Cute as a Button! Petit Four Mini Cupcakes & Silicon Fondant Mould How-To

fondant button mini petit four cupcakes bright spring colours

Tell me you don’t already love these cupcakes. HOW cute are they?!

A good few months ago I received a silicon button mould from my cake decorating magazine and finally had the chance to use it. The idea had been in my head for quite a while, and I had lots of brightly coloured fondant leftover from my Fondant Stars birthday cake, just waiting to be used up.

The cake was a simple vanilla sponge, baked in pastel petit fours cases, and topped with a swirl of vanilla buttercream.

I’ve not got on particularly well with fondant mould before – the icing normally cracks or sticks, or sometimes both! But, after reading a few tips and tutorials online, I think I’ve cracked it…

Start with a clean mould, and dust or brush well with corn flour (icing sugar will not work as it’s too sticky).

how to use a silicon mould for fondant start by dusting with corn flour

Take a small ball of fondant, knead well until soft (add some tylo powder if you want it to set hard), and press firmly into the mould:

silicon fondant mould tutorial press sugarpaste in well

Using a sharp knife, carefully trim away the excess. I used the straight edged top of the mould to level the knife:

trimming the excess edges from button silicon fondant mould how to

Leave to air-dry for a few minutes, if you have time. Then invert the mould, and slowly bend away. Bend the mould, not the fondant, otherwise it may crack:

silicon mould tutorial bend to get the fondant out red icing sugarpaste button

Brush off the excess cornflour, or, for added sheen, dab on a small amount of water:

finishing sugarpast fondant button using water to create shiny finish

Repeat for lots of beautiful buttons! (I sprayed mine with a quick spritz of gold shimmer)

fondant buttons bright colours yellow orange red green pink tylow powder

I only used the smallest button out of my mould so the results were small, but so perfectly formed:

tiny pink cupcake fondant button topper size of a penny

And the best thing? They’re only bite-sized, so there’s always an excuse to eat another!

cute as a button mini petit four moulded fondant topped cupcakes

tiny petit four cupcakes topped with moulded fondant buttons bright colours orange green yellow pink red spring baking ideas

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Cadbury Creme Egg Mini Cheesecakes – Two Ways

cadbury creme eggs full size and mini tiny cheesecake bits with halves and yolks

I’ve never really understood why creme eggs are so marmite – love them or hate them. They are just chocolate with a sugary filling, what’s not to love!

With Easter only a week away I wanted to bake something with these bites of yumminess. In the supermarket I couldn’t decide between mini creme eggs and full-sized ones, so bought both! And I as I ended up making far too much cheesecake batter, I split it in two to make the different kinds. I’ve halved the recipe for each section so you won’t end up with too much.

Mini creme egg halves cheesecake bites

creme egg cheesecake recipes half mini egg baked into creamy recipe

Ingredients

6-7 digestive biscuits
1 tablespoon (approx 15g) butter or spread
125g cream cheese (1/2 pack, I used extra light)
50g plain yoghurt (I used low-fat greek)
1 egg
15g sugar or sweetener equivalent
1 pack mini cadbury creme eggs

Method

– Crush the biscuits or place in a blender, and mix with melted butter.
– Place about 3/4 teaspoon full into the holes of a mini cupcake/petit fours tin, and press down firmly with your fingers. Grease the top part of the tins (I use a quick spritz of cake release spray). Set aside in the fridge if the tin will fit, or in a cool place if not.
– Beat together the cream cheese, yoghurt and sugar, before folding in the sugar.
– Spoon approximately 2 dessert spoons of the mixture on top of each biscuit base, until nearly full

white cheesecake batter on digestive biscuit base mini petit fours bitesize

– Slice the mini creme eggs in half (this is easier to do if they’ve been in the fridge first), and gently place one into the top of each cheesecake.

mini cadbury creme eggs cut in half for cheesecake recipe

mini creme egg halves pressed into white cheesecake batter

– Bake at 180 degrees for 12 – 15 minutes, until the cheesecake batter can be lightly pressed without sticking to your fingers, and the edges are starting to colour.

petit four bitesize baked cheesecake with mini cadbury creme egg half

– Leave to cool in the tin, before carefully removing with the point of a sharp knife.

Look at that creme egg goo!!

mini baked cheesecake bites with bitesize creme egg halves biscuit base

Separated Creme Egg Cheesecake Bites

cadbury creme egg mini cheesecakes recipe orange yolk creamy whites chocolate biscuit base

Ingredients

6-7 digestive biscuits
1 tablespoon (approx 15g) butter or spread
125g cream cheese (1/2 pack, I used extra light)
50g plain yoghurt (I used low-fat greek)
1 egg
3 cadbury creme eggs (you could use a pack of mini creme eggs but it would be much more fiddly!)

