The last 48 hours of my life have been amazing fun. In case you missed my Instagram/Twitter/Facebook frenzy, I was at the Cake Bake and Sweets Show at Olympic Park. I’m so excited to share everything with you that I’m not even posting a recipe today!
Not only was I able to sample a million different little things, I was able to chat to people who are passionate about their food – it was just lovely. I was super strict about what I bought because I already have a ridiculous amount of baking paraphernalia, and I still had a good time. Maybe all the sugar from the free samples tainted my view…the 6 pack of macaroons I purchased probably helped too.
Sugar rush aside, here are four amazing Australian/NZ producers that you should love (because I do now):
- Heilala Vanilla – simple, delicious vanilla products. Their stall smelled amazing. And they were giving away delicious vanilla marshmallows!
- Caramelicious – Soft, buttery, French artisanal caramel made in Australia. I’ve already eaten half of my jar of vanilla caramel by the spoonful.
- Kettle Town – beautiful tea in beautiful packaging, all blended in Australia. Try the blueberry blossoms black tea.
- Byron Bay Chocolate Company – delicious, Australian fruit and nuts covered in chocolate. Little indulgences sold by a chocolate loving duo.
I also visited the ever-friendly Bianca at her Communicake It stand. She was super busy chatting to people about her gorgeous cake toppers, but not too busy to point out that Norman had made an appearance at her stall. I was pretty happy, Norman is well on his way to super stardom.
And then there were the demonstrations!! I saw some amazing bakers and soaked up every tidbit of information they were offering. It was humbling listening to each of the bakers and getting an insight into their style of baking.
I watched Dan Lepard craft gorgeous hamburger buns (tip: add 1 tbps of cornflour to the mixture to keep them super soft), marvelled as Zumbo created an apple pie macaroon (tip: don’t over-stir sugar syrup once sugar has dissolved), fell in love with Rowie Dillon for her enthusiasm for gluten free cooking (tip: gluten free flours can’t simply be substituted for wheat flours in recipes) and swooned in two separate demos by Eric Lanlard (tip: don’t bake with cooking section chocolate, go to the confectionary aisle.) I loved how Lanlard was so gesticulative as he was making his beautiful cakes, so I put together a montage of him busting a move.
I also watched Chef Duff create some frozen desserts using liquid nitrogen. He was a fantastic performer and had Eric Lanlard help him up on stage for most of his set. I assume Duff’s tip of the day would have been “don’t cook with liquid nitrogen” – things did not go as smoothly as he had planned! I was amazed that the glass bowl of the KitchenAid stand mixer he was pouring litre upon litre of liquid nitrogen into didn’t break. If not entirely successful, Duff’s demo was thoroughly entertaining.
Over two days I attended as many demos as I could and revelled in the buzz that filled the building. There’s only one more day left of it (Sunday, March 23rd), so if you’re baking mad, sweet-toothed or want to be inspired by enthusiastic foodies, get yourself to Olympic Park!
Head to the Cake Bake and Sweets Show website if you’ve not got tickets yet.
Two days was not enough time to take advantage of everything that was on offer at the Cake Bake and Sweets Show. Personally, I can’t wait to do it again next year.
Ps I apologise for the quality of the pictures, they were on my iPhone and I was pretty overexcited for the majority of the show.
Pps normal Baking with Gab recipes will resume tomorrow, once I’ve calmed down sufficiently and figured out what I want to bake first in light of all the inspiration.