: River Island link. Boots [similar] link.

The food in Bluebird was gorgeous, what we loved most of all was the atmosphere and decor, you cant go wrong with a blossom tree indoors. 


Although the waiters were subpar the food totally made up for it, perfect place for a catch up lunch



As you walk in, there is a magnificently large bar; from the price of the cocktails you'd expect them to be made of gold, but they tasted delicious and it was lovely to see them being made with such skill... of course we didn't mind paying, they were served in a strawberry!

If you're looking for somewhere to indulge for a lunch time treat, Bluebird is definitely the place to go, enjoy Xx

Wednesday, 17 February 2016

T2 - Tea Store Review

For tea lovers like me, there is nothing better then being surrounded by the smell of fresh tea... with a biscuit or two, or five. 

So when I discovered the T2 tea company down Kings Road, I was in heaven.
In the store there were samples of the most amazing unusual lose leaf tea, every flavour you can imagine.
Established 19 years ago in Australia, the tea company surely has some experience of concocting some pretty incredible flavours such as Strawberries & Cream and Crème Brûlée.

I was lucky enough to be sent some flavours including Melbourne Breakfast, Fruitalicious and Earl Grey. 
Each were beautiful and uniquely scented, I honestly will probably never drink 'normal' teabag tea because compared to lose leaf tea - nothing will ever compare. 

As well as tea, the company also sell flasks such as tea diffusers, stylish travel flasks and intricate cups & saucers.
In the future the company are progressing on to Matcha, a firm favourite of mine which is meant to, energize, boost memory and concentration, fight cancer and is great for the immune system. 

So if any of this sounds like it's your 'cup of tea' [sorry I had to] then visit one of their 77 stores in Australia, New Zealand, the US and UK.
Enjoy Xx

Sunday, 7 February 2016

Valentines Heart Prints


Valentines Day is coming up, sorry to remind you... try not to think of who you will be spending the day with, or not Just try to imagine what you will be wearing on the day, that's why I'm here, to give you some inspiration on what to wear and eat on this one lovely day of the year. Whether you eat it in bed watching repeats of gossip girl, because no boy will ever be like Chuck Bass, or if you give it to your loved one, it's still a perfect seasonal dessert.

What I'm wearing. Cape [h&m] here. Blouse [similar] here. Gloves [Jaspar Conran, similar] here. Boots [ASOS] here.

If you reside in the UK then you'll probably be aware that February the 14th is bound to be freezing... and raining. So instead of making an outfit with adorable dresses and heel, I decided to be practical, unlike me I know. 
2016 is housing Burberry's Prorsum cape, whilst obviously not being able to afford such grandeur, I found a high street cape which is similar, and almost as lovely. As the majority of the outfit is black, including my leather gloves, longer than most, and boots, I decided to put in some 'accent' arms which fit in to the Valentines Day love theme, being heart printed and all and match the swiss roll considerably well. 

On to the heart printed swiss roll recipe: 


Ingredients: 
Swiss Roll: 
3 eggs
75g caster sugar
75g self raising flour
9in x 12in Swiss roll tin 
Heart Pattern [you may have some spare mixture]
50g margarine
50g icing sugar
50g [1 and half] egg whites
50g plain flour
pink food colouring
Piping Bag
Filling: 
100g icing sugar
50g butter
1/2 tsp pink/red food colouring

1. Preheat your oven to gas mark 6
2. Cut out the exact amount of greaseproof paper to fit the base of the tin
3. Making the pattern in the roll, combine the margarine and icing sugar until smooth and well combined
4. Whisk in the egg whites until combined
5. Stir in the plain flour and then once incorporated add the food colouring until you get a light pink colour
6.Add mix to a piping bag and pipe out heart shapes onto the greaseproof paper you have previously cut to size
7. Place the patterned sheet into the fridge to set for around an hour. 
8. To make the swiss roll whisk the eggs and sugar into a bowl until light and fluffy
9. Fold in the flour to the mix - careful not to over mix
10. Take out the cool, set pattern and spoon the swiss roll mix over the pattern
11. Bake for 7 minutes until springy. 
12. Once baked remove from tin and place on to another piece of baking paper
13. Roll up the swiss roll around the baking paper so that when you come to fill it, it will roll up easily. 
14. To make the buttercream icing, combine the icing sugar, butter and colouring until smooth
15. Unroll the cake and fill the middle with buttercream, re roll up, using the greaseproof to help if needs be. 




There you have it, a perfect Valentines Day treat and an outfit to match, hope you have a lovely holiday. Enjoy Xx