Novelty Firework Cake – Bonfire Night

Novelty Firework Cake

Finished_novelty_fireworks_cake

This novelty firework cake is perfect for a bonfire night tea. Shaped as 2 fireworks with ‘exploding’ stars it will make a great centrepiece, and when it is cut each person gets their own little Catherine Wheel cake. You can’t get much more bonfire themed than that!

What you will need

Tools

    • Rolling pins – one for rolling out the paste and a small pin for the decoration
    • Marzipan spacers are useful for making sure your paste is the correct thickness
    • Small and medium circular cutters
    • Sharp knife
    • Baking Parchment for templates
    • Non-Stick board
    • Star Cutters – I used the FMM Star Set
    • Alphabet Cutters – I used the FMM Art Deco Tappit set
    • Shell tool for embossing the board to give a grass effect.

Method – Preparation

Step 1: Bake your cake. You can find the recipe and instructions for baking a Fat-Free Swiss Roll here.
Colour your sugarpaste. You will need approx. 400g Purple, 250g Red, 250g Green and 100g Yellow. Cover your board with the green paste and emboss using the shell tool.

Embossing the cake board
Ideally it is best to do this step the day before so that the paste and cakes set up a little to make it easier to work.

Step 2: Make the stars – This could be done a few days ahead to make sure that they are completely dry but they certainly need to dry overnight at least.

Cut the metallic wires to the variable lengths. Roll out the white Squires SMP thinly on a non-stick board and cut out a variety of stars using the FMM Star Set of cutters. Dip the end of the wire into edible glue and fix each star onto a wire.

Either leave flat to dry or place in oasis or polystyrene to dry. Personally I like to dry them standing because it gives a bit more shape to the stars rather than them being flat although they are delicate at this stage so take care. Leave to set up completely.

Make the stars

When set brush with edible glue and dip in the glitter. I use a piece of parchment paper under them as that way it is possible to tip a lot of glitter onto each star to ensure they are well covered. Any glitter remaining on the paper can then be tipped back into the pot when finished.

Set aside and leave to dry thoroughly.

Method – Covering the Firework cakes

Step 3: Cut the swiss roll into 2. One should be approximately twice as long as the other section. This will make 2 novelty firework cakes. Using parchment paper make a template for your covering.

Mask the cakes thinly with buttercream or ganache and stand on end.

Cut the cakes and make the templates

Step 4: Roll out a small piece of purple paste and cut 2 circles using the larger circle cutter – you should chose a cutter the same size as the cake surface. Place the cut paste on the top end of each cake.

Cover the larger cake with purple paste and the smaller with red paste using the templates as a guide. Leave a small amount standing proud of the top edge.

cut out top circles of paste
roll_out_covering

Cut a thin strip of the contrasting coloured paste and tuck into the join, fixing in place with edible glue. This gives a stripe down the back of each firework cake. When you cut the cake into the slices each slice will have a contrasting ‘fuse’.
covered_cakes

With the remaining purple paste roll out thickly and cut 2 circles and fix to the centre of each firework cake top with edible glue. This makes the ‘fuse’ and will be where you will fix your stars so that the wires do not go into the cake.

top_fuse

Method – Finishing Touches

Step 5: On a non-stick board roll out the black Squires SMP to make the labels for the fireworks. It is important that this paste is rolled very thinly. Cut into a strip. Rub a little cornflour under the paste to release it from the board and a little into the top surface with your fingertips to help the letters come out of the cutters easily.

Using the FMM Tapit set select the letter you need and press into the paste. Scrub it a little against the board to ensure it is cleanly cut. Lift out and then tap the end of the cutter firmly against your table top. The letter should drop out cleanly. If it sticks you may have your paste too thick or you may not have dried the top enough with your cornflour. Repeat with the remaining letters until you have all you need.

Roll out a strip of white Squires SMP paste and stick the letters onto this using a little edible glue. Trim to size and then glue the strip to the side of the larger firework cake as shown.

Making the lettering labels

Step 6: Cut out some yellow stars using the FMM star cutters and fix to the side of the smaller cake.

fireworks_with_details

Step 7: Place the cakes carefully on the covered board using a little buttercream or ganache if necessary to stick them in place. You could add a few stars to the board or else add an inscription if you prefer.

Step 8: Finally arrange the stars into the top of each cake. You can also make a few spirals using the metallic wires.
make spirals of wireSimply wrap the wire around a small rolling pin (A Cel Stick is ideal for this). Remove the wire and you will have a spiral ‘spring’. These can be used to fill out the firework topper.

Finished_novelty_fireworks_cake

So there you have your finished Firework cake with glittery stars topper.

