Autumn is the perfect time to eat apple cakes and I love this recipe with cinamon. It keeps well but is also perfect warm with cream.
To make Apple and Cinnamon Cake you will need…
140g Butter, softened
140g Soft Brown Sugar
2 medium Eggs, beaten
2 teaspoons Cinnamon (plus, 2 more teaspoons for the topping)
250g Self Raising Flour3 small eating apples (or 2 medium), grated
3 small eating apples (or 2 medium), grated
Pre heat the oven to 170c and prepare a loaf tin.
Beat the soft brown sugar and butter together and add the beaten egg slowly. Fold in the flour and cinnamon and finally, the apple. Pour into the prepared tin. Bake for between 40 – 50 minutes approximately. (Check with a skewer to see if it comes out clean.)
The cake will be golden brown and moist inside. It keeps well with the flavour improving if its left a day or two. However, I couldn’t resist serving it straight from the oven, drizzled with apple syrup and a large dollop of creamy vanilla ice cream. Heaven.
I’ve wanted to create an Alice in Wonderland cake for so long. Now we are in Lockdown and I can’t bake for other people, I’ve had time to go back to thinking about cake designs just for me. I had so much fun creating this design on a dummy cake. I’m not that great at sketching but I always start with a sketched design so that I know which pieces need to be made. I’m also looking for a balance in the overall design and to ensure that colours go together.
I started with making all the separate pieces to put onto the cake. Alice took a while as I had to start with her legs and leave them a few days to dry before gradually adding the layers of her dress, then the upper body and head. Finally, when everything else was dry, her hair and shoes were added. She is set on a food safe skewer which then sticks into the cake so she’s really secure.
I then covered the dummy tiers, added the background decoration, such as painting the bottom tier and piping dots, hearts and lace to the upper tiers. I then left it all to dry so that I could check I was happy with the colours. Then the fun part began, adding all the pieces to the cake. The design was changed a little from the original sketch as the finished cake came together. This can sometimes happen once the sketch begins to come to life. This cake took many hours to create but it was so much fun!
Vanilla Rose Cupcakes – Vanilla sponge with Rose Flavour Buttercream and sugar roses to top. Perfect for a Mother’s Day treat…
Cupcakes by Sweet Bliss Bakes, Yeovil
Cupcakes by Sweet Bliss Bakes, Yeovil
The recipe will give 10 – 12 cupcakes which are lovely for an afternoon tea – just right for mum on Mother’s Day. Alternatively, serve them in vintage bone china tea cups or put them in lacy wrappers and pretty boxes tied with ribbon for a scrumptious gift.
Vanilla Cupcakes Recipe
100g Butter, softened
110g Caster Sugar
1 Teaspoon Vanilla extract
120g Self-Raising Flour
2 Tablespoons Cornflour
2 Medium Eggs, beaten
3 Tablespoons Milk Method:-
Heat the oven to 160c and place cupcake cases in a 12 hole muffin tin.
Beat the butter and caster sugar together well until soft and creamy. Add all the other ingredients and beat to combine but for no more than one minute. Divide between the cake cases ( you can make between 10 – 12 depending how much mixture you put in each.)
I completed my cupcakes with a rosewater flavoured buttercream rose swirl and added sugar rose decorations.
1. You will need to consider how many guests will want a piece of cake. If you are serving the cake as dessert then you will need a larger portion per person but if it is in addition to dessert, a 2” x 1” portion per person will be adequate. Your cake decorator will then advise you about what size cake you will need. If you want to keep costs down, you can ask for a ‘cutting’ cake in addition to a smaller decorated one which will give more portions without the cost of decoration.
2. Make sure your cake will taste as great as it looks, so sample some cake before you book your wedding cake. Most cake decorators will offer you a consultation with tasting although some may charge a small fee. If you are having a tiered cake you could have different flavours for each tier so you can choose all your favourites. It’s a good idea to think about the wedding menu and you may want to choose complementary flavours particularly if you’re serving your cake as dessert. If you choose sponge cake it will need to be eaten within a few days. A fruit cake will last much longer, so consider when you will be cutting the cake and when your guests will be eating it. Have a look at some flavour ideas here.
3. Consider whether you will need to provide for special dietary requirements. Your cake decorator should be able to prepare cakes for most needs. You can also request any modifications such as less fruit in your fruit cake.
4. Looking for pictures of your dream cake is a great idea to help your wedding cake decorator to get an idea of what styles you like. It will also help if you have pictures or swatches of fabric from wedding dress, bridesmaid dresses, floral arrangements, invitations, if you want to incorporate these into the cake design.
5. Discuss your budget with your cake decorator as there may be ways you can achieve your dream cake on a lower budget if needed by simplifying elements of the design.
6. Check with your venue that they can provide a cake table and knife for your wedding cake. Think about how you will need to decorate the table so that your cake looks its best, your wedding cake decorator may help you with this.
7. Wedding cakes should ideally be booked at least 12 – 16 weeks in advance of your wedding. Many cake decorators get very busy, particularly during peak wedding time – April to September, so book as early as possible. Also, some decorations like sugar flowers and models can take many hours to make by hand.
8. Fresh flowers are not necessarily cheaper than hand-made sugar flowers and you would need to consider how long they would last out of water. Also, some flowers are not edible, some even poisonous and could have been sprayed with chemicals and although they are not going to be eaten, you may not want to put them on your cake.
225g Plain Flour
55g Custard Powder
110g Caster Sugar
75g Mixed Fruit (or can be one fruit e.g. sultanas)
15g Ground Almonds
Zest of 1 Lemon plus 1 teaspoon of the juice
½ Teaspoon Cinnamon or Mixed Spice
1 + ½ Egg Yolks Method
Pre heat the oven to 175c and line a baking sheet.
