Halloween mishaps and frankendoughnuts

This recipe almost didn’t happen. There were two versions of this recipe that didn’t make it to the blog (simply because they were devoured, so I couldn’t take photos of them) and when I’d made this batch and piped them all nicely into their moulds, the oven wouldn’t light.

You read right, I’ve ovened my oven oblivion. *insert crying emoji here*

halloween doughnuts four

Lemon lime layer cake and morning tea

wholeA friend and her mum held a morning tea yesterday. Not just any morning tea, it was Australia’s Biggest Morning Tea. For those of you unfamiliar with the concept, it’s a cute idea initiated by the Cancer Council to help raise money to beat Cancer.

You make some cakes/pastries/other delicious things, you invite your friends to do the same thing and you get together and eat, laugh and chat, then leave a little money behind to go towards a great cause. It’s a great excuse to go all out on decorations and use your best tea cups. The fabulous event I attended raised almost $2,000 for the cause, and it was ridiculously cute; everybody wins! The theme was yellow, hence the citrusy approach, and I’m so glad I made it; I forget how much I love super tart curd!

Marshmallow bunnies and Easter excitement

huddleGuys. I’m so excited about Easter. I ate a Crème Egg last night and I can’t contain the excitement any longer. As soon as I cave and eat an Easter egg, I can’t help but get excited. The Easter flood gates have officially opened!

This year’s Easter is going to be quieter than years gone by; we don’t have much planned. My cousins usually bring their kids over, which results in much cuteness (see instagram for exhibit A)

Decorating a cake with fresh flowers

sceneCakes covered in real flowers are awesome. Naked cakes are super popular at the moment, and with those rustic, cutesy cakes have come flowers – big, small, pastel, bold, spiky, flowing…you get the point. Combining delicious cake with gorgeous flowers is a glorious idea, but the concept can seem foreign to some people, so I’ve put together some tips to help you take your cake to the next level.

Most of these steps are aimed at making sure that your flowers are safe to be placed on a cake – you don’t want nasties getting on your beautiful cake.

Giant vanilla cake and gratitude

sceneA little bit of gratitude goes a long way. I deal with lots of people through Baking with Gab, and I love that it puts me in contact with amazing, creative, kind people. Like Bianca from Communicake It, or Meredith from DeeDub Designs, or the lovely duo from TTotaler.

I strive to be positive and pleasant in all of the dealings with people who come into contact with the blog (and even those who don’t!) It’s just good practice.

Chocolate cups with blueberry cream and romance

edible heartsI’m not really one for Valentine’s Day. I’ve never been keen on red roses, I’m not a fan of the clichés. I’m really not much of a romantic at all. When asked the other day about the most romantic thing the Boy had ever done for me, my response was that he got me Daisy for my birthday.

My idea of romance involves sausage dogs. Yup.

Champagne pop rocks cake and New Year’s Eve

aboveThis cake is an occasion cake. It’s two-tiered, it’s got champagne in it, and POP ROCKS! All those components make it just a little bit more special than the average cake. This cake really embodies New Year’s Eve traditions to me – it’s fun and unexpected, it’s got a little bit of champagne in it, and the pop rocks are like little fireworks for your taste buds.

Chocolate spider webs and lacking fondant skills

freshOne thing I notice about lots of Halloween-themed baked goods is that they often require fondant skills – something that I definitely don’t have. While I wish that I had the dexterity to craft mini pumpkins or witches hats out of fondant, I just don’t. So I stick to basic decorations… chocolate I can work with! The great thing about these spider webs is that you don’t even need a piping bag, you can just use a snaplock bag.

Choc chip pumpkin cupcakes and Halloween desserts

fourI mentioned in my previous post that my parents didn’t consider Halloween a very Australian holiday. And I’ve inherited this view to some extent.

It’s odd trying to translate the dark, spooky images that permeate the idea American Halloween to Australia’s October, when the weather is mostly sunny and warm. It doesn’t stop me wanting to make Halloween-themed goodies, though!

So for this year’s Halloween, I’m focussing on another thing that I equate with the American Halloween; pumpkin. I remember making a pumpkin pie for my family, years ago, and they all cringed at the idea of it. It was delicious (how modest of me…) but pumpkin and dessert don’t often meet in Australia.

The Boy’s Nutella birthday cake and 4WDs

sceneIt was The Boy’s birthday on Friday and all he asked for was an “epic cake.” I always make him a birthday cake, so that was no big deal, but having it prefixed with the word epic made the task slightly more daunting.

I love baking, but presentation isn’t always my strongest point – I value taste over looks!

The Boy is a big fan of 4WDing (and I’ve played dutiful partner and tagged along before), so I decided to give him a 4WD themed cake. In the end it wasn’t hard, we just ended up with massive amounts of cake. Like, three tiers of cake. I know what I’ll be eating for the next week…