A night with my Continue reading
Well friends, here we are. 2014 is well on its way. Can you believe it’s the 17th of January already?? I feel very behind as I only came back from holiday on Sunday afternoon, so I’m still in holiday mode. By this time of the year I normally have my cupboards spring cleaned and my new year’s resolutions in place. Diving straight in to work has left me no time for me. I’ll get there though.
My above-mentioned holiday was amazing – a month long family trip to Italy. I ate, shopped, built a snowman and walked myself silly. I have a few pics to share.
Coming back to real life will always be a drag compared to a holiday, but luckily for me this year is full of exciting things:
* I am getting married to the sweetest, kindest man I know, my boyfriend and now fiancé of four and a half years (Mr V).
* Mr V and I are moving in to our first home.
I can’t wait!! I have less than 9 months to go. I’ll definitely be sharing my thoughts and inspiration for the wedding and house as I go.
In the mean time, I’ve come across a little project that I’m super excited to take part in. It’s called 100 Happy Days. It basically makes you find the good in every day. Today was my first day sharing what made me happy…
… Friday makes me happy! Check the project out here: 100 Happy Days
I hope your days to come are filled with fun and happiness.
Hello, hello! Yes, I am still alive. And I’m bringing you a peak of a new batch of cupcakes I’m working on. I received an order for 25 cupcakes – Minion cupcakes to be exact. I decided to make flat fondant toppers instead of 3D characters. These little gremlins will be placed atop a swirl of fluffy vanilla buttercream (plain vanilla cupcakes for the base). I think they look a bit scruffy, but not too bad for a first attempt. It was my first time using a food colouring marker too. I think the next time I use it I’ll wait for the fondant to dry out first. Let me know what you think. Have you ever made Minion cupcakes or cakes? Please share if you have!
Hello dear readers. How is your Sunday treating you? I am so excited! I received my first baking order this week for a carrot cake. Yay! Let’s hope this is the first of many. I decided to try a Jamie Oliver carrot cake recipe, and boy is it yummy. The cake is moist, soft, light and subtly spiced with cinnamon, ginger, cloves and nutmeg. The topping is a zesty mascarpone, cream cheese and lime icing. I made cupcakes instead of a big cake, but next week I’ll be making a big carrot cake for my order.
This cake is really quick and easy to make. If you are a fan of carrot cake, then try this one.
Jamie Oliver’s Carrot Cake with Lime Mascarpone Icing
Makes 24 cupcakes
For the cake
- 250 g unsalted butter, softened
- 250 g light brown soft sugar
- 5 large free-range eggs
- zest and juice of 1 orange
- 170 g self-raising flour, sifted
- 1 slightly heaped teaspoon baking powder
- 100 g ground almonds
- 100 g shelled walnuts, chopped, plus a handful for serving
- 1 heaped teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 pinch ground cloves
- 1 pinch ground nutmeg
- ½ teaspoon ground ginger
- 250 g carrots, peeled and coarsely grated
- sea salt
For the lime mascarpone icing
- 100 g mascarpone cheese
- 200 g full-fat cream cheese
- 85 g icing sugar, sifted
- zest and juice of 2 limes
Preheat the oven to 180ºC. Line two cupcake trays with cupcake paper cups. Beat the butter and sugar together with an electric mixer until pale and fluffy. Beat in the egg yolks one by one, and add the orange zest and juice. Stir in the sifted flour and baking powder, and add the ground almonds, walnuts, spices and grated carrot and mix together well.
In a separate bowl, whisk the egg whites with a pinch of salt until stiff, then gently fold them into the cake mix. Scoop ice cream scoop sizes of batter into each paper cup and cook in the preheated oven for 15 minutes until golden and risen. You can check to see if the cake is cooked by poking a cocktail stick into it. If it comes out clean the cake is cooked. Leave the cake to cool in the tin for 10 minutes, then turn it out on to a rack and rest for at least an hour.
Mix all the icing ingredients together and spread generously over the top of the cake. Finish off with a sprinkling of chopped walnuts. (In my case, I caramelised some slivered almonds and crumbled that on top for a bit of crunch.)
It’s as simple as that. If you try it out, let me know what you think of it. I’m still on the fence about the icing. I like it, but I’m wondering if my cream cheese icing that I normally make would possibly go better with this? I’d definitely still add some lime zest though! I hope you enjoy the rest of your Sunday dear readers.