How To Make Your Own Cake Stand

Hello everybody!

I’m here again!

Every time I’m walking down the street and I see a shop window with lovely cake stands full of cupcakes or cakes, I can’t avoid stopping in front of them and stay admiring at the cakes for a while. Where everybody sees just a cake,  I try to see further than this: I examine all kind of cakes, cupcakes, ingredients, shapes, fillings, ornaments…  I imagine a bite of each cake in my mouth, mmmm… hahaha. Even I imagine myself making them happily in a huge kitchen…  Sara, stop dreaming! I say to myself. 

Speaking about cake stands… I have some cake stands at home, but not as many as I want. I don’t have enough space to store them. In addition, some of them are quite expensive. Do you experience the same? Would you like to have more variety of cake stands without spending a lot of money and without filling your cupboards with them? 

Let me show you a nice solution. Make your own cake stands! I got my inspiration from Bea Roque. You just need a plate, a small bowl and some blu tack. Have a look: 

Materials Cake Stand

You just have to stick some blu tack onto the base of the bowl and press the plate onto it. 

Materials Cake Stand

As the blu tack can be easily removed, you can return to use your bowls and plates in a normal way, as well as making different combinations to get different cake stands models. 

Home-made Cake Stand

Home-made Cake Stand

This idea is useful to have different cake stands when we take pictures of our cupcakes, for example.  We can make bespoke cake stands for every occasion. 

Home-made Cake Stand

Home-made Cake Stand

Look at this two tier cupcake stand:

Home-made Cake Stand

I got these plates and bowls from Sainsbury’s. I noticed they were in offer and I decided to give them a try. There were plates and bowls from just 0’60 to 1’5 pounds!! A bargain, isn’t it?

Easy, cheap and quick!

I hope you find this idea useful!

See you in the next posts.

Olympic Torch Cupcakes Tutorial

Hi there!

Did you watch the Olympic Games opening ceremony yesterday evening? It showed the British history (from the rural life to the Industrial Revolution and to the current urban world). It was really nice.

As I promised in the last post, here is the step-by-step tutorial to make Olympic Torch Cupcakes.

How To Make Olympic Torch Cupcakes

These Olympic Torch cupcakes consist of a soft sponge base (see Easy Vanilla Cupcakes) and tasty buttercream on top.

Materials (for 12 cupcakes)

For the Olympic Torches:

Materials

♠  Orange food colouring (paste or gel)

♠  Yellow food colouring (paste or gel)

♠  12 golden foil cake cases

♠  3 disposable piping bags

♠  1 nozzle (Tip #30 “closed star”)

♠  2 small bowls

♠  Optional: golden edible glitter + paintbrush

Tip #30

Decorating Tip #30

For the Flags:

Flag materials

◊  12 toothpicks

◊  12 Union Jack paper flags (1.4″ x 1″) –  (3.5 cm x 2.5 cm)

◊  12 Olympic paper flags (1.4″ x 1″) - (3.5 cm x 2.5 cm)

◊  Scissors

◊  White glue (non toxic)

♦  Process

Making the Olympic Torches

1) To make the sponges (torches base), you can follow the Easy Vanilla cupcakes recipe (click the link to see it). In this case, you have to use golden foil cake cases.  

2) To make a thick buttercream, which is quite hot resistant and useful to pipe the flames, you can use the following recipe (it worked for me): 

- 250 grs unsalted butter (room temperature)

- 625 grs sifted icing sugar 

- 6 tsp milk

- 2 tsp vanilla extract

–> Mix all the ingredients for 4 minutes. Once the buttercream is made, keep it for 10 min. inside the fridge to enhance its consistency. 

3) Take 2 small bowls and divide the buttercream between them both. Colour the buttercream:

>> 1st bowl: Add some yellow food colouring and mix with a spoon.

>> 2nd bowl: Add some orange food colouring and mix with a spoon.

Yellow & Orange Buttercream

4) Take 3 disposable piping bags (one of them should be big enough to contain the other ones).

