Cake Bake and Sweets Show Melbourne Giveaway!

CBandS Show

Let Melbourne eat cake!

The inaugural Melbourne Cake Bake and Sweets Show will take place at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre on the 3rd to 5th October 2014.

If you have a passion for baking, like myself, or just eating sweets, like Hubby, then you’ll want to head to the event which is devoted to all things baking and the art of baking.  Guests will get the chance to see a line up of some of the best international and home grown baking stars.  Guests like US celebrity chef and TV star Buddy “Cake Boss” Valastro, and one of Australia’s favourite patissiers, Adriano Zumbo, will have live demonstrations.  You can learn all the tricks of the trade.

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At the show you can shop till you drop, taste till you’re full and watch demonstrations or take part in workshops to become an expert.  For tickets and more information visit their website http://www.cakebakeandsweets.com/melbourne/

I’m happy to announce that I have 4 double passes to give away to this fantastic event and it’s easy to enter.  I will choose the winners randomly and contact successful readers via email so please make sure you provide a valid address.

To enter just follow these 2 easy steps:

  • Leave a comment at the bottom of this post stating why you would love to attend the show.
  • Share this post on Facebook and Twitter.

Please note:

  • The competition is open to all readers who can attend the Melbourne event between 3-5 October 2014 (flights and accommodation will not be provided)
  • Competition ends midnight Friday 26th September 2014

I’m excited!

Cherrie

#HobokenStyleBaby

Cheesecake Brownies

cheesecake brownies

When normal brownies are not indulgent enough.

I love this recipe.  I’ve made it a couple of times already as the family loves it.  It’s a Rachel Allen recipe.  I like homely comforting bakes, especially on a slow sunday afternoon.  It fills the house with a lovely aroma.

Give this recipe a go.  It’s a keeper :)

Recipe:

  • 100g butter
  • 100g dark chocolate
  • 125g caster sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 75g self raising flour
  • 1 tbs cocoa powder
  • 100g dark chocolate bits
  • pinch of salt

 

  • cheesecake mixture:
  • 200g cream cheese
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 75g caster sugar

Method:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 180degC
  2. Melt the butter with the dark chocolate in a bain marie, stir
  3. Meanwhile, make the cheesecake mixture by adding the 3 ingredients together in a bowl and stir until smooth and creamy.  Put aside.
  4. When the chocolate is melted add the caster sugar, salt and eggs.  Use a wooden spoon to stir.  Sift the flour and cocoa into the mixture then add the choc bits.  Mix to combine.
  5. Pour the brownie mix into a prepared 20cm square tin.  Make sure it covers the base of the tin.
  6. Add heaped spoons of the cheesecake mixture all over.  Using a butter knife, swirl to marble.
  7. Bake in the oven for 30 to 35 mins.  It’s ready when the sides are set but the middle still has a slight wobble.
  8. Sit at least 20 mins to cool before cutting into it.

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Deanna’s Ice Cream Birthday Party with Harry

Deanna Ice cream birthday party

Do you know it’s International Ice cream month? No? well, you do now…

It just so happens July is also Deanna’s birthday month. What better way to celebrate than having an ice cream party. It doesn’t matter if it’s the middle of winter here in Melbourne, ice cream is always welcome with my family.

Deanna was lucky enough to create her very own flavour to celebrate. Harry’s ice cream asked us to create a flavour that they would make for us in their factory in Brunswick. After many discussions between Deanna and myself, we came up with…

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Cotton Candy ice cream with marshmallow pieces and strawberry swirl. It definitely is a fun flavour with a touch of a princess :)

Along with the Cotton candy ice cream, we were also sent Pavlova and sticky date flavoured ice creams. O.M.G. that sticky date! I had various toppings that our guests were able to add.

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We had our family over to help celebrate and had lots of fun doing it.

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Thanks to Harry’s Ice cream, we were able to have our creation made up in a couple of weeks. It usually takes 6 months of research to develop their perfect flavours before it hits the freezer shelves of Woolworths supermarkets. You can see Harry’s full range here or you can also see my recipe of Leche Flan Ice cream using Harry’s base ice cream recipe here.

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Bon Appetite,

Cherrie

Banana Fudge Layer Cake for Great Food Blogger Bake Off

 

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I think you all must know by now how much I love to bake.  I try to bake at least once a week for my family.  It can be anything from bread to cakes and cupcakes and of course everything in between.

Last month, I invited a group of other food bloggers for a bake off pot luck.  Everyone had to bring a savoury bake and a sweet show topper.  We were all a little nervous and the flurry of tweets and instagrams ( #GFBBO) prior to the gathering showed just that. But just like every other food blogger pot luck, everyone delivered the goods (literally).