To serve the cake cut into slices. You will end up with a plateful of little Catherine wheels thanks to the spiral of the roulade, complete with a little fuse.

Enjoy!

Variations

If you don’t want to bake a swiss roll you can of course get ready made shop ones which you can just decorate. Alternatively you could use your favourite firm cake mix baked in empty washed out cans – I love the Rich Cherry Cake for this – for 4 baked bean cans you will need about a half quantity of cake mix. Unfortunately this will not give you the pretty spirals when cut but tastes delicious!

Take care this November the 5th and enjoy the praise from all for this fabulous Novelty Fireworks Cake!

swiss-roll-slice

Mixing Sugarflair Food Colours

Mixing Sugarflair Food Colours

I’m not sure if you’ve seen this one on Mixing Sugarflair Food Colours on our YouTube channel yet, it’s from about 3 years ago now but the concept remains solid! We get asked quite a lot about the shades and variations that can be produced with professional food colours. We used Sugarflair as our example brand as they are one of our best selling food colours alongside Rainbow Dust Pro-Gels.

There’s two really helpful videos we put together to show you how to get the most out of mixing sugarflair food colours to create a range of colours.

Mixing Sugarflair Paste Colours

You can do this with our Beginners Sugarflair Set!

Part 1: Mixing with Sugarflair Colours.

Part 2: Mixing with Sugarflair Colours.

We hope this helps!

Don’t forget we have loads of great discounts on Sugarflair Paste Colours all available on our online shop!

 

Baby Block Cake Toppers

Baby Block Cake Toppers

How to make Baby block cake toppers by our guest blogger Victorious Cupcakes.

Baby Block Cake Topper Tutorial

This is a really cute tutorial which is perfect for so many occasions; New Baby, Christening, 1st Birthdays and Children’s Novelty Cakes. You can use whatever colours suit the occasion…go for pastel shades for babies and lovely bright colours in primaries for your toddlers!

Here’s what you’ll need:

Ingredients – To make 5 blocks you will need:

Baby Block Cake Toppers

Step 1:

Mix 30g of fondant and 30g of modelling paste (keeping 10g for the lettering) together and knead for a couple of minutes to warm the paste up. Colour with a touch of food colour paste.

Baby Block Cake Toppers

Step 2:

Roll the fondant/paste mixture into a 20mm thick sausage and mark out squares on the top, as a guide where to cut.

Baby Block Cake Toppers

Step 3:

Cut the squares out using a sharp knife and flatten the top by rubbing it onto your work surface. Use a touch of corn flour to stop the squares sticking.

Baby Block Cake Toppers

Step 4:

Emboss the edges of the squares with the stitch tool or a cocktail stick.

Baby Block Cake Toppers

Step 5:

Roll 10g of white modelling paste to 1mm thick and leave to dry on the counter for 15 minutes. Dust the counter and letter cutters lightly with corn flour. Cut your letters and tap the end of the cutter on the counter – the letter should fall out. If it gets stuck in the cutter, the paste needs to be thinner, roll and leave to dry again.

Baby Block Cake Toppers

Step 6:

Stick the letters to the blocks with a water brush.

Baby Block Cake Toppers

Step 7:

You could leave the letters white or paint them with edible paint.

Baby Block Cake Toppers

Step 8:

Display the blocks on your chosen cake.

Baby Block Cake Toppers

If you loved this blog, you’ll like these tutorials we’ve added:

You can also see loads more of Victoria’s fabulous tutorials and recipes over on her page on at GoodtoKnow.

Pug Cupcake Tutorial

This cute Pug Cupcake Tutorial is by the awesome Shereen from Shereen’s Cakes and Bakes, Shereen is our very lovely guest blogger and you can check out loads more of her fantastic work and tutorials all available on her Facebook page HERE.

For today’s blog Shereen is posting a Step by Step tutorial on these incredibly cute pug cupcakes so if your barking mad about dogs then you’re going to love these!

