Jubilee Cake Pops {Guest post}

Today on Philosophy and Cupcakes we have a very special guest post from Nikki over at Nom.  I found her blog a year or so ago and loved reading her baking buys posts as it brings out my nosy side, and seeing her original ideas spring to life out of the page.  Her Blog is wicked and she makes brilliant cakes like this and this and has a very original flair.  I am very excited to hand over today to her so she can share with us her cute cakes.  I recommend you go check out her blog and see what else she has been up to recently!   

 …. over to you Nikki ….

Hiya, I’m Nikki from Nom! A blog full of indulgence; butter, and a minor shopping obsession. I’m really excited to be guest posting for Philosophy and Cupcakes, I love her blogging style so am really happy to be a part of it!

2012 is turning out to be an eventful year for England with the Olympics and the Jubilee coming up; being patriotic has become quite the trend. I have to admit I love it, my obsession began with the royal wedding last year and having another reason this year to whip out my royal cake stands is almost too much to bear.

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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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Goodie Bag Giveaway

***NOW CLOSED – WINNERS – MICHELLE DIAMOND AND SUE HOLMES ***

I am super excited to announce a giveaway and the first ever on this blog.

The reasons why: I believe in karma (kind of) and so after winning a cupcake giveaway this week I thought I would share the love!  Plus I just love giving gifts and this is like my way of saying thank you for reading my blog!

I have two goodie bags to give away, inside them are the following:

♥  Awesome Marks and Spencer’s tea towel with fun patterns

♥  Cupcake birthday candles

♥  Cupcake stickers

♥  Fun note cards

♥  Fun note pads

♥  Dr. Oetker cupcake cases

♥  Dr. Oetker sprinkles

♥  All together in a cupcake gift bag

To win simply follow the rules and leave a comment on this blog post to be in with a chance of winning.

The Rules:

♦ Giveaway will run form 25/03/2012 until midnight 10/04/2012 {after this time all entries received will not count}

♦ To be in with a chance to win simply leave a comment on this blog post and follow the instructions below for bonus entries

 Bonus entries:

Tweet about the giveaway using the following message “Hey @cakephilosopher is giving away 2 bags of baking goodies – check out the blog for a chance to win http://wp.me/p1noFf-5U”

Like Philosophy and cupcakes on Facebook

Follow @cakephilosopher on Twitter

Share the blog post on Facebook {using the buttons at the bottom of this post}

Subscribe to the blog via email

{each of the above is worth one additional entry only after leaving a comment below – possible 6 entries total}

♦ Prizes are open to anyone world-wide who is 18 years of age or older at time of entry

♦ Winners will be selected within 24 hours of the giveaway closing and will be announced on the blog and on other social media sites

♦ If the winners do not respond within 48 hours, a new winner will be chosen

♦ All entries shall be verified and falsified entries shall be disqualified

♦ This giveaway is sponsored solely by Philosophy and Cupcakes and I take sole responsibility for the products given away

♦ I have not been asked by any of the retailers of these products to sell them in any way and the products are provided by Philosophy and Cupcakes in good faith.

x Thank you for entering and good luck x

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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To Sprinkle or not to Sprinkle – that is the question!

For a while now I have been baking and blogging and part of that is my addiction to blog surfing and facebook page surfing.  From my many (many, many,) hours of ‘research’ I have one looming question: “What Matters Most – Taste or Presentation?” 

For me the question has a definite answer – Taste every time – but from my research of testing recipes on friends, family, colleagues and innocent bystanders it seems that the more elaborate the decorations, and the more frills a cake (and most definitely a cupcake) has adoring it, the less people enjoy it. 

The research I have done shows that when presented with a choice, 9/10 people choose the swirly butter cream topped cupcake over the fondant topped one.  Also that given a choice of plain, simple decoration of a layered cake with a mere (while extremely thick) butter cream coating, or a cake covered in fondant with sugar paste decorations and glitter and sparkles galore – the choice was again clear in favor of simplicity.  [It should also be noted that those who did choose the fondant covered cakes were also likely to say such things as “it looks too pretty to eat” or for the more elaborate designs “there doesn’t look like much cake in there!” (this was in reference to cakes made in a ‘scene’)]

The second part of this question would be the age old question that frightens all new cupcake bakers – to Sprinkle or not to Sprinkle?  Personally there is nothing that ruins a gorgeous creamy, butter cream topped cupcake, with wonderful fluffy sponge, than a hard and crunchy topping that tastes a little like the accidental chewing of the toy inside a kinder egg (of course only a fool would do such a thing when biting scrummy chocolate eggs – but it happens to the best of us!) 

So I pose the question to you blog world, Taste or Presentation?

Would you rather be presented on your birthday with a gorgeous looking, fabulously decorated, elaborate designed cake/cupcakes, OR would you rather something that looked a little ‘homey’ and yet tasted like an explosion of flavors working together to make your taste buds tingle with delight?