Baking made simple · cake · It's a piece of cake

It’s like Play-doh; Modelling Fondant

I just love using modelling fondant. It takes me back to my childhood…… playing with play-doh 😍. Remember those days, being creative and mixing up colours? Well you can still be a kid😁. I get my son involved too. When I’m making leaves, we spend time in the garden picking leaves together. It’s so simple, no tools needed! Just press (so the veins of the leaf appear) the leaf against rolled out green fondant. Cut around it, fold it down the middle and let it dry upside down. Use a folded paper for it to rest against.

Not only is it fun to work with, but you get to use it, to decorate your cakes. I tend to make mine a week before I actually need it. This gives me time to play around with the colours, shapes and sizes. Without stressing about baking and icing the cake. It is also a great way, to help make a cake look complete and alive.

To help you use fondant. I have pulled together a few tips:

1. Make sure it is modelling fondant you are using, and not fondant you use to roll out on a cake. The latter fondant, will not harden and may collapse in the heat. It can also feel sticky and difficult to keep its shape.

2. You can buy different colours of modelling fondant. But a lot of the time, you will need to mix colours to make the desired figures. You can mix two different coloured fondants together, to give the colour you want. Or add a little gel paste food colouring. To ensure you get an equal colour throughout, roll the fondant in a ball in your hands and keep stretching it and rolling it into a ball until you have an equal colour throughout.

3. Once I have opened a packet, if I don’t use all the fondant. I wrap it really well in cling film. This keeps it airtight and reusable. If you don’t do this you will have fondant that is gritty, and unusable.

4. It’s fine if it feels hard to start with. Don’t worry as you work it with your warm hands it will become softer. If it feels too soft to work with, just pop it in the fridge for 10-15 minutes.

5. If you do not like your model. You can just take it apart or bits off, and start again. That’s the beauty of modelling fondant 😅

Look at my Pudsey bear the first time I did it. He came out so fat, so I managed to slim him down.

6. Once you are happy with your model; to harden it, let it air dry. Sometimes that is not enough. So pop it in the oven with the light on for about 10-15mins. Make sure you don’t put the heat on.

7. Store them in an airtight container. They should stay hard and easy to put on your cake.

Check out my video on how to make roses fondant roses. Have fun!! You can do this with the kids… as long as they are not eating it at the same time.

Baking made simple · cake

Autumn basket of carrot cake

 

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“Autumn is in the air, with a moist carrot cake”

What better way to get your spirits up, with the end of Summer. Than to have that warm smell of toasted nuts and cinnamon spices. And of course an autumn vegetable, like carrots. To give you a delicious moist carrot cake. 😋

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To get the aromas in the kitchen. Toast the walnuts before you add it to the cake. Just make them golden, so watch them closely to avoid them burning. Another option of nuts to use are pecans 😋 or try out your favourite nut and share!

The only thing that takes long to prepare, is grating the carrots. Other than that mix everything together. If you don’t have an electric mixer it’s easy to mix by hand too.

I’ve added buttermilk to my recipe, as an extra touch to give that added moistness.

I’ve also reduced the sugar quantity in this recipe. I found having both caster sugar and light brown sugar, can make the cake too sweet if too much is added.

For the frosting I recommend a soft frosting in between the layers. But if you are going to do piping decorations. Use a frosting with more butter and icing sugar. As it holds better, making piping patterns on the cake later easier to hold its shape. While I was piping the basket onto the cake. I had to put the cake and frosting in the fridge half way during piping to cool the mixture down. I think my kitchen was too hot on that day too. So definitely keep space in your fridge.

Ingredients for cake
400g plain flour
200g caster sugar
200g light brown sugar
450ml sunflower oil
2& 1/2 tsp cinnamon powder
1/2 tsp salt
5 eggs
500g carrots
2 tbsp buttermilk
1/2 tsp Bicarbonate soda
1& 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp Vanilla extract
150g walnuts

Cream cheese frosting inside layers
250g cream cheese
50g butter
25g icing sugar
Few drops of vanilla extract

Cream cheese frosting for piping
250g cream cheese
120g butter
4 cups icing sugar
Few drops of vanilla extract
Gel paste food colouring to give the colour on the basket

 

1. Set your oven to 160 degrees Celsius and grease 2 round tins
2. Grate the carrots
3. Chop the walnuts and roast on a frying pan. (Make sure they don’t burn).
4. Mix together the flour, brown sugar, caster sugar, cinnamon, salt, baking powder, soda bicarbonate.
5. Mix in the oil and vanilla extract.
6. Whisk separately the eggs and add to the mixture. Along with the buttermilk.
7. Once the mixture is mixed well. Stir in with a spoon the carrots and walnuts.
8. Pour the mixture in your greased trays making sure equal quantities in both.

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9. Put in the oven for an hour to 1hour and 10 mins. Check with a knife that’s it’s baked before you take it out.
10. Once cooled level the cakes with a knife.

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Cream cheese frosting
1. Mix the cream cheese, icing sugar, butter and vanilla extract. Put the non piping one in between the layers.

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Look out for my blog in the week on how to decorate this moist cake🤗