Current projects

Under the Needle: Nothing! (oh dear)
In the oven: Vanilla cupcakes

Tuesday, 28 February 2012

A round up post...

OK, I've been rubbish and not posted anything for ages... so here are a few bakes I've made!

Pear and honey cake (yummy yummy!):

Filo sausage rolls - random, but tasty!

The previously promised chocolate tray bake, which was AMAZING:

And today's offering, the "ultimate" chocolate cake, which is a trial run for my entry into the Fairtrade fortnight best tasting cake competition at work - testing it out on willing participants tomorrow!

I'm also starting a "proddy" rag rug, which I'll crack on with again very soon, to grace the floor of my newly decorated bedroom - pics to follow when I've completed a little more!

Monday, 6 February 2012

Chocolate frosted traybake

After having a hiatus from lots of baking (although I have made a few little cakes for work), I am tonight making this frosted chocolate traybake. My waist and hips tell me I do not need it, but I know better! Hah! I'll post photos when it has set :-)

Saturday, 28 January 2012

Malteasers cupcakes

I've realised that everything I have that is small-cake related is actually not cupcake sized! So, I'm following a malteaser cupcake recipe but actually they will be smaller.... oh well, better for all of us I guess :-)

Friday, 20 January 2012

Many layered spinkles cake

After taking my carrot cake to work, I asked what I should make next. A bit of googling and we stumbled across this amazing looking cake at Raspberri Cupcakes. Nothing like a baking challenge to get me going, so I said I would make it, and here are the results. 

PS I decided that Raspberri Cupcakes must have used magic to stick the sprinkles to the side of the cake so didn't attempt it! Oh, and as I only had red food colouring, that had to do!

First off, here's the 5 bowls of coloured batter, ready to bake into the layers of the cake:

And the final decorated version! Isn't it pretty?

A close up, just because.

And the secret surprise on the inside :-)

Wednesday, 18 January 2012

"The best carrot cake I have ever tasted" recipe!

As promised, here is the recipe for the carrot cake, partly taken from the BBC's Good Food website:

For the cake:

1 orange
140g raisins, or whatever you have if less
125ml rapeseed or olive oil
230g self raising flour
1 tsp baking powder, plus an additional pinch
1 rounded tsp of ground cinnamon
140g caster sugar
280g grated carrot (my carrots weighed just under 400g before I peeled them)
2 eggs

For the frosting:

125g unsalted butter, room temp
50g icing sugar
250g cream cheese
1 tsp of vanilla essence

To make the cake:

Heat the oven to 160 C (I used 150 C as my oven appears hotter than normal). Oil and line the base and sides of a deep cake tin - I used a 20cm round tin, but you could use a square one.

Grate the zest of the orange into a bowl with the raisins. Add the juice, then mix. Set aside.

Mix the flour with the baking powder (not the pinch, that's for later), the cinnamon and the bicarbonate of soda. Set aside for the moment.

Separate 1 egg - put the yolk in a large bowl, and the white in a small bowl. Set the white aside (yes, I know - another item set aside - bear with me!). Break the remaining egg in with the yolk, then add the sugar. Whisk until thick (about 2 mins). Slowly pour in the oil and whisk on a low speed until well combined.

Add the flour mix, half at a time, a stir with a wooden spoon or rubber spatula - this will be quite hard as the mix is quite stiff at this point!

Now return to your set aside white, and add the pinch of baking powder. Whisk to soft peaks.

Fold the carrot and the raisin mix (including the liquid) into the flour mixture; again, this will start out quite difficult, but will get easier. Once combined, gently fold in the egg white. Your mixture should now be relatively runny, in a solid sort of way!

Pour into the tin, then wobble it to level the mixture. Bake for 1 hour, or until risen and firm - a skewer or something similar should come out clean when inserted into the middle of the cake.

Leave the cake in the tin for 5 minutes or so, then remove and peel off the paper. Leave on a cooling rack until completely cool.

Whilst the cake is cooling, make the frosting...

Beat the butter and icing sugar together, then beat in the cream cheese and vanilla. Chill until solid, but not so much that you can't spread it! When the cake is completely cool, frost the cake however you like; I covered the top and sides, but you could just cover the top, or even cut the cake in half and use some to sandwich it together.

Get a fork, and enjoy!

"The best carrot cake I have ever tasted!"

So, last night I made a carrot cake. I have never made one before, so I wasn't sure how this would turn out, however as you can see from the title of this post, it went down very well at work!

I am saving some to take home, but half of it has been scoffed already :-)

I'll sneak a photo later, hopefully without people thinking I am completely made, then update the post! Recipe to follow.....

Editing to add a photo - this is almost all that is left! Excuse the orange slugs carrots; they were made by hubby, and they have kind of slid off the top of the cake... :-)

Saturday, 14 January 2012

My finished pleated and pocketed bag!

I'm so pleased with how this came out! It's taken me about 6 hours, I guess; maybe a little more. And it's almost 1.30am right now. But I had to finish it! Here's some photos and I'll link to the tutorial later:

One side:

The other side, with the reclaimed dress fabric:

The inside, showing pockets on each side (yes, pockets!) made from the same fabric as the outside.