Simple Cakes for a Simple Girl

***** DONT FORGET TO ENTER THE GIVEAWAY HERE AT THIS LINK******

This Past week has been full of work and fun.

On friday I made cookie pops and salted caramel cupcakes (unfortunately they were devoured before I could snap a photo)  I will try and get some stuff up soon though.

I have been visiting other blogs and you should check out this one and this one (where I got the idea for cookie pops) and this one (who literally makes me laugh out loud) and dont forget to stop by here (which has loads of awesome stuff)

I have also been working my butt off with deadlines approaching an unfortunately this is why I haven’t been posting much recently!

But here is a recipe that has been passed down to me from my grandma which is really simple and make excellent plain sponge [for the pdf recipe click HERE]

It can be used for victoria sponge, vanilla cupcakes, the base for any other flavour or as a simple tray bake.

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When the dog bites, When the bee stings, When I’m feeling sad …

Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens
Bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens
Brown paper packages tied up with strings
These are a few of my favorite things

Cream colored ponies and crisp apple streudels
Doorbells and sleigh bells and schnitzel with noodles
Wild geese that fly with the moon on their wings
These are a few of my favorite things

Girls in white dresses with blue satin sashes
Snowflakes that stay on my nose and eyelashes
Silver white winters that melt into springs
These are a few of my favorite things

When the dog bites
When the bee stings
When I’m feeling sad
I simply remember my favorite things
And then I don’t feel so bad

There is something about this movie that gives me goose bumps, listening to the opening notes of ‘doe a dear’ makes my skin prickle and gives me that warm glow inside!

I don’t know if it is because I’m not as sensitive as Julie Andrews but personally these are not the things that make me sad!  Not to mention that she was fighting the Nazis (obviously not her personally but in a roundabout way I guess!) surely things like bee stings and the like are the least of her problems? But I guess as an upbeat nun she was doing ok!

However, when I do feel sad a few of my favorite things to make the day a little brighter.

One of those is red velvet cupcakes – eating them, making them, icing them, giving them as gifts and smelling them.  It is one of my favorite cakes to make because of its light moist sponge with deep cocoa taste and light cream cheese topping, its contrasting colours and the great way it always looks.  But my favourite thing of all is the making of them and the way the batter turns from a placid, dull yellow to the most vibrant astonishing red and the exciting last minute fizz of the bicarbonate of soda too – GLORIOUS, forget brown paper packages tied up with string, this is what I want to cure me from a bee sting!

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Oreo Cuppies {If you like it then you should have put a cookie on it }

Everywhere I go these days people are putting cookies in cupcakes and sandwiching things in cookies and making sandwiches out of cookies and  generally using cookies in awesome new ways that you never thought would work (or wanted to do but didn’t want to look like a food junkie) so I thought I would join the fad!

And that is the great thing about this blog – I can show you all the food junkie things I do and no-one is there to tell me not to, or ask me how many calories are in that!

I just show you and you (who are you by the way – is anyone reading?), you fabulous web-world people, read and hopefully enjoy and maybe, if I am super lucky, go on to make it share it with your friends and family and share the joy of cooking.  That’s all I want really!

So for this recipe that I have been bigging up in my mind I made my standard cupcake recipe from the Hummmingbird Bakery cookbook aka my bible and popped a cookie in the bottom (but only on half – just to be safe!)

I have to say most of my baking is done at night – being a night owl and also its better than watching tv (anyone else addicted to the vampire diaries? I have a secret thing for Damon

– don’t tell anyone but I so think Elena should be with him) and so here I am at 10pm writing up the recipe as the little cuppies grow and prosper in the oven.

So here you have it one recipe, two cupcakes (well 18 really), two icings (frostings if you will) and a very simple way to show someone you love them.  As I am trying to be super good and not eat tons and tons of junk food, at least half of these will probably be given away to my seminar group and friends.  I love giving cuppies away!

These cupcakes are the simplest and most effective ones I have ever made – dry ingredients wizzed up with butter to look like sand, then slowly add the liquid ingredients and BAM excellent cupcakes every time.  They are moist, and rich, light yet with a dense chocolate flavor.  Couple this with light creamy chocolate frosting or a thick cookie frosting and you are on for a winner!

These cupcakes are my fail-safe, go-to, ready in no time, absolute fave!

These are the cupcakes that prompted my lecturer to open up and tell our class why his nephew called him marshmallow man (and a weird seminar was had by all).

This time when shared again the lecturer told us why he thought he should go hunting (another strange Tuesday night!)

Have I bigged them up enough? Do you want the recipe now?

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Ode to Mothers (Especially Mine)

It is Mothers Day today and I am feeling like the worst daughter in the world.

Because of the timing of this holiday I hardly ever get to spend it with my mum anymore – you see her birthday is on the 10th of March and so (that being last weekend) since being at university and living the other side of the country, it isn’t so easy to just pop home anymore – especially two weekends in a row (if only money did grow on trees!).

Last weekend it was really lovely to be home and spend time with the family.  Mum and I had a great weekend doing girly things (mostly cake related) and we went to the Squires Kitchen exhibition on her actual birthday.  It was aces! (and yes we probably spent too much money!)

Here is the birthday cake I made her

Plain Sponge with Lemon Butter Cream and Homemade Strawberry Jam Filling

And also there were chocolate cuppies involved!

Chocolate Cupcake with Rich Chocolate Buttercream

{please excuse the hand – I have old lady hands – but I was about to eat it and thought you might want to see! recipes to come soon}

This time of year is really brilliant for my mum to have a birthday.  This is because, not only are there loads of mum-themed gifts around but also its spring time and the brilliant colours and flowers of spring are my mum’s fave too! Win Win!

So why you ask am I feeling like a bad daughter?

Maybe it my own guilt about things in general but mostly because I forgot to post her card until yesterday 😦 boo me!

So in an attempt to make up for it a bit,

Here is just a few of the reasons why my mum is so very awesome:

  • She taught me to cook/bake
  • She does jager bombs with us
  • She always knows when im upset and just what to say
  • She is the nicest person I know
  • She is adorable when she swears
  • She plays ring of fire with us
  • She has a huge heart
  • She is never mean (even if someone deserves it)
  • She is the person you can always count on no matter what

While the list is practically infinite this will suffice for today!

This is my Wonderful Mum and I

(I am the Bungle from rainbow – I was fundraising!)

Take some time today to tell your mum just how much you love her and how brilliant she is

Mum you are a superstar, my inspiration and the best mum a daughter could ever ask for

All New Cupcake Classes

Starting March 16th I will now be running Cupcake making and decorating classes.

Scoops and Spatulas - little and large!

Scoops and Spatulas - little and large!

These will be Pampered Chef Specialized:  This means that the cost is £60 per person for the afternoon but up to £45 of which is redeemable on Pampered Chef goodies!    Plus for those who purchase the full £45 or over will receive a free gift!!!

Places and dates are limited so contact me soon to get your desired dates

For further details please comment with your email address, or subscribe to the blog and I will email you.

This class will be in one of three locations – Bristol, Surrey, or your house! (UK only)
That’s right – invite your friends over and open a few bottles of wine because I can travel to you! (limitations apply please contact in the above way for details)

Chocolate Cupcakes on the amazing Stoneware baker