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Last week was my 31st birthday and I had the most amazing time! A personalised escape room built by Tim to find all my presents, a spa break at Rowhill Grange Hotel followed by a day out in London completing the Sherlock Holmes Escape Room (with the Sherlock Holmies – thats our escape room group name!), cinema trips, beach days, lots of tasty food and drink, it’s honestly been wonderful. Tim has just been amazing the whole time and my friends have helped make it magical as usual.

In the middle of it all on Friday night, I had a party at a private bar and, as always, I made my own birthday cake for it. It’s something I’ve been doing since I started baking back in 2010 and even though I always complain about it, I always enjoy it really!

Previous years themes have included Unicorns, Mermaids, Rainbows and last year was a Harry Potter/Slytherin special. But this year, I knew what the theme was going to be from very early on. Ever since I walked out of the cinema at the end of Captain Marvel back in March, I wanted my cake to be a celebration of my favourite superhero in red, gold and blue.

I knew I wanted the cake to look like Captain Marvel’s final red, gold and blue outfit but at first I wasn’t sure how I was going to do the star. I’m not very good at cutting anything out freehand and I struggled to find the right shape and size cutter. That was, until I found this set of three 3D printed cutters on Ebay. They came all the way from Australia and were perfect!

I cut the stars out with modelling paste that I coloured yellow with Sugarflair Egg Yellow. I indented them with a stainless steel ruler to create a nice effect and then I painted them gold using Rainbow Dust Metallic Golden Sands mixed with a little rejuvenator spirit. I left them to dry on foam and once they were completely dry I stuck a smaller one on top of a bigger one using a little royal icing.

There are so many made in the second picture because if I’m only having one delicate decoration I like to make a few incase one (or two) breaks.

For the actual cakes themselves, I knew I wanted three tiers as I thought this would create a nicer effect for the suit and colours. However, with only about 50 people coming to the party, three tiers of cake would have been a waste. So the bottom tier was a 10″ round polystyrene dummy which I iced blue well in advance. This meant no cake would go to waste. I regularly use polystyrene dummies for bottom tiers of cake when I know it simply won’t get eaten. The bottom two tiers of our wedding cake were polystyrene for this exact reason. It also means you can decorate them months in advance to get ahead of schedule.

The middle tier was an 8″ round salted caramel, fudge and white chocolate with salted caramel buttercream and the top tier was a 6″ round lemon madeira with lemon buttercream. Two of my favourite flavours! Because I wanted the middle tier to be much deeper than the other two, I baked two 8″ round cakes which I planned on stacking.

Firstly, I split the two 8″ round cakes in two. Then I turned one cake upside down so the very bottom would be super flat, then I filled the both the cakes with salted caramel buttercream and stacked them together using more buttercream. The 6″ round lemon, I split as I usually do, twice, making three layers of cake and two of lemon buttercream.

I secured both of these cakes on cake boards of the same size using a little buttercream and chilled for 10 minutes. Once this was set, I crumb coated (spread a thin layer of buttercream around the outside of the cakes) both of them in their buttercream flavours and chilled again. Finally I did a second layer of crumb coat, left to set and then they were ready to be iced! Once the middle tier was crumb coated it was already at nearly 7″ high!!

The bottom tier was iced using Renshaw Sapphire Blue Sugarpaste and the top tier was iced using Renshaw Poppy Red Sugarpaste. I will usually buy white Renshaw Extra paste and colour it myself using Sugarflair Concentrated colours but I made exceptions for black, red, dark blue and dark green. For these, I find it’s much easier to buy it pre-coloured.

As the middle tier was going to be iced in two different colours, I first iced it in a very thin layer of white sugarpaste. This meant it was so much easier to decorate as I didn’t have to worry about buttercream squidging out between the two different colour layers.

I also iced the 13″ round board in white sugarpaste I coloured using Sugarflair Egg Yellow and when dry, sprayed gold using lustre spray. I also cut out the wording I wanted ‘Higher, Further, Faster’ which is a line from the movie, using Mexican paste I coloured with Sugarflair Red Extra and tappit cutters. I left everything to set overnight before decorating. It all looked like this –

When it came time to decorate, I firstly wanted to give the bottom tier a bit of a ‘starry speckle’. I did this by mixing Pearl Rainbow Dust with a little rejuvenator spirit. I used a large brush and essentially flicked paint onto the cake, creating a night sky effect. I left this to dry for 30 minutes before sticking the bottom tier to the iced board using royal icing. I also stuck the letters to the board using a thin paintbrush and a little edible glue.