>>  Cut the corner of the biggest one and fit the nozzle (tip #30 “closed star”). 

>>  Fill the second one with the yellow buttercream and cut the corner (about 0.4″ cut) – (1 cm).

>>  Fill the third one with the orange buttercream and cut the corner (about 0.4″ cut) – (1 cm). 

Yellow & Orange Piping Bags

5) Insert the two filled piping bags inside the biggest one, trying to fit the opened corner of each one into the nozzle. This way we will get our two-tone piping bag!

Two-Tone Piping Bag

Two-Tone Buttercream

6) Pipe the flames:

♦ 1st tier:

- Take the sponge base and pipe little peaks on the edges of the sponge, surrounding it. We will get the first circle.

- Pipe a second circle of peaks (next to the first circle).

- Keep piping peaks until covering the whole surface of the sponge.

Piping Flames

Piping Flames

Piping Flames

Piping Flames

♦ 2nd tier:

-Pipe a circle of peaks starting onto the second circle and proceed as in the previous steps (piping peaks until completing the 2nd tier).

Piping Flames

Piping Flames

♦ 3rd tier:

- Pipe peaks onto the 2nd tier until completing the 3rd tier.

Piping Flames

♦ 4th tier:

- Pipe peaks onto the 3rd tier until completing the 4th tier.

♦ 5th tier:

- Pipe a longer peak on the top of the “flames”.

Olympic Torch Cupcake

After this process, we will get a vivid two-coloured flames!!

7) Optional: Sprinkle some golden edible glitter by means of a paintbrush (tapping the paintbrush with your second finger, without touching the icing).

Proceed the same way with the remaining cupcakes .

Olympic Torch Cupcake

Making the Flags (12 units)

Union Jack & Olympic Flag Union Jack & Olympic Flag Union Jack & Olympic Flag   Union Jack & Olympic Flag

Union Jack & Olympic Flag Union Jack & Olympic Flag Olympic Flag Union Jack & Olympic Flag

1) Print on a white paper sheet 12 Union Jack flags and 12 Olympic flags (1.4″ x 1″ each one) - (3.5 x 2.5 cm). They have to appear in a row, alternating each type of flag: 1 Union Jack – 1 Olympic flag – 1 Union Jack – 1 Olympic flag… (see previous pictures). 

3) Cut the flags. Each piece must have both a Union Jack flag and an Olympic flag (one right next to the other one, in a row).

4) Fold the paper flags in the middle.

5) Apply 2 small drops of glue onto the white side of the paper flag, specially in the fold (one flag at a time to prevent the glue from drying).

6) Place a toothpick in the fold of the paper flag and press, sticking both sides togheter.

7) Let them dry. 

8) Insert one flag into each cupcake, by pressing the toothpick downwards.

Olympic Torch Cupcakes

And that’s all!! We have our Olympic Torch cupcakes ready to go!

Enjoy them and have a nice Olympic weekend!

 

Olympic Torch Cupcakes

Hello everybody!

I’m quite excited because, after a long route, the Olympic Torch will arrive to the Olympic Stadium next Friday. In that moment, the Olympic Torch will be fired under the attentive look of the whole planet and this will officially mean the beginning of the 2012 London Olympic Games.   

Olympic Torch Cupcakes  

Its design is quite modern. It is made of golden aluminium and it’s full of holes throughout the whole surface (nothing less than 8.000 holes!). It is 80 cm long (31.5″) and 800 grs weight. The designers are Edward Barber and Jay Osgerby. Have a look:

This won’t be my first Olympic experience! I also witnessed the 1992 Olympic Games in Barcelona. In that occasion, the Olympic Torch was lighted by means of a fired arrow, which was thrown with a bow from the other side of the Stadium, landing into the Torch.

Olympic Torch Cupcakes

All this inspired me to make some Olympic Torch cupcakes, although these ones don’t burn! haha. They were just an attempt to emulate the original Torch, but I hope you like them. I’ll show you how to make Olympic Torch cupcakes in the next post. It will be a very easy to follow step-by-step tutorial with pictures. So stay tunned!    