Equipment Needed:

 

pugs1

Step 1:

Ice your cupcake in the middle and cut a round disk for your cupcake – about 4mm thick

pugs2

Step 2:

Cover your cupcake and using some dark brown make a mouth shape as pictured below

pug3

Step 3:

Work fast with your sugarpaste so it’s warm and ‘tacky’ so you don’t need glue, it will just stick to the cupcake, put the mouth on as pictured and shape a tongue from pink sugarpaste

pug4

Step 4:

Attach your tongue and use the quilting tool to make a little line in it

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Step 5:

Add the snout

pug7

Step 6:

Make some lines in the snout and some little dots with your ball tool

pug8

Step 7:

Use your large ball tool to indent the top of the snout for the nose to fit in to. Roll a sausage shape as pictured and stick across the top and side of the snout

pug9

Step 8:

Repeat sausage shape for under the mouth

pug10

Step 9:

Add some icing above both eyes and use your shell tool to make little hair effects on the icing

pug11

Step 10:

Roll some more sausage shapes and stick them above the eyes … bring down into cheeks and around the mouth … see the left hand side

pug12

Step 11:

There should be a little gap on each side of the face make a little shape to fit in and texture it too

pug13

Step 12:

Fill all spaces on the cupcake with folds/rolls as I did with this chin

pug14

Step 13:

Add a piece right at the top between the eyes and use your blade tool to make grooves in it for the forehead

pug15

Step 14:

Shape some ears using your hands, they don’t have to be identical

pug16

Step 15:

Attach your ears and add a little sugarpaste at the top of each ear to blend in with the face

pug17

Step 16:

Add tiny little white icing dots to the eyes for character and using your soft brush, dust first black around the eyes and then brown around the eyes and just in the folds to give a little depth

pug18

Step 17: 

I used some confectioners varnish for the eyes and nose to shine them up a little bit

pug19

 

Thanks Shereen for this awesome Pug Cupcake Tutorial!

Well you have got to admit they are about the cutest thing you’ve ever seen! What a wonderful idea and it’s really great that fantastic bakers like Shereen share their tips and know-how with the world! We applaud you! If you think these are amazing you can check out more of Shereen’s Cakes on her Facebook Page!

If you enjoyed this post…. you’ll probably love having a nosey through this Blog for Dog Lovers.

 

Thanks for reading! We have all the products available on our website at the very lowest prices to create all the tutorials shown on our blogs so why not swing by and see our latest products. xx

5.flavoursandcolours

 

Beach Themed Cupcakes

Beach Themed Cupcakes by Victorious Cupcakes.

beach_hut13

Our latest guest blogger to join us is the fantastic Victoria Threader from Victorious Cupcakes. Victoria is really well known for her columns and recipes in Good To Know Recipes and we are absolutely delighted to have her join us here too.

This Step by Step will show you how to make these awesome Beach Themed Cupcakes and include instructions and what products you will need to achieve your results. You might have similar products already in your collection that you can improvise with, but in case you need them I have added the links to the list of what’s been used.

beach_hut1

Equipment

beach_hut2

Step 1

Colour 440g of the sugarpaste pale blue, 20g yellow, 10g Royal Blue, 10g Green, 10g Red and leave 10g White.

beach_hut3

Step 2

Roll out the pale blue and, using the double sided circle cutter, cut 12 circles the size of your cupcakes. Cut using vegetable fat to stop the icing sticking to your cutter or work surfaces. Place on a foam mat to dry.

beach_hut4

Step 3

Roll the yellow sugarpaste  out finely and then cut another circle the same size as the original but this time cut the bottom third off it and use this as your sand. Attach with a brush and a little water.

beach_hut5

Step 4

With the remaining yellow cut 12 small circles using the tip of a plain-tipped piping tube. If the sugarpaste gets stuck simply nudge it out with the soft end of the brush. Attach to the cupcake as shown before with a small amount of water.

beach_hut6

Step 5

Roll and cut 1 strip of white and 1 strip of red, 1cm wide. Cut little red and white rectangles, 2cm long for the huts. Apply to the cupcakes.

beach_hut7

Step 6

Once the huts have been arranged on the sand, use a sharp knife to score door marks on the front of the huts.

beach_hut8

Step 7

Use the zig-zag cutter to cut out the roof shape. You can find this cutters in FMM Straight Frill set 5-8. Attach the roofs with a little water.

beach_hut9

Step 8

Cut out the navy icing, using round and scalloped cutters, cut out a small piece to make the water. Stick on, as before.

beach_hut10

Step 9

Roll out green and with a suitable smaller circle cutter, cut out the hills and place them to the side of the huts. Stick on, as before.

beach_hut11

Step 10

Finally use the black edible pen to dot the handles on the door. Then apply to your cupcakes using whatever flavoured buttercream you would like.

beach_hut13

 

That’s it all wrapped up. You can even use some gorgeous red cupcake cases to match the huts on your Beach Themed Cupcakes.

If you enjoyed this step by step tutorial by Victorious Cupcakes check out Victoria’s Facebook Page and her Good To Know Recipe column! 