Cream the butter and sugar together well then beat in the egg yolks.
Whisk the flour, custard powder and spice together and then stir in the fruit. Add this to the beaten egg, butter and sugar mix and also add the lemon juice and zest. Mix together. If it seems sticky, wrap it in cling-film and put into the fridge to firm up before rolling out. This should take about 30 minutes but it can be left overnight.
Roll out and cut out circles to the size you like – mine were quite small and I got 32 biscuits from the mixture.
Bake for about ten minutes. They should look light golden brown and need to be still fairly soft as they will firm up once cooled.
This cake is a basic sponge (baked in two 8” tins) but with the zest of two limes added. A syrup is then made with the juice of one of the limes and two tablespoons of sugar to drizzle over the cake as soon as it comes out of the oven. (To make the syrup just stir together the juice and sugar in a pan over a medium heat until the sugar is dissolved. Bring to the boil, stirring, until the mixture starts to thicken.)
I made two fillings for the cake which really gave it all the flavour, a lime curd and a blueberry and lime conserve. They were both slathered in between the two sponge cake layers to make this a really heavenly, zesty cake. The flavours are very fresh and would be perfect for Easter. A few crystallised violets would be pretty on top or pile on some cream and fresh blueberries.
Juice of 1 Lime
2 Eggs, well beaten
Place the butter, sugar and lime juice in a bowl over a pan of boiling water and continue to heat, stirring continuously to melt the butter and dissolve the sugar. Remove from the heat for a minute and then add the beaten eggs, stirring well. Put back on the heat, continuing to stir well until the mixture thickens. Leave to cool then it’s ready for use or can be stored in the fridge for a few days.
Blueberry and Lime Conserve
Juice of 1 Lime
4 tablespoons sugar
Place all the ingredients in a pan over a medium heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar and soften the fruit – about ten minutes. Mash the fruit down (I just used a potato masher) and bring to the boil. Leave the mixture to boil rapidly, stirring occasionally, until it thickens. It can be tested on a very cold saucer to see if it is set. I like mine fairly soft so that it spreads easily on the cake.
Check the oven temperature is correct before cooking – the cupcakes may come away from their cases if the oven is not hot enough or they haven’t been cooked long enough.
If you want a domed shape cupcake, fill the case to 3/4 full.
Warm your eggs before using them by placing them in a bowl of warm water (still in their shells) for a few minutes. This will help to prevent them curdling. Then break them and whisk lightly before adding to the other ingredients.
Make sure your butter is well softened. Many recipes recommend using margarine for good results but the flavour is always better with a good quality butter.
When the cupcakes are taken out of the oven and still warm, brush them with a syrup to add flavour and moisture. This can be made with a little water boiled in a pan with an equal amount of sugar. Various flavours can also be added or melt some jam with a little water.
Add a moist, flavoured filling by cutting a small cone shape from the top of the cupcake. Then fill this with some jam or curd. The cone can then be replaced before the topping is added.
Cupcakes can then be decorated to taste….
~It’s never too early to start planning for your perfect day! Depending on the date you would like you may be wise to start planning a year ahead as many suppliers get booked up quickly during the ‘wedding season’ May to August. Although you may not have a definite idea of how you would like your cake to look and taste it’s worth checking out your favourite cake designers for ideas and prices and whether they would have your date available.
~Once you have an idea of guest numbers you will be able to request provisional quotes from cake decorators. You will need to consider how many guests will want a piece of cake. If you are serving the cake as dessert then you will need a larger portion per person but if it is in addition to dessert, a 1” x 1” portion per person will be adequate. Your cake designer will then advise you about what size cake you will need. If you want to keep costs down you can ask for a ‘cutting’ cake in addition to a smaller decorated one which will give more portions without the cost of decoration.
~Taste some cake! Most cake designers will offer a wedding cake consultation where you can meet with them and chat about your ideas and taste some cake. Think about your flavours – there are so many combinations to choose from and your cake decorator will be able to help you with some ideas. If you are having a tiered cake you could have different flavours for each tier but if you choose sponge cake it will need to be eaten within a few days. A fruit cake will last much longer, so consider when you will be cutting the cake and when your guests will be eating it. Some designers charge for wedding cake consultations but some will discount the price from the cake order.
~Consider whether you will need to provide for special dietary requirements. Your cake decorator should be able to prepare cakes for most needs. You can also request any modifications such as less fruit in your fruit cake.
~A cake designer will probably not be able to give a definite price until the size, flavours and design of the cake are decided but they can give you price guides and options. Make sure you let them know what your budget is so that they can create a cake design to fit what you need.
~If you have ideas, wedding colours, theme and/or photos of things you have seen, take these along to your cake designer. All your ideas can be incorporated into the design. Even if you want a very simple cake it will help to give an idea of how you would like your dream cake to look.
~Along with the number of guests expected your cake designer will need to know the venue details for delivery and setting up and whether there will be a cake table ready. You will need to check with the venue whether they can provide a knife to cut the cake and whether they have a cake stand you can use. If not, you will need to talk to your cake designer about hiring these.
~You will need to pay a deposit to secure your booking and the cake designer will give you a completed cake order with all the details for your records. The final balance will be due on or before the wedding date.
~Go through your order form and make sure all the details are correct. Check when the final payment is due for your wedding cake.
~Make sure your designer has any colour swatches needed.
~Check with your caterer whether they can cut the cake for you into the required portions. Some venues/ caterers charge for this service.
~Confirm all the order details with your cake designer – from final payment to delivery and set up instructions.