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TAKEOVER : CHARITY BAKE! Grey Cakes

Happy weekend all!

This weekend, the lovely @Bubakes has asked if she can host a week, and we are very happy for her to do so for this brilliant cause. There is also a prize for the winner!

This weekend’s theme is Grey Bakes, in order to raise awareness for the mental health charity MIND, and Help for Heroes, and to raise awareness of our own mental health. Many of us have been affected by this matter, and it is very close to our little hearts.

As @Bubakes puts it – Be it cakes, frosting, meringues, macarons, cookies or any other treats, we want to see your grey Depressed Cake inspired bakes.  Bonus points will be given to those who can also incorporate a pop of colour!   Please submit your bakes to @SBCTakeover @BuBakesCakes using #BakeADifference.  The winner of the week will receive on of my limited edition Bake A Difference with BuBakes tea towels!

@Bubakes will be running the Baking Club through our takeover website – @SBCTakeover , so please join us!

Please see the below from Bubakes, and we look forward to seeing you all! For those in Essex, do pop along to the County Cricket Ground on the 7th as well.

Laura and Dominique xxx

The Depressed Cake Shop comes to Essex this August!

Local cake business BuBakes is hosting an event on Sunday, August 7th to raise money for Mind and Help the Heroes, and to raise awareness of mental health issues

On Sunday, August 7th, the County Cricket Ground in Chelmsford will play host to The Depressed Cake Shop, organised by me (AKA BuBakes!) to raise money for Mind and Help the Heroes.

As many of you will know I suffered a breakdown in 2014 and was subsequently diagnosed with anxiety and depression, I then left my job to found cake business BuBakes: for me, The Depressed Cake Shop is a perfect fit.  

Baking and cake decorating help to ease my anxiety symptoms, I’m so pleased to have found a job that allows me to continue to work as well as helping me to feel better.

I’m excited about hosting The Depressed Cake Shop here in Chelmsford – I’m hoping that it will give those concerned about mental health a safe haven to talk openly and for the public to find out more about mental health issues, all while enjoying some delicious cakes and knowing that the proceeds are going to a good cause.

One in four people will be affected by a mental health issue at some point during their lifetime – either by being diagnosed themselves or by having a loved one diagnosed with a mental health issue.

Initially founded by Emma Thomas in 2013, the Depressed Cake Shop revolves around the simple act of baking and selling baked goods to raise both awareness and funds: the one stipulation is that these tasty treats must be grey (but can have a splash of colour to represent hope).  Although Emma is no longer involved, the reigns have been taken up by a group known as the “Depressed Cake Shop co-conspirators” who continue to spread the word.  

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I am delighted to be named as the newest co-conspirator, and my Depressed Cake Shop event will take place…from 11am to 5pm on Sunday, August 7th, at the County Cricket Ground in Chelmsford. The trademark Depressed Cake Shop grey bakes will take centre stage, and there will be a number of activities – including a raffle, face painting and more – taking place on the day. All proceeds from the event will be split between mental health charity Mind, and UK military charity Help for Heroes.

To compliment my Depressed Cake Shop pop up, the lovely Sunday Baking Club have given me permission to take over for a week.  So for the weekend d. 6/7th August the theme will be grey bakes.  Be it cakes, frosting, meringues, macarons, cookies or any other treats, I want to see your grey Depressed Cake inspired bakes.  Bonus points will be given to those who can also incorporate a pop of colour!   Please submit your bakes to @SBCTakeover @BuBakesCakes using #BakeADifference.  The winner of the week will receive one of my limited edition Bake A Difference with BuBakes tea towels!  

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 (The tea towels are available to order via bubakescakes@gmail.com and cost £10 + £1.99 P&P, will all profits being shared between Mind and Help for Heroes.)

 

A tiny bit about Bu

I publish regular blog posts on the BuBakes website: posts that cover both cakes and mental health. Since founding BuBakes, I’ve been honoured in both fields: depression suffered Stephen Fry endorsed one mental health blog post, Michel Roux Jr favourably critiqued a BuBakes cake on Great British Bake Off – Extra Slice, I also recently reached the final of the 2016 North Essex Business Awards. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

No-Bake Bakes Week

 

Afternoon bakers

Hot isn’t it?

We had planned to do a technical challenge this week, after a few weeks of themed bakes, but this weather and pastry don’t really go well together do they?  We don’t know about you, but we can’t think of anything worse than switching our ovens on at the moment, so we thought we’d give you a week off.

