Category: Wedding cakes

Add a little glitz to your cakes with these stunning cake toppers

Add a little glitz to your cakes with these stunning cake toppers

Talking Tables cake Toppers 2

The moment I saw these cake toppers I knew I had to share them with you. I mean how cool are they? The font, the colours, the style! They’ll look great on any cake and what’s more when you’re in a rush a plain and simple cake can instantly become divine!
Talking Tables cake Toppers 5

I received the Talking Tables newsletter about them just last night when I was actually sitting down to write up a post on Rhubarb jam but I just couldn’t wait to share them.

I’ve been shooting for Talking Tables for a few years now so I’m no stranger to their fantastic and top end products (just head on over to their website  and loads of the shots you’ll see there are styled by me – the silver bath is one of my favourites. Actually this is my all time favorite styled shot which is happens to be a TT shot and is bouncing around Pinterest like mad at the mo) But this is the first time I’ve seen these cake toppers and I know that I’ll be putting an order in soon.

Talking Tables Cake Toppers post

Alice, the product developer has a really good eye for detail. I love it that this range has something for everyone whether you’re getting married, baking something special for your partner or just want to add a bit of ‘Sparkle‘ to your day. Talking Tables cake Toppers 3

You can choose the gold ‘Love’ heart and cover the cake in gold! How amazing does this cake look? I’ve been seeing gold cakes everywhere since I went to The Squires Cake Show back in March. Maybe Silver is catching up with the metallics cake trends too!

Talking Tables Toppers 1The toppers are really easy to insert. I’ve used many of Talking Tables’ other cake toppers on shoots in the past – just check out the ponies! These ones can be wiped clean ready for the next big celebration.

TT LEt's party topper

So which is your favorite? I think mine is the ‘Let’s Party’! It has so many uses.

EmmaMT x

Disclaimer: I did not receive any product for this post and these are not my styled shots or cakes so I can’t take the credit. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Talking Tables didn’t even know I was going to write this post so that will be a nice surprise for them won’t it? 

 

Wedding cake Inspiration at the Squires Kitchen Cake show

Last Friday I went to the Squires Kitchen cake show in Surrey and I have to say that it never disappoints. This is the third time I’ve been to this show and it’s my favorite. The venue is really higgledy, piggldy with rooms and halls all over the place on different levels and the competitions are in another part of the building all-together but I think that’s why it works so well. It’s like you’re going on a treasure hunt and around every corner there’s something new to discover.

I went to two workshops on the day. One was how to make succulents with Paddi Clark and the other was how to make a double barrel cake with Helen Mansey who has a new book coming out in a couple of weeks. (It looks beautiful!) I learnt so much in those short 45 minute workshops which I am hoping to share with you when I get round to trying the techniques out. I am pretty sure that they made it all look very easy. We’ll see!

The Cakes on Show

One of the highlights for me is always checking out the wedding cakes. They are just fantastic so I thought I’d share just a few with you.

Cake Creations by Jill Fisher
Cake Creations by Jill Fisher
Cake Creations by Jill Fisher
Cake Creations by Jill Fisher

How incredible are the flowers on this cake by Cake Creations by Jill Fisher. How on earth did she make them? Are they sugar paper? They’re just so delicate and unbelievably realistic. Ranunculus are one of my favorite flowers so I may be a bit biased with this one!

Cake Creations by Jill Fisher
Cake Creations by Jill Fisher

These roses look just exquisite in the flesh. I wish I could take better photos to share with you guys.

Cakes by Elizabeth Finch
Cakes by Elizabeth Finch

There were lots of chalk board cakes at the show like this one by Elizabeth Finch. The roses on this cake are exactly like the ones by David Austin Roses.

Cake House
Cake House

The cakes by Sherry Hostler of The Cake House were also fantastic. I love this green one inspired by the art of quilling.

Authenticake
Authenticake

Authenticake’s modern twist on a classic is the kind of cake you have to look at twice before you realise that the tea cup is all made from sugarpaste.

Authenticake
Authenticake

I really love the colour combo here. Another cake trend I spotted at the show was metallics. We’ve seen it in fashion and home wares and now they’ve reached the cake world. Hoorah!

Sylvia's Kitchen
Sylvia’s Kitchen
Sylvia's Kitchen
Sylvia’s Kitchen

I really loved the cakes by Sylvia’s Kitchen. They were timeless elegance personified. I’d love to make a cake like this – Just give me a year to make all those flowers!

