Sunday, 24 October 2010

CANDY CAKES


one of the delights of having lived (and now working) in london is discovering all of the little treasures about the town. earlier this year i discovered a small bakery called candy cakes just in kingly court, not far from oxford circus.

these cupcakes are the most colourful i've seen and you can even design your own cake on their website! here, you can pick the icing colour and a topping of your choice (dolly mixture is a personal fave)


HAMBURGER CUPCAKES?

what do we think? would you feel a bit wrong eating these?

THE SILICONE CASE

the silicone case - reusable, colourful and environmentally friendly - seems like the most efficient invention to be introduced to baking.

not only can you buy them in a variety of exciting colours, you can find them in all sorts of shapes and sizes, from pastels to brights and from hearts to stars. they're also now widely available in most supermarkets so they're easy to get your oven mits on. and to top it all off, they're a fairly decent price.

    

    

because the silicone mould is sturdy and promises not to collapse in high temperatures, you don't even need a cupcake/muffin tray which is incredibly handy indeed.


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however, i don't throw away your traditional cake pans just yet - these moulds split fairly easily when peeling apart from the sponge. they can also be a tad tricky to clean so make sure you have removed all debris before putting them in the dishwasher.


 x

Saturday, 23 October 2010

THE RVC -for every occasion.

yesterday we had to bid farewell to member of the press team. nothing says goodbye like atlantic's signature cake - the RVC. where from? hummingbird bakery of course!




Friday, 15 October 2010

DELIA SAYS...

an important thing to remember when baking is: DO NOT open the oven before at least 10-15 minutes of baking times has elapsed. during this time, the mixture is at its most active and any rising that has begun to take place will be rudely interrupted as the mixture will collapse significantly once that oven door is opened.


got this from delia smith's complete cookery course. :) x

culinary goddess. ;)

Thursday, 14 October 2010

FLASHBACK

cakes from my youth!


first up, the best...arial from the little mermaid. dad designed, mum baked. what a team.


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Wednesday, 13 October 2010

LAKELAND

so one of my favourite retailers of baking accessories, and other related gadgets, is lakeland. i was given their new catalogue yesterday and have found some cool, quirky appliciances and utensils that are definitely on my wish list.

first up, the electric cupcake maker:

i'm not too sure if it would be any good but it sure is cute!





i'm also loving this cupcake stand:


and this cute cupcake caddy is perfect for when transporting those treats from A to B. i always get icing everywhere so i'm definitely in need:



xx

Tuesday, 12 October 2010

CLAFOUTIS

this pudding is probably one of the easiest i've ever come across. the batter, similar to crepes, consists of milk, egg and flour. the only other ingredient is a fruit of your choice; plums and apricots are a popular clafoutis ingredient.


down at the winkwell, we favour the plum clafoutis where the plums are halved and placed flat-side down in a pastry dish. the prepared batter is then poured over the plums and baked for a short while before sugar is sprinkled over the surface.

best served luke warm, the clafoutis is a cheat summer pudding to impress your guests!

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TIP: THE PERFECT CUPCAKE

THE GOOEY CUPCAKE
one of the most important aspects that feature in a perfect cupcake is the balance between how moist/dry it is. the last thing you want is a gooey cake that will stick together when you cut into it which is normally the result of an undercooked sponge.

THE DRY CUPCAKE
having said that, you also don't want to end up with a cake as dry as crumble topping. usually a dry sponge means the cake is overcooked but you can overcome this with the following tips:

- your cake only needs to be just golden brown (unless you're using golden caster sugar)
- adding a drop of milk (no more than 100ml) to your mixture always helps
- cupcakes normally only need 20-25 minutes to cook
- i find my gas oven is no good for baking. electric all the way

THE CAKE TESTER
another way to make sure you can create that perfect balance is by using the cake tester. if you're not sure whether the sponge is ready, poke this device into the centre of the cake and, if the cake is cooked, there should be absolutely no debris on the tester once removing. even if a small amount surfaces, you'll need a few more minutes of baking.

(available for around £2 from mother townley's shop on lower kings road, berkhamsted and online)

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