Happy 1st Birthday Cara

And so it was finally here, we have been blessed with Cara’s first birthday, I can remember the day my sister went to the hospital with my brother in law and mom.

Isla (3 year old niece/big sister to Cara) stayed up all night (shush) watching Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. Until the following day we awaited to hear the news.

I wanted to do something special and as you can see from my previous cakes, I’ve always been happy to use cake mixes and icing but this time I wanted to do it myself.

I didn’t take as much pictures as I would like because I didn’t have faith it would go better than I expected. I used fondant icing to cover the cakes and FINALLY used my topsy turvy cakes. I was a complete beginner with both icing and tins and was researching smoothing techniques and various recipes for what would be a 3 (albeit wonky) cake.

20130521-215947.jpg

I bought
1kg of Caster Sugar,
18 Eggs,
1.5kg of Self Raising Flour,
A big tub of Stork margarine
1kg of fondant icing and 3 x 250g
250g of pink icing
Pink food colouring
Green food colouring
Vanilla Essence
1 candle
Betty Crocker Vanilla Icing
Baking powder

I also found a Madeira cake/Victoria sponge mix in the cupboard but these weren’t used.

20130521-220343.jpg

I used this recipe for the three cakes. The 25cm tin which would be the bottom. The 20cm tin for the middle and the 15cm tin for the top. The website where I got the recipe and method from seems to have disappeared and so I’m a bit disappointed I can’t put it on here. However I’m a big fan of Lorraine Pascal and this link is a good recipe to follow:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/food/recipes/three-tier_red_velvet_17795

I’m not sure if that link works but I generally googled three tier cake recipes till I found a method I liked.

20130525-091353.jpg
As usual I sat down to watch it rise. There’s something comforting watching what you made grow. A bit how my sister feels watching Cara grow in to a toddler and Isla in to a little lady.

20130525-091512.jpg
When it came out I was a bit ‘hmmm’ about it. The recipe I used didn’t call for baking soda/bicarbonate even though I had bought some. I felt it had not risen enough. Once I took it out the pan though, I could see the it had moulded to the shape of the wonk so was a little bit more pleased.

20130525-091637.jpg
This was in the oven at gas mark 4 for about 1 hour and a half.

I used the method of creaming the butter and sugar and adding 1 egg to 1 spoonful of flour to avoid curdling. I set to work greasing and lining the middle pan and put this in the oven for 1 hour.
And this was the end result.

20130525-091857.jpg
I had neglected the boy a little. So he offered to loosen up and colour my fondant icing.
It turned out he was a dab hand at cutting the butterflies out of fondant and therefore he takes the credit.

20130525-092011.jpg

20130525-092101.jpg

20130525-105653.jpg
Now came the crumb coat. This is the first time I have used icing to coat a cake crumb like rather than just plop it on!
And the fondant icing. I’ve never used it before. I’ve never covered a cake before. I didn’t have a scraper or a smoother. Just my hands.

20130525-105937.jpg

20130525-110007.jpg

20130525-110023.jpg
For my first attempt I was impressed and I’m never happy but I really was pleased. It was a heavy cake and I thought it wouldn’t be nice because of it being a sponge cake I missed putting the jam on it. I thought no one would like but everyone was pleased.

20130525-110137.jpg
And the birthday girl enjoyed her very first piece of cake 🙂

20130525-110233.jpg

Advertisements

Shopping, ooh lala!

Yesterday I went shopping with my oldest friends Susan and Leah for Leah’s birthday present which unfortunately wasn’t there so have promised to purchase it online.

I also have a rather amazing boyfriend who borrowed me some money to buy myself a new pair of jeans and a top.
Of course the top I bought happened to be owl themed and the slippers I bought, yup, owl themed. Oh I even bought a snood…with owls on it.

I did buy a plain purse, no owls. It was awesome shopping and seeing the girls. Susan is engaged so it was wedding themed conversation and I’m maid of honour so we were discussing hen weekends and dresses. Of course, she is worried about the cost, me and Leah have offered to purchase our own dresses, perhaps even hire them as we understand how expensive weddings can be (well, not that either of us are married but we have seen don’t tell the bride a lot!).

So these were some of the options for our dresses, Susan found them and they’re all under £35, bless her.

20130127-223044.jpg

20130127-223050.jpg

20130127-223055.jpg

20130127-223101.jpg
I prefer the first choice, the blue is a lovely shade and I like one shoulder dresses.

As we were walking along, we walked past Millie’s cookies and I saw THIS

20130127-223154.jpg
I was going to buy it for Alex for Valentines day but I didn’t think it would keep and I’m still in the mindset that I could make one better.

WOAH, did she like just name the boy?

Like she totally did, totally!