For the middle tier, this one was tricky and a little ‘trial and error’ (as all baking is I feel). I rolled out a long strip of the Renshaw Sapphire Blue sugarpaste and gently rolled it up. I unrolled it around the cake, checking it would fit and making marks where I wanted to cut it to size as I had the blue shallower at the front of the cake than the other sides. I then gently took the sugarpaste off the cake and cut as necessary using a pizza cutting wheel. Once I was happy with the size, I painted on edible glue to the white iced cake. I then unrolled and stuck down the blue sugarpaste where I wanted it.

Once I had done this, I rolled out the Poppy Red sugarpaste to size. Then I gently lifted it up using a rolling pin and plated it onto the cake. Using a scribe, I tried onto the icing around the cake where the blue was so I knew where to cut the red to meet it. I also made sure the front of the red was hanging lower than the rest to create the V-shape in icing. Once I was happy I carefully removed the icing from the cake, cut to size and stuck down with edible glue.

I’ll be completely honest, in 32C heat which it was last week, this bit was not fun. In hindsight, I would have used modelling paste and matched the colour to make my life easier but I was still happy with the results. I then cut out strips of modelling paste coloured with Sugarflair Egg Yellow using a strip cutter and stick these down over the red/blue joins using a little edible glue. Once the strips were dry, I painted them gold in the same way I did the big star.

Don’t be fooled by this picture. The red/blue join wasn’t neat in the slightest. But cake decorating is a bit smoke and mirrors isn’t it. Haha.

Once everything was set, it was time to stack the cakes. I inserted 5 bamboo dowelling rods into the 8″ cake and cut them to size. I then carefully lifted this monster of a cake and stuck it down to the polystyrene 10″ round using a little royal icing. Finally I stuck down the 6″ round cake on top, again with royal icing.

With the cake stacked, it was just left to do the finishing touches. I used 15mm golden ribbon to decorate the outside of the cake board, using 3mm double sided sticky tape. I also used 25mm royal blue and red ribbons to go around the bottom and top tiers, stuck together at the back with the same double sided sticky tape. The middle tier was meant to have the 25mm blue ribbon but I by the time I had decorated there wasn’t enough room. Luckily, I had some 15mm ribbon of the exact same colour in my drawers (it really helps to keep EVERYTHING) and so I used this instead.

For the topper, I was very tempted to make a Captain Marvel out of modelling paste but time constraints, schedule, the heat and to be perfectly honest my tiredness levels meant it was an impossibility so I went with a plastic Captain Marvel Funko Pop. I actually collect these, I’ve got quite a few now, so I thought it would make a great topper!

To finish the front of the cake, I stuck down the star right in the middle using royal icing.

I loved how this cake turned out. Don’t get me wrong, I cried a few times when I was making it. The kitchen was so very hot, the icing wasn’t playing ball and I was tempted to sack it off and go buy a Colin Caterpillar. But I’m really glad I persevered with it. Even though I’ve done this for years and have made thousands of cakes, it’s always the ones I make for myself that stress me out. I think it’s the pressure to be honest.

Getting the cake down to the venue was also stressful. It was the hottest day of the year and the venue was a 25 minute drive away on the motorway. I sat in the back with it on a folded down car seat so I could keep an eye on it! I had with me a piping bag full of royal icing, spare stars and tools as a ‘recovery kit’. Thankfully it wasn’t needed!

The cake looked great at the venue all set up on the table. I even made some Captain Marvel cookies to go with it, using one of the smaller cutters of the three and this recipe.

I guess the saddest part of this story, is that I didn’t get any of it! I cut it all up for my friends to enjoy and at the time I had a few drinks so was more focused on dancing (standard) and there was none left for me! I never seem to actually EAT any of my birthday cakes haha! I’ll just have to make myself one to enjoy this week!!

I loved how it looked and I also loved that it matched my dress perfectly. I had this dress shipped over from Torrid in America (Thank you Colin!)

I also want to give a big shout out and thank you to Pop Goes The Vinyl! Tim got in touch with them to order and they made me two custom Funko Pops for my birthday and I think they are fabulous. A She Who Bakes one and a Britt Box one (wearing my birthday dress!) to show both sides of my personality!

If you or anyone you know also collects Funko Pops (or even if you don’t!) they make wonderful gifts!!

I hope you’ve enjoyed all of these tips and tricks. I always love writing about the cakes I make in the hope that it may help someone else making something similar!