Well we say a week off, what we actually mean is a week off from the oven. This Sunday, we thought we’d challenge you to make a no-bake bake – you know what we mean…  A no-bake cheesecake, rocky roads, or something else non-baked that we haven’t thought of (our brains have melted).

If you need us, we’ll be over here, with our heads in the freezer, sipping on a nice cold Aperol Spritz.

Until Sunday Non-Bakers!  Enjoy the sunshine!

Dominique & Laura x

@beccawandering – French Honey & Vanilla Madeleines

European Bakes : Golden Spoon Winner

Hello all,

Another day, another time where our hearts are broken. The atrocities in Nice have left us crestfallen, and so, so sad. As trite as it can sound, one of the things that we love about our little community of 5,378 (as of today) followers, is that everyone comes from different countries, backgrounds, faiths, beliefs, interests and… loves, and despite that, we all come together as one little community.

It warms our little hearts to see every bake, every tweet, every like/favourite, and we must remember that there is love out there, despite all the hate that sometimes feels all consuming.

We are going to carry on, and we are going to celebrate the good. So, onwards.

It feels somehow right that the winner of our European Bakes was a French bake, and the Golden Spoon goes to @beccawandering for her beautiful Honey and Vanilla Madelines. We love the elegance of this bake, and would love you to try it🙂

INGREDIENTS

  • 100g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 100g caster sugar
  • 100g butter, melted
  • 1 whole egg, separated, plus 1 egg white
  • 1 tbsp clear honey
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • Icing sugar, for dusting

DIRECTIONS

– Preheat oven to 190c (170c fan oven or gas mark 5).

–  Grease a madeleine tray with a non-stick cooking spray or a little butter and use a sieve to dust lightly with flour.

– Mix the flour and sugar in a bowl. Put the butter, egg yolk, honey and vanilla into a separate bowl and whisk together.

– Using a hand held whisk, whisk the two egg whites until stiff.

– Fold the butter mixture into the dry ingredients until evenly mixed, then gently fold in the egg whites until thoroughly combined.  Be careful not over mix (you want to keep the volume in the egg whites).

– Divide between the moulds and bake for 10-12 mins until golden brown and firm to the touch.

– Leave to cool in the moulds for a few minutes, then turn out and cool on a wire rack.

– Dust with icing sugar before serving, if you like.

 

Enjoy, and we wish you all peace and lots and lots of love.

Laura and Dominique xxxx

 

 

@foxtonm

Game, Set and Match! Golden Spoon Doubles Champions!

Hello bakers!

We have doubles champions for Wimbledon Week!

Winning the vote and the Golden Spoon this week was the brilliant @foxtonm with her amazing Wimbledon themed Victoria Sponge.

We also decided to give special mention to @janetgbfan for her spectacular and brave Tennis Cake. *applause*.

Both ladies have given us their recipes, so revel in having another British Champion with these fab bakes – we would also love to see any attempts at recreating these… send them to us on @SundayBakeClub🙂

Without any further rain delay, have a look below :

Golden Spoon Winner – @foxtonm’s Wimbledon Victoria Sponge :

@foxtonm

Well, I feel a bit of a fraud winning Wimbledon Week, as my cake was a simple (but delicious) Victoria Sponge filled with home made raspberry jam, whipped cream and the  sweetest strawberries I could find. So far so good with the Wimbledon theme. However, to turn this from traditional into kitsch, I used my trusty grass piping tip and garishly green buttercream to transform the top of the cake into Centre Court. I then added yellow macarons, filled with buttercream & lemon curd, each piped with a couple of curved lines of white chocolate to resemble tennis balls.