For my savoury bake, I baked Paul Hollywood’s bacon and cheddar loaves.  I’ve baked them before and you can find the recipe here.

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I decided to bake a Banana fudge layer cake. I got the recipe from the Great Australian Bake Off cook book but it is also featured in the Great British one.  I just made a tiny change. I added whipped cream in between the layers. I thought it just lightens the whole cake.  This cake is perfect for occasions as it looks spectacular but most importantly, it’s not difficult to make.

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Recipe:

For the sponge:

  • 175g unsalted butter, softened
  • 150g caster sugar
  • 25g brown sugar
  • 3 large eggs at room temperature, beaten
  • 175g self-raising flour
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla paste/extract
  • 3 tsp milk, at room temperature

For the filling and topping:

  • 175g brown sugar
  • 150g unsalted butter
  • 75ml plus 200ml double (or thickened) cream
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 3 ripe bananas, thinly sliced
  • Preheat oven to 180degC.
  1. In a large bowl or electric mixer beat the butter until creamy.  Gradually beat in the 2 sugars until the mixture turns paler in colour and becomes light and fluffy.
  2. Gradually add eggs, beating well after each addition.  Sift the flour into the bowl and fold into the mixture with a large metal spoon.  Combine the vanilla and milk and fold in.
  3. Evenly divide the mixture into 3 x 20cm prepared tins.  Bake for 15-18 minutes or until light golden brown.
  4. Turn the cakes out onto a wire rack and let cool completely.
  5. Meanwhile, make the fudge mixture by putting the sugar, butter and 75ml of cream in a saucepan over a low heat.  Stir frequently until the butter has melted.  Turn up the heat and simmer for 3 minutes, stirring frequently to prevent the mixture from catching on the base of the pan.  Take the pan off the heat and vigorously stir for 30 seconds.  Add the sea salt flakes.  Leave to cool.
  6. Whip the cream until soft peaks
  7. To assemble, spread one third of the cream on top each cake, then layer the banana slices on top of the cream.  Choose one cake to be the top layer and place the banana slices decoratively on top. Now slowly pour or swirl the caramel fudge over the bananas letting some of the caramel drip over the edges.  Now carefully, place each cake on top of each other, making sure it is straight.

Tip: For even cake layers, weigh the cake batter and divide evenly into thirds.

Our savoury table:

savoury collage

 

Our sweet table:

sweet table

 

For pics of what fantastic bakes we had that day look up #GFBBO on twitter and instagram

Bon appetite,

Cherrie

A Cake Decorating Class and an AppliancesOnline.com.au 8th Birthday Competition

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As many readers may know, I love baking and decorating cakes for family and friends.  I’m far from being an expert so any tips and tricks I can get is always welcomed.

I was invited by AppliancesOnline.com.au to attend a cake decorating class at Let Them Eat Cake in South Melbourne.  Owner Christopher Montebello and staff demonstrated their decorating skills and answered all the questions we had.  And trust me, we had plenty.

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Australia’s largest online retailer of appliances is celebrating it’s 8th birthday by launching a national cake decorating competition to find it’s official birthday cake.  The national competition encourages Australians to get creative by baking and decorating an appliance themed cake, to celebrate the birthday.  Entrants will go in the draw to win one of eight sunbeam food processors valued at $399.

To enter, create your cake and upload a picture via Appliances Online Facebook, instagram or twitter. Tag @appliancesAU and use the hashtag #AOLbirthday

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During our class, we were shown how to decorate cake to make it look like a blender. CakeDecoratingClass1

Doesn’t it look real?!

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Christopher also showed us how to write with royal icing.

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Not bad huh?

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Here are some cake decorating tips:

1. Buy fondant pre-made.  It can be difficult to achieve the right consistency when making fondant from scratch.

2. Sketch your concept before you start decorating and keep it simple.  The simplest ideas are often the best.

3. Use fruit or mud cake.  Fondant works best with firm cakes such as fruitcake or mud cake.  Make sure you don’t use sponge cake as it won’t support the weight of the icing.

4. Heat the marzipan.  If you’re using marzipan, take it out of it’s foil package and microwave for about 10 seconds to make it easier to work with.

5. Applying the fondant.  Knead on a clean board that’s been sprinkled with icing sugar.  If adding colour, apply sparingly and knead into the icing.  Roll out with a rolling pin and keep applying sugar throughout the rolling process.  Drape fondant carefully over the cake and then smooth gently with dry hands, starting at the centre of the cake, moving outwards.  Make sure to get rid of any air bubbles. Trim any excess fondant with a sharp knife.

