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Category Archives: Bear-y Cakes

Bear-y cakes are like fairy cakes. But bigger. And better.

A Little Ray of Sunshine

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A Little Ray of Sunshine

Or rather, a rainbow. Sure to put a smile on anyone’s face.

The nozzle is a 1M. Paint a stripe of red, orange, yellow, green, blue and violet gel colouring inside the piping bag, to each point of the star nozzle. Fill with white buttercream, pipe in a swirl, et voila, RAINBOWS!

Mummy Bear x

Toddler trouble.

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The Bears and I have been absent for a while. There is a very good reason for this, and it comes in the shape of a not-so-small two year old. I tried baking with him.

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It ended in a state of sugar induced hyperactivity, a broken measuring jug and very very little sleep. Oh yes, and a cake which looked like I had assembled it, run over it with the car, and then tried to fix it up again.

Image(It’s a Maple Syrup and Pecan layer cake with marscapone frosting, from Delia’s gorgeous new book. It did taste fantastic, but not fantastic enough to warrant only two hours sleep.)

And then I tried baking without him. This time the cakes were at least edible looking. And tasted exactly as they should:

 Image(These are Turkish Delight Bear-y Cakes: Chocolate cake, topped with a rose flavoured buttercream and dark chocolate sprinkles. Recipe may follow. Should the Toddler ever sleep.)

However, my living room wall no longer looked like it should:

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Neither did Daddy Bear’s computer screen. Or the sofa. And so, we stopped baking.

That completes my absence letter.

We hope to be back soon!

Mummy Bear x

The sun is shining, the weather is sweet

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Well, ok, it’s not really tropical here, but at least it’s not the Arctic conditions of last week. To celebrate we’ve made individual Caribbean-upside-down-cakes. (Also because Daddy Bear loves upside-down-cake and he is back at work this week whilst Mummy Bear and the Little Bears are still at home. They certainly soften the blow!)

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Individual portions are excellent for the Bears House. Then nobody can complain about who got the bigger piece of pineapple. Or, when Daddy Bear decides to reheat it and forgets it’s in the oven, he only ruins his own one, not everyone’s.

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These get the official name of Caribbean-upside-down-cakes because Mummy Bear is still desperately trying to finish off the bottle of Coconut Rum without actually having to drink it. Basically they’re just a boozy version of normal upside down cake. But it definitely sounds better doesn’t it?!

Ingredients:

2 large eggs (about 50g each without shells)

100g Self Raising Flour

100g Stork

50g Caster Sugar

50g Light Brown Soft Sugar

4 tbsp Golden Syrup

4 pineapple rings

4 whole glace cherries

1 tbsp Coconut Rum

Preheat the oven to 150 C.

Break the eggs into a large mixing bowl and beat gently. Add the Stork, the sifted flour and both of the sugars. Whisk gently until combined with a hand whisk. Add in the rum and whisk again.

Lightly grease four ramekin dishes, then spoon a tablespoon of golden syrup into the bottom of each one. Place a pineapple ring on top of the syrup in each ramekin, and then a glace cherry in the hole in the middle of the ring. Split all of the batter equally between the four ramekin dishes, spreading it gently over the top of the fruit so not to displace too much of the syrup.

Pop the four ramekins in the oven for around 35 ish minutes (until the centre of the cake springs back when touched). Leave to cool in the ramekins for 20 minutes. Run a butter knife around the edges, and then turn out onto a plate – perfect pudding cake!

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Let’s hope that spring is FINALLY on its way. Or at least that it has definitely finished snowing for the next six months.

Mummy Bear x

Double whammy

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I had a minor panic yesterday in realising that it was in fact, already March, and I was only 4 bakes into the Great Comic Relief Bake off Challenge. It’s not going too well.

March 1st was also Granny Bear’s Birthday, and I had promised her cake. See where I’m going with this?! I do LOVE being efficient.

So, to kill a couple of birds with one stone and feel better about it aleady being March, we baked two of the recipes. Although, I didn’t intend to bake two for Granny Bear initally. More about that later.

First up are the Carrot Cake Muffins. I thought I was being clever in buying some ridiculously expensive Wilton tulip muffin cases in contrasting royal blue to make the orange-ness of the carrot cake stand out. However, they did not live up to their promise and just look grease stained and awful. I feel thoroughly cheated and will never impulse buy cake cases again.

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This carrot cake recipe is very different to the one I usually follow, I won’t post it because I’m all for raising the money for charity, but I will say it used shredded bran, and called for a flavoured cream cheese centre.