 If you want to try my go to recipe for French macarons, do look at this this step by step guide by the very talented @bakingfanatic1
I’ve been lucky to have had consistent results using this method. However, if you’d prefer to give Italian macarons a go, here’s a link to @becksbake guide. In this method, you whisk hot sugar syrup into egg whites to produce a more stable meringue. Becky turns out magnificent macarons on a regular basis (just take a look at her Twitter pics) so this is a tried and tested recipe.
Thanks to everyone who voted – and good luck with mastering macarons!
Golden Spoon Runner Up and Special Mention – @janetgbfan’s Tennis Cake
@janetcbrown
Well I thoroughly enjoyed and  loved making this cake and have my sights set on making a different sporting event for the Rio Olympics.To all who would love to try this recipe. Advice : Breathe keep calm and give your icing plenty of time to set.
Love to all of the Sunday Baking Club Family and to the time you girls put into this thank you and  whom without this we wouldn’t have made and met some lovely chums.Thank you again for including me in best bits. Muchas Gracias. [Thanks Janet! It’s you guys and gals that make it all worthwhile! L&D xxx]
Ingredients
350g glacé cherries (Washed and dried) cut into quarters,1x 225 g tin of pineapple natural juice (drained and chopped)
350 g of dried apricots
350g sultana’s
Grated zest of 2 lemons
250g unsalted butter
250g Golden caster sugar
5 free range eggs (large) lightly beaten
250g self raising flour
75g almonds.
For the almond paste.
250g ground almonds
150g caster sugar
150g Confectioners sugar (sifted) and extra  for rolling
1free range egg
1 tsp almond essence.
Royal icing.
3egg white
675g Confectioners sugar (sifted)
Pink yellow and green food colour gel.
For the fondant
1kg of white fondant (green food gel colour)
A deep 23x15cm/9×6 rectangular tin double lined base and sides and well greased.
Method.
A preheated oven to 160C/140C fan/Gas3
Wash and drain cherries dry them and pineapple on kitchen paper
Place all fruits,nuts and zest in bowl and mix together
Use a separate bowl and cream butter and sugar together till fluffy and white.
Beat in 1 egg at a time and small amount of flour to prevent mixture from curdling
Fold in the rest of flour and almonds.
Add the fruit in a mix lightly.once all mixed together pour into tin.
Level the top,
Bake for 2 hours or till golden brown
And test with a skewer into the centre
After an hour cover top of cake with foil.
Leave to cool for 15/20 minutes in the tin.
Then put onto a cooling tray to completely cool.
Almond paste.
Mix almonds with the sugars
Stir in egg and essence
Knead it in the bowl until it comes together
Wrap in cling film put to one side.
Royal icing.
Whisk egg whites in a clean dry bowl
Until frothy,
Mix in the sifted icing sugar a little at a time
Until all mixed and very stiff and white and its stands up in peaks.
Once mixed cover the surface of icing with cling film mustn’t go wrinkly.
Almond paste.
Roll out on surface dusted in icing sugar to
Be slightly larger than cake.
Cut out a 23x15cm/9×6 rectangle place on a silicon sheet dusted with icing sugar easier from silicon sheet to slip onto the cooled cake.(if not use baking parchment).
Fondant.
Colour your white fondant to your desired shade of green(or buy ready coloured)
Use same method as almond paste.
Carefully place the fondant onto the almond paste.
Royal icing.
Divide the Royal icing into 3 bowls
Colour one bowl pink
And one a light gold or yellow(in my case)
Leave third bowl white.
White Royal icing to make the net and bats.
Put most of the White Royal icing into a piping bag fitted with a number 3 writing  nozzle
Pipe the outline of a tennis court on top of the green fondant leave 2cm 3/4 inch gap around the edge.leave to set.
On sheet of greaseproof paper pipe the outline of 2 tennis rackets 5cm to 2 1/2 inches long
And the tennis net  12x3cm/4 1/2 X1 1/4 in (should be same width as court)
Spoon remaining icing into piping bag fitted with a no 2 nozzle and pipe the strings of the racket within the tennis racket outline and the strings of the net within the outline of the net.leave to dry until you can peel them of the paper.(in my case mine stayed on paper) not dried out in time.
Spoon Pink icing into piping bag with a number 8 star nozzle and the gold/yellow into piping bag with a number 7 star nozzle.
Pipe a double border round outside edge of the fondant.
Assembling together
With your cake  completely cooled and trimmed of any rough edges carefully lift your dried decorative iced layer of almond paste and fondant onto the cake (you can brush some warmed apricot jam) onto cake before putting your decorative layer on if want.(I didn’t)
Pipe a line of white icing across the middle of the court peel the paper of the net and assemble onto the line of icing.So it is upright on the cake,lay the dried tennis rackets either end of the court and roll a small piece of fondant into a ball.
Optional make two tennis players out of fondant (hubby did). I can’t do modelling still practicing.
I’m sure you will agree, these are both fantastic recipes, and two very worthy winners! We look forward to your Girl Power Bakes this weekend!
Laura and Dominique xxx

Zig a zig… Aaah! Girl Power week!

Good morning bakers,

This month marks 20 years since the release of Wannabe (don’t ask us, we don’t know how that’s happened either). To celebrate this, we are having a Girl Power week!

We want to see you bake anything from your favourite female baker – Nigella, Delia, Ruby, Mary… the choice is yours.

So pop those tunes on, put Spice World on in the background, and bonus points to anyone dressing up as a Spice Girl for the photo!

