Paper Doily Bakes: Lemon Layer Cake

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Happy Thursday all! Those of you who have been reading my blog for some time will know how much I love baking. Are you one of those bakers who has a certain speciality in the kitchen? My speciality used to be cupcakes, but nowadays I seem to get so much more excited from layer cakes (terrible for my waistline, I know!) I first tried my first slice of lemon cake last year in a local cafe. It was truly delicious and I kept going back for more. Fast forward a few months later and they stopped baking it. I thought I’d try baking it myself at home as I was hosting a small party. It was such a success and it was truly enjoyed by all. I’ve been making it ever since and it’s become a regular in this household! Would you like to know the recipe? Read on!

Firstly, I have two variations depending on how I’m feeling. Both versions are layer cakes made using the same sponge recipe but I alternate the icing technique.

One version is a lemon drizzle topping with small individual swirls of buttercream and sprinkles for decoration, alongside a few tablespoons of lemon curd and full layer of buttercream in between the sponge layers. (shown in the first photo above)

If I’m feeling like making the other version, I replace the lemon drizzle topping with a full layer of buttercream. I place a few tablespoons of lemon curd in between the sponge layers, alongside a second layer of buttercream. I finish this off with some sugarpaste flowers and sprinkles to give it a bit of colour. (shown in the first two photo’s below)

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Feeling inspired? Here’s the recipe…..

Ingredients

For the Cake:

Butter 250g, plus a little extra for greasing the tin

Golden Caster Sugar, sifted 250g

Self-Raising Flour, sifted 250g

Baking Powder, sifted 1 tsp

Organic Free Range Eggs 4 large

Lemons 2, zested

Semi Skimmed or Whole Milk, 1 tbsp

Choose either of the following:

For the Filling and Topping of the Lemon Drizzle/Buttercream Swirls Version:

Lemons 4 (2 for the buttercream icing, 2 for the lemon drizzle)

Caster Sugar 85g

Butter 125g

Icing Sugar, sifted 250g

Lemon Curd 4 tbsp

Cake Sprinkles

For the Filling and Topping of the Buttercream/Sugarcraft Flowers Version:

Butter 250g

Icing Sugar, sifted 500g

Lemons 3, zested and juiced

Lemon Curd 4 tbsp

Sugarcraft Flowers and/or Cake Sprinkles

Piping Bag and Star Nozzle

Method

Step 1

Heat the oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4. Butter, line and flour the bases of 2 x 20cm sandwich tins. Beat the butter, sugar, flour, baking powder, eggs and lemon zest together until your batter is of a smooth consistency. Add the milk slowly until the cake batter glides off of a spoon.

Step 2 

Divide the mixture between the two tins and bake for 20-25 minutes. When they’re ready, a skewer or cake tester poked in should come out clean. Cool on wire racks for 5 minutes.

Step 3

Choose either of the following:

For the Filling and Topping of the Lemon Drizzle/Buttercream Swirls Version:

Make the icing by beating the soft butter with the icing sugar, lemon zest and juice from 2 lemons until light and fluffy. Spread half of this mixture over the top of the cake. Spread the lemon curd on top of this.

Take your second layer and place this on top. Gently prick this top layer all over with a skewer or fork.

Make the lemon drizzle topping by mixing together the lemon juice of 2 remaining lemons, alongside the caster sugar. Pour the drizzle over the cake, the juice will sink into it and the sugar will form a sweet, crisp topping.

Once the lemon drizzle topping has set, insert the star nozzle into the piping bag and fill this with the remaining buttercream icing. Make a series of small buttercream swirls around the outside of the cake. Add sprinkle/s to each swirl if you wish.

For the Filling and Topping of the Buttercream/Sugarcraft Flowers Version:

Make the icing by beating the soft butter with the icing sugar, lemon zest and juice until light and fluffy.

Divide the buttercream icing into half. Spread one half of it over the bottom layer of the cake. Spread the lemon curd on top of this.

Take the other layer and place it on top of the layer you’ve just finished. Gently spread the remaining buttercream on top of this layer. Decorate with sprinkles and/or sugarcraft flowers.

Voila! Enjoy. If you’ve made this cake, do let me know as I’d love to see it and hear your feedback. You can share photographs of your creation on my Facebook page if you like. Happy baking and see you soon!

