Monday 24 March 2014

Mother's Day cake and craft

I can still remember getting up early and picking a bunch of daffodils from the garden. Putting them in a vase and using them to decorate a breakfast tray which I would carefully carry up to my Mum who would still be in bed as a Mother's Day treat. Maybe it's the daffs, or the primroses or the crocuses but for me, Mother's Day always has a yellow hue. So when I was trying to come up with an easy project you to make for your own mums I knew that it had to be yellow.
At the same time that I was mulling this craft project around my head, I was asked by if I would like to try out one of their recipes to give as a Mother's Day present. They have some delicious sounding recipes for you to make, coffee and walnut, rhubarb and ginger tart (this is a recipe I will keep for Father's Day!) and victoria sandwich. However it was the lemon drizzle recipe that really caught my eye, I thought that this would be perfect for my project.

I tinkered a little with the recipe, I baked the cake in two tins (for speed), and I doubled the quantity of mascarpone. I then added four dessert spoons of poppy seeds to the mascarpone, and four dessert spoons of ready made lemon curd (I'm sure the homemade version in the recipe tastes divine, but I really had no time) I filled the cakes with the mixture and also added a layer on the top. The recipe includes a really good tip which is to add the lemon zest while you are creaming together the butter and sugar, this releases the lemon oils into the cake. I will always do it this way from now on. The cake tasted gorgeous! All it needs now is some decoration.

To make the paper wreath

I used three different patterned craft papers, each was double sided and they were all yellow, of course you could use a different colourway if you prefer. Cut out 24 large petals, 30 medium petals,12 small petals and 18 leaves. 

Make a slit in the middle of each petal. With a glue gun glue one side of the petal.

Fold the other side of the petal over the glue. Trim the edges.

Glue the petals together. Use five medium petals to make the centre group of the large flowers and the medium sized flowers, and six small petals to make the small flowers.
Glue six large petals on the outside of four of the medium sized flowers.

Make the centre of the flowers by cutting a strip of paper. Then snip slits along it's length, but not quite to the end, about 3/4 of the way across. Roll the strip around itself.

Glue the roll into the centre of the flower and fan it out.
Cover florists wire with green florist tape and make a circle large enough to fit on the top of your cake.
Glue the flowers onto the wire then glue the leaves onto the bottom of the flowers, this will sandwich the wire in between the flowers and the leaves.
Trim off any threads of glue that are hanging off the flowers and place the wreath on top of the cake.

Give the cake to your Mum and watch her eat it up!

(This is my lovely Mum!)
The bonus to this project is even after the cake has been gobbled up, your mum still has a pretty wreath to hang up!

You can find the recipe here, and you can download the template for the flowers here. have a special page dedicated to Mother's Day gift and homemade food ideas, they also have a sweet app where you can share your  #thanksmum messages which help form a giant flower installation at Kew Gardens (and enter to win a prize). You can find the page here.
Thanks to my Mum for being the model for this project!
Happy Mother's Day!
ps This is not a sponsored post but I did receive Waitrose vouchers to buy the ingredients for the cake.

Saturday 15 March 2014

New Class for Squires

I was very honoured to be asked to go and teach at Squires Kitchen. So I created this pretty two tier cake for the class.

You can find the class details here
I hope that you like it and I'll maybe see you there!

Tuesday 11 March 2014

Pretty painted cookie tutorial

I have created a pdf tutorial for this sweet cookie. The pdf contains the list of equipment, a template and instructions on how to recreate this cookie.

If you wish you can alter the design slightly to make a pretty Mother's Day gift, or you can change the text to say 'Thankyou' or even 'I love You!'.

You can buy the tutorial for £2.50 (Paypal will automatically convert it to your currency). The pdf will be emailed to you in receipt of the payment, if you are in a different time zone it may take longer (because I may be asleep!)
Happy painting.

Monday 10 March 2014

Spring cake

Hurrah, Spring has sprung! After a truly miserable winter we have been basking in some spring sunshine. The birds are flitting about, the trees are blossoming and the daffodils are blooming.