If you’re baking any of my recipes or using any of my blogs, let me know how you get on, either on Facebook or Twitter or Instagram.

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Last week was my lovely mother-in-law Pauline’s birthday and I wanted to surprise her with a birthday cake. I didn’t have a lot of spare time but I still wanted to make something pretty that I thought she’d love. A ‘Present’ cake is one that can be done at relatively short notice, it doesn’t need a lot of extra ingredients or equipment and can be adapted for any size, shape or theme of cake or occasion!

I really enjoy making them and wanted to take you through how I made this one!

Firstly, you’ll need an iced cake. For this, I made a vanilla madeira with pink vanilla buttercream. I went with a coloured filling for a little surprise when the cake was cut into.

I split the 7″ round cake into three sections and filled with lovely pastel pink buttercream. I then crumb coated the cake and covered it in a layer of white sugarpaste. I also iced the 10″ round board with a pink sugarpaste and I left both the cake and board to set overnight before decorating.

You can see how I ice my cakes in my Professional Finish online cake course here.

On the same day that I iced the cake and the board, I started making the bow decorations as these too, had to set overnight before using otherwise they would become soft and limp and wouldn’t create the 3D effect on the top of the cake. For these I’m using modelling paste, a sugar stronger than sugarpaste. I don’t advise using roll out icing for these bows as it can crack and bend very easily. I’m using white modelling paste which I have coloured with Sugarflair Baby Pink and Sugarflair Lavender.

To make these you will need;

  • Modelling paste in desired bow colours
  • A small rolling pin
  • Small spacers
  • A strip cutter
  • A cutting wheel
  • Edible glue
  • Paintbrush

All equipment needed for this cake can be purchased at Iced Jems.

  1. Roll out your modelling paste on a surface dusted with cornflour using spacers if you have them (this just makes sure the strip is a nice even thickness).
  2. Cut out strips using a strip cutter, tidy up any edges if necessary with a cutting wheel. Again, this is just for uniformity, if you don’t have one of these, a ruler and a sharp knife/cutting wheel will do. Simply mark out your strips and cut them out.
  3. Halve the strips so that each one is around 2 inches long.
  4. Using a paintbrush, paint a little edible glue on the end of a strip.
  5. Fold the strip over on itself and press down to secure.
  6. It should look like this.
  7. Leave to dry, on it’s side on foam overnight.
  8. Continue with making bows in whatever colours you like. For this 7″ round cake I made 14 purple and 14 pink and had a few spares leftover.

Once your cake and board icing is set the following day, secure the cake to the board using a little royal icing. I use pre-made tubbed royal icing for this.

I will always have a thin cake card of the same size as the cake underneath to keep the sponge safe and allow for ease of movement.

Carefully lift up the iced cake and drop it down onto the board. I tend to have my cakes off centre ever so slightly so I can add a message onto the board.

When your cake is secure, using a ruler and a scribe, mark even lines on your cake where you want the ribbons to go. I found the halfway point of my cake and scored a line. Then I did the same the other way to make a cross. Then I did the diagonal lines. Once you’ve done this, score lines down the sides of your cake to keep it all nice and even.

I’m using modelling paste again for the ribbons on top and down the sides of the cake and I’ve matched the same colours I’ve used for the bows. I’m also using a slightly longer strip cutter than I used for the bows. This one came with my Tappit letter cutting set and I find it perfect for this. You can always cut your own strips however.

  1. Roll out the modelling paste on a cornflour dusted surface.
  2. Cut out the strip using either a strip cutter or cutting wheel.
  3. Place the strip onto the cake on top of the scores you made and make a mark where the middle is.
  4. Cut to size and paint the back with a thin layer of edible glue.
  5. Stick the strip onto the cake and do the same for the other side. Don’t worry about the line as we will be covering the middle with bows.
  6. Repeat so you have a cross as pictured.
  7. Next, do the other cross either in the same or a complimentary colour.
  8. It doesn’t matter if the strips overlap or you see the joins.

For the bow –

Stick down alternating colours of your pre-made bows using royal icing. I start by going around in a bigger circle with the first layer and then building the second layer up with a smaller circle until I get to the middle where I stick 2-3 bows upright to finish off the design.

Finishing Touches –

To finish off the cake I cut out a message using Mexican paste and my favourite, Tappit cutters (you can see more on how to use those here), and a 15mm lilac ribbon around the edge of the cake board stuck down using 3mm double sided sticky tape. I also created a little ribbon bow on the front (you can see how to make this little bow halfway down this blog post).

