Archives for category: Cake

The Great British Bake Off is back! Woo! Did you watch it? Apart from finding myself starving for cake half way through I also find myself super inspired to give what they are making a go. So this series I’m going to attempt to make something from the show each week (well as best as I can), but give it a bit of my own twist. I’ve never made a swiss roll before but they looked so much fun and I totally loved the idea of decorating the outside of them with a pattern. So this Sunday Lauren, Alexia and I set about making a few rather unusual swiss rolls. I chose to decorate mine with one of my favourite things, burgers. Lauren chose bicycles, as it was the cycling event this weekend and Alexia chose palm trees and flamingos. To create the pattern effect we used these instructions to make up the piping mixture. We doubled the recipe so we would have enough for all three swiss rolls. For the swiss roll batter itself we used Mary Berry’s recipe from this book. The scariest bit was rolling it up as I didn’t want the whole thing to break. I filled mine with vanilla buttercream and raspberry jam and as you can see I was rather generous, resulting in an overstuffed not so tight roll. It tasted amazing and the outside turned out really cute. I love the pattern idea and can’t wait to try out different ones. 

For my birthday present Steve and Alexia planned to take me for Afternoon Tea at Fanny’s Farm. I’ve been super excited for it as the tea was going to be extra special and take place in a tree house. We’ve been waiting to go when the weather was nicer and so booked to go this past weekend. Along with my sister Lauren we made our way to Fanny’s Farm on Sunday afternoon. We arrived early and wandered around the quirky farm, said hello to the chickens and browsed the adorable farm shop. Ready for tea we climbed up to the tree house and were served Afternoon Tea on sweet china sets complete with cakes and scones. The scones were definitely my favourite, but I also loved that the cakes were served with fresh fruit. The tree house was really cute and decorated with lots of fairy lights and other unusual objects. I loved that there were tree branches running through the table where we sat, not letting you forget where you were. It was nice to just sit in the cool shady tree house and chat as we finished up the pots of tea. Thank you Steve and Alexia for my wonderful tea! x

It’s been a few weeks now since the Hampton Court Flower Show was on but I’ve been waiting to share this post until I made this cake. I had the best day at Hampton Court with my flower-loving friend Alexia, and while the weather wasn’t amazing, the displays sure were. We wandered through the show gardens, browsed the stalls and enjoyed a demonstration from top florist Simon Lycett. I went away feeling super inspired by all the incredible plants and flowers. Their textures and colours were fascinating but mostly I ended up looking at everything and wishing it was made out of sugar. Typical. While in the rose tent one particular flower grabbed my attention for its gorgeous colours. I regrettably, in my excitement, didn’t take down the specific name of this English rose but going off the photos I took, chose to roughly recreate it for the top of this cake to be served at an afternoon tea. Luckily I recently purchased this unbelievable book where I followed its step by step guide on how to create an English rose. I made a few alterations from the original flower, choosing to make it in a more ombre orange to pinky purple colour to go with the cake better. In addition to Peggy’s instructions I included an extra layers of petals so the rose was larger and I bent back the petals on the outer layers. I love how it turned out, especially the colours and how fluid the petals look, and I’m excited to use other flowers I saw in future cakes.  You can see more pictures from our visit here…

Oh yessss it’s that time of year again! I’ve swiftly moved on from pretending to care about the football to wholeheartedly getting excited about Wimbledon. It starts today and I’m so looking forward to enjoying the tennis, drinking Pimms and eating strawberries and cream. Last year to celebrate I made these, but this year I wanted to go for something a little bigger. I picked up a couple of these tins and was inspired to make some slightly larger than life tennis ball cakes filled with fresh strawberry buttercream. I used a basic vanilla cake recipe to make 8 cake halves for 4 tennis balls. Once baked, I left them to chill in the fridge overnight so they would be easier to cut. To make the halves fit together better I trimmed the flat tops and edges so they would be spherical. I made sure to cut a tiny bit off the top of one of the halves so they would each stand up without rolling over. Then using a spoon I scooped out a bit of the inside to make room for the filling. For the frosting filling I beat some fresh strawberries into some vanilla buttercream and then folded in some larger pieces. I heaped the filling so when I put the other half on top the whole centre would be full of frosting. I covered the whole ball in a thin layer of vanilla buttercream so that the fondant could be stuck to it. After chilling it in the fridge for 20 minutes I covered the ball in yellow fondant and smoothed it using these which I’ve just discovered! They have totally changed my life. To decorate I made the stripes using white flower paste and placed it on a 5 inch cake board covered in royal icing ‘grass’. To finish I used a purple ribbon so it would look like the signature green and purple of Wimbledon. While it doesn’t compare to last year’s Wimbledon final, cutting into it and seeing the strawberry pink centre was still pretty damn exciting.

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!