Saturday, 23 June 2012

Chocolate Cherry Blossom Wedding Cake and Cake Pops

The wait is over, finally here is my post about THE wedding cake - I've been banging on about it for long enough so it's time to tell you how it all went down. (The photos will be a little all over the place so bear with me)

The cake of course was for my brother and his now wife Hannah. I have to say when they first asked me to do the cake I freaked out. I hadn't made a wedding cake before, what if I mess it up? PRESSURE! But they really wanted me to make it so how could I refuse? After many discussions I was given a picture of something they'd like. Brown fondant with pink cherry blossoms, and for the cake to be chocolate! YAY! I really dislike fruit cake, and haven't made more than one so it's not something I was fully confident in....but chocolate, well, me and chocolate are good friends - no problem.

The months crept closer and I started buying little gadgets to do the flowers and started researching the best cake for a wedding cake and ways to make it not collapse on itself (which did actually the last time I tried to make a big tiered cake). I have to admit even two weeks before I was terrified, but I started making the gumpaste flowers a little early, I realise now I have 6 times too many (better safe than sorry). I made them using a mould I bought a couple of months ago, rolling gumpase in pink petal dust, varying strengths and when they were dry I then shaded them in with some more petal dust.

They also asked for cake pops, my new favourite. I did these before the actual cake as they keep a lot better and were one thing less to worry about. The spone was chocolate maderia and used chocolate buttercream to roll them into balls. As the theme was brown and pink I dipped them in milk chocolate and covered them in pink sugar decorations and gumpaste flowers. I will be doing some more for their wedding party for the guests that couldn't make it so I'll do a proper post then.

As for the actual cake, it was meant to be two tiers but I decided it just didn't look impressive enough - it had to be three! The sponge was chocolate madeira, sturdier than victoria sponge - though I do want to find a way to make it more moist without collapsing - that will be the next project. The bottom two tiers were made up of three layers, sandwhiched and covered in chocolate ganache mixed with buttercream. The fondant was coloured with  Dark Brown Sugarflair colouring paste, I again overbought, using only one of the four tubs I bought. As the cake had to be transported down to Lyme where the wedding cake I decided just to cover them in fondant and assemble when we got there.

I found a few great tutorials online about stacking a tiered cake, the answer was obvious, it needed support. Each tier was to be on a cake board that fit the cake exactly - which I found on eBay yay! The cake needed dowling supports in the bottom two tiers, this actually made a lot of sense and no idea why I didn't think of it before. I picked up a few lengths and a little hacksaw from Homebase, I got one thicker length for the middle support and the usual thinner one for the other ones.

So the morning before the wedding came and I was now driving to Lyme on my own (following my brother), I've never driven alone for longer than 45 minutes, Lyme is 4 hours away... So the car was packed, full, cakes were wedged and strapped in covered in protective tins and I taped my 'Cakes On Board' sign to the back window - I was ready as I was ever gonna be. The drive had hideous, scary (nearly taken out by two lorries) and there were accidents happening all around us. The drive should have taken 4 hours but we had two hours of traffic and stopped for lunch, so 6 and a half hours we finally arrived. But in one piece and no damaged cake!

No messing about, not even an hour after arriving we were heading the reception venue to assemble the cake, I made my other brother and his wife comes and help. The venue was Hix Oyster & Fish House in Lyme Regis, we arrived and the lovely lady owner who lived next door let us use her personal kitchen to assemble the cake. The views were amazing and she told us how it used to be a tea room - I was in heaven. Ever the perfectionist I was doubting of how the cake would love, I could see every little dent in the fondant, however somehow miraculously as I started to put it together it all worked out. The tiers were level, and the flowers and ribbon covered all the the little marks I could see that probably weren't even there to begin with. But about an hour later we stepped back - and it was done! I topped the cake with the little groom and bride I bought at Hobby Craft, and actually, I was happy! Shock horror I know! I was nervous about it all collapsing in the night but you know what? It didn't. I then popped all of the matching cake pops in the little jugs I bought and finally relaxed. Relief! I sent a few pictures to the bride and groom so they knew how it ended up looking, they were thrilled so I couldn't wait for them to see it in person. The wedding was lovely, emotional on many levels and went without any problems (except cake wise the groom fell off! But the lovely lady made up some more icing and stuck him back on - so lovely!)  Then venue too was amazing, I don't think I've ever eaten so much in my life, I love seafood so it was brilliant. It was great so spend so much time with all my family, and in such a nice location - I officially want to move there.

Well I think I've rambled on for long enough, If you've got this far then congratulations and thanks for staying with me! Until the next essay.

Nom! x Pin It Now!

Sunday, 10 June 2012

Lyme Regis - Jubilee Weekend

I promise I will do the proper wedding cake post soon, but as we spent the Jubilee weekend in Lyme Regis, and I took A LOT of photos I thought it needed its own post. We love seaside towns and Lyme Regis has now become our favourite. In fact I'm thinking of bribing my brother to move there just so that I can visit whenever I want.

Friday before the wedding, after I had assembled the cake with the help of my brother Mike and his wife Lindsay we thought we'd walk down to the bay and have a look around. Instantly we realised why they wanted to get married there, it was stunning with an amazing atmosphere. We decided to have some dinner at the Royal Standard, they'd even serve you on the beach which I loved. I had my favourite thing, king prawns - a pint of them! I couldn't wait to explore it properly later in the weekend. 

The Saturday was the wedding, brilliant day, will tell it properly soon - really does need its own post too.

The Sunday me, my mum and brother Joe went to the River Cottage Canteen in Axminster, I was too full from breakfast to eat anything but it was great just to look around inside and it's just as well I was too full or I would have hit that cheese counter - hard! Then me and my mum met up with my dad, stepmum and little brother in Lyme Regis for the day. The shopping - there are no words to describe it, amazing is one.

The streets were filled with great little gems at brilliant prices too, quirky shops you just wouldn't find anywhere else such as; Ruby Rockcake, The Terrace, The Happy Cupcake Company, Serendip and A Touch Of Vintage. The whole place has such a nice atmosphere too with the Jubilee, people were dressed up (check out the scary Queen meeting my little brother below) and everyone was in good spirits. We walked until we dropped so I had to go back the next day to re-look through some shops I couldn't make my poor dad go into again. I even managed to pick up some nice treats for a Baking Buys post.

 Below: The Terrage - vintage clothes and cute homeware!

 Below: Ruby Rockcake

 Below: A Touch Of Vintage

 Below: Serendip 

Below:The Happy Cupcake Company

 Below: my future house....

That night we all met up with the newlyweds at the Royal Standard again for dinner, apparently it is the best place there to eat. We were feeling a bit posh so decided to treat ourselves to lobster, there was a bit of a mix up in the kitchen but it ended up with us getting even bigger ones than we ordered, result!

 Below: Nom!

Below: The man who balances rocks (can't remember his name!)

Below: goodies from The Happy Cupcake Company,
and a coronation cup I wish I bought at an antique shop (with a mustache shield!!)

 Below: Rocking the Jubilee Burger King Crown on the way home

On the Monday it was time to leave as we needed to come back to Norway the next day. It's a shame the weather wasn't too brilliant, there wasn't much rain but it wasn't good enough to be on the beach in , except the day we were leaving which is typical. I really hope to go back soon, I highly recommend it!! Pin It Now!
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