I then left the whole thing to set in a cool dry room, all the royal icing to dry before boxing it up and taking it over to surprise Pauline! She really loved it and I’m so pleased I got to make it for her.

This really is one of those cakes you can make in a short amount of time but still leave a lasting impression!

Happy baking!

Britt xo

If you want to turn your baking hobby into a career, check out my book Cakes, Bakes & Business for everything you need to know about running a successful baking business, including pricing, marketing, insurance and much more!

The post How To Make A Present Cake appeared first on She Who Bakes.

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Merry Christmas to you all! If you fancy baking something a little different to a Christmas cake this year, why not try a cupcake wreath. A simple but impressive display made up of cupcakes. I demonstrated how to make this at the Cake & Bake Show in London last year and it’s one of my favourites.

You will need;

  • 10 cupcakes in green cases
  • 12″ cake drum
  • 300g sugarpaste to cover drum
  • green 15mm ribbon
  • 3mm double sided sticky tape
  • 100g red modelling paste for the bow
  • paintbrush
  • edible glue
  • drying foam
  • green buttercream
  • large piping bag
  • 1J nozzle
  • royal icing
  • Christmas decorations made and dried overnight

This tutorial shows you how to make a cupcake wreath using 10 cupcakes and a 12” cake drum, but you can make them as big or as small as you like. Even doing a second layer inside the first for a really big party.

I’ve broken it down into separate tutorials as there’s a lot I want to show you.

You will need to make your wreath decorations, including the modelling paste bow, in advance. I’ve used a mixture of moulds which I’ve painted, cutters and mini candy canes, but this is where you can really personalise your wreath using whatever toppers and colours you like.

Firstly, cover a 12” cake drum in sugarpaste (roll out icing). To do this, roll out your icing to 5mm thick on a corn floured surface, turning the sugarpaste as you roll to get an even shape and to stop it sticking. Spray your drum lightly with water and then using your rolling pin to lift your sugarpaste, lay it gently on the board, securing it with your hand and cutting off the excess with a sharp knife. Leave this to set overnight. To see a video of me covering a board in sugarpaste, check out my post here.

Then, to apply a board ribbon, use 5mm double sided sticky tape and a 15mm width ribbon. The hardest part here is peeling off the backing of the tape!

Next, create a cute flat bow to attach to the front of the board. Use a length of your 15mm ribbon (approx 12cm) and fold in half to make a crease. On this creased line, stick two bits of double sided sticky tape, as pictured. Then fold the halves in on themselves to look like the middle picture. stick a shorter piece of ribbon around the middle of your bow. Attach to your board with more double sided sticky tape.

To create a bow out of modelling paste for the top of our wreath, cut four identical strips out of red modelling paste to your desired thickness. On two of the strips, cut a triangle to create the ends of the ribbon. Then cut a smaller strip for the middle of the bow.

With a small amount of edible glue, fold over the plain strips in on themselves to create the bow loops. Then glue the small strip in the centre as the third picture.

The strips that you have cut the ribbon ends, dry on foam with a ripple in the icing to create a more fabric look. Do this by pinching the top and bottom together, you can also use a cel stick if it helps.

Leave the bow to dry upright to create prominent bow loops.

Now for the wreath. Bake your desired flavour cupcakes in green cases, I’m using my vanilla cupcake recipe here (I’ve used metallic ones for a more Christmassy feel.) Make up some green buttercream (you can find my recipe here) and fill a large piping bag with a 1J nozzle.

Once the cupcakes have cooled, pipe onto them by starting in the middle of the cupcake and working your way slowly outwards. (I found I went round the cupcake 2 ½ times.) A gentle and even pressure is needed here.

Leave the buttercream to set slightly so they are easier to move about. Then position your cupcakes on your dried iced board. Once you are happy with the shape of your wreath, stick your cupcakes down with a little royal icing. You don’t need to use a lot. It’s just to secure them enough to transport the wreath. We still want people to take them off to eat them!

Once your cupcakes are secured to your board, decorate to your hearts content! Adding the bow to the top first, then using your toppers.

And there you have it! A cupcake wreath for the festive season!

Equipment can be purchased from Iced Jems.

For more information on how to decorate your cake and go from home bake to showstopper, check out my list of latest online cake decorating courses here.

Give it a go and let me know how you get on, either on Facebook or Twitter or Instagram.

If you want to turn your baking hobby into a career, check out my book Cakes, Bakes & Business for everything you need to know about running a successful baking business, including pricing, marketing, insurance and much more!

