Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Fondant ducky, you're the one...

These are my "never-fail" cupcakes.  The recipe is quick, simple and, like I said, never fails!  It's a simple, bung everything in the bowl, and whisk recipe, yielding 12 deliciously moist, deliciously fluffy, deliciously vanilla-ry cupcakes!

Ingredients for the buns:
  • 125 gram(s) butter (soft)
  • 125 gram(s) caster sugar
  • 2 medium egg(s)
  • 125 gram(s) Plain flour
  • ½ teaspoon(s) bicarbonate of soda
  • 2 teaspoon(s) baking powder
  • 2 teaspoon(s) vanilla extract
  • 3 tablespoon(s) milk
  • - See more at:
     125g butter
    125g sugar
    2 medium eggs
    125g plain flour
    1/2 tspn bicarbonate of soda
    2 tspn baking powder
    3 tbspn milk
    3 tspn vanilla extract

    So, as I said, put all the ingredients in one bowl and whisk until incorporated.  Then, add the milk. You want the batter to be of a dropping consistency.  Then spoon into a muffin tin lined with cake cases and pop in the oven at 200 degrees for around 15-20 minutes.

    Whilst the cupcakes are cooling you can make your frosting. 
    Ingredients for buttercream:
    Paste food colouring of your choice
    140g softened butter
    280g icing sugar
    2 tspn vanilla extract
    2 tbsp milk

    Begin by whisking the butter, you want to do this for about 5 minutes, until the butter is lighter in colour and fluffy in texture.  Once the butter is whisked, add the icing sugar in two parts.  After the first half, add the vanilla and milk and continue whisking until the vanilla and milk is incorporated.  Then, add the second half of your icing sugar. Continue whisking for another five minutes.  Add your food colouring. You can then pipe, swirl, or spread your buttercream onto the cooled cupcakes in whatever way you choose.

    I then topped my cupcakes with a fondant duck, rendering the cupcake fit for a baby shower or a baby's first birthday! They were surprisingly easy to model.  I got so into making them, I forgot to take pictures, faux pas!! To make the body of the duck, take a piece of fondant and roll into a ball the size of a marble.  Roll the ball into a cone shape and lift the pointy end upwards.  Cut out two fondant-shaped hearts and stick onto body of the cone using water.  These are your wings.  Paint on two eyes, with food colouring, using a skewer.  Make a teeny tiny cone from fondant and stick onto the head of the duck for a beak.  Put the whole thing into the freezer for ten minutes and then stick on top of your cupcake.

    In the past, I preferred to steer clear of fondant, thinking it was too technical, however, I have become rather fond of using it to model shapes and animals to make toppers for cakes and cupcakes! Don't be afraid, you'll be surprised what you can achieve with a little bit of fondant...  

  • 125 gram(s) butter (soft)
  • 125 gram(s) caster sugar
  • 2 medium egg(s)
  • 125 gram(s) Plain flour
  • ½ teaspoon(s) bicarbonate of soda
  • 2 teaspoon(s) baking powder
  • 2 teaspoon(s) vanilla extract
  • 3 tablespoon(s) milk
  • - See more at:
  • 125 gram(s) butter (soft)
  • 125 gram(s) caster sugar
  • 2 medium egg(s)
  • 125 gram(s) Plain flour
  • ½ teaspoon(s) bicarbonate of soda
  • 2 teaspoon(s) baking powder
  • 2 teaspoon(s) vanilla extract
  • 3 tablespoon(s) milk
  • - See more at:

    Thursday, 21 February 2013

    Cake POPs!

    Today, I ventured into the world of cake POPs! These were such fun to do and pretty easy! If you haven't made them before they are definitely worth a go!

    You start off with a simple vanilla cake,  I tinted mine hot pink, and bake it.  Then once it is cooked and cooled you crumble the cake into a bowl and add some frosting.  Not too much, just enough to bring the crumbs together to form a dough-like consistency. Then roll into little bite-size balls and refrigerate for 30minutes!  Once the cake balls have been refrigerated, melt some candy melts, or chocolate. Dip a lollipop stick into the candy melts and then plunge into the cake ball,  about half way. Repeat on all your cake pops.

    The cake pop should still be cold so the candy melt sealing the stick to the cake ball will set quickly, giving you a sturdy cake pop! It can then be plunged into the melted candy! Cover the ball but do not twist into the melted chocolate as it will cause the cake ball to fall off the stick! (Trust me, it happened to me twice)! Then dip into a bowl of sprinkles of your choice! Pop the stick into some styrofoam to set!

    These cake POPs were so much fun, and so delicious! I hope you have fun making them!

    Monday, 11 February 2013

    Valentines sugar cookies...

