Archives for category: Cake

When I was asked to make a Persian New Year cake I wasn’t really sure what to do as I had never seen or heard of one before. There isn’t a traditional dessert as such so my task was to create a cake to celebrate by combining traditional Middle Eastern flavours. I chose to make a pistachio cake layered with honey buttercream and raspberry and pomegranate jam. I tripled the recipe I used for this cake as I knew it would be delicious and be able to hold the treats on top. I coated the whole cake in the honey buttercream and covered the sides with crushed pistachios. For the top of the cake I created a mountain of homemade baklava which my Grandmother helped me with. I then sprinkled on some pomegranate and pistachios to finish. I love all the colours and textures of this cake and it definitely brings together some of my favourite elements of Middle Eastern sweets. I had some extra batter and buttercream so I made a few cupcakes to go along with the cake. I adore the mini versions with the individual baklava. I hope everyone has a wonderful time celebrating Persian New Year! 

Let me be honest and tell you that I got a bit drunk while making this cake. I guess I was asking for it when I tasted my first (I think) gin and tonic at 9:30am on a Wednesday morning. I don’t really ever drink gin and tonics, it’s not really stored in my brain as something to choose as a drink or even like that much. However, I know lots of people love it, including my Grandy, so it was the perfect flavour choice for her birthday cake. There is a serious amount of gin in this cake which is good because what’s a birthday without some alcohol. Let’s just say I tasted a lot of the glaze, a lot of the icing, ate all the offcuts of cake and then had to sit down for a bit. I used this recipe for the cake and the glaze but made up the frosting. The cake was really light and the sweet gin glaze made sure it was full of flavour. I kept the decoration simple and made some limes out of fondant which I covered in glitter. I think my favourite part of the cake was the candles, they were the perfect colour and came in cute patterns. Happy Birthday Grandy!

I think I’m going to be approaching that age now where my friends are going to start asking for wedding cakes. To prepare for this I decided to do a two day wedding cake course at the Peggy Porschen Academy to make something like this. I’ve done a course there before which was brilliant, but this course went in to more detail and covered stacking, doweling and all the steps to producing a professional wedding cake. I loved that this time around we were able to bake everything and make the buttercreams ourselves. It was really helpful to be taught at every stage of the process. I struggled a bit with all the new techniques and tools and keeping up with the pace of the class, but our teacher Marianne was amazing. She kept us on track, allowed for some one on one teaching and answered all our questions. It was hard fitting it all in to two days, so the design was simplified and we only made two tiers. This was ok as the practice is the same; as long as we had the basics down, we could just apply them to more tiers in the future. During the course I attempted lots of new things, such as covering a cake board, making rose buds and creating a stripey band around the cake (which seemed impossible to cut straight,ugh). I learnt so much in such a short time and it showed me that I need to be more precise by paying attention to the little details and calculating everything properly, especially when tackling wedding cakes. The biggest thing I took away from the course was having so much more confidence in my abilities and being more sure of my approach to cakes in general.

Do you have a favourite animal? I don’t think I ever have. I chose my favourite colour (orange) from a young age, but never committed to an animal. I’ve always loved dogs, found monkeys really funny and I fell in love with koalas in January, but have no permanent fave. My cousin Luisa however, has always loved pigs. Last time she visited I made her Percy Pig cakes, obviously her favourite UK sweets. I bought this cake mould ages ago and have been waiting until she came over from America again to use it. It has the cutest face and is the size of a small plate, perfect for tea time. She adores coconut so I made it a coconut cake but added some pink food colouring. I decided to make some Nutella frosting to serve with it, not only as coconut and chocolate is such a great combination but also as piggys like to hang around in mud.

By the time I finished this cake I was a little bit in love with it. Probably because of all the little personal details which made it so special and because it indulged my endless desire to make things out of fondant. I got so into making this cake I even forgot to take photos as I went along. I was asked to make this cake for a Doctor who is retiring. I was told she likes to wear floral shirts and has a pink stethoscope (she sounds awesome). It turned out to be a pretty hefty cake as it needed to feed around 30 people, so I made two super large rectangle cakes and sandwiched them with raspberry jam and vanilla buttercream. I coated the whole cake in more buttercream and then covered it in white fondant. The most fiddly part of the cake was making sure the shirt of the collar looked right and in proportion to the rest of the coat. I made a paper pattern for the lapels of the white coat so that both sides would be exactly the same. I used all sorts of things to decorate with and bring it to life  including flowers, sprinkles, jelly beans and my new favourite, edible metallic paint. I hope that she was a little bit in love with it too.