Cycling cupcakes

Cupcakes aren’t just for girls.  Men like cakes too and manly-themed cupcakes are great fun to make.  When decorating cakes I love creating designs that will have special meaning for the recipient – either highlighting a hobby or featuring some of their favourite things.

 

These chocolate cupcakes were made as a birthday gift for a man who – can you guess? – loves cycling.  

 

Bicycle cupcakes

Cycling cupcakes

He enjoys following the Tour de France (the yellow jersey) whilst the rosette and gold cup highlight his success in competitive cycling. Early in his career he worked as a bike mechanic – as represented by the handy tool kit.  

 

The bike might look a bit rubbish however this was deliberate as it is a representation of his first racing bike.  When he started competitive cycling, his first bike was a broken down standard bike and not a specialist racing bicycle.  He painted it black and called it his “black hack”. Despite its humble heritage it was still a winner as he rode it to many victories before trading up to a proper racing bike.

 

No doubt you are now wondering, ‘Why the kangaroo?  How does that relate to cycling?’  It is no mystery really.  He is there because the recipient is Australian.  

 

Happy birthday, Skippy.  Hope you had a great day!  

 

(Note: the kangaroo design in based on a card tutorial I found on Pinterest.  If you are the designer, please let me know so that I can formally acknowledge your work).

Chocolate rose cupcakes

Mmmm chocolate.  There is something about the smell of chocolate that is just so delicious.  Today, whilst it was pouring rain outside, I spent my time in a warm kitchen making chocolate cupcakes. What a life!
Chocolate and roses just seem to go together so I decorated  my cupcakes with glossy chocolate ganache (hint – always make extra to have with toast later – it is delicious!) and hand made fondant roses.  Usually I colour my own fondant however this time I used a ready coloured one from Renshaw called fuchsia pink.  Don’t you think the strong colour looks great against the dark chocolate? 
 
If you haven’t made ganache before you really should give it a try.  This is the recipe that I use and this amount should be enough to decorate 12 cupcakes.
 
100gm dark cooking chocolate
100ml of double cream
 
Break the chocolate into small pieces and put it in a heat proof bowl.
Heat the cream in a saucepan until small bubbles appear on the edges but don’t let it boil.
Pour the hot cream over the chocolate and let it stand for a couple of minutes.  
Stir the mixture until it is lovely and glossy.
Spread the ganache over your cupcakes using the back of spoon.
Any left over ganache can be stored in the fridge for your toast the next day.  Enjoy!

Let it snow

When you need to make a batch of cupcakes in a hurry, then snowflake decorations are a lovely option.  These were a last minute request for a work event.

 

Delicious chocolate cupcakes smothered in yummy chocolate ganache.  The fondant snowflakes were brushed with lustre dust to give them a bit of wintery, Christmassy sparkle.    

Chocolate ganache is the perfect topping for those who don’t like their cake indulgence to be too sweet.  I always make a little more ganache than I need.  It saves any last minute panic plus the leftovers taste fabulous on warm toast and make a great mocha when added to a mug of coffee.

Spook-tacluar Sewcial at Fabric HQ

The nights are drawing in and soon it will be time for ghosts and ghouls to roam amongst us during Halloween.  These mummies got a head start, making an appearance at the Sewcial tonight.
 

 

And they weren’t the only ones.  There were monsters too, 
 
 
as well as giant spiders, scaredy cats, ghosts and even a haunted house!
 
 
Those brave souls undaunted by these fearsome creatures found a ghoul-licious chocolate cake and dark chocolate buttercream hiding underneath.  Turns out most people found these monsters rather sweet and not frightening at all!

Anyone for chocolate cake?

It was the Sewcial again last night.  The first one in the new Fabric HQ shop and Make HQ studio.  After all their cutting, stitching and sewing, the ladies deserved a treat.
And here it is.  Decadent chocolate cupcakes (yum) smothered in dark chocolate ganache (yum, yum) and topped with a chocolate flavoured fondant flower (yum, yum, YUM).