    You may say I'm a cliche. You may say, "Pooh! What a cheeseball!!" However, surely, if you can't be cliche, or cheesy, on valentine's day that when else can you? Therefore, I have thrown myself, whole heartedly into designing some of the cutest cookies I have ever made! So forgive me, but I loved it!!!  I bought a set of measuring cups this week and so you will notice I have used cup measures in the recipe list, rather than grams.  It seemed to work, however, I found that I feel more comfortable, and trusting, of grams rather than cup measures!

    For the sugar cookie dough you will need:
    230g of butter.
    1 egg.
    1 cup of icing sugar.
     2 1/2 cups of plain flour.
    1/2 tespoon of salt.
     1 teaspoon of vanilla extract.

    The method itself is incredibly easy.  You start off by creaming the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.  Then add your egg and vanilla essence and beat until incorporated. Slowly, mix in your flour until a soft dough forms.  It will be quite sticky, this is normal!! Then wrap in clingfilm and refrigerate for two hours! I'm told, you cannot skip the refrigeration step.  I'm not entirely certain of why you need to refrigerate for so long, however, I do as I'm told!!

     Afterwards, knead the dough and roll out to desired thickness.  I then used a heart cutter and shaped different designs.  These then went in the oven at 180C for 12-15 minutes or until golden brown. 

    The royal icing for decoration was pretty simple to whip up.
    675g Icing sugar.
    3 egg whites.
    3 teaspoons lemon juice.
    1 1/2 teaspoon of glucose syrup.

    You start by whisking the egg whites until they are frothy. Fold in icing sugar spoon by spoon.  Add in the glucose and lemon juice and then whip the mixture to thick peaks. I then added food dye in three batches. 

    The decoration is then up to your imagination!!

    I have recently found a new love, a love that sees me glued to my mac screen and visiting youtube more than ever.  And that love is baking blogs.  I couldn't write a blog post about the cutest cookies I've ever made, without pointing you in the direction of a blog that makes the most cutest cookies I have ever seen:                          

    Lakelands spree..

    Good evening fellow baking, blog-reading enthusiasts! I am writing this during the early hours of the morning.  Due to shift work, my body clock is completely up the duff and so I thought, what better time to fill you in on my baking adventures?! I can not be held accountable for mispelt words, and oddly structured sentences!
    This week, I went on a Lakelands spree.  I decided, if I'm going to give this baking blog a real go, I should have a certain amount of kit to bake with! So, during my Lakelands spree, I bought my first offset spatula. Well, my first two offset spatulas!! One large, one small! It was an exciting moment I must say! And from now on in, may all my cakes forever be covered in super smooth, silky frosting (No excuses)!

    I also bought some disposable piping bags. I have a reusable piping bag but I find it rater stiff to work with, plus disposable means less washing up, which I detest!

    I lastly bought some lollipop sticks, 10cm in length! I have made cake balls several times ( including some ridiculously cute Christmas pud ones during the festive season) however, I have never tried cake pops! In my head it will be easier as I should get a smoother coating on chocolate, but that remains to be seen!

    So, of course,  with this new kit, I had to bake something! I ended up baking a plain vanilla sponge! The same recipe I used in previous blogs and so I won't bore you with repeating myself! However, what I would like to tell you about is my new found white chocolate frosting! I'm sure this ha been done before but to me it feels like my own invention! I stumbled across it rather coincidently! I had started to make a white chocolate ganache when I realised I would have liked a stiffer frosting that holds a better shape when set. So there I was, with white chocolate ganache, wanting frosting. So I whipped up some vanilla buttercream, poured in the ganache and hey presto, I had a luxurious, silly smooth white chocolate frosting! Well I tell you, it is incredibly sweet, and terribly bad for you,  but one slice can't do too much damage right? How about a second? Or third?...

    Friday, 1 February 2013

    Cinnamon rolls...

    These deliciously sweet, doughy, cinnamon-ny rolls are time consuming but, worth the wait.  They're good for a sweet breakfast/ brunch, or afternoon tea with Mum and go perfectly with a cuppa! 

    Start off with a basic dough mixture, flour, tepid water, your choice of yeast (I always use dry yeast), and salt.  Bring together and knead for around ten minutes.  You know your dough is kneaded enough if, when you push your finger into the dough, it springs back up. Once you're at that stage, put back into bowl and leave to rise for one to two hours, until doubled in size.

    The filling is really very simple, just beat together 150g of softened butter, 125g dark brown sugar and 2 tablespoons of cinnamon.  This can be done whilst the dough is rising.  A simple glaze can also be made in this time.  Melt 150g of butter and 125g of dark brown sugar over a low heat. from 150g of butter and 125g of dark brown sugar.  It will form a sticky syrup which tastes divine!   

    Once the dough has risen, remove from the bowl and roll out into a rectangle.  Spread an even layer of the filling over the dough. Roll up the rectangle tightly.  The dough can then be cut into even slices.  Brush the glaze over the rolls and allow to sit for one hour to rise.  Then pop into an oven at 200 degrees celcius for 40minutes and bingo! Cinamon rolls.