Olympic Torch Cupcakes

Olympic Torch Cupcakes

Next July 27th will be a gret day. You can’t miss it!

See you in the following posts!

Butter Biscuits Recipe

Hi there!

As I promised in the previous post, here is the butter biscuits recipe. I had tried other recipes before, but this is the one I follow because it’s the one that has given me the best results. I got my inspiration from Bea’s biscuits recipe (www.el rincón de Bea.com).

Try it out! It isn’t that difficult as it may look like. 

Decorated Biscuits

Now, let’s cook!

See Recipes Visual Code.

Ingredients (20 -25 biscuits aprox., depending on the cutter size)

                    ♦  125 grs                                          ♦  125 grs 

                    ♦  1 EGG                                                        ♦  325 grs  

                    ♦  1-2 tbsp                                         ♦  1 tsp  or any other food flavouring

Process

          ♦  Previous steps

1) Pre-heat the OVEN (180º)

2) SIFT   >>  in a mixing bowl.

3) SIFT  >> in a separated bowl.

 

           ♦  Main steps

4)  >>  + in the mixing bowl until smooth and creamy (1 min aprox.)

5) Add EGG+  in the previous mixture and slowly for a few seconds.

6) Add 1 spoon at a time without stop (slow speed) –> We’ll get a crumbly texture.

8) Add and keep for a few seconds –> We’ll get a smooth dough.

 

9) ROLL OUT the dough onto a flat surface covered with baking paper until you get a 0.2″ thick dough (0.2″ = 0.5 cm). Keep in mind that the top of the biscuit  should be the straighter, the better.

 

10) Once rolled, keep 3 hours inside the fridge (at least).

11) Cover awith baking paper.

12) Cut the dough with the  and place the biscuits onto the. 

 

13) Put the baking tray with the biscuits inside the fridge for 15  min more (this will help to keep the shapes better).

14) OVEN Bake them for 10-12 min (until the biscuits borders are brown).

15) Leave the biscuits on the for 10 minutes.

 

16) Place them onto a cooling stand and leave them to cool completely before decorating (about 2 hours).    

                                                    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Decoration

Once the biscuits are cooled, you can decorate them with sugarpaste, marzipan, chocolate, royal icing… In following posts, I’ll explain how to make home-made royal icing, as well as how to apply it onto the biscuits.

If you try sugarpaste or marzipan, you can:

♠  Buy them at any supermarket, ready to roll.

♠  Colour them with any food colouring (always gel or paste, not liquid).

♠  Roll out them with a non-stick rolling pin. You should add some icing sugar onto the work surface to prevent from sticking. 

♠  Use the same pastry cutters in order to cut the shapes and fit them onto the biscuits perfectly.

♠  Stick them onto the biscuits by using a paintbrush and golden syrup, edible glue… (something sweet and very sticky).

♠  Use several modelling tools to enhance the icing surface.

♠  Add some details (sugar balls, sprinkles, smaller shapes…).

Decorated Biscuits

Preservation

Decorated biscuits can be preserved inside a tin, jar or cellophane bags for a long time (several weeks).

 

Good luck with your biscuits session!

 

Decorated Biscuits

Hello everyone!

How are things going?

I love pastry cutters. There are hundreds of different shapes and sizes. I have some of them, but they are never enough! I always want a new one. I go mad when I go to any cookware store!

Two weeks ago I decided to bake some butter biscuits instead of cupcakes. In that occasion I chose butterflies, hearts, stars, and crinkled cutters, which are some of the basic ones.

                                                     

One of the parts of baking that I like the most is decorating. It’s really amusing and relaxing too! So after baking these biscuits, I decorated them with some marzipan and sugarpaste, following the original shape of each one.

I coloured some marzipan with pink concentrated gel and I used ready to roll coloured sugarpaste (just for some of the biscuits, which only appear in the last picture). As you can see, in order to fit the icing onto the biscuits, I used the same pastry cutters and smaller ones as well. I enhanced the icing surface by using some modelling tools and by adding several marzipan details and sugar balls.