6. Experiment and have fun with leftover marzipan and fondant icing which can be used to create simple figurines and flowers.

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Don’t forget to enter Appliancesonline.com.au’s competition.  Ends December 8th. So get on it now!

Bon Appetite,

Cherrie

Celebration Carrot and Pistachio Cake

Carrotcake2

I love baking for my family and friends be it for an occasion or for the joy of baking for them.  This time, it was my mother in law’s birthday.  We went out for dinner but came home for a slice of this delicious carrot and pistachio birthday cake.

It looks simple but elegant.  It’s a celebration cake because it’s luxurious in flavour and texture.  It’s moist and most importantly, damn delicious.  For a family that does not like eating carrots, I had them eating this cake to the very last crumb.

Thanks to Fleishman Hillard PR co, I had a bag of Wonderful Pistachios in the pantry and I was dying to bake with it.  I came across a carrot cake recipe and I thought to add the pistachios to it.  It was a great idea! It gave the cake a little character.  I love eating pistachios on it’s own so you can imagine how difficult it was for me to shell them without scoffing them all down.  LOL

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Recipe:

  • 275g plain flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp bicarb soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 200g soft dark brown sugar
  • 100g caster sugar
  • 4 eggs, beaten
  • 250ml vegetable oil
  • 1 tbs vanilla paste/extract
  • 450g carrots, peeled and grated
  • 400g can crushed pineapple, well drained
  • 125g Wonderful roasted unsalted pistachios, shelled and chopped
  • 1/4 shredded coconut, toasted
  1. Preheat oven to 180degC (160degC fanforced)
  2. Oil and line 2 x 18cm round baking tins
  3. Combine all the dry ingredients into a large bowl and stir well.
  4. In another bowl, add the eggs, oil and vanilla extract together and then add to the dry ingredients.
  5. Using an electric whisk, blend until all ingredients are well combined.
  6. Stir in the carrot, pineapple and chopped pistachios.
  7. Divide evenly between the two baking tins and bake for 35 to 40 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the middle comes our clean.
  8. Remove from the oven and leave to cool before removing from the tin.
  9. When cool, divide the frosting (recipe below) between the two cakes and layer one cake on top of the other.
  10. Sprinkle the top with the toasted coconut.

Frosting:

  • 175g softened cream cheese
  • 50g softened butter
  • 1 tsp vanilla paste/extract
  • 200g icing sugar, sifted
  • 1-2 tbs milk (if needed
  1. Beat the cream cheese, butter and vanilla paste together until smooth, then gradually beat in the icing sugar until the frosting is smooth.
  2. Add a little milk if it needs loosening it a little.

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Bon Appetite,

Cherrie

Lemon Curd Meringue Cake

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I love lemon curd.  It’s so easy to make.  Sometimes, I just whip it up and serve it in a jar on top a biscuit crumb base and topped with whipped cream.  Like my recipe here.  It can be used as a topping on top of cupcakes as well. Lemon curd can be used in many ways but I think the best way, I found, is in this cake.

I found this recipe in a women’s weekly cookbook and it may look hard to make but it’s actually quite simple.  This is definitely a show stopper!  It can be served as a dessert after dinner or as a sweet treat for afternoon tea.

The cake is best eaten after being  chilled overnight but, hey, who can wait that long?  Not my family, that’s for sure!

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Recipe:

  • 4 egg whites (at room temperature)
  • 1 cup ground almonds
  • 1 cup caster sugar
  • 125g white chocolate, coarsely grated.
  • 1 1/4 cups thickened cream
  1. Preheat oven to 160degC and grease a 24cm springform pan and line base with baking paper.
  2. Beat egg whites and 1/4 cup of the sugar in a small bowl until firm peaks form.  Add remaining sugar and beat on high speed for about 5 minutes or until sugar is dissolved.
  3. Fold the chocolate and ground almonds into the meringue mixture.  Spread mixture into the pan and bake for about 40 minutes.  Cool meringue in the pan.
  4. Beat the cream until soft peaks and fold in the lemon curd (recipe below)
  5. Spoon the curd mixture onto the meringue and refrigerate several overs or overnight until firm.

Lemon curd:

  • 250g cold butter, chopped
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2/3 cup lemon juice
  • 1 1/3 cups caster sugar
  • 2 egg yolks
  1. Place the butter in medium saucepan.  strain the egg yolks into the pan.
  2. Add the remaining ingredients and stir over low heat, without boiling for about 10 minutes or until mixture thickly coats the back of a wooden spoon.
  3. Transfer curd to medium heatproof bowl.  Cover, refrigerate until cold.

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I need to make this again very soon!

Bon appetite,

Cherrie