home made cakes for special days and elevenses

Sunday, 29 July 2012

English Country Garden Cupcakes - Calendar Cakes

I had great fun making these lovely garden cupcakes for a first birthday this weekend. The theme was 'English Country Garden' and the song I remember from childhood (Country Gardens) became an earworm whilst making all the decorations. I think maybe I played it on the recorder long ago at my Cornish primary school.

I made snails, caterpillars, ladybirds, bees and butterflies as well as some traditional English flowers such as daisies, primroses, and hydrangeas. I also made some mini bugs to decorate cake pops.

I made the mistake of playing the song to my daughter on You Tube and now she is skipping around the house singing it too.

I'm sending these over to Dolly of Dolly Bakes for the monthly blogging event that she hosts with Laura from Laura Loves Cakes. The theme for August's Calendar Cakes is British Summertime, and these fit the bill perfectly.

Friday, 27 July 2012

Tea Time Treats - Janie's Flapjacks

On our recent Italian holiday my mother-in-law brought along a box of home made flapjacks, which were a huge hit with the kids. Flapjacks are perfect for picnics so given that the sun has been out in full force this week I thought it a good time to make some. I have adapted Jane's recipe a little, but not so much that the kids would object.

140g butter
2tbs golden syrup
2tbs honey
100g soft brown sugar
300g rolled oats
1tbs sesame seeds
2tbs pumpkin seeds
2tbs chopped, dried apricots
1tbs dried cranberries

Melt the butter, golden syrup, honey and sugar together in a saucepan. Stir in all the remaining ingredients and press into a lined tin (24 x 18cm or 21cm square).

Bake in a fan oven at 170 degrees for 20-25 minutes. Leave to cool in the tin before slicing.

Despite the seeds and fruit I can't claim that these are healthy, but they are delicious, and this is such an easy recipe that it really is worth a go. I might try some with coconut next time, and perhaps some fresh blueberries.

I'm sending these over to Karen (Lavender and Lovage) and Kate (What Kate Baked) for their Teatime Treats challenge as these would be great for a cake stall at a summer fete.

Tuesday, 10 July 2012

Olympic Penguins

Things have been a little busy at Vanilla Frost HQ over the last few weeks, and my poor old blog has been a bit neglected. I have also been failing to enter any of the lovely blog challenges that take place each month. Luckily one of my orders from last week fits nicely with this month's theme for the Calendar Cakes challenge, and so I can join in with the fun. Laura and Dolly have chosen the Olympics as the theme for July (well it couldn't very well be anything else!), and asked us all to send in our appropriately themed bakes. Mine is a cake featuring penguins as Olympic athletes. It's a bit random, but the birthday boy loves penguins and his mum wanted to make the cake a bit more suited to the time of year.

It's not easy to make a penguin look as though he is running! I'm not sure I succeeded, but it's fun anyway.

Pop over to Laura Loves Cakes and Dolly Bakes to see more information on the Calendar Cakes Challenge, and for a round up of all the entries at the end of July.