Cake, Sweet

Jessica’s first birthday cake – bee hive

Yesterday my friend Sarah’s little girl turned one and with my own daughter rapidly heading towards this first milestone its been a strange feeling.

image

I remember visiting her in hospital when Jessica was a tiny 8 weeks premature baby and now looking at her as a happy, very healthy girl its hard not to wonder what happens to the time. 

To celebrate my friend asked me to help her make the birthday cake.  She wanted to create a bee hive cake as Jessica’s favourite teddy is a buzzy bee and yellow is her favourite colour.  Between us we created something pretty good for two beginners!

Sarah baked the cake layers and I did the decorating.  Considering I’ve never tackled a cake more than a single layer I was ready to have a go. 
Luckily, after I buttercreamed the layers together and smoothed off the sides with more buttercream, it gave a pretty good beginning shape.  Next step was to roll out a large amount of yellow fondant to cover and drape over.  The original cake picture cut a hole out for the door but I thought it’d be (bee) easier to use black fondant to make a door shape.

Lastly it was just the finishing touches, 3 little bees, a few flowers and a personal touch of the writing on the top.  I wish I could have written finer but it was a late decision to do it and the writing icing we had available at the time was a little runny.  If I was to do it again I’d write using royal icing and a thin nozzle.

Anyway, Jessica seemed to have a fab day.  Happy birthday!

Cake, Sweet

I’m a little teapot…

I have recently bought myself some edible inks to have a play with during my cake decorating escapade’s.  As you’ve probably noticed from my previous cake decorating attempts, I’m not the best but I do try hard.

image
They’re my birthday cards in the background.

The main ideas for using the inks are to airbrush template designs onto cakes or cookies or to use rubber stamps to stamp images on.   I used to make cards so I have some supplies in the loft which will help me do this but I will write a post about it one day when I get round to doing it.

Today I wanted to try painting with the inks – its a lot harder than it looks.  The inks are very watery (although the colours are good) I suppose closest to watercolour paints, the icing is nonporous so the colours sit on and don’t soak in and you cannot apply any pressure because wet icing is soft icing.

That aside I made a kinda cute little teapot and cup and saucer which I painted, rather crudely with flowers.  I think by the end I was getting the hang of it and I know I said it before but I could really do with a cake turntable.
I made a teeny little sponge cake and decorated it with icing…then I gave the cake to my parents.

Cake, Sweet

Quick apple fruit cake – my birthday cake

In our family, I am the person who always bakes birthday cakes for everyone and it is a job I love to do but this also means that I bake my own birthday cake.

Now don’t feel sad for me, I get what I want, and I’ve also been bought a fair few (I had a great hello kitty one a couple of years ago) but nothing quite beats a home made cake so I choose what I fancy and make it.

image
Happy birthday to me…

This year I a wanted a fruit cake with marzipan and icing so I used this recipe Easy Apple Fruit Cake as my base and then decorated with ivory icing. I used Ivory for no other reason than I found it in a shop for £1 for a 1000g, no special design purposes.
Then, because I was decorating my cake at night again I thought “this would look quite good with stars painted on it”. (!) Seemed like a quick and easy thing to do at the time. 21 hand painted stars later and a border, I also hand painted with hundreds of little dots, I was done. I am fairly pleased with it though it could have been a lot neater but I will blame my boredom by the end. I will definitely use this method again.

Although my birthday isn’t till tomorrow, I’ve started eating the cake already… My birthday cake, my rules! Hehe.

PS, I never write happy birthday on it, that would be weird.

Biscuit, Sweet

In the Night Garden Cookies

In less than 3 months it is my little daughters first birthday! Its scary reminiscing about her being this tiny helpless little thing I bought home to only 9 months later having a very active little madam who wants to be everywhere and eat everything.

So I decided that I had best start thinking about her first birthday cake and how to decorate it. She doesn’t have any interest in TV at all (just wasted time she could spend exploring I guess), she won’t sit still for any books (see TV issue) so she doesn’t have a favourite character in that way.
After a little think I’ve decided to make an “In the Night Garden” cake and cupcakes. This is because my brother in law used to work on the programme making it and we have toys, books, DVDs and clothes for her. It also seems to be very popular with other young children.

My cake decorating skills are fairly none existent but I saw a way with icing that seemed to make it look easier than normal – flat shapes cut out and layered.

Please let me introduce – Iggle Piggle, Makka Pakka, Upsey Daisy and 3 Tomliboos. No, I haven’t gone mad, that’s their names. Anyone with young children will probably be able to sing the song to.

image

I made the circles of icing as a practice and then because I was quite pleased with myself I made some basic shortbread cookies for them to go on.

Now all I will have to do is try and make them again, at night, in 3 months time whilst being back at work full time. Hmm.

Cake, Sweet

Happy… Cake

As the little-ist baker had gone to her grandparents for the night, I took the opportunity to bake and decorate a cake.
I really fancied a ‘birthday cake’ meaning sponge cake, icing, buttercream and all decorated quite pretty.

image
Not my best decorating but the best I could muster at nearly midnight!

As it wasn’t my birthday, or anyone else’s who would share cake with me, and I had no other occasion to celebrate I decided to make a happy…cake.  The idea is that eating cake makes me happy (that is until weigh in day!) and you could fill in the blank with whatever you want to celebrate:
– Happy Tuesday Cake
– Happy Sausage sandwich for dinner Cake
– Happy “oh someone just gave me a piece of” Cake

…you get the idea.

The cake I made was a chocolate sponge with chocolate spread and buttercream filling.  Silly me for deciding to ice a chocolate cake in white icing, on a hot evening whilst sleep deprived at 11:30pm.  I don’t always think too far ahead.  So please forgive the poor icing as it did taste good.