Sylvia's Kitchen
Sylvia’s Kitchen
Sylvia's Kitchen
Sylvia’s Kitchen

This is another design I would love to try out. I haven’t mastered the art of piping at 90º yet without it making a whole lot of mess but as soon as I can I want to make this cake- but maybe in a one tier birthday version. Just stunning!

Scrum Diddly
Scrum Diddly
Scrum Diddly
Scrum Diddly

Just look at all the pearls on this wedding cake by Scrum Diddly. This was one of my favorite cakes.

Scrum Diddly
Scrum Diddly
Scrum Diddly
Scrum Diddly

Another cake that must have taken ages to create. The clean and crisp colour combo with the textured sugarpaste and roses and strawberries make this a perfect summer wedding cake.

Jelly cake
Jelly cake

This was my favorite gold cake (of which there were quite a few!) by Jelly Cake. The colour just pops out as you look at the table. I also really like the colour of the other cakes in this trio. Really elegant on their wooden stands.

Jelly cake
Jelly cake

Another tea cup and saucer filled with floral paste flowers. Do I need to learn how to do this too?

Simply Alpa
Simply Alpa

Simply Alpa shows the amazing effect you can get with a paint brush and a little talent ( make that a lot of talent!)

Iced Innovations
Iced Innovations

This is another cake with a really pretty colour palette by Iced Innovations . Soft and delicate with cute pin wheels on the front. I can’t tell what they’re made of. Any guesses?

Lou's amazing cakes
Lou’s amazing cakes
Lou's amazing cakes
Lou’s amazing cakes

Lou’s amazing cakes really are just AMAZING. They’re the cakes I remember every year. This one is just a riot of colour! I showed it to Beau and it was her favorite.

Lou's amazing cakes
Lou’s amazing cakes

This is another painted cake but just look at that shape. Where do you start when it’s time to cover it in sugarpaste? All those ins and outs!!! Rather Lou than me!

Helen Mansey - Squires tutor
Helen Mansey – Squires tutor
Helen Mansey - Squires tutor
Helen Mansey – Squires tutor

This is one of the cakes by the tutor Helen Mansey in the Squires main hall. It was huge and so beautiful. Even the buttons on the back were perfect.

Helen Mansey - Squires tutor
Helen Mansey – Squires tutor

I can’t tell you how amazing the piping on this cake waa. What isn’t totally clear in the picture is that it’s white writing with black writing on top. It’s so delicate and fine. I was blown away by it.

Natasha Collins - Squires tutor
Natasha Collins – Squires tutor
Natasha Collins - Squires tutor
Natasha Collins – Squires tutor

I didn’t know that Natasha Collins does a class for Squires on how to paint cakes. I’m a bit of a fan of hers. Her cakes are totally original don’t you think?

 

So that’s my short round up of just a few of the wedding cakes on show at this year’s event. Amazing aren’t they? Which one’s your favourite? I’d love to know….

EmmaMT x

Peggy Porschen’s New Wedding cake collection

Okay, so it’s no secret that I’m a Peggy Porschen fan, but if you don’t live in the world of cakes- or within a 5 miles radius of me! Then you may not know who Peggy is. To keep this from being the longest post in the world let’s just say that she’s a cake decorator to the stars (Kate Moss, Stella Stella McCartney and Elton John to name but a few!) I mean she’s so tallented her cakes are highly recommended buy London’s foremost wedding venues including the Savoy, Claridge’s, The Ritz, The Dorchester and The Mandarin Oriental. She also has a beautiful cake boutique in Belgravia  where you can sit and eat cake or go and take one of her classes in the Peggy Porschen Academy. She’s also one of the nicest people I’ve ever met.

2013_01_30 Peggy Porschen_Floral wedding cake collection_Group13435
photo: Georgia Glynn Smith

Last month I was lucky enough to be invited to the Peggy Porschen Floral wedding cake collection  launch (as seen above). It was a really amazing event at The Mandarin Oriental and I have to say I was bowled over by the cakes. There were quite a few non-cakey people at the event and they couldn’t believe that the flowers on the cakes weren’t either real or silk. They were all made with sugar or modelling paste and were incredibly realistic – not to mention beautiful.

The cakes were really big. Wild at Heart provided the flowers for inspiration behind the cakes when they were initially being developed and they also decorated the tables with some beautiful blooms on the launch night.

