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The “Miss Ayesha”

Hey kids!  So you may (or may not) have noticed we’ve been a bit posting-lite of recent…

Well the thing is, we have a job, and a life and grown-up stuff and erm…Skyrim, so Wondercat has been demoted to “when we have some time spare”.  Soooooo, having the week before Easter off work and a new kitchen on the verge of completion means it’s time to crack open the self-raising and turn the Kitchenaid up to 5!

cock-a-doo-de-licious

It was our dear friend, the fabulous Miss Ayesha’s birthday so what better way for the new kitchen to lose it’s cake-ginity? (It beats drunk on a Saturday night with a dodgy batch of cupcakes…oh, we went to our bitter place of regret again)

Miss A requested a chocolate and cinnamon flavoured cake…she also mentioned a colour scheme but we sort of disregarded that and free-styled…we wanted to make something like the lady herself; striking, glamorous, exquisite and sophisticated.

Behold the “Miss Ayesha”!

a pretty bird for a...

We can’t take all the design credit as it is based on a design we found on Google University…but I think ours is prettier!

a close up of my cock

The cake was a chocolate, cinnamon sponge with a touch of ginger and nutmeg…it was nice and moist due to our new Wondercat sponge recipe (the secret ingredient: Dairy Milk Philly!)!  It was split in to three layers and filled with Fortnum & Mason marmalade, a chocolate ganache (75% cocoa) then glazed with a maraschino and cinnamon syrup before coating with vanilla flavoured fondant.

We used white fondant which was painted on top in gold mixed with a bit of yellow (it did dry the icing a little making it crack a bit…something to work on), the sides were painted in red mixed with fuchsia lustre and the piping work was a dark brown royal icing using size 1, 1.5 and 2 piping tips.

still pretty upside down!

Hopefully we’ll get a chance for some Easter baking (we are itching to make some hot Atheist “A” buns) and manage to post about them…but Alduin ain’t going to kill himself.

Laters!

Milk and Chocolate Biscuits: Delicious all year round (we are very lazy)

Hey Kids!

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you all!  We hope you got some nice things from Santa (who must have been terribly uncomfortable this year as the weather was so clement…Red fur trousers in the heat must amount to a substantial amount of crotch sweat);

The bakery is now the proud owner of a Baby Gaggia Espresso Machine so no excuses for us not getting our lazy arses in gear and posting in a reasonable amount of time.  So, yeah, we are only just posting our Christmas biscuits due to the jolly, joy, joy of drinking, eating, socialising, eating, snacking, munching, sleeping, watching Goonies…but it’s not like we get paid for this or anything so deal with our dallying.

on Dasher, on Dancer, on Hob-Nob and Linzer!

What were we saying? *distracted by a Lindor Reindeer* Oh, Christmas biscuits…sooooo, our main gripe about the Christmas biscuit, and don’t get us wrong, we love traditions and cracking out the old standards each year, but come on folks, a little imagination…we like sugar but we’re only an iced vanilla biscuit away from the diabetes.

So we went for something a little different…and they were awesome!

the forest of num numsFrom this angle I guess these are girl reindeer

We thought we’d play with different textures and flavours in the same cookies but try and keep each separate and distinct.  What we came up with was a vanilla shortbread type bikkie containing milk crumbs (oh, milk crumbs BTW=delicious!!! More than delicious, they are a eat-the-batch-and-have-to-make-more-then-eat-half-of-that-batch-and-make-yet-another level of delicious) topped with a layer of really deep, dark chocolate sort of shortcrust pastry type biscuit.  You get the soft buttery, milky bottom layer with the crunch and cocoa intensity from the top…marvellous!

check out the layerage

We made Christmas trees rolling the base to 6mm and topping with 2mm thickness of the chocolate layer; this gave a great balance of the two.  The milk layer was a soothing back massage, the chocolate, a cheeky slap on the ass.

We dusted in gold and added a little squiggle of green for some tree-y-ness ( and because as much as we love chocolate, food the colour of post-Guinness bowel movements doesn’t get us reaching for the biscuit tin).

you can't polish a turd, but you can roll it in glitter.

What to do with the pile of doughs left over?! (apart from eat them raw, don’t judge, raw cookie dough is a food group of it’s own); we squished then into a single marble dough and made reindeers!

almost too cute to eat...

 

the herd has been thinned...

a delicious ecosystem

So here’s to a great 2012 and another year of baking experiments!

Qu’ils mangent de la brioche?

The wedding cake for Team Whitworth

My little sister Kimberley got married on the 1st of May.

Kimberley asked me to make her wedding cake, something to fit in with her Marie Antoinette inspired theme; this was the photo she gave me for inspiration…

EEEEEK! I’d only ever made one wedding cake before…and it was my own!! How on Earth would I be able to recreated something so grand(e), romantic, indulgent and expensive…

Off to the drawing board (and Google University) for a crash course on metallic piping work, dummy cakes, moulding edible jewels and cameo brooches…scary!

We decided to go with a classic fruit cake; you don’t get much more classic than Delia’s!  The top couple of tiers were made using soya butter as the bride-to-be has a lactose intolerance.  The bride needed to be able to scoff a piece after months of intermittent fasting and kettle bell training for the big day…girl worked HARD! (as did the groom!)

It turned out that piping in gold requires first piping in a caramel coloured royal icing, then hand-painting everything in a mixture of alcohol and gold dust…TWO COATS!  Cut to a three day montage of tiers, tears and a kitchen splattered in gold (I actually started swigging the kirsch I was mixing with the dust).

I decided to make sugar flowers and not stuff as many in as the inspiration picture did.  I liked the idea of the cake looking more delicate and light…and I really couldn’t make that many sugar roses!

So after a couple of weeks hard baking…

I’m generally happy with it.  I tried to incorporate the theme through the icing…the base was made to represent a grand ball room, the top two tiers are iced with a subtle king and queen motif.

Some of the piping is slightly off, I kept getting gold dust on the blue which was a nightmare to remove (cue another montage of kirsch soaked cotton buds and more tears…and more kirsch swigging) and left marks.  The icing dried out in the hot weather and crazed in places…and the biggest edible tier was slightly over-baked so was a little dry.

The most important thing is that the bride and groom liked it…I was so worried that I’d let them down.

As you can see, though the cake is quite pretty, it is not a patch on the happy couple!  My little sister is a beauty!