Monthly Archives: November 2009

5th birthday – horses

Fleur was 5 this week and had a birthday party on Saturday with a horse theme.  My good friend and neighbour Wendy (who has been a bit of a regular addition to sugar paste evenings) once again came to my rescue with her insider knowlege of horses and ponies.   I thought these were really lovely and am really grateful for all Wendy’s hard work.

Christmas cake decorating

  An old school friend of Phil’s brought me a fruit cake to ice and decorate for her kids’ preschool fete.  So I had a bit of fun not having to worry about the cake itself and just icing it – I cheated and bought ready rolled icing but it was brilliant and so easy to place on top of the marzipan. I might have a go at doing my own christmas cake now!                  


Florist cupcakes

 Another architect friend of mine asked me to make his wife a few cakes for her birthday last week. Fortunately this time there was no structural engineering required.  His only requests were for the cake to be pear and ginger and for bright colours.

His wife is a florist so I made some of the little flower pots with flowers in and a range of bright flowers to top the cakes. I really like the flower pot cakes, I might have to make some in large size too.

Really nice batch of cakes to make and I think ginger and pear worked although the pear could have been swirled in the batter rather than mixed in completely as it changed the texture of the cake slightly.

Mag’s 60th

Our lovely friend and neighbour Margaret (Aunty Mags) was 60 years old last week and her partner Amy asked me to make her a nice sponge cake to cut at her party.  Her only requests were orange white and green as the colours of the Irish flag. This cake may not have looked that perfect but oh boy did it taste nice, it was light and spongey with jam in the middle. Definitely one of my better tasting cakes. We also managed to get about 30 slices out of it as well.

Just in case there wasn’t enough cake to go around I made a few cupcakes too!

Happy Birthday Margaret, Eva and me!

Gingerbread House – cake disaster

This was a gingerbread house cake I made for a friend at work.  I had been really looking forward to doing this and although I was quite pleased with it – the flower pots and Wendy’s squirrels were my favourites – I think the house could have been prettier.

All of that was, however, academic as, by the time I reached work to give it to her, the cake had subsided and collapsed into the garden.  I’ve never been so mortified in all my life and particularly as I was giving this cake to an architect…How embarasing.  I have learnt a lot doing this cake. Deliveries by tube and train don’t work.

Apparently she managed to make it look ok for Cecily’s party.


My sister in law asked me if I wanted to have a stall at her kids’ pre school Chistmas fair so I though it was a good opportunity to have a go and see if I’d like doing a stall.

It wasn’t the most productive night with rain and probably the recession keeping people away but I was next to a fantastic lady callled Lyn who was brilliant at giving me lots of advice and contacts for stalls. My sister made the lovely stall decorations and, despite the background being awful to photograph I was quite happy with the stall.

I made triple chocolate, mince pie, vanilla and ginger cupcakes, gingerbread biscuits, oaty fruity biscuits, apple and cinnamon slices and snowball meringues.

Christmas decorations by Sarah Morpeth

80th Party

An ex colleague at work asked me to make a cake for her father’s 80th Birthday party.  I hadn’t done a fondant covered cake before and after a practise session this was my first attempt.  I was quite pleased with it although it wasn’t my favourite cake to make so far. The cupcakes were nice though! I liked the blue white and red theme. I added a few handmade roses in as well.


We had our first house party on Saturday night as Phil wanted to do a ‘Chilli Con Carnival’ which was also Halloween.  45 of our friends and neighbours joined us to eat lots chilli, cakes and puddings and go on what must be one of the biggest trick or treat groups our street has ever seen!


It was great fun and the kids managed to stay up all evening having fun with their friends or entertaining the adults with apple bobbling.  I didn’t have very much time to decorate the cakes so did some really quick and easy toppings.  Next year I’d like to have a go at something a bit more exciting!  White cases were vanilla with a dollop of strawberry jam and brown cases were gluten free mocha.

The home made punch went down really well and we will be putting our empties out with embarrassment on Friday!

Thanks to all who came and made it such a brilliant night.

Mocha cupcakes

My friend Emily was leaving our team so I made her a batch of mocha cakes to say thank you for all the hard work she has done over the last year.

IMG_0863These were my first mocha and I wasn’tsure how much coffee extract to use to ensure a good balance. I used Camp coffee because it reminds me of my childhood and I’ve read (somewhere!) that it’s a great coffee flavouring for cakes. Mostly people couldn’t taste the coffee though. Hmm. I topped them off with a coffee bean from Hylands Farmer’s Market we picked up the other weekend.  The white wrappers were gluten free, the brown wrappers were normal. Actually I thought the gluten free ones were nicer!