Chocolate Cupcakes with Cocoa Fudge Frosting

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I made these cupcakes to celebrate the arrival of our friends' new baby girl Niamh (who is soooo cute!). They love chocolate cake so I made a batch of chocolate cupcakes but rather than topping them with buttercream I tried out a cocoa fudge frosting. It was quicker to make than buttercream and less messy (no clouds of icing sugar settling all over the kitchen). It tasted really nice and was less buttery and rich than buttercream. The receipe can be found using the following link and the quantity shown covers 12 cupcakes.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/food/recipes/easy_chocolate_birthday_90089

 

Pistachio Heart Meringues

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These pistachio meringues were a Valentine's treat for my Valentine (and me)! They were lovely. I used a basic pavlova meringue recipe and added chopped pistacio nuts and a bit of green food colouring. The colour faded when the meringues baked but the pistachio flavour really came through and the meringues were nutty and chewy. I filled the meringues with sweetened whipped cream and chopped fresh mango! Love is… Sweet!

 

 

Key Lime Pie

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Happy New Year!

Last week we went to my cousin's house for football and fajitas. I offered to make a Key Lime Pie for dessert. All the recipes I looked at seemed fairly similar so I chose one from the BBC Good Food website. The recipe was so simple and quick plus the pie can be made the night before which is a bonus! The pie was lovely and light and the family were making positive noises whilst eating! I will definitely make this again – it would be perfect for a BBQ – although sunshine and warmth seem a long way off at the moment!

http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/2155644/key-lime-pie

 

Pavlova Christmas Wreath topped with Vanilla Cream with Berries

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This was my contribution to the Christmas Day feast cooked by my mum. We are very lucky as we don't have to do any food shopping or cooking over the Christmas period so this was the least I could do. This light meringue ring is topped with whipped cream and berries and makes a good alternative to Christmas pudding. However, we did have a traditional Christmas Pudding complete with a 'Christmas Pudding Candle' which ended up nearly scorching the kitchen units!

I used the following recipe and video and the pavlova tasted great.

http://realfood.tesco.com/recipes/pavlova-wreath-with-chocolate-sauce-vanilla-creme-and-berries.html

http://realfood.tesco.com/videos-and-tips/pavlova-wreath-with-berries.html

 

Blueberry Cupcakes with White Chocolate Frosting

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I can't believe Christmas is over! I had a lovely time over the holidays and managed to do some baking. Now I just have to sit down and get blogging! First installment…

I baked these birthday buns for my dad who's birthday was the week before Christmas. I added some lemon zest to the blueberry cupcake mixture and topped the cakes with a cloud of white chocolate buttercream which was sweet and scented with vanilla. I didn't have any blueberry jam to hand but it would have been nice to cut out a little hole in the cupcakes and fill it with jam before topping with the buttercream – next time! The gnome candles were bought from The Primrose Bakery and matched the multicoloured cupcake cases – cute or what!

 

Caramel Cupcakes with Caramac Frosting

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I’ve not had a chance to bake for ages and I’ve been missing it! Luckily I had a Sunday with nothing planned (except the usual chores and admin!) so I seized the mixing bowl and made these cupcakes. The sponge was made with muscavado sugar so was rich and moist but the frosting was on another level! I mixed melted Caramac bars (caramel flavoured white chocolate) with buttercream, piped it on top of the cupcakes in swirls and finished them with a piece of chocolate – very indulgent!

The recipe for the sponge can be found here http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/caramel-button-cupcakes

The recipe for the Caramac buttercream is as follows,110g unsalted butter, room temperature250g icing sugar150g Caramac chocolate1 tablespoon semi-skimmed milk

Beat the butter and the icing sugar together until smooth. Melt the chocolate and add to the mixture and mix until smooth. Add the milk to achieve the correct consistency.

 

Dinosaur Birthday Cake

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I made this cake for my friend's son Isaac to celebrate his 1st birthday. He wanted a dinosaur themed cake (well his mum did – Ike can't talk yet!). I made this cake in an afternoon so it could have been a bit neater but it met the brief! I cut out the centre of the vanilla sponge cake so I could fill it with chocolate 'dinosaur eggs' and made the dinosaurs from fondant icing. Grrrrr!

 

 

Chocolate & Raspberry Cake

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This was a belated birthday cake for my sister and made to her specific flavor combination request! A chocolate sponge filled with whipped cream sweetened with icing sugar and combined with fresh raspberries. A drop of chocolate sauce added an extra chocolate kick!

 

Liverpool Football Club Birthday Cake

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This birthday cake was a special request by a Liverpool Football Club fan! Rather than worrying about getting the football club's badge right I bought a badge printed in edible ink on rice paper and attached this to the fondant icing shirt. Underneath the icing is a Victoria sponge cake filled with vanilla butter cream and raspberry jam. I hope the birthday boy enjoys it!

 

Love Bird Cupcakes

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My lovely friends Hannah and Ben recently got engaged. Ben proposed in a French woodland with fizz at the ready and handmade “marry me” bunting strung up between the trees. Trés romantique! As love is in the air I thought love bird cupcakes would be a fitting engagement treat for them and their baby boy.

I modelled the love birds out of fondant and added a bit of sparkle with edible glitter. I did the fondant work a good few days in advance to allow the pieces to dry out. I used the following trusted recipe for the vanilla cupcakes http://www.bbc.co.uk/food/recipes/cupcakes_93722