Sunday, 19 May 2013

World Baking Day - 19 May 2013

In anticipation of World Baking Day today, last night I received a mysterious wrapped up parcel from I Love Baking SA, which once unlocked, was a box full of ingredients and a challenge for me to #bakebrave and try out a particular recipe. In my box were all the ingredients for Raspberry and White Chocolate cupcakes.
I have my favourite go to recipe for my vanilla cupckes so it was exciting to try out somebody else's.

The mystery parcel

playing about...

My box of ingredients and the Raspberry & white chocolate recipe challenge.

Raspberry and White Chocolate Cupcakes
Recipe from here.

Method: (makes 24 - 36 depending on the size of your cupcakes)
  • Sift all dry ingredients together.
  • Separate eggs so that egg whites are in a separate bowl. Beat egg whites with electric mixer until stiff (where you can hold the bowl upside down without the whites running out). Set aside.
  • Melt the Stork Bake and mix remainder of the wet ingredients in with the dry ingredients. Once it is mixed fold the mixture slowly in to the stiff egg whites. Do not over mix.
  • Bake at 180ÂșC for approximately 15 - 18mins.

White Chocolate Ganache:
  • Melt 500grams of white chocolate in a bowl until just soft set aside to cool but still be melted. Add 250 grams of Stork Bake and mix with mixer.
  • Once the cupcakes are cooled, spread the White Chocolate Ganache on the cupcakes.

Raspberry Buttercream:
  • Put 500g of Stork Bake and 1 kg of icing sugar into a mixer and beat until mixed. 
  • Add 400g of fresh raspberries and mix in.
  • Pipe the buttercream onto cupcakes and decorate.

As far as baking goes, I have always favoured quick and easy recipes over recipes that requires hours in the kitchen. This one unfortunately does require some extra time, whisking the egg whites and making the ganache, and the end result is just as good as cupcakes made the easy way.

I took these to a family lunch today and they went down a treat, but for me personally, the sweetness level is very high so I do prefer a cream cheese frosting.

But they sure do look pretty...

*UPDATE: Brought a few of these cuties to work this morning and they were received with cheers and lip smacking. (so it is only me that prefers the less sweet options)

Tuesday, 14 May 2013

Melted Marshmallow Fondant

A mix of marshamallow fondant and butter icing - I had both so decided a mix would be fun...

When I spotted this recipe here, I just knew I had to give this icing a try. I love the look of fondant cupcakes, but really, I do not enjoy the taste. I'd pick a butter icing over fondant any day, but show me a marshmallow fondant and that's a whole new story!

This recipe does take a bit longer than your usual butter icing, but for special occassions it might just be worth it.

For the cupcakes recipe see here.

225grams white marshmallows, cut up.
2 Tbls. water
450grams icing sugar
Butter to grease hands

First melt marshmallows and in microwave for 30 seconds at a time. Mine took one minute until melted.

Melted looks something like this

Stir 3/4 of the powdered sugar into the marshmallow mixture, then knead in the remaining 1/4 until it is all incorporated into the mixture . I used my mixer, with the dough attachment. Note: be sure to grease your hands and counter before dumping mixture from bowl!

Add colour to your fondant. I split mine into two batches and just coloured one half. Then Knead Knead Knead until it is soft and shiny. You’ll need to grease your hands again most likely. If it starts to feel a bit dry, add 1/2 tablespoon water at a time until it feels soft and pliable – then keep kneading.

Grease the outside of the ball and double wrap in saran wrap, then put in a ziplock bag to keep it moist.

To get the frosting to stay on your cake / cupcakes, you’ll need to ice them with a butter icing. Delicious recipe here. This acts as a ‘glue’ to get the frosting to stick.

Dust your counter with powdered sugar. TIP: if your fondant is a bit hard, throw it in the microwave (still covered) for 5 – 10 seconds until more pliable.
Roll out your fondant until it is about 1/8 inch thick. 

Using cookie cutters, try find a size that is just bigger than your cupcakes, and cut the round tops. I also cut out little hearts and circles as decor
When decorating, you can just add a dab of water to your heart and gently place it on.

Sunday, 12 May 2013

Happy Mommy's Day

To all the Mommy's of the world... 
Without your unlimited love, compassion, patience and understanding, this world would be a pretty awful place. 
It is because of you we can continue to spread the love and keep the happiness alive.
The heroine who has made me into woman I am today. Love you forever.

Tuesday, 7 May 2013

Photo-a-Day: Something beginning with 'F'


It's not something I usually do for the pleasure of it. I don't love exercise. Sad but true. I wish I was addicted to running and jumping and swimming and getting active, but truthfully I'd rather bake cupcakes while sipping on a glass of wine. Not the best for my thighs!
So I exercise. Because I must if I continue my refusal to diet / cut out delicious food. 

But, as much a I hate to admit it, that feeling after a great workout is actually really wonderful. ( Although said feeling is not enough to make me want to exercise again the following day.) So to make it bearable, I drag my like minded friend along, and we try giggle our way through crunches and lunges. 

DropKick Media snapped this pic of us tonight stretching after our workout on the fields outside the Moses Mabhida Stadium. 


Sunday, 5 May 2013

Photo-a-day: Paper

Some people have yoga, others have psychologists, but me, when the world starts to get crazy, I bake. 

Baking clears my mind and calms my soul, and pretty much just puts everything  in perspective. 

There are never a shortage of these little cupcake papers in my house, so that at any time I can whip up a batch of tasty treats. 

Saturday, 4 May 2013

Photo-a-day: In my cup

Oops. Not a good start. I almost forgot to snap away for today's topic. I had planned to photograph my morning coffee but as it is now evening, I put down my wine, picked up my iPhone and snapped a quick pic of what is in my cup right now.  

Unfortunately I don't have access to my computer at the moment so I'm uploading this post off my phone so my apologies if this doesn't look like it normally does... Fingers crossed it loads as normal.


Friday, 3 May 2013

Photo-a-day: 'This is really good'

As I mentioned earlier today, I am going to try and keep up with this challenge and update with pics every day. Today's topic is 'This is Really Good', which is an easy one.. Champagne darlings!

A really good friend of mine (who also happens to be a total bar and liquor guru - check out his blog, Drink Movement, for some wonderful cocktails and bar knowledge) advised that a wise idea is to always keep a bottle of bubbly chilling in the fridge, and although I don't live up to this all the time (because you know, sometimes the champers gets consumed) I do love this concept and try to keep up with it...

This was a tasty glass of Billecart-Salmon, enjoyed sitting on our balcony at home, watching the afternoon slip into evening...

May Photo-a-Day Challenge

I saw this awesome idea on a blog I love, Happiness is… and thought it would be a fun way to share with my followers a little more about me and maybe to get to know me better (even though I am 3 days late for the start… oops). 

Why don’t you join in and also try take the challenge to photograph something every day. Read more about this fun challenge here.

*side note: If you follow my blog you'll know I'm not really any good at photography, so although my pics may not exactly be pin worthy, I do intend to try show an honest side of myself... Plus, maybe by snapping away daily my skills will improve, and that's always a great thing!