 

 

 

Paper Doily Bakes: How to make the perfect Victoria sponge cake

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Andrew, my husband recently celebrated his birthday and requested his favourite cake. He absolutely adores Victoria sponge cake and so do I for that matter. I’ve made many Victoria sponge cakes over the past few years and I’ve built up a certain technique due to all of that practice! You know what they say about practice making perfect! The last one I made was actually the best one in a long time, so I just had to share the results with you.

If you’re planning an afternoon tea party, yummy dessert table or just wanting to bake for a special someone, then this cake is a very good option. It’s very simple to make using my method and it’s a versatile bake. You can add fresh strawberries to it for extra deliciousness and also add flowers for decoration. You can also pipe some buttercream swirls on the top of the cake if you’re feeling in a decorative mood. You can add different flavours of jam or replace the jam with lemon curd. Why not? For this blog post though, I’ll be giving you my recipe for the classic version.

Ingredients

200g caster sugar

200g softened butter, at room temperature

4 eggs, beaten

200g self raising flour

1 tsp baking powder

2 tbsp milk

For the filling

100g butter, softened

140g icing sugar

1 tsp vanilla extract (optional)

4 tbsp strawberry or raspberry jam

icing sugar, to decorate

Method

  1. Heat the oven to 190C/fan 170C/gas 5. Grease and line two 20 centimetre sandwich tins. Soften the butter and sugar until the mixture is of a creamy, pale consistency. Slowly add the beaten eggs and milk. Sift the flour and baking powder into the mixture. Gently mix until all of the ingredients together until fully combined. If using a mixer, don’t mix for longer than 2 minutes to avoid over mixing.
  2. Divide the mixture between the prepared tins. Smooth the surface with a spatula or the back of a spoon, then bake for 20 minutes until golden and the cake springs back when pressed. Leave the cakes in their tins for 5 minutes, before turning out on a wire rack to cool completely.
  3. To make the filling, beat the butter until smooth and creamy and slowly sift the icing sugar into the mixture. Beat in the vanilla extract if you’re using it. Spread the jam over the bottom layer of the cake using a palette knife. Take a piping back and large star nozzle and pipe stars/shells on top of the jam across the entire bottom layer of the cake, leaving a bit of room around the outside. Carefully place the top layer of the cake on top of this layer. If you don’t have the piping tools, you can use your palette knife to spread the buttercream on the underside of the remaining layer, before sandwiching both layers together. Dust the top of the cake with icing sugar. Your cake will keep in an airtight container for 2 days.

Enjoy and do let me know if you decide to use my recipe. I’d love to hear your thoughts and see your pictures.

Mini Glazed Ring Doughnuts Recipe

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After spending hours on Pinterest drooling over mini glazed ring doughnuts, it only felt right to buy a doughnut mould and get straight into the kitchen. With my best baking materials and apron at the ready, I began the bake. I was a little nervous at first, as I think doughnuts can look like a tricky, fiddly bake. Let me tell you that this isn’t true in the slightest. The doughnut mould makes the process incredibly easy and I think the outcome looks very impressive if I do say so myself. They are definitely fit for a special party, or even as cute little wedding favours placed in mini glassine bags. If only I had thought about that for my own wedding!

Anyway, if they look like your kind of thing and I’ve inspired you to have a go, please follow my recipe below. I would love, love, love to hear from you if you baked them using this recipe. This is the perfect recipe for a lazy Saturday. It’s also very well suited to those who have a moment of last minute panic when realising that there are no sugary treats in the house!

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To make these little bites of deliciousness, you’ll need:

Ingredients

150ml (5 fl oz) milk

1 large egg (US – extra large)

30g unsalted butter (1oz)

1 tsp vanilla extract

175g plain flour (6oz/ 1 1/2 cups)

75g caster sugar (superfine) (2 1/2 oz/ 1/3 cup)

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp salt

1 tsp cinnamon

For the glaze:

225g icing sugar (8oz/ 1½ cups) (confectioners sugar)

A small selection of food colourings and sprinkles

2 – 3 1/2 tbs water

This recipe makes 48 mini doughnuts.

Method

1. Preheat the oven to 170C and lightly spray or butter a 12 hole mini doughnut mould. Beat the egg, butter, milk and vanilla extract until fully combined.