I did take a load of shots of the cakes but they aren’t a patch on the ones taken by Georgia Glynn Smith for Peggy Porschen so here are some of her fab shots to show you just how AMAZING the cakes are!

2013_01_30 Peggy Porschen_Floral wedding cake collection_Rosie12916
photo: Georgia Glynn Smith
2013_01_30 Peggy Porschen_Floral wedding cake collection_Purple sweet peas12988
photo: Georgia Glynn Smith

xcvxcvxc

photo: Georgia Glynn Smith
photo: Georgia Glynn Smith
2013_01_30 Peggy Porschen_Floral wedding cake collection_Peony13195
photo: Georgia Glynn Smith
2013_01_30 Peggy Porschen_Floral wedding cake collection_Peony13135
photo: Georgia Glynn Smith

There was also a table with a selection of the cakes that appear in Peggy’s new book out next month Cakes in Bloom: Exquisite Sugarcraft Flowers for All Occasions. As you can see these shots are by me! (see what I mean about the ‘not so professional shots?)

Did I taste any cake? What do you think? I started with a slice of the salted caramel cake – on the far end of the table. Had salted caramel for main and for pudding I had salted caramel! I don’t even like caramel but I could not leave this cake alone. It was so light and the flavours are just out of this world. Peggy has layers of cake and buttercream and then a layer of chocolate ganache coating the outter edge of the cake before the sugarpaste layer. What a fantastic combination. To die for! I can’t wait to get my hands on the book for the recipes. Just so you know…. I’ll be reviewing it here next month so you can see how fab it is!

tasting tableWhen it came to chatting with Peggy I was completely blown away. I did one of her classes about 4 years ago for work and I’ve met her at a couple of press launches but not for ages. She not only remembered me but knew I had two daughters. I was seriously flattered as I think my big smile shows! Me and Peggy Porschen

 

So, what do you think? I think I wish I was getting married all over again so I could have one of these cakes. They’re just beautiful.

 

EmmaMT

 

Getting naked… Don’t worry it’s cakes not me!

Image from www.elizabethannedesigns.com
Image from www.elizabethannedesigns.com

So, have you seen the trend for naked cakes yet? I really love the look of them but they do have a lot of downsides. Firstly there’s no fun with sugarpaste when you make them!  Secondly there’s no sugarpaste to hide any mistakes (including wonky stacking or gaps in fillings). And thirdly……. No, I can’t think of the thirdly! You see I love them. The more uneven, messy and squadgily creamed they are the better I think they look! A friend of mine got married last May and she had a naked Victoria Sponge three tier wedding cake decorated with fresh flowers to match her bouquet and it looked so beautiful.

Here are just a few I have added to my Pinterest boards ‘Bakes I like’. What do you think. Is it a trend that will stick around or do you think it’s a passing phase?

From http://www.sweetbloomcakes.com.au/
From http://www.sweetbloomcakes.com.au/ 

Naked cakes

From www.weddingwindow.com/
From www.weddingwindow.com/
From cakesdecor.com/cakes/25658
http://pinterest.com/emmamt/bakes-i-like/

Naked cake

Naked cakes

Naked Cake
From vintageandcake.blogspot.co.uk/

 

EmmaMT

Cherry and marzipan cake with orange blossom syrup and toasted pistachios

On Saturday I posted an interview with the lovely Rebecca Smith, Deputy Food Editor at ‘Delicious’ magazine. After the interview came her amazing cake recipe, but as the page was so long I think some people may have missed it, so here it is again in all it’s glory.

I baked the cake yesterday for a charity tea and cake afternoon my sister held in her garden. It really was delicious, but I LOVE marzipan so I would say that!

Cherry and marzipan cake 

(Taken from the August 2013 issue of Delicious magazine – out now) 

This is a very moist, dense cake – quite middle Eastern in character. It will keep well in a cool place, well wrapped for 3 days and is wonderful served for pudding with a dollop of honey sweetened Greek yogurt.

Cherry marzipan cake
photo:Maja Smend

Serves 12-14

Takes 25 minutes to make, 1 hour 10 -1 hour 20 minutes to cook, plus cooling

Freeze the finished cake without the pistachio topping, well wrapped in cling film for 1 month. Defrost thoroughly, then garnish and serve.

Know how If you’re adding anything heavy to cake batter, (like the cherries and marzipan in this cake) tossing them in flour helps to stop them sinking. Pushing half into the top of the mixture also helps them to stay more evenly spaced.