 

We are now stocking white cupcake display boxes that hold 12 cupcakes. Perfect for transporting these beautiful cupcakes to your nearest and dearest! So don’t forget to pop by our online shop and pay us a visit!

cupcake_box_white_12_single_eBay

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Orange Slice Sugarcraft Tutorial

The Orange Slice Sugarcraft Tutorial is absolutely perfect for those summer cupcakes!

I came across this tutorial some years ago and after much research I struggled to find the original creator but want to say hats off to them! I love it… you don’t have to stop with orange slices you can also make Lemons and Limes using the same concept!

Here’s the fabulous Orange Slice Tutorial

Orange Slice Sugarcraft Tutorial

 

When mixing your colours for Sugarpaste use high quality colours like Sugarflair Paste Colours. They are fabulous giving you a lovely vibrant colour with a very small amount, this also makes the sugarpaste much more manageable as it doesn’t become sticky and hard to handle like it does with cheap supermarket brands.

I’d recommend going with Sugarflair Melon Yellow and Tangerine for your yellow & orange. Sugarflair colours are 100% edible as well as being suitable for vegetarian diets.

SugarflairPasteMelonEbay                    Sugarflair Paste Tangerine Colour Chart

I must say this is one of my favourite little toppers, this allows you to make loads once cut in to slices and if you don’t use them all then all you need to do is store them in a cool dry place away from direct sunlight and you can use them for future cupcake toppers too. We recommend using them up until the best before on the packet of sugarpaste or modelling paste you have used to create them.

A lovely summery orange slice cupcake topper!

orange_image

 

If you enjoyed this mini tutorial why not check out some more.

 

 

Testing Black Food Colour

Testing Black Food Colour

We’ve been testing black food colour this week as many of you have reported strange things happening to your food colour when left over a few days.

black_foodcolour_test

I have used 2 of the high quality brands of professional quality on the most recent batch to 2014 – Sugarflair & ProGel.

Top Tip – Never use Supermarket food colours to get bright colours, they are no way near as concentrated so cannot acheive vibrant colour and often make sugarpaste sticky, buttercream too runny and aren’t bake stable.

black_test_abstract

 

What was used in this experiment:

black_mixing_process

Experiment Steps

Step 1 – I weighed and measured my white sugarpaste and split it in to three equal quantities. I then coloured one ball of each to the darkest colour possible using the same amount of food colour in each sugarpaste ball.

Step 2 – I split the dark sugarpaste down in to two equal quantities to create different shades of the same colour. The more white VS colour the lighter the shade becomes.

Step 3 – I mixed the colours together well and then took a picture immediately of the results.

Step 4 – I left the food colours for 72 hours out of direct sunlight and then took another picture under the same light.

Results

black_test_results

Findings

Sugarflair Shadow Grey – I liked that you couldn’t add too much with this food colour, as we all know too well, it’s easy to add colour but extremely difficult to take it away. The limited depth of this pastel shade meand you get a really lovely grey even when you accidentally add too much! No change in colour over the 72 hours development time.

Sugarflair Liquorice Black – Fantastic all-rounder for greys, unfortunately this didn’t reach black but instead made it to a deep charcoal grey with the same amount of food colourings as the others. I found this to be lovely for greys and deeper greys but if you wanted a prominent black I would advise Black Extra or ProGel Black. Slightly deepened in colour over the 72 hours but hard to see in the photograph.

Sugarflair Black Extra – Great for Black, in fact the best for the black requiring a small amount of colour to achieve it’s results but absolutely rubbish for grey as it had a strong bluey tinge to the colouring which worsened over the 72 hours. The deepest shade of the colour was fantastic for black and stayed the same over the 72 hours.

Rainbow Dust Pro-Gel Grey – A lot stronger than I expected it to be, not as much variation in the shades but it held it’s colour well over the 72 hours and there was no sign of blue or greening over the time waited. Comparable to the Sugarflair Liquorice.

Rainbow Dust Pro-Gel Black – Very impressive strength, nearly as good as the Black Extra by Sugarflair and although I wouldn’t advise using this for grey due to the blue-ish tone it leaves on the lighter shades, it’s certainly made the top of the list for black food colouring.

black_test_large

 

Why Does Black Food Colour Change Colour?

This happens as black isn’t a colour in itself but it’s made up of many other colours for example a combination of Blue, Green and Red. The reason why our food colouring changes colour as the red is the most unstable colour which allows it to fade much faster than the other two colours. This is why you are often left with a greenish or bluish looking icing that was once black.

A quick tip is adding dark brown to your black paste, the extra red infusion stops the paste fading as fast and leaves it staying black!

We hope you’ve found this experiment & colour chart helpful. If you have any questions or other experiments you would like to see please write them in the comments on our blog.

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