2. Sift the sugar, baking powder, flour, salt and cinnamon into another bowl and mix to combine.

3. Add the flour mixture to the egg mixture and briefly whisk until combined.

4. Unless you have multiple doughnut moulds, you’ll need to make 12 doughnuts at a time. Just simply clean the mould after each batch is finished and re grease it with the butter or spray.

5. Bake in the oven for 10 minutes, or until light brown.

6. Remove the doughnuts from the mould and allow to cool on a cooling rack. You may need to gently use a small pallet knife before turning out.

7. To make the glaze, whisk the icing sugar and water together. Choose your food colouring and divide your icing mixture into multiple bowls, dependent on how many colours you decide. Take a cocktail stick and dip this into the food colouring, before placing it into each bowl and stirring the colouring with a spoon.

8. Before moving onto the next stage, place a large piece of foil or baking parchment under the wire rack, to capture excess drips/icing/sprinkles.

9. Once icing has been fully mixed and coloured, dip one side of each doughnut into the glaze. Shake off any excess icing.

10. Decorate with sprinkles and enjoy!

A polite reminder: Images ©Paper Doily Party Shop and should not be reproduced or used without credit.

Paper Doily Bakes: Malteser Chocolate Cake Recipe

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We welcomed family into our home for dinner today, and I decided that it was the perfect opportunity for some chocolate cake recipe testing! I absolutely love chocolate cake, and think it’s the perfect kind of cake for any special social gathering or party. It’s simple to make, it’s a crowd pleaser and it is super versatile in the way that it can be modified or decorated to suit different tastes and requirements. Place it on top of a beautiful cake stand, polkadot doily and tablecloth, and you have yourself something absolutely delightful!

Obviously it’s fairly clear that chocolate cake is not groundbreaking stuff, and certainly hasn’t been invented by me (sadly), but there are so many variations of it and so many different recipes out there. My bookshelf is overflowing with baking books, so I’m guessing I probably have about 30 different chocolate cake recipes. Over time, I’ve tried and tested many of them, often sprawling hand drawn notes all over the pages. This recipe has derived from all of those little notes, alongside all of the baking mishaps I’ve suffered along the way to get to this point! (I’ll spare you the details!) If you feel like having a try, or you are baking for a special occasion, pop some music on, grab an apron and some pretty spatulas and have some fun with my recipe.

Ingredients

For the Cake

230g soft butter, plus extra for greasing

230g caster sugar

3 large eggs

180g self raising flour

60g cocoa powder

1 level teaspoon baking powder

For the Filling and Topping

350g icing sugar

80g cocoa powder

100g soft butter

4 tablespoons milk, to mix

To Decorate

Chocolate balls such as maltesers, if you’re looking for something similar to my cake. If not, you can use simple sprinkles or other cake decoration.

You will need:

Two 20cm round sandwich cake tins, greased with butter and lined with baking parchment

Makes 1 medium-large cake (serves 8-10)

Method

1) Pre heat the oven to 180c (gas mark 4)

2) Place the butter and sugar in a mixing bowl. With an electric mix or a wooden spoon, cream them together until they are fluffy and pale. Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Do not mix for anything over 2 minutes, as the sponge needs to be airy when baked.

3) Measure the cocoa powder, flour and baking powder and sift into the bowl. Fold this in gently, preferably with a large metal spoon, until all of the ingredients are evenly combined.

4) Divide the mixture between your 2 prepared tins. At this point, you may want to use some weighing scales to ensure even dividing. Bake in a pre heated oven for 20-25 minutes, or until fully cooked through. (Inserting a cake tester or knife into the centre of the cake is a good indication on whether it is cooked through. The cake tester/knife should come out completely clean if it is cooked)

5) Leave the cakes to cool in their tins for 10 minutes. After this time, turn them out onto a wire rack and leave to cool completely for approximately 30 minutes or longer. Do not ice the cake until fully cooled, or a baking disaster may strike!

6) Mix all of the filling and topping ingredients (apart from the milk) together in a large bowl and mix until smooth. The milk should be added 1 tablespoon at a time, should the icing need loosening.

7) Spread half of the icing on one layer of the cake, which will make the buttercream centre. Take the remaining cake and place on top of this layer. Carefully spread the remaining icing on the top of the cake. Decorate with maltesers, or other chocolate/sprinkles of your choice.

The cake can be made the day before and will still taste delightful if stored in airtight containers or tins, but if possible, ice on the day of the event for added freshness.

Enjoy!