  • 225g unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 185g caster sugar
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 2 tsp orange blossom water
  • 4 large free-range eggs
  • 150g self-raising flour
  • 100g ground almonds
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 150g marzipan, chopped into 1cm square chunks, tossed lightly in flour
  • 300g cherries, stoned, quartered, patted dry and tossed lightly in flour
  • 50g pistachios, toasted
  • icing sugar, to dust

for the syrup

  • juice 1 orange
  • splash orange blossom water
  • 1tbsp caster sugar
  1. Heat the oven to 170ºC/fan 150ºC/gas 31/2. Lightly oil and bottom line a 20cm springform cake tin, wrap a doubled up sheet of baking parchment around the outside and tie in place with string. This will protect the sides of the cake while it’s cooking. Set aside. Beat the butter with the sugar and orange zest for 3 to 5 minutes until pale and fluffy, then beat in the orange blossom water.
  2. Beat the eggs in one by one beating well after each addition, then stir through the flour, almonds and baking powder, with a pinch of salt. Stir through half the marzipan pieces and cherries, then transfer to the prepared cake tin and poke in the remaining marzipan and cherries, making sure they’re just covered with cake mix. Place in the middle of the oven. Bake for 20 minutes, then turn the heat down to 160ºC/fan 140ºC/gas 3 and bake for a further 60 minutes. Cover the top with a piece of foil after 30 minutes if it’s getting too dark – not before as the cake will sink. It is cooked when a skewer inserted into the centre comes out with only a few moist crumbs attached.
  3. About 5 minutes before the cake has finished cooking, make the drizzle. Place the orange juice and orange blossom water with the sugar in a pan and heat gently until the sugar has melted. When the cake is cooked, remove from the oven, poke holes all over it and drizzle over the syrup. Leave to cool in the tin for 10 minutes, then carefully remove and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Make sure the cake isn’t left to cool on the base of its tin or the bottom will be soggy. When ready to serve, roughly chop the pistachios, scatter over the top of the cake and dust with icing sugar.

 

All that’s left to say is thanks so much to Rebecca for taking the time to do the interview and for sharing this delicious recipe with us (Sorry no ‘Delicious’ pun intended!)

EmmaMT

Meet the Expert: Rebecca Smith- Deputy Food Editor at Delicious Magazine

Rebecca Smith - Delicious

I first met Rebecca when she came to work on Woman and Home Magazine. She and the Food Editor, Jane Curran sat opposite me and the Homes team and let me tell you I learnt a thing or two from that dynamic duo. I also got to do a lot of taste testing for them- but nowhere near as much as they had to do – such a hard life! I used to nip down to the test kitchen to ‘heat up my lunch’ but really it was to snag any cakes they had been making and soak up their extensive knowledge. Rebecca has since gone on to Delicious Magazine which I know all you bakers love as much as I do and is now the Deputy Food Editor. Busy times.

It gives me huge pleasure to have Bex as one of my ‘Ask the Experts’ and I know first hand how amazing her recipes are. She really is an expert in all senses of the word. She has such a natural flare for creating easy to follow recipes that taste just amazing. Her gourmet chocolate brownie recipe is the only one I have ever needed and as such it has been featured here on this very blog.  I can’t wait to share with you her Cherry and marzipan cake with orange blossom syrup and toasted pistachios recipe below. But first a little bit about the expert…….

Ask the expert : Rebecca Smith 

How did you get into cooking and baking?

Bizarrely it was a Roald Dahl’s Revolting Recipes book that I was given when I was still at school. Roald Dahl’s wife had worked with a cook to create some of the recipes from his book and Quentin Blake illustrated them. It’s an incredible cook book for children and the Bruce Bogtrotter chocolate cake was absolutely divine!

Who inspires you most in the cooking arena and why?

I have to mention Nigel Slater as I grew up on my mum cooking his recipes – they always work, and they were and are always delicious. My biggest hero at the moment is probably Ottolenghi – I think the effect he’s had on the way people cook and the breadth of ingredients that are widely available now, virtually just by word of mouth, is absolutely astonishing – and he’s solely responsible for the obscene amount of pomegranate molasses we get through in our house. His food is complex, balanced – just unbelievably good and I can’t stop eating it!

What’s your favorite cook?

