Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Guitar Cake



Hello...remember me..lol!

No I haven't fallen off the face of the earth, time has just not been my friend as of late. I honestly don't have a clue where February went and then I feel like I blinked and missed March. I mean how in gods name is it the first of April already!!!

I haven't even dabbled in much bakes. I went off bread for lent (like a crazy person) and my whole family went off sweet things so all that was left to make was more savoury dishes.....which I'm considering sharing as it does class as baked goods....right?!

I did, however, get an order for this guitar cake. I can't tell you how happy a new cake challenge makes me. It was something I had never done before and I've certainly never made something so large. I loved every minute of it.


I baked five sheets of chocolate cake and used a template I cut out of cake boards. I then "glued" them all together with buttercream and crumb coated. I think I've finally got my crumb coating down so that it crusts perfectly for the fondant. I then covered it in fondant and added the extra bits 'n' bobs with a little bit of edible glue.

I was pretty chuffed with the results......super fun project!

Hope you are keeping well out there in blogland!

Shirley x

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Strawberry and Vanilla Viennese Whirls


Firstly I just want to say a Happy Pancake Tuesday to one and all! I love pancakes, I would be more of a lover of the sweet pancakes (shocker!) than the savoury. I can usually manage 3,maybe 4 and then die of pancake overload.

I used always be a jam gal until a trip to Paris with G. We were strolling up the Champs-Elysées and saw this huge crowd. I genuinely thought there was a celebrity or something near by, there was such a buzz. But no it was for crepes.....aka a thinner pancake! I had to see what all the fuss was about so we got one stuffed with nutella and oh maa lawwwd! A love affair was born.


Anyways to get back to these dainty bite-sized biscuits. As you all know by now I have a serious sweet tooth, that strikes at anytime. Whether it is waking up in the morning craving a muffin or staying up until 1a.m. baking Pecan Cinnamon Rolls, My sweetooth has it's own body clock. This time was no different. These were baked about 10p.m one night. Luckily they are beyond easy to make and bake within minutes.

These biscuits are buttery and melt almost instantly in your mouth. I chose to fill mine with strawberry conserve and vanilla buttercream which was dreamy to say the least. My sister thought they were shop bought which was a super compliment to get!


Recipe for Strawberry and Vanilla Viennese Whirls

Makes 12 bite-sized biscuits (24 biscuits sandwiched)

Ingredients

  • 160g really soft butter
  • 25g icing sugar
  • 125g plain flour
  • 25g cornflour
  • 3/4 tsp  vanilla extract
  • Vanilla Buttercream
  • Strawberry Conserve

Instructions

 

  1. Preheat the oven to 170C (fan-assisted oven). Line a baking tray with greaseproof paper.
  2. Put the butter, icing sugar, plain flour, cornflour and vanilla extract in a mixer and beat until well combined and smooth. Making sure to scrape down the sides.
  3. Spoon the dough into your piping bag fitted with star tip. I made mine bite-sized. So I piped them quite small just using enough pressure on the the bag that a dollop piped out. They were about a 2 euro coin sized round. Make sure you pipe them with a good amount of space apart, they may spread ever so slightly.
  4. Bake in the centre of the oven for 10-12 minutes or until pale golden-brown and firm. Cool on the baking tray for five minutes then transfer to a cooling rack.Leave cool completely.
  5. Smother one biscuit with strawberry conserve and a generous dollop of the vanilla buttercream and sandwich together with another biscuit.


Hope everyone enjoys their pancake Tuesday!

Shirley x

P.s. Can you believe it's March already? Honestly where does time go?!

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Robot Cake


One robot cake for one very special little man in my life.

My nephew turned 3 over the weekend and had requested a robot cake. He loves robots. I have had many conversations in robot language the last few months......I.   AM.  A.  ROBOT.... You know how it goes!

The cake was a sponge with a raspberry and blueberry buttercream. I wouldn't say it was my favourite berry buttercream ever but it was tasty none the less. I don't think you can beat strawberry buttercream...it's just too good in my opinion.