Method

– Cut the creme eggs in half with a sharp knife, and separate the white, orange yolk, and chocolate into separate bowls.

cutting creme egg in half for cheesecake recipe

cadbury creme egg components orange yolk white fondant chocolate shell

– Add the butter to the chocolate, and melt together. Crush the biscuits and stir in the chocolate mixture.

cadburycreme egg cheesecake recipe chocolate digestive biscuit base mixture

– Press the chocolate biscuit mixture into the bottom of a mini cupcake tin, using your fingers to ensure it is firmly packed and flat. Grease the top part of the cupcake / spritz with a little cake release spray.

mini cheesecakes chocolate biscuit base cadbury creme eggs recipe

– Beat together the cream cheese and yoghurt, then fold in the egg. Put about 1 tablespoon of the mixture in with the orange creme egg yolks, and add the white creme egg fondant to the rest of the cheesecake batter.

creme egg cheesecake recipe white fondant orange yolk batter

– Mix together well, it will take a fair bit of beating to get the fondant to dissolve into the cheesecake batter. I added a tiny drop of Wilton orange colouring to the yolk, as the colour had become a bit diluted.

orange yolk wilton colour cheesecake batter with cadbury creme egg

– Spoon the white batter into on top of the chocolate biscuit bases, until nearly full.

white cheesecake batter creme egg recipe egg white

– Bake the whites at 180 degrees, for 5 minutes. Remove from the oven and place on a flat surface.

– Carefully spoon small amounts of the orange yolk mixture onto the top of each white.

making cadbury creme egg mini cheese cakes layering orange yolk on part-baked egg white

– Place back in the oven for another 7 – 10 minutes until the top is set, and the edges are slightly browned.

cadbury creme egg mini cheesecake recipe just baked

– Leave to cool in the tin. As they cool the cheesecakes will start to shrink slightly, easing away from the edges of the tin.

mini cheesecake baked in petit fours tin cooling and easing away from the sides

– Carefully lift out of the tin with a sharp, thin knife.

lifting mini cadbury creme egg cheesecake out of the tin

Creme egg – deconstructed!

creme egg recipe mini baked cheesecakes

Hoorah for the chocolatiness of Easter!

bitesize mini petit four baked cheesecakes made with cadbury creme eggs recipe two ways

Toffee Apple Upside-Down Cake

toffee apple upside down cake from gbbo great british bake off bbc recipe review

Made a couple to weeks back, this cake was an amazing dessert to accompany a big Sunday lunch.  Not that it lasted long enough, but I’m sure a slice would be amazing any day of the week!

I wanted to make a dessert that used apples – as some of the best traditional desserts do – but something with a bit more of a challenge than your usual pie or custard.

toffee apple upside down cake granny smith apples three

Not very much research later, and I stumbled across this great recipe over on the BBC, from last years Great British Bake Off. As I’ve never made anything upside-down before, let alone something so spectacular, I followed the letter as close as I could, so won’t retype here. The only thing I added was a little spice to the cake mix which really ramped up the taste – a teaspoon of lemon juice, a teaspoon of cinnamon, and half a teaspoon each of ginger and nutmeg.

First step in the cake was by far the most challenging – toffee! I’ve not made anything like a tarte tatin before so was intrigued to see how this would work. Such a simple combination of water and sugar, boiled over a high heat until golden. But leave it just 10 seconds too long and it turns into a black, vicious, tar-like substance that will smoke out the kitchen!

burnt toffee sugar and water instructions
smoke in kitchen from burnt baking

Oops! Lesson learnt, and pan cleaned (you need HOT water to get this toffee off anything…), a second batch fared much better, and it was poured into the tin and covered with apple rings and slices.

layering apple rings in toffee upside down cake loose bottomed tin

Cake batter mixing and baking was a doddle after the caramel disaster (and to add insult to injury the house smelt of burnt sugar for a good few days after).
The next obstacle was to turn the cake out, and the moment of truth for its’ upside-down-ness, would it stay in one piece?

toffee apple upside down cake viewed from the top

turned out toffee apple upside down cake apple rings didn't stick

It made it! Just about – you can see a few small pieces of apple stuck on the greaseproof paper in the background. Next time I’d perhaps use large slices of apple, and not so many small bits.

As it cooled on the rack I was slightly concerned that all the toffee seemed to be dripping down the sides…

toffee dripping from upside down apple cake like tart tatin

…but other than put a tray underneath to catch the drips there wasn’t a lot I could do! Actually it turned out this wasn’t such a bad thing, when we ate the cake it was good to have sticky toffee flavour all the way down.