The book I return to again and again for advice and help with the classics is my Leiths Bible. It has pretty much everything you could need to know about in there and there’s a copy constantly on my desk. Other than that, I go in phases. At the moment I’m salivating over Rick Stein’s  new India book, and before that it was Ottolenghi’s Jerusalem. For baking, I love Fiona Cairns’s Bake & Decorate (she’s so effortlessly stylish), and the American baking book Outsider Tart. I also was once fortunate enough to borrow my friend’s copy of The Last Course by Claudia Fleming, the old pastry chef at the Gramercy Tavern in New York. This is the single most beautiful book I’ve ever come across and I made copious notes from it. It’s out of print now and they’re fetching hundreds of pounds on amazon. So if anyone spots one in a charity shop…

How did you come to be at Delicious

I’d been at Woman and Home for three and a half years, and BBC Good Food before that, so when the job came up I went for it immediately – I was really excited at the thought of working in a solely foodie environment and for such a beautiful magazine.

How long have you worked on Delicious

Just over a year – I came after the first May bank holiday last year.

What does your job entail?

We’re a very small team so it’s incredibly diverse. I could be in the kitchen one day testing recipes (either that I’ve written or that we’ve commissioned), food styling on a photo shoot the next or out at a press day. A day at my desk will comprise of working out costings for each issue, liaising with book publishers, responding to reader queries, writing recipes or editing copy, compiling our canny cook section or planning for cover, style or issue meetings.

What’s the best part of your job?

Being able to dream up and cook some fantastic food that you might not have contemplated otherwise. For instance, yesterday I created a dessert based on a Twix bar…it’s pretty good if I say so myself!

What’s the worst part of your job?

The washing up!

Tell me about the Cherry and marzipan cake your sharing from the current issue.

It celebrates our British cherries which are some of the best in the world and only available in the summer. It has some of my favourite things in it – marzipan, pistachios, cherries (obviously) and orange blossom (thank you Ottolenghi). I love cakes that are drizzled in syrup – not only do they keep longer but it means they’re moist enough to be served as a pudding.

 What’s been your most successful cake?

The red velvet cake that was on the delicious. January 2013 cover is probably one of my best. We had amazing feedback about it and making it satisfied my love of big brash American cakes.

Have you had any big baking disasters?

Tons! Though less so in the last few years. Creating cake recipes makes you very aware of how far you can change basic formulas before it goes wrong. My worst was probably a couple of Christmases ago when my parents had a load of people for dinner. I decided to make a pithivier but with pistachios instead of ground almonds and the whole thing exploded in the oven. It wasn’t too bad though, everyone was somewhat merry by the time pudding came around so I scraped it up as best I could and everyone thought it was hilarious.

What do you do for fun?

I’m in a show choir called the Adam Street Singers, and we rehearse every week as well as having socials. Belting out songs after a hard day in the kitchen is an excellent way to relax!

Are you a Tea or coffee drinker?

It depends entirely on my mood!

Where is your favorite place to go out to eat?

Dinner – the Abbeville Kitchen in Clapham – it’s a lovely little neighbourhood restaurant that does absolutely wonderful Med-inspired food.

Lunch – Jose’s on Bermondsey St. A tiny tapas bar owned by the fabulous Jose Pizarro. You go in for a quick lunch and emerge four hours later slightly wobbly.

Tea – For real luxury I love the Lanesborough for afternoon tea. But any of the big hotels are always so much fun and a serious treat.

What kitchen gadget could you not live without and why?

A very sharp chef’s knife. I think my enjoyment of cooking would be significantly reduced if I had to use tiny blunt knives to chop everything. It’s an absolute hassle.

What’s your favorite dinner party meal and dessert?

I love cooking very slowly roasted pork belly. The meat falls apart and the crackling is perfect – everyone always enjoys it and its utterly low maintenance – it just needs a salad and some sort of potato to accompany it. For pudding, affogato with homemade ricciarelli biscuits – for exactly the same reason. It takes no effort, and it’s an immediate crowd pleaser. I don’t hold with doing complicated things for dinner parties. It should be about relaxing with your friends, not sweating in the kitchen while everyone gets drunk on your booze next door.

What’s your guilty food pleasure?

Where do I start?! Bowls of noodles slathered in Sriracha chilli sauce, Laughing Cow cheese, chunky peanut butter straight from the jar, Haribo tangfastics…actually I’m not really guilty about any of it. Everything in moderation…

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