So how fitting is this little spring cake? I made it for a tutorial in the new addition of Pretty Witty Cakes Magazine, which you can download! It's all coming up roses. Well, it may be a bit early for that particular bloom but it's definitely coming up primroses! You can download the magazine here.

Happy painting.

Thursday 6 March 2014

World Book Day 2014

Yes, it's that time of day again! The day mother's around the world dread, when you have to transform your little darlings into the Gruffalo or Hermione or (if you are lucky, like me) a random child from a book who just wears normal clothes.It can only mean one thing...World Book Day!

For the last few years I have made book themed cookies for my kidlet's classes to help celebrate this special day. This year my eldest kidlet moved up to a new school, and even though they are still dressing up I made the executive decision not to make cookies for her class, I'm a bit time poor at the moment.

I asked my littlest kidlet what they had been reading in the class recently, I learnt that they had been bingeing on Roald Dahl...and why not, he's is brilliant and really appeals to the naughtiness of children.
So I made cookies using characters illustrated by Quiten Blake from 'The Twits' and 'George's Marvelous Medicine'.

I hope that your little ones have enjoyed World Book Day and are encouraged to keep reading.

You can see previous World Book Day cookies here, here, here, here and here

Monday 3 March 2014

Hot Cross Pancakes

I know, I know, it's been over a month since I visited Amelie's House, so you can imagine that I am looking very shame faced at the moment...but I do have a good excuse, I have been busy shooting pictures for my book (out next year!). It has been six weeks of very long hours and lots of hard work, but it has been totally worth it, because the pictures look fabulous.
Anyway I am having a few easy weeks for now and I thought it was time to meander back to a comfy sofa and spend some time here, and I have the perfect excuse.
Some time ago OXO sent me an OXO batter dispenser and an OXO flip & fold omelette turner, they challenged me to come up with a fabulous new pancake recipe for Pancake usual I have let it go down to the wire, but you should have all these ingredients in your pantry at home and it is a matter of minutes to whip up these delicious goodies.
Shrove Tuesday marks the start of the Lent period which finishes on Easter day. The supermarkets like to mark this period of time by filling groaning shelves with hot cross buns, a small fruit bread bun traditionally eaten at this time of year. So I thought, why not link these two special days by making some hot cross pancakes?...and even though I say it myself, they are absolutely delicious, I am trying to stick to a wheat-free diet at the moment, but at least five of these little cakes made it past my defenses!


Pancake ingredients (makes 10-12 pancakes)

  • 135g plain flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt
  • 1 teaspoon mixed spice
  • 1 tablespoon light brown sugar
  • 130ml milk
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoon melted butter plus extra for the pan

To make the cross

  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 2 tablespoons plain flour

For the sauce

  • 50g mixed dried fruit
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • grated rind of one lemon
  • 1 tablespoon of lemon juice


  • Put the mixed fruit into a saucepan and cover with boiling water, leave for five minutes then strain. Put the fruit back into the saucepan with the rest of the sauce ingredients and heat gently
  • Sieve the flour, salt, sugar and spice together into a bowl.
  • In a jug lightly beat the milk, egg and melted butter together. Pour onto the dry ingredients and beat together with a whisk or a fork
  • Mix together the milk and flour for the cross, then spoon this batter into a piping bag and cut a small hole in the tip
  • Heat a saucepan and brush the surface with melted butter. 
  • If you have the OXO batter dispenser squeeze out enough batter to form a small pancake, or you can use a spoon.
  • While the pancake is cooking on the first side pipe a cross on it's top. Then flip the pancake over once you see bubbles bursting on the top of the pancake.
  • Pile the pancakes up as high as you can, and then drizzle the sauce over the top.

I cannot stress enough how delicious these pancakes are, so if you have a greedy family you may want to make double quantity.

I hope to be popping in more often with some lovely recipes for you to try.

ps this isn't a sponsored post, but I did receive an OXO batter dispenser and an OXO Flip and turn spatula.