Happy baking and Merry Christmas!

Britt xo

All of my online cake decorating courses are currently HALF PRICE! Grab a bargain here

The post Cupcake Wreath Tutorial appeared first on She Who Bakes.

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It’s that time of year again! Time to get SPOOKY!

Halloween, and Autumn in general, is my favourite time of the year. I love everything about it. From the crisp mornings to the falling leaves, the nights drawing in, all pumpkin everything and of course, Halloween itself.

My husband Tim and I throw a Halloween party every year and despite 2018 being a pretty big year for us already party-wise what with my Harry Potter themed 30th, our wedding and reception, nothing was going to stop us from throwing our annual spooktacular!

This year we went even bigger with actual scare actors dressed and made up like zombies to scare greet our guests as they arrived, an experimental lab gone wrong bathroom complete with body on a stretcher, a haunted graveyard stairwell and a funeral parlour-esque party zone!

With a bit of a zombie theme going on, we decided it was only fitting for the newlyweds to go as a zombie bride and groom!

We also make lots of food, put on tasty snacks and sweet treats and I, of course, make a dessert. This year I continued the haunted graveyard theme from the stairwell and transferred that to a 3 tier cake!

Here’s how it was made –

I wanted a bright colour sponge inside to contrast with the black and grey icing on the outside, I also wanted a crowd pleasing flavour everyone would like so I went with a classic madeira cake recipe and coloured it red using Sugarflair Party Green. I wrapped the cakes in clingfilm and let them sit overnight. Then the following day I split the cakes and filled them with a contrasting purple vanilla buttercream by using the recipe here and colouring it with Sugarflair Grape Violet.

I then crumb coated the cakes with buttercream and covered the tiers in a later of marbled white and black Renshaw Sugarpaste (I’ve got an article on how to do that here on Food Heaven) and smoothed them with Flexi Smoothers (I’ve got an article about them here). I then let them firm up overnight. Once this was set, I dowelled the bottom two tiers and stacked carefully, sticking together with royal icing.

I made the little pumpkins and gravestones out of Karen Davis Marshmallow Paste which I find great for modelling. I’ve got a little tutorial on how to make the pumpkins here. I just stopped before doing the face. The gravestones were made using a variety of gravestone cutters I have collected over the years.

The fully edible (but I’m gonna keep it forever instead) church topper I made using Renshaw pre-coloured black modelling paste (because life is far too short to colour anything that dark) and this metal church cutter set I got years ago. I made little windows using yellow modelling paste and little ghosts using a silicone mould and white modelling paste. I stuck everything down with black royal icing.

I finished the cake with black 25mm ribbon, a black sugarpaste covered 12″ cake board and 15mm black ribbon around the outside of that, stuck down with double sided sticky tape.

I really loved making this cake and I loved how it looked on the table at the party!

Check out last years cake here and below for more pictures from this year’s Halloween party and have a look at my Instagram for all the videos!

Happy Halloween!

Britt xo

The post Happy Halloween 2018! appeared first on She Who Bakes.

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I love Halloween! Below are some of my Halloween themed and Pumpkin flavoured recipes. I’m adding more all the time so make sure to check back! Click on the picture below to be taken to the recipe.

If you want to turn your baking hobby into a career, check out my book Cakes, Bakes & Business for everything you need to know about running a successful baking business, including pricing, marketing, insurance and much more!

Give it a try and let me know how you get on either on Facebook or Twitter or Instagram.

Happy Halloween and happy baking!

Britt xo

The post Halloween Recipes & Tutorials appeared first on She Who Bakes.

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I’m so pleased to announce this year I will be demonstrating at the Ideal Home Show Christmas! I’ll be on stage at The Christmas Kitchen in the Eat & Drink Festival section showing you how to make a giant cupcake Christmas tree on Friday 23rd November at 1:45pm and on Sunday 25th November at 10:45am!

I would love for you to join me in the festivities! I’ve been given a 2 for 1 offer on tickets exclusively for my readers! Simply head over to the Ideal Home Show Christmas website and use my code – SWB241

This year’s show is set to be the best edition to date, bringing together all of the seasonal essentials to help you create the ultimate Christmas at home. Surrounded by trees and covered in twinkling lights, you’ll feel like you’ve stepped into a fairy tale yuletide celebration. As you walk show, you can discover the most imaginative and awe-inspiring Christmas products available this year – including everything you could possibly wish for to douse your home in Christmas magic. With over 600 exhibitors, you’re sure to find some new festive favourites – from hand-crafted gifts and hanging decorations, to home decor and hampers for the foodies. Plus, your ticket will also get you free access to Eat & Drink Festival Christmas, offering the ultimate festive foodie experience, with top celebrity chefs Rosemary Shrager, Theo Randall, Aldo Zilli, Rachel Green and Ed Baines as well as yours truly, all on hand to offer their top tips and expert advice on perfecting the ultimate festive feast.

