Water Drop Pendant - Snowbell Jewelry
Monday, 31 August 2009
Thursday, 27 August 2009
I had a hankering for ginger cake yesterday and thought I'd have a go at making some, I was certain I had all the ingredients but when I checked, I was missing the ground ginger, a rather important ingredient for making ginger cake! I checked to see what else I had and decided to make an orange and lemon cake instead.
Turn on oven to 180°c/350°F/Gas Mark 4
1. Measure out the butter and sugar and mix together in a bowl, then add the flour.
2. Whisk the eggs and add to the bowl with the butter, sugar and flour.
3. Grate the orange and add the peel to the mixture, save a little for the icing.
4. Using the orange, squeeze some juice into the mixture (about a table spoon).
5. Mix all the ingredients together until smooth.
6. Grease and line a small loaf tin, I use butter and flour to line the tin.
7. Pour the mixture into the tin and place in the middle of a pre-heated oven.
8. Cook for 25-30mins or until cooked through and golden. You can test if it's cooked by stabbing it with a skewer or knife, if it comes out clean it's done, if it comes out gooey then it needs a bit more time.
9. Once it's cooked, take it out of the tin and leave to cool on a cooling rack.
1. Sieve 2oz of icing sugar into a bowl and add 2 tea spoons of lemon juice.
2. Mix together until smooth. You may need to add a tiny bit of water to make the mixture runnier. Aim for a thick consistency, if it's too runny it'll run off the cake, if it's too stiff it'll be hard to spread. If your icing is runny, add more icing sugar (a little at a time), if it's too stiff add a couple of drops of water or lemon juice.
3. Add the left over orange peel to the icing and mix together.
4. Spread the icing over the top of the sponge.
All that's left to do is put your feet up and enjoy a nice slice with a cup of tea, well, that and the cleaning up!
Tuesday, 25 August 2009
We were asked to do a cake featuring a man playing on a PlayStation, I had a photo of the man in question so I could get a resemblance (hope he's not too offended!).
I was told he had a PlayStation 2 and that he liked playing war games and racing games, I opted for the war game to display on the TV screen.
Thursday, 20 August 2009
I did manage to make a card last night and I thought I'd try something a bit different. I dug out my watercolour pencils and started playing about. I did this little drawing/painting of a bird.
And then I made it into a card
And I know just the person to give it to, she likes birds, just hope she likes my strange little bird!
Saturday, 15 August 2009
Friday, 14 August 2009
My sketch of the cake
It took a long time to decorate and the kitchen looked like an icing sugar bomb had exploded with some butter cream and food colouring mixed in! As if that wasn't enough mess, Jay's hand mixer decided to burn out (literally), the motor started making a funny noise, then I noticed it glowing blue and orange through the vent! He turned it off just in time before the whole thing went up in flames, but there was plenty of smoke and a rather strong burning smell. Time to move the cake out of the kitchen while we tried to get rid of the smoke! Come to think of it, I've been involved in a few incidents in the kitchen where something's caught or nearly caught fire, maybe I should get a fire blanket or extinguisher!
Things weren't going too bad, although mixing coloured fondant icing was a bit time consuming, so I reverted to painting some of the objects with the food colouring. Sculpting with fondant icing is quite tricky, it's too soft, I managed to make the fairy (just) but had to give up on the idea of gnomes and toadstools as they were too small and fiddly to sculpt out of fondant icing. I'm sure there're plenty of people that could manage it but I was losing patience and time was getting on.
Edible fairy wings!
The fairy wings are made out of edible wafer paper with coloured sugar sprinkles glued on (yes glue - but an edible version). I made the sugar sprinkles by putting some granulated sugar into a food bag, added a few drops of red food colouring and mixed it all together, and there you have it, some pink sugar sprinkles! We've used these coloured sugar sprinkles on top of cupcakes before, which adds a nice bit of sparkle and crunch.
Yummy cupcake with home made sugar sprinkles!
With everything pretty much finished, the cottage was done (which is basically a mini cake, sponge, jam, butter cream and covered in icing), the fairy was done, as were the pond and flowerbeds, all that was left to do was the piped icing shells around the bottom of the cake. For this we needed royal icing as it sets nice and firm, providing you get the mixture right. I don't think we'll have any problems with the royal icing setting firmly, the mixture was so stiff it was a job to pipe! I think it's safe to say that things weren't going too well with this cake, and we've done a few novelty type cakes in the past, none quite as eventful as this one.
So here's the finished cake
It's hardly in the same league as Ace of Cakes (a tv programme about Charm City Cakes, a bakery in America that do amazing novelty cakes) but I'm sure it'll taste great....I love birthday cake and can't wait to try a piece of it.
We've got another cake to do in a couple of weeks time, I hope that one goes smoother than this one did!
Thursday, 13 August 2009
Monday, 10 August 2009
Thursday, 6 August 2009
This is my drawing of Blade (Wesley Snipes)
I love drawing portraits, but I tend to worry about not getting a likeness, even if I manage to pull off some sort of resemblance I can always find faults with my work (and that's true of anything I create - it can be the tiniest detail that I can look at and think 'that could be thinner, thicker, straighter, smaller' etc, the list could be endless). I'm probably the harshest critic of my own work, always looking of ways to improve, but I guess that's why 'practice makes perfect'.So I thought I would dig out some of the portraits I've done over the years, and we're talking over the past 20 years, since the age of 10! Some are good, some aren't so good and some may make you laugh.