Now don’t get me wrong, I’m all up for new ideas. But preferably ones that work. It’s like a Carrot cake with a cheesecake centre. Which I guess it ok if you like baked cheesecake, but I think I’ll stick to using cream cheese in frosting. And the Primrose Carrot cake recipe.

Which is why I decided to try another recipe as well (and it also ticked bake #6 off the Comic Relief Bake Off Challenge)

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This is the Mocha Marble Loaf cake. Except, as you can see, it is not a loaf cake. Loaf cakes take a LONG time to bake. And Baby Bear is nowhere near patient enough to wait 90 minutes for cake. And Mummy Bear has no loaf shaped cake box. And besides, as I’ve said before: (Almost) everything is better in miniature.

So they are in Bear-y cake form, and it’s safe to say the marbled chocolate coffee sponge with white chocolate frosting far FAR better that the Carrot cake muffins. And no silly greasy tulip cases in sight.

We halved the recipe and it made 12 Bear-y cakes….. just remember to also halve the amount of cocoa powder and vanilla essence first time round. Unlike Mummy Bear.

So all that is left to say is: Happy Birthday Granny Bear!

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Mummy Bear x

All good things come to an end

No, not the Great Comic Relief Bake Off challenge, but my trusty hand mixer. Lets all take a moment to mourn its loss. *sob*

But I have discovered what it is like to make a cake entirely by hand. I’ll sum up the experience in 1 word: ENERGETIC.

Seriously, it’s bordering on having a sport for a hobby. So either there will be much less baking in the Bears house. Or Mummy Bear will develop amazing muscles.

(Or, Daddy Bear will get tired of my moaning, and buy another one)

ImageThis is challenge bake #2: Sticky Orange Marmalade Cake.

We followed the recipe in the book. Almost. Apart from adding Valencien Orange Extract to the batter, and an extra tablespoon of marmalade melted on top. Because we wanted it to be EXTRA orange-y. It is delicious.

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Sorry, no, wait. It WAS delicious. Definitely not baking less cakes. Let the moaning to Daddy Bear commence!

Mummy Bear x

Love is in the air. Or rather, the acrid smell of burnt sugar is.

Daddy Bear and I don’t ‘do’ Valentines day. His argument is that he doesn’t need to have an overly commercialised day to remind him to buy flowers and tell me that he loves me. Which would be fine, if I got flowers on other days.

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But having discovered the amazing idea from ‘Stockpiling Moms’ of melting candy canes to make hearts, I decided I was going to bake him some bear-y cakes this year. However, (and I am ridiculously embarrassed to admit this) STUPIDLY I never considered the 250 degrees could mean Fahrenheit, and set my oven to 220 Celsius for ten minutes. This is what my candy canes looked like after 120 seconds:

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FAIL. Much anger ensued, and after peeling the candy canes off the baking tray, they looked like this.

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I did feel much better having beaten the life out of them with a pestle. Nevertheless, I was determined to make SOME sort of bear-y cake for Daddy Bear, if only to stop him from laughing at the hideous baking disaster that was the candy canes. This is what he ended up with:

Image They are vanilla bear-y cakes, topped with the crushed candy canes and then a white chocolate and peppermint two tone butter cream (in a vain attempt to still have some recognisable form of candy cane on the cake!).

The butter cream was definitely the BEST part of cake.

180g unsalted butter,

100g melted white chocolate,

300g of icing sugar

1 tsp pepper mint essence.

Beat in a bowl with an electric hand mixer until light and fluffy. Paint a stripe of red gel food colouring down the inside of a disposable piping bag with a large round nozzle in, and then fill up with buttercream. Pipe in swirls on top of your cake.

So there you are Daddy Bear, this is from me to you, on nearly valentines day, from the bottom of my arse. I would say heart, but my arse is much bigger.

Mummy Bear x

Wanted: Bigger Muffin Top

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No, not one of those. Believe me, I’ve got that WELL covered. We baked some lemon and poppyseed muffins and everything was perfect with the recipe, except I think they need a bigger muffin top.

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Tips followed so far include:

  • not using muffin cases and baking straight into the pan.
  • filling the muffin pan right to the top.
  • baking at 200 C for the first 10 mins and then turning down the heat for the rest of the baking time.

Any other tips to increase muffin top size (of the second variety) are warmly welcomed. In the mean time I will have to keep experimenting, and hope it doesn’t cause an increase of the first variety too much!

Mummy Bear x

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