*T&Cs: Book before 25 November 2018. 2 for 1 tickets offer applies to the adult on the door price only (£19 Weekday/ £21 Weekend). Calls cost 7p per minute plus your company’s access charge. A £1.70 transaction fee applies. Kids age 15 and under go FREE when accompanied by a paying adult (maximum 2). Tickets include free entry to Eat & Drink Festival Christmas.

The post Ideal Home Show – Christmas 2018! appeared first on She Who Bakes.

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When you’re a baker or you’re using your oven ALL THE TIME, it can get quite greasy, quite quickly. Not only do I really dislike cleaning my oven, but I’m really bad at it! So when OvenClean got in touch and asked if I fancied having my oven sparkle again, I jumped at the chance! I wouldn’t say it’s dirty but it’s certainly well used (and well loved!) and needs a bit of attention. Please don’t judge me for the ‘before’ photo. I’m busy and I hate cleaning haha.

Stuart from OvenClean arrived on time and was really polite and professional. My husband (still not used to saying that yet!) showed Stuart to the kitchen and the oven and he got to work. Turning the oven on to make it warm, which makes the cleaning easier, and taking all the wire racks out to the van to be soaked and scrubbed for a deep clean.

Within two hours Stuart told me he’d finished and when I went into the kitchen to see, for a second I thought he had replaced my oven with a brand new one! I was so impressed. The racks were sparkling, the tray which was once covered in thick charcoal and rust was new again and the inside of the oven looked brilliant. It’s given my oven a brand new lease of life and I can’t wait to get baking in it!

I promise to try to take better care of her now but on the off chance I don’t, I know I’ll be giving OvenClean a call! I can highly recommend them and their services!

Happy baking!

Britt xo

N.B Cleaning service gifted by OvenClean, but my views are my own, impartial and honest.

The post Getting a clean oven with OvenClean! appeared first on She Who Bakes.

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Well, baking season is well and truly upon us! I know for some of us, myself included, baking is a year round joy but with The Great British Bake Off returning to our screens we turn our attention away from the sunny BBQ’s of summer and on to the falling leaves, cosy nights, tasty home bakes and all the joys of Autumn!

This week, I partnered with Bacofoil® to try out their Non-Stick Baking Paper.

I had never used it before but had seen it on the supermarket shelves so I was both intrigued and excited to try it. I wanted to create a recipe that included super sticky ingredients, notorious for sticking to the tin. So I went with three of my favourite flavours; fudge, salted caramel and white chocolate.

With all three ingredients included in the cake, I felt it was a good way to put this product to the test! The Non-Stick Baking Paper felt different to other baking papers I’ve used in the past. This is because it has an innovative and unique Non-Stick textured surface – the little dimples on the paper mean there is less surface area in contact with the bake so everything bakes evenly and food just slides off, making cake mess and cookie disasters a thing of the past! It’s also non-stick on both sides which makes quick baking much easier!

I’m lining my cake tin with Bacofoil® The Non-Stick Baking Paper and as it’s non-stick, there’s no need to grease the tray! This also means it saves on the washing up. Win!

For this bake, you have a choice. Depending on how adventurous you feel.

You can make your own salted caramel, which is actually really simple, the biggest worry is not letting it burn, and if you would like to I have included the ingredients and method below. Or you can use store bought salted caramel sauce. The results are the same, so it’s completely up to you!

Salted caramel ingredients –

  • 225g golden caster sugar
  • 60ml water
  • 175ml double cream
  • 50g unsalted butter
  • 1 ½ teaspoon sea salt

To make the salted caramel:

  • Mix together the water and sugar on a medium heat. Shaking the pan every so often.
  • When it starts to bubble, take it off the heat.
  • Mix in the butter, pour in the double cream and whisk well.
  • Add in the sea salt and leave to cool.

