Wednesday, 26 May 2010

Mini Tiered Cakes

I love this new cake pan from Willians-Sonoma. Making tiered cakes could never be simpler! The pan makes 6 mini cakes, 3 each of 2 pretty designs.

To decorate the cakes, drizzle a coloured glaze over them then pipe finer details with royal icing. Embellish with draguees or sprinkles if desired. They would make a lovely gift, especially if you individually package them in a clear box with a ribbon.

Happy baking x

Monday, 17 May 2010

Lemon and Blueberry Cupcakes

Lemon and Blueberry Cupcakes (makes 12 large cakes)

  • 125g unsalted butter (softened)
  • Juice and zest of 1 medium lemon
  • 3/4 cup caster sugar
  • 2 medium eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups self-raising flour (sifted)
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 punnet of blueberries

Lemon Buttercream

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter (softened)
  • 1 1/2 cup icing sugar (sifted)
  • juice of 1/2 a lemon
  • Food colouring (optional)
  • Glitter or other decorations (optional)

Preheat oven to 180C. Beat butter, lemon juice and zest, and caster sugar in a bowl with an electric mixer until light and fluffy (about 2 minutes on medium-high speed). Beat in eggs one at a time, until well combined. Stir in the sifted self-raising flour and milk in two batches until all ingredients are mixed in well. Lastly stir through the blueberries. Spoon mixture into a lined 12-hole muffin tray. Bake cupcakes for 15-20 minutes then leave to cool on a wire rack before adding frosting. Note, if you want your cupcakes to be domed in shape, cook them in a slightly hotter over (~200C).

To make the lemon frosting, mix the icing sugar and butter with electric beaters for about 5 minutes. Add lemon juice once all the icing sugar is mixed in. Mixture should be firm enough to pipe and hold its shape. Add more icing sugar if mixture is too runny. To make two-toned frosting like I did (lilac and yellow) colour half of the buttercream with purple food colouring and use it to fill half of the piping bag. Fill the other half of the piping bag with the other coloured buttercream. Pipe swirls of buttercream onto cooled cupcakes, then decorate as desired. I used a wilton 2D tip to pipe my swirls and edible glitter and handmade royal icing flowers as a finishing touch.

Happy Baking x

Wednesday, 12 May 2010


I love these cup-hugging cookie cutters from Cox &Cox. The cutters come in a set of three (either stars, hearts or butterflies) and have a little slit in them to allow you to hang the cookie on the rim of a cup or mug. Such a great idea! The good news is you can even make these cup-hugging cookies - or 'huggies' as I like to call them - by cutting a slot into any small shape with a knife. Here's my attempt using small heart and flower cookie cutters......

So easy, yet so effective......

Happy baking xx

Tuesday, 11 May 2010

Ironcupcake London - Fruit

Last night was the 11th ironcupcake london event and as usual there was a fabulous turn out and more than 30 great entries to taste. Here is a sample of the line up.....
and these are the ones I shared with my friends - yum!!!! So hard to pick a favourite.....
The theme this month was fruit so I decided to try something new and came up with blueberry and earl grey cupcakes, topped with earl grey buttercream and a handmade vintage rose decoration. Nice and dainty......

Here's the recipe if you want to make them.....

Earl grey and blueberry cupcakes


Cupcakes (makes 12)

  • 125ml semi-skimmed milk
  • 4 Earl Grey tea bags (I used twinnings)
  • 110g unsalted butter (softened)
  • 1 cup caster sugar
  • 2 medium eggs
  • 125g self-raising flour (sifted)
  • 125g plain flour (sifted)
  • 1 cup of blueberries (washed)


  • 250g unsalted butter (softened)
  • 400g icing sugar (sifted)
  • 2 tbsp semi-skimmed milk
  • 2 tsp of earl grey tea leaves

Preheat the oven to 180C. Heat milk in a saucepan to the boil, then remove from heat and add teabags. Infuse for 20 mins or until cooled. In the meantime, beat sugar and butter with electric beater for 5 minutes until light and fluffy (butter will change to a lighter colour). Add eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Add flours and the tea-infused milk in two batches, mixing well each time. Lastly stir through blueberries (I like to keep them whole, but you can chop them up also). Spoon mixture into lined muffin trays (about two-thirds full), then bake for 15-20 minutes. Insert a toothpick into the centre of one of the cupcakes to see if they are done. If it comes out clean, it’s done! Remove cupcakes from oven, and let them cool for 10 minutes in the muffin tray before transferring them to a wire rack. Once they are completely cooled, decorate with a buttercream swirl.

To make the buttercream beat the butter and icing sugar on a slow speed for 5 minutes. Add milk to make icing a slightly softer consistency if desired. Sitr through tea leaves then put in piping bag, fitted with a star-shaped nozzle to pipe swirl on the cooled cupcakes.

To decorate the cupcakes, I used pale pink flowerpaste in a rose mould (Karen Davies) to make vintage rose toppers. Here's the mould......

I then used lustre dusts to colour the rose and the leaves. So pretty......

Next month is the 1 year birthday of ironcupcake london. Stay tuned for an update on my entry!

Happy baking xx

Thursday, 6 May 2010

Cookie Mix in a Jar

There seems to be baking fever going on at the moment. So many people are keen to get in the kitchen and bake something from scratch, but often they don't have recipes or a lot of staple baking ingredients. Giving them a jar of cookie mix or cake mix is a perfect gift idea to get around their problem. A jar of cookie mix is really quick and easy to make, and there are endless flavour combinations you can create. Here's a double chocolate cookie mix I made for a friend of mine who loves to bake.

If you want to have a go at making this cookie mix, here's what you will need:

3/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup caster sugar
1 cup milk chocolate chips
1 cup roughly chopped chunks of white chocolate
2 cups plain flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking powder

Mix salt and baking powder with flour. Layer ingredients in jar in any order. I alternated dark and light ingredients to make a striped pattern. You can leave the jar plain, or decorate it with ribbons, if desired. Remember to attach instructions to the jar on how to make the cookies! You can either tie a recipe card to the ribbon, or make a label to affix to the jar.

Here are the instructions for your label:

Double Chocolate Cookies
What you need:
Cookie mix in a jar
1 cup unsalted butter
1 egg

How to make cookies:
Beat butter in a mixing bowl until fluffy with electric beaters. Beat in egg then stir cookie mix into mixture with a wooden spoon until well blended. Drop spoonfuls of mixture onto greased baking sheets. Bake in preheated oven at 175C for 10 to 12 minutes or until lightly browned.

Have fun making cookies!