Decorated Biscuits

I tried these butter biscuits with and without icing, and I have to say that they are better with it. They look more beautiful and they are much tastier (just if you like marzipan and sugarpaste, of course!!). Conclusion: from now on, my biscuits will always be decorated! But in my next attempts, I’ll cover them with chocolate or royal icing to compare the results.

Decorated Biscuits

 

Decorated Biscuits

I’ll post the butter biscuits recipe in one of the following posts. So make sure to stay tunned for that!

By the way, don’t be jealous, cupcakes!!

Decorated Biscuits

See you soon!

 

Spaghetti & Meatballs

Hi there!

I’m here again.

What did you have for breakfast today? Do you remember? I had a delicious plate of Spaghetti & Meatballs!! No, I’ve not become mad! It’s true! Have a look:

Some people prefer having sweet food for breakfast (pastries, jam, sugary cereals, fruit…) whilst other people prefer savoury one (sandwiches, buttered toast, crackers, eggs, sausages…). What kind do you prefer? I clearly prefer the first one, haha. So… Why did I have Spaghetti & Meatballs for today’s breakfast? Why this radical change? 

Because actually these Spaghetti & Meatballs are extra sweet!! There is nothing savoury in this dish. No meat, no salt… I’m not kidding! Let me show you: 

Ingredients:    •  Plate = cupcake (see Easy Vanilla Cupcakes)

                     •  Spaghetti = Vanilla buttercream (applied with a small round decorating tip)

                     •  Tomato sauce = Strawberry jam

                     •  Meatballs = Chocolates “Ferrero Rocher

                     •  Grated cheese = Grated white chocolate

My inspiration to make them came from the decorating book “HELLO, CUPCAKE!“. It’s an amazing book which I recommend if you want to create funny cupcakes.

By the way, if you are on a diet, you can eat a tasty plate of plain boiled spaghetti instead, hahaha. 

 

I hope you liked them and try to make them at home.

See you in the next post!

 

Easy Vanilla Buttercream

Hello everyone!

I like buttercream. I like it too much! I usually place a big swirl of vanilla buttercream onto my cupcakes. I love it! Sometimes, if there is leftover buttercream in the piping bag, I can’t resist the temptation… Yummy! ;)

I’m sure that most of you have tried buttercream more than once. But have you ever made it from scratch? A home-made one?

If you follow this simple recipe, as well as the following tips, you can get your own delicious buttercream done within minutes!

Before making buttercream ~~~ Small tips 

 When I make standard buttercream, I like that the proportion of the  icing sugar to be at least the double than the butter (the more icing sugar, the more consistent the final texture is).

◊ Butter temperature is also very important for the final consistency. We must use the butter at room temperature (5-10 minutes outside the fridge, depending on the warmth). If the butter is too warm, the buttercream will be too watery.

 Before switching the mixer on, BE CAREFUL! Cover your mixing bowl with a clean cloth or similar in order to avoid splashing the whole kitchen. Icing sugar spreads very easily.

Now, Let’s cook!

See Recipes Visual Code                                              

Ingredients (for decorating 12 cupcakes)

                  ♦  125 grs                                          ♦  250 grs 

                  ♦  3 tsp                                               ♦  1 tsp  

                               all the ingredients in a mixing bowl

                                             for 4 minutes, ½ speed.

                                                                     

After making buttercream ~~~ Small tips

 You can colour your buttercream in order to get the colour you wish using food colouring (paste colouring is better than the liquid one because doesn’t change the consistence of the buttercream). I’ll talk about food colouring in future posts.

 If you don’t like vanilla flavour, you can use another food flavouring instead of vanilla extract. There are a lot of flavours available, like strawberry, banana, pineapple, almond, rum… 

 If your buttercream isn’t very thick, you can put it some minutes inside the fridge before using it in order to thicken it (but just for a while!). 