Cake ingredients –

  • 300g self raising flour
  • 140g golden caster sugar
  • 140g light brown sugar
  • 285g unsalted butter
  • 75g plain flour
  • 5 eggs
  • 50g melted white chocolate
  • 50g fudge pieces
  • 4 tablespoons salted caramel sauce

To make the cake:

  • Cream together the unsalted butter and sugar.
  • Add in the salted caramel and mix well.
  • Add in the eggs and mix again.
  • Fold in the self-raising flour and plain flour.
  • Pour in the melted white chocolate and add the fudge pieces.
  • Spoon this mixture into a 8” round tin lined with Bacofoil® The Non-Stick Baking Paper.
  • Tap on the side to get out any air bubbles.
  • Bake at 140C for 1 hour 45 minutes or until it is fully baked and a skewer/cake tester comes out clean.

Once the cake is baked, I like to turn it out from the tin soon after removing it from the oven. One of the main reasons I do this is to ensure a nice flat top. If you take the cake out of the tin and leave it to cool upside down on the side (not on a wire rack), then any bumps on the top flatten, leaving you with a lovely flat, even cake to decorate later!

Using oven gloves, as the tin will still be hot, turn out the cake onto a strip of Bacofoil® The Non-Stick Baking Paper on the side. The great thing about Bacofoil® The Non-Stick Baking Paper is that as the paper comes away from the cake so easily, bakes look perfect and nothing sticks to the paper!

Leave to cool completely. I also like to leave my cakes until the next day before cutting into and filling so once the cake has cooled, wrap it well in two layers of cling film and leave overnight.

Decorating the cake:

I’m going to be filling this cake with a salted caramel buttercream but feel free to get as adventurous as you like! A chocolate ganache would work just as well, as would a white chocolate buttercream or something else entirely!

Salted caramel buttercream –

  • 250g unsalted butter
  • 500g icing sugar
  • 2 tablespoons salted caramel

To make the buttercream:

  • Cream the butter on its own for 5 minutes.
  • Add in the icing sugar.
  • Add in the salted caramel and mix well.

Don’t add in any liquid to the buttercream like water or milk. The salted caramel sauce is all it needs.

To split and fill the cake, I recommend to use a cake leveller. They are readily available in cake shops and online. Because I’m using a leveller as opposed to a knife, I feel more comfortable cutting the cake. For this cake, I’m going to split it twice, creating three lovely layers.

Split the cake once about a third of the way up and then again halfway between the first cut and the top of the cake. You can measure if you like but I normally do this by eye! Once cut, carefully take the top two layers off and spread your filling. Then reassemble an take off the top layer, adding more buttercream. Then reassemble and chill in the fridge for 10 minutes. This firms up the buttercream and makes it easier to handle.

Once chilled, spread a layer of buttercream on the top of the cake and a thin layer around the sides, creating the ‘semi-naked’ look.

To finish the cake, melt a little white chocolate and pour onto the top, using a palette knife to push the chocolate to the edge of the cake, allowing it to drip down. Top with rosettes of buttercream (I used a 2D nozzle), white chocolate stars and more fudge pieces.

Leave to set and enjoy!

This cake, once baked will last 3-4 days if wrapped well.

I loved working with Bacofoil® The Non-Stick Baking Paper. It made making this cake really easy and it’s a great product I will certainly use again! It’s ideal for all kinds of baking jobs – lining, making and baking and for all types of food – savoury or sweet! The next thing I think I’ll use it for is some chocolate chip cookies!!

For more information about Bacofoil® and all of their products, check out their website www.bacofoil.co.uk

Happy baking!

Britt xo

This is a sponsored post in partnership with Bacofoil®  All views and opinions are my own.

The post Salted Caramel, Fudge & White Chocolate Cake appeared first on She Who Bakes.

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So, a bit of a funny story in case you didn’t know. I’m a baker who is allergic to eggs. I know, I know, how on earth do I cope? Well, I have quite a specific egg allergy (because, of course I do). Sadly as of a few years ago I can no longer have tasty scrambled egg, poached egg, omelettes or quiches, even mayonnaise is out of the question for me! But I can indulge and enjoy cakes, cookies and biscuits.

This is because the type of allergy I have unfortunately developed is to uncooked egg proteins. If you get an egg and throw it in a pan for a few minutes it will very probably make me sick, but if you bake it at a high temperature for a longer period of time (as you do in baking and also known as ‘baked’ egg), the higher temperature changes the nature of the proteins enough that my body can tolerate them. Which is pretty cool.

Basically it means that eggs in my breakfast is a no (unless I just have cake for breakfast), but eggs in baking are thankfully a yes!

Laying hen farm. High Park Wall Farm. Barnard Castle. Co. Durham. United Kingdom.