Sing with us… If you wannabe my lover…

Laura and Dominique xx

European Bakes – The Best Bits

Afternoon Bakers

If it’s possible to heal a broken heart with baked goods, then you guys certainly gave it your best crack.  We might still be weeping into our European passports, but we do feel a little bit better.

It was almost impossible to pick a Top 10 this week because everyone did such an incredible job, but without further ado, HERE’S YOUR BEST BITS!

@beccawandering – French Honey & Vanilla Madeleines

@beccawandering – French Honey & Vanilla Madeleines

@Hayleydaviez – Torta Colombina

@Hayleydaviez – Torta Colombina

@mypurplespatula – Redcurrant Marzipan Tart

@mypurplespatula – Redcurrant Marzipan Tart

@bakingfanatic1 – Anchovy, Roasted Onion & Garlic Focaccia

@bakingfanatic1 – Anchovy, Roasted Onion & Garlic Focaccia

@natashamaynard – Portuguese Custard Tarts

@natashamaynard – Portuguese Custard Tarts

@layingthetable - Koningen Birnen Petits Fours

@layingthetable – Koningen Birnen Petits Fours

@burb58 - Kardemummakaka & Svenska Scomes

@burb58 – Kardemummakaka & Svenska Scomes

@HeeromaLavinia - Scandinavian Fruitcake

@HeeromaLavinia – Scandinavian Fruitcake

@biscuits_pieces - Eierlikörkuchen

@biscuits_pieces – Eierlikörkuchen

@thebettystamp - Swedish Kladdkaka

@thebettystamp – Swedish Kladdkaka

 

You know the drill…  Now you just have to pick your favourite and VOTE!

 

Dominique & Laura x

@becsbakes

Pride Bakes : Your Golden Spoon Winner!

Hi Bakers!

Following our beautiful Pride week bakes, we are very pleased to announce that our winner is….. @BecsBakes with her beautiful Rainbow Caramel Shortbread!

@becsbakes

Becky has been so lovely and has shared her recipe with us – have a try, and celebrate that love is love🙂

Rainbow Caramel Shortbread

Makes enough for a 29x18cm shallow baking tin

Base

190g butter

75g caster sugar

265g plain flour

Caramel filling

125g butter

50g caster sugar

2 tblspn golden syrup

1 x 196g can condensed milk

Topping

200g white chocolate

food colouring

hundreds and thousands

sugar coated chocolate beans

 

Method

Grease and line with parchment paper a 29x 18 cm shallow baking tin.

Preheat the oven to 180C (fan).

To make the base

Cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy

Add the flour and combine gently until the mixture binds together.

Turn onto a lightly floured surface and knead gently to form a smooth dough.

Roll or press gently into a shape roughly the same as the tin then put into the tin.

It may break as you transfer it but don’t worry just press into the base of the tin making it as level as possible getting into the corners.

Prick all over with a fork and bake for 25- 30 mins until very light golden brown.

Remove from the oven but leave in the tin to cool completely.

To make the caramel filling.

Place all the ingredients in a heavy bottomed pan

Place over a gentle heat and stir until dissolved.

Bring to a gentle boil for 5-10 mins, stirring continuously, making sure you get all the sticky bits at the bottom.

Don’t worry if you get some dark brown bits at the base of the pan just keeping stirring.

Cook until a lovely golden brown and thickened.

Cool slightly then pour over the shortbread base.

Smooth all over with a warm pallet knife., and allow to cool completely.
Topping.

Melt the white chocolate over a bain marie or in short bursts in the microwave.

In 5 small bowls add about 1 tablespoon each of the melted white chocolate.

Add your choice of food colouring to each bowl, I use Sugarflair pastes as you only need to add a little which reduces the risks of the chocolate seizing or thickening too much. I used orange, pink, green, blue and yellow.

Transfer each colour into a separate disposable piping bag.

Cover the cooled caramel filling with the remaining white chocolate, tap the tin gently on the worktop to even the chocolate out over the top.

Snip a little off the end of the disposable bags and drizzle each colour randomly over the top, alternating the colours a couple of times to get an even but random pattern. Cut through the pattern gently with a cocktail stick to marble the colours together.

Finish with a sprinkle of hundreds and thousands and the coloured chocolate beans.

Allow to cool completely – finish off in the fridge if you can’t wait any longer to eat them!

Cut into squares with a warmed sharp knife.

Devour at a great pace!!!

 

Great recipe Becky, we can’t wait to make this (and dive our face in it).

Remember to vote for your best bits from Wimbledon Week… and join us for our European week this week.

Laura and Dominique xxx