 Buttercream can be preserved in an airtight container inside the fridge during a few days. Whenever you want to use this buttercream again, it will be rock hard, so you will need to leave it outside the fridge until it reaches room temperature.

Now, let’s decorate! PIPING BAG

 

See you in the next post!

Easy Vanilla Cupcakes

Hi there!

I’m back again!

As you may know, there are several and nice vanilla cupcakes recipes on the internet, but I’d like to show you one of the easiest, quickest and tastiest recipes out there. It is a basic but appetizing recipe that everybody can try to bake!

Easy Vanilla Cupcakes

This sponge works with a lot of icing combinations (which I’ll show you in next posts). It’s an essential one! To make things easier, I’ll show the recipe in a visual way (see Recipes Visual Code). Anyway, if you put the mousse onto each picture, its name will appear below. Enjoy baking!

Ingredients Vanilla Cupcakes  

Ingredients (for 10-12 cupcakes)

♦  120 grs                               ♦  120 grs 

♦  120 grs                                ♦  1 tsp

♦  2 EGGEGG                                       ♦  2 tsp 

♦  2 tbsp 

 Process

♦ Previous steps

1)  Pre-heat the  OVEN (170º)

2) SIFT  >>   in a separated bowl.

3)      >>   EGG+  in another bowl.

  

 Main steps

4)  >>   +   in a mixing bowl and blend until smooth and creamy. 

5)  Add EGGEGG+  in the previous mixture and for a few seconds.

6)   Add   in the main mixture and until fluffy. 

7)  Add in the mixture and for a few seconds.

8)  Place CUPCAKE CASESinto and fill them with the mixture (only 1/2 way!). 

9)  OVEN Bake for 20-22 minutes (chek them with a cake tester). 

10)  Leave them in the for 5 minutes

11)  Place the cupcakes onto a cooling stand and leave them to cool completely before decorating.

 

How to decorate them?

You can use buttercream, cream cheese, sugar paste, glace icing… A lot of choices! In my next post I’ll show you how to make an easy vanilla buttercream: the perfect combination!

See you in the next recipe!

Recipes Visual CODE

Hello everybody!

When I find a new recipe that I want to try, I usually write the key words in a paper sheet and draw some pictures and arrows in it in order to make the process more clear and quick. It’s like a schema, which is easier for me to follow than a large text. In my opinion, it’s a good way to make it more dynamic and to memorize the recipe.

Due to the previous reason, I’ll show you some of the recipes of this blog in a especial way, by using a quick and visual code. I hope you find it useful!  

Here are the symbols of the basic ingredients, actions and tools.

♦ Ingredients:

 GRANULATED SUGAR                      UNSALTED BUTTER (Room temp.)

 PLAIN WHITE FLOUR                       BAKING POWDER

 EGG   EGG (size M)                                       MILK (semi-skimmed or whole milk)

     VANILLA EXTRACT                          ICING SUGAR

COCOA POWDERCOCOA POWDER                        CREAM CHEESE

 

♦ Actions & Tools:

    To MIX                                            To BEAT

SIFT To SIEVE                                  ROLL OUT To ROLL OUT 

   OVEN  OVEN                                         CUPCAKE CASES  CUPCAKE CASES           

 MUFFIN TRAY                           PIPING BAG PIPING BAG  

  PASTRY CUTTERS          BAKING TRAY

 CAKE TIN ROUND CAKE TIN

          

See you in the next recipe!

Cookie Monster

Hello!

I would like to show you one of my funniest creations so far: Cookie Monster Cupcakes!! Here they are!!

Cookie Monster Cupcakes

In Spain this creature is known as “Monstruo de las Galletas” (it’s a direct translation from English). 

Cookie Monster Cupcakes

Look at these cross-eyed monsters!

Cookie Monster Cupcakes

 

Cookie Monster Cupcakes

 But the authentic cookie monster is the following one: he ate almost all these cupcakes! Even he was photographed with the last one in his own hands! Wink

A & Cookie Monster