Eggs play such a big role in traditional baking. The fats and proteins in eggs provide flavour, create structure and stability to cakes, add moisture, bind biscuits and cookies, help thicken and emulsify sauces and custards, act as a glue or glaze and even create delicate meringues.

But have you ever really thought about where your eggs come from and what kind you are using in your kitchen?

When I first started baking (and didn’t really know what I was doing) I was using the cheapest ingredients, and to be honest with you, this included using caged eggs. I’m not proud of it now but back then I couldn’t see a difference between the stacks of similarly shaped egg boxes in the supermarket, except for the price. I’d heard of ‘free range’ and ‘high welfare’ eggs but I didn’t really understand what that meant for me, my bakes, or for the chickens.

As my knowledge of baking and the importance of quality ingredients grew, but I learned about the truth of ‘caged eggs’.

The tiny spaces the chickens are confined to sometimes for their entire life makes living conditions uncomfortable and even physically painful. Having such a poor quality of life is not only cruel and unfair, but of course, it impacts the quality of eggs they are able to lay.

When the hens are looked after and cared for properly, given room to roam around, fresh air as well as decent food and living conditions, the eggs they lay are naturally more nutritious and tasty (based on research by Compassion in World Farming on the nutritional value of higher welfare eggs vs. battery/ caged hens. The main benefits seem to be more omega-3, antioxidants and Vitamin E). They are generally deeper in the colour of the yolk and richer with a buttery flavour which makes for a much better and more consistent bake.

But sadly, around 50% of egg laying hens in the UK are still kept in battery cages.

So how can you be sure you’re buying good quality, high welfare eggs?

There are a number of phrases and logos to look out for on packages. The Lion Mark that you see on most eggs shows you that they were laid in Britain and that they keep to food safety standards. Free-range, ‘woodland’ and barn are all phrases you will see on egg boxes, but to know that the chickens have truly been looked after, you need to look out for the RSPCA Assured logo as well.

RSPCA Assured is an ethical food label dedicated to farm animal welfare. It sends assessors and farm livestock officers out to the farms to make sure that they meet strict welfare standards, which lays out the kind of food, shelter and environment that the chickens must have access to. This includes things like plenty of space, perches and litter for dustbathing and foraging.

Once the assessors are sure the farm is following these practices to give the chickens their best life, the eggs are given the special RSPCA Assured mark. This mark can be found on 90% of non-caged eggs sold in the UK, and 50% of all UK eggs, so they are very easy to get hold of. They are only just pennies per egg more than the low quality, low welfare alternatives.

L to R: Graham Atkinson (Contract Supplies Manager, Noble Foods), Stuart Richardson (farmer), Rob Howorth (Freedom Food Assessor). Laying hen farm. High Park Wall Farm. Barnard Castle. Co. Durham. United Kingdom.

I stopped buying caged eggs many years ago and I believe that my bakes have vastly improved in quality and taste since then. As someone who buys eggs regularly as a baking ingredient, it’s important to me to buy the right ones and doing so gives me a sense of doing something good. By buying higher welfare eggs and spending our money wisely, we can all show large corporations (retailers, farmers and the food industry) that happy hens are important to us as consumers.

I implore every baker out there to do their own independent research when it comes to where their ingredients come from and the ethics and welfare standards which surround them. If I could go back in time and use higher welfare eggs sooner, I would.

Happy hens lay better quality eggs, which make better quality bakes. Better for you, better for the chickens.

Happy baking!

Britt xo

Laying hen farm. High Park Wall Farm. Barnard Castle. Co. Durham. United Kingdom.

This is a sponsored post in partnership with RSPCA Assured.  All views and opinions are my own.

The post The Importance Of Using Quality Eggs In Baking appeared first on She Who Bakes.

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She Who Bakes by Britt - 11M ago

Oh my goodness. It’s finally here! My TEDxFolkestone talk is now live on the TEDx YouTube channel!

Back in June I fulfilled one of my lifetime ambitions by doing a TEDx talk. This is one of my proudest achievements, something I’ve always wanted to do and I’m so happy I get to share it with you all.

My talk is about my journey, mental health and how baking played a big part in it all.
Thank you so much to everyone for all of your kind words and support leading up to this. I’m overwhelmed. Here’s to TEDx 2018.

It was so stressful, but an absolutely brilliant experience that I will remember for the rest of my life!

Britt xo

Courage to Continue | Britt Whyatt | TEDxFolkestone - YouTube

The post My TEDx Talk! appeared first on She Who Bakes.

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