Saturday, 16 August 2014

Guestpost: Baking with Ellie

My name is Ellie and I'm a baker, well It is one title that I hold including mother, daughter, guider, blogger among other things. 
I have been blogging for about 16 months, and love to write all about my family, all the trips and activities we do, I also blog about any baking that I do and will be writing about out Florida holiday later this year.

For as long as I can remember I have always loved to bake, my mum taught me as a small child.

When I was very young I used to ask mum if we could bake and she always said yes, we started of "baking" rice crispy cakes, and over the years progressed to proper cakes. I started out by "helping" make things such the christmas cake, mince pies and other treats, basically helping to mix and getting to lick the bowl once the cake was in the oven.

 I loved getting to sit up on the counter and watch her make the lovely cakes and mince pies.

 When I was about 8, I got an Easy bake oven, you know the one where you mixed water with the powder and "cooked" the little cakes using the easy bake oven (which just used a light bulb in a box) but you could watch the cakes back and it fascinated me.

 Over the years I have gotten better at baking and decorating, and in march this year I had the privileged of making a wedding cake for a family friend.

 Baking is my hobby and it helps me to relax but that wedding cake was a nightmare and I will never again make individual square cakes.

 When my mum taught me to bake she taught me a very simple sponge cake recipe and it is one that I have used for nearly every cake since.

 It it the recipe I use for vanilla cupcakes, for my celebration cake sponges and any sponge cake I fancy doing.
It is the simplest recipe that I have ever used and can be changed easily to suit size of cake and quantities of cupcakes.

It uses only 5 basic ingredients Flour, Sugar, Butter (stork), baking powder and eggs. The quantities are very easy to remember it is equal amounts of flour, sugar and stork and half that of eggs.

 I though I'd share that recipe with you.
I usually make the following for a batch of cupcakes

8oz Self raising flour
8oz Caster sugar
8oz Butter/Stork ( I have always used stork)
4 Large eggs
1 tsp baking powder
A splash of flavoring - vanilla, lemon etc


 I weight it out, put it all in the mixer and beat it for less than a minute. Once its all mixed together I taste it, after making it a few thousand times I know if something is missing or not quite right. I think its just something that becomes second nature after a while.

The cake mix then gets put into paper muffin cases ( I personally think fairy cake cases are too small) I use a regular large kitchen spoon, the type that you use for deserts or eating soup etc and put a large spoon into each case. I then top them up so they are a little over half filled.

 I find that this made cakes that are large enough but don't spill over, but it is all just trial and error. They are then baked at 160c (fan) for 17 minutes ( checked, then given a couple more minutes if needed)



I usually ice my cupcakes with buttercream, I don't use a recipe for buttercream or weigh anything really. I simply put butter into my Kitchenaid mixer bowl and beat it till sort, then add a splash of boiling water to make the mix looser and make it easier to add the icing sugar. I then pour in icing sugar a little at a time then mix. I add it until it's a thick smooth mix and you don't get a butter aftertaste

I add vanilla ( or any flavouring you like) in and some colourings.

 I would love to hear you favourite recipes or childhood baking stories?
How did you get into baking?

 You can see more of my baking creations, and read more about me and my family on my blog http://havingababyandlivingathome.co.uk 

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