I have been so busy crafting these past few weeks that there has been no time left over for blogging about it! I’m going to make up for it over the coming weeks with lots of new projects to reveal… and so without further ado, here’s the first one…
A flowerpot birthday cake! What do you think? It was my Mum’s birthday last Friday which, for me, was an excellent excuse for a spot of baking. This year I decided that instead of buying a bouquet of flowers, I would make one with cake and sugarpaste icing!
I began by making a chocolate sponge using Mary Berry’s “Heavenly chocolate cake recipe” from her Complete Cookbook. I don’t often make chocolate cake and so I spent quite a while scouring the internet for recipes. With the current series of the Great British Bake Off in mind, Mary Berry’s recipe seemed a natural choice! As directed, I used a deep 20cm cake tin, resulting in a one-tin bake which I later cut in two using a new toy – a cake leveller from one of my favourite shops, Lakeland! It certainly made the job of slicing the cake so much easier – not to mention resulting in a very even and level split between the two cake halves.
After slicing, I filled and topped the sponge sandwich with chocolate fudge icing and placed it on a cake board (which I had already iced using a thin layer of yellow sugarpaste). Now the really fun bit could begin!
First, for the terracotta flowerpot I had to mix the icing colour myself as, not surprisingly, it isn’t a colour readily available to buy pre-made. I had a spot of green (left over from the leaves) and some pre-coloured orange (used in my previous basketball design) which combined to give a lovely warm brown colour, perfect for the flowerpot.
I had great fun designing the top of the cake. The flowers, leaves and butterflies were all produced using icing cutters before being left to dry out slightly (which meant that they held their shape when placed onto the cake). I made the roses using a series of icing discs pinched together. A simple “how to” guide can be found here.
I have to say, I loved making this cake. It did take quite a long time – about six hours from start to finish – and it was a massive project for a Thursday evening after work but it was certainly worth it in the end! My Mum loved the design and it was declared very tasty by all!
So here’s what was left of the flowerpot by Friday night. I’m taking that as a sign of a successful bake and a good party!
Happy Birthday Mum!
Mrs D xx