The "body" was made up of four layers of sponge squared while the "head" was a three layer smaller square. Actually quite an easy cake to make. He was super happy with it and ate all the fondant "buttons and dials" within minutes of blowing out the candles.

I can't believe we are on to robots already, where does time go?! It seems like only yesterday I was whippin up "Iggle-Piggle" and Thomas the tank engine. I look forward to his birthday requests every year as you really don't know what he'll come up with. I thought for sure I would be making a Monsters inc. or Jungle Book cake this year but nope a robot cake.

So what my fav little man wants, My fav little man gets :)

Happy Birthday Callum!

Shirley x

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Warm Rolo Stuffed Brownies


I have been wanting to stuff rolos into baked goods for quite some time. I dabbled around with cupcakes, cookies but eventually decided on brownies. I had seen a pin of a stuffed brownies and it just sealed the deal....I wanted them and I wanted them nooooow! (Enter Veruca Salt from Willy Wonka lol)

I mean just look at them. Drool worthy....perfect for my weekend treat! Warm brownies out of the oven are one of my biggest downfalls.... I HAVE to taste them while they are still warm, I just loooooove the warm chocolate gooeyness.


I used the same recipe as I did for my White Chocolate Chip Brownies and added some frozen rolos. I did not bake them as long as I usually would and I froze my rolos first. I did not want the rolo caramelly goodness to spread just everywhere. I wanted them to remain in one spot so there was globs ( that a word?!) of caramel here and there. Admittedly the chocolate on the rolos melted so the golden caramel colour was lost but all was forgiven after one bite.

They were beyond super moist but just baked enough that there was still a slight bite to it. The minute these hit your lips they just melt in a warm chocolatey goo. Then you get a hit of the sweet gooey caramel that can only be described as moreish. We ate these warm (which was a pain in the ass to photograph!) but they are just a tasty cool. I had two this morning, the second one I gave about 5 seconds in the microwave and it was like it was straight out of the oven :)


Recipe for Rolo Stuffed Brownies

 

Ingredients


  • 175g good-quality dark chocolate (70-80% cocoa solids)
  • 175g butter,cubed
  • 25g good-quality cocoa powder,sifted
  • 3 eggs
  • 125g caster sugar
  • 100g demerara sugar} alternatively use 225g light brown sugar instead of caster and demerara sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 100g plain flour
  • 2 tubes of Rolos (15 Rolos and one or two leftover for you)

20 x 20cm (8 x 8in) square tin


Instructions

  1. Stick the two packs of rolos into the freezer for a half hour or more. Preheat the oven to 160°C (fan-assisted oven). Line the base and sides of the tin with parchment paper. 
  2. Melt the chocolate, butter and cocoa powder together in a heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water. Do not let the base of the bowl touch the water. Remove from the heat.
  3. In a separate large bowl, whisk the eggs, both sugars and vanilla extract for 2-3 minutes on high speed until the mixture looks thicker almost whipped like. Continuing to whisk, add the chocolate mixture until well combined. Sift in the flour and add your chocolate chips. Fold through with a spatula. 
  4. Spoon the mixture into the prepared tin and push your rolos lightly into your mixture. I did 5 across and 3 down but fit as many or as little as you wish. Do not put them all the way down to the bottom of the mixture as the mixture will rise up over them while baking. This make the rolos perfectly centered. 
  5. Bake in the oven for 25 minutes. When cooked, it should be dry on top but very 'gooey' inside. If you wish to leave them in longer do so just be sure not to leave it too long or it will become cake and not moist,gooey brownies. Leave cool in tin for 5 mins,then 5 minutes on wire rack and cut, which is difficult if serving warm. I cut them length ways first. Leave them cool for another 5 Minutes and then square them off. Another idea would be to leave them cool entirely, cut and then heat up. 

The latter would be a great idea for a quick dessert at a dinner party with a big dollop of ice-cream.

My sweet tooth just couldn't wait :)

Happy Tuesday!

Shirley x