Finally – a third batch of toffee:

making caramel from sugar and water easy recipe bubbling in non stick pan

This was drizzled over the cleaned baking tin bottom, so as to create a sugar sculpture shell that was the same size as the cake itself.

toffee drizzles on round baking pan for hardened sugar topping freeform artistic cake topping

Quite how it was supposed to “gently remove” in one piece is still completely beyond me, but I was quite happy with my 3 pieces, you can hardly tell and they still finished off the cake to a T!

caramel apple upside down cake with abstract freeform sugar work on op

caramel toffee crown on apple upside down cake sugar toffee pieces

I have to say it looked amazing – the colours on the top were just fantastic, reds, golds, and browns, more autumnal than our current weather! On arrival at our Sunday dinner I took the lid off the tin to reveal an amazing scent of spices, apples, and sweet, sticky, sticky toffee.

hardened sugar pattern caramel on for toffee apple upside cake from gbbo recipe

toffee apple upside down cake caramelised sugar crownt topping

So I’d say another technical challenge really rather well conquered! Any suggestions on what to try next…?

toffee apple upside down cake with toffee sugar caramel crown art

toffee crown sugar artwork on top of upside down cake

Chocolate Philadelphia Cheesecake

chocolate philadelphia cheesecake recipe instructions and ingredients simple one hour to make

A couple of weeks ago, before my trip to Brussels, Rob asked if I’d make him a cheesecake to have while I was away. His little face lit up when the idea of using chocolate philly popped into his head, of course I couldn’t say no!

The thing I love most about this is that it’s SO SIMPLE! You really do only need 5 ingredients. Also I should probably be politically correct and tell you it’s technically called Philadelphia with Cadbury.

ingredients for cadbury chocolate philadelphia cheesecake recipe simple low fat biscuits yoghurt eggs butter and cream cheese

It’s adapted from my low-fat cheesecake recipe – chocolate Philadelphia is not that bad for you, and if you use reduced fat biscuits, butter/spread and yoghurt then it’s definitely good for you.

The one thing it doesn’t need from the original recipe is any added sugar or sweetener. Unlike normal cream cheese the chocolate version has a wonderfully sweet tang which doesn’t need anything adding!

Ingredients

Approx 15 digestive biscuits (low-fat if you fancy)
25g butter/low-fat spread
250g chocolate Philadelphia (About 1 1/2 tubs)
250g plain/vanilla yoghurt
2 eggs

Method

– crush the biscuits (using a good processor helps to get them very fine for a nice smooth base), and mix with the melted butter. Press into the bottom of a springform/loose-bottom tin (8-10 inches works well with this recipe), and pop in the fridge

base for low fat cheese cake digestive biscuits pressed into the bottom of tin recipe

– beat together the yoghurt and cream cheese until smooth. Add the eggs and fold in until just mixed (don’t beat once the eggs are added)
– pour the chocolate mixture over the biscuit base, smooth with a spatula, and bake for 25-40 minutes at 180 degrees

chocolate philadelphia recipe cream cheese yoghurt and egg mixture being poured onto biscuit base

– after 25 minutes check every 5 minutes or so to see if it’s done. You want the top to be just cooked, it can still wobble but shouldn’t look liquid-y. If you’re not sure give it another few minutes.

just baked chocolate philadelphia cheesecake firm top recipe

– remove from the oven, run a knife around the edge so it can cool without sticking

Let it cool completely – trust me it’s worth it – and adorn with anything you wish – I added some extra chunks and sprinkles of chocolate (Cadbury of course), and a sprinkle of icing sugar.

cadbury chocolate topping on chocolate philadelphia cheesecake blog post recipe

Et voila! Simple, easy, quick and soooo tasty!

chocolate philadelphia cheesecake recipe gold plate

Sit back, and enjoy a big slice. You know you want to.

slive of cadbury chocolate philadelphia low fat cheesecake with recipe and ingredients

Galaxy Bites Chocolate and Caramel Cupcakes

chocolate and caramel cupcakes recipe topped with rose buttercream and galaxy bites flower gold soft pearl centre

I’d love to tell you more about these but, truth be told, they have sat on my phone for about 2 months (the photos, not the cakes!), and my memory is, well, hazy at best!

