|Posted on 21 September, 2015 at 1:40||comments (4)|
My nephew turned 20 the other day - 20! He has grown into such an amazing man, I am very proud to be his Aunt.
Of course that called for a birthday cake.
I had made the most amazing caramel sauce, so I decided that it had to feature in Alby's cake. I bought some beautiful, juicy apples at the market and thought they would go perfectly with the caramel sauce, so my idea for a toffee apple cake began.
I started with an apple cinnamon cake base, and it definitely needed 4 layers. I lightly stewed the apples with cinnamon and cloves until they were just done and still in chunks and made cinnamon cream cheese frosting because I didnt want it too sweet once the apple and caramel were added.
On each layer I added frosting, apple and cinnamon and then covered the whole cake so it looked near-naked. I then drizzled the caramel over the top and let it drip down the sides.
I decorated the top with some salted caramel frosting, homemade meringues, stewed apple chunks and some chocolate balls.
And Alby's verdict?
Isn't he handsome!
|Posted on 22 August, 2015 at 0:50||comments (0)|
If I had the choice, if I had no bottomless pit kids and husband to feed, and I was just cooking for myself, I would just eat nibbles. You know, antipasti, dip, crackers, olives and cheese. Actually, when I was single and living alone, thats exactly what I did eat.
I love morsels, tidbits, snacks, hors d'oeuvres, bites, canapes and nibbles. It should come as no surprise that when I was asked to cater for a baby shower, that I jumped at the chance.
I decided an a selection of sandwiches with ham, chicken salad, egg and roast beef, blini with smoked salmon and bruschetta with tomato and bocconcini for the cold selection.
For hot savouries, I opted for homemade sausage rolls, mini ham and asparagus quiche, pizzetta squares, chicken and leek vol-au-vents and spinach and fetta triangles.
For sweets, I made cupcakes with handmade fondant toppers, baby blue macarons and lemon meringue tartlets.
The best part, we got to eat the leftovers for dinner.
|Posted on 5 August, 2015 at 21:40||comments (0)|
My eldest son just turned 17!
With that age comes driving lessons, buying a car and worry....... lots and lots of worry. Don't get me wrong, he is a good driver (I haven't died once during a driving lesson), but once he is out there driving around, I will worry.
My love of baking ignitied once I had my children and birthday parties were my most favourite times. Over the years the cakes have ranged through The Wiggles and Bob the Builder to much more grown up styles (with a couple of years in the Cheesecake Shop wilderness when homemade cakes were totally uncool! Teenagers can break your heart in so many ways)
Joshua at 2 with his Dorothy the Dinasaur cake.
We invited the family over to celebrate his birthday, so a cake was obviously in order. He requested caramel mud cake, so I decided to do a layered cake and fill the layers with some malteasers and buttercream flavoured with my homemade caramel. I poured chocolate ganache over the top and decorated it with more caramel buttercream, malteasers, caramel TimTam bites and some mini choc balls.
Joshua at 17.
|Posted on 25 July, 2015 at 20:40||comments (0)|
I'm not a huge cocktail drinker, but I love the idea of cocktails. The way they are presented in so many creative ways appeals to me so much more than the taste. When I was asked to combine cocktails and cupcakes for a 40th birthday party, I jumped at the chance.
After some research, I decided on 4 cocktails, the mojito, cosmopolitan, lemon drop and espresso martini.
A mojito is a muddle of lime, mint and rum, so a lime based cupcake was an easy choice. I added fresh mint to the cake mix to add to the mojito flavour. I made a sugar syrup with rum and mint and brushed that over the cucpakes just after they came out of the oven. The cream cheese frosting also combined lime, rum and mint to really bring the mojoto flavour.
A cosmopolitan is a combination of Cointreau, Vodka, lime and cranberry. I started with an orange cupcake, filled it with cranberry compote and topped it with a orange Cointreau buttercream.
Homemade limoncello inspired the idea of a lemon drop. I made a lemon cupcake wifused with limoncello, and topped with with a limoncello cream cheese frosting.
A good Italian always finishes an evening with an espresso coffee, so an espresso martini was an obvious choice. This is a coffee cupcake made with freshly percolated coffee, and a shot of kahlua and vodka, topped with a kahlua buttecream.
I then made handmade fondant toppers to suit the Cocktails and Karaoke theme for the party.