The key ingredient I can tell you is my latest addiction in the chocolate market, Galaxy Bites. Think of a malteaser, but with creamy galaxy chocolate on the outside and smoooooth galaxy caramel inside. Yum!

galaxy bites chocolate fillled with caramel chopping up into chunks for cupcakes

The cupcakes were made form a basic vanilla sponge mixture. I used half light brown sugar to add a more caramel-y taste to the sponge, and a good handful of caramel bites, mixed in with the flour so they wouldn’t sink to the bottom on baking.

caramel cupcake mix with galaxy bites chunks chocolate mix in flour to keep from sinking

The baked cupcakes – a golden caramel colour and with sneaky peeks of chocolate!

caramel cupcakes with chunks of galaxy bites chocolate purple and pink foil cases

To decorate – it couldn’t really be anything else but more chocolate! A rose swirl of chocolate buttercream, topped with a quartered caramel bite, and finished with a soft gold pearl centre.

rose topped chocolate and caramel cupcake flower buttercream swirl gold soft pearl

purple and pink foil cases caramel and chocolate cupcakes buttercream rose swirl topping

chocolate and caramel rose flower cupcakes purple and pink cases artistic photos

Mother’s Day Tulip Cookie Pops

cookie pops flower bouquet biscuits hand decorated orange and yellow sugar glitter sugar royal icing

Happy Mother’s Day to my lovely mummy!

My Cake Decorating magazine came a couple of weeks ago with a lovely tulip biscuit cutter and this nifty little cake / cookie pop ‘vase’. I waited patiently and knew mother’s day was the perfect opportunity to use them – not your usual bunch of flowers!

mothers day tulip flower cake pops orange and yellow in cardboard polka dot vase mycakedecorating

After baking the biscuits on the sticks (use paper ones not plastic, and push gently in to at least halfway across the biscuit, before they go in the oven), I decorated in two different ways.

The first – as you can see above, are hand decorated in orange and yellow icing. I covered the large flower surfaces in pastel royal icing, allowing to dry before using a paintbrush to add the finer details and edging in darker orange/yellow. Finally, they were topped with gold soft pearls.

orange hand decorated tulip cookie pop with gold soft pearl decoration

The second – and quicker – used a pastel orange icing and dipping in pink and yellow sparkly/glitter sugar. The icing dried pretty quickly so I did the yellow fronts first, then the pink top, before using the icing alone for the sides. I again used a thin paintbrush to apply all the icing so that it only went on the areas needed.

glitter sugar tulip cookie pops biscuits on sticks flowers for mothers day

Tied with a bow for a beautiful bouquet!

flower bouquet tied ribbon bow tulip cookie pops for mothers day

Belgian Chocolate Brownies

godiva belgian chocolate brownies recipe crispy top sticky middle

This weekend just gone I have been back in Brussels, for the third time in 4 months! Thankfully it had warmed up a tad since my last trip, when we landed at midnight to be greeted by a chilly -8 degrees.

For reasons I can’t bring myself to explain right now, we came back with rather a lot of Belgian chocolate. Smooth, creamy little bites, and so difficult to stop at just one! There are a lot of chocolate houses in Brussels, these are from Godiva and very highly recommended 🙂 Managing to squeeze in a day off on Monday, I wanted to bake something decidedly wicked with this lovely high quality ingredient.

godiva belgian chocolates brownie recipe

Recipe (adapted from The Hummingbird Bakery brownies)

130g chocolate
115g butter
200g sugar
90g plain flour
2 eggs
optional 80g chocolate, broken into chunks

godiva belgian milk chocolates weighing out for brownie recipe

It took surprisingly little time to unwrap all the chocolates – although there was quite a case of one for the bowl, one for me!

I didn’t have many of the dark chocolates, but thought these would be extra special as chunks in the mixture (with a few milk chocolates thrown in for good measure).

godiva belgian dark chocolate 72% cocoa brownie recipe

chocolate brownie mixture with chunks of milk and dark belgian chocolate

Method

Melt the 130g chocolate and butter together gently, this is best done in a bowl over a pan of boiling water (don’t let the bottom of the bowl touch the hot water).

Take off the heat and stir in the sugar, then add the eggs, flour, and chunks of chocolate (if using). Mix well until smooth and chocolatey.

Pour into your tin, which should be greased and lined. Mine was 20cm square but you could use a bigger/smaller one if you wanted thinner/thicker brownies.

belgian chocolate brownie recipe batter mix ready to bake square tin

Bake at 180 degrees for 20-30 minutes, until the top is crispy, the side are a little firm, and the centre is still a bit squidgy when pressed.

freshly baked belgian chocolate brownies crispy top ready

Leave to cool completely in the tin, turn out, and cut into pieces – as big or as small as you like!

slicing belgian chocolate brownies

Chocolatey, fudgy brownies – with extra chocolate chunks for good measure!

belgian chocolate brownie squares recipe

I also tried the Hummingbird Bakery’s method of icing sugar decoration – pop the stencil on stop and sprinkle over.

icing sugar patterns on brownies circle stencil

Pretty patterned brownies!

belgian chocolate brownie squares with icing sugar flower patterns stenciled