Saturday 27 April 2013

Clandestine Cake Club - May Day theme

Today was my second Clandestine Cake Club meet - this month's theme was May Day cakes, and we met at the lovely Limes cafe in Bedford town centre on this lovely sunny April afternoon from 2pm-4pm. This month I took my husband Liam along with me as a guest - although he doesn't bake many cakes he very much enjoys eating them, and knows a lot about baking through the process of osmosis (living with me!) 

We baked our cake together last night - he's a great passer, fetcher, stirrer, wiper, taster assistant in the kitchen, and we danced around to the radio while we cooked. He also helped with the manly 'construction' side of the cake, so it wasn't too girlie a process. 

The idea for my cake came from my lovely friend Liz, who usually comes along to cake club with me. Unfortunately she couldn't make today's meeting - but suggested the idea of making a May pole cake with ribbons, and said I could steal it. (Thanks Liz!)

Hubby and I put our heads together, and I was really pleased with our final result. 

The cake itself is the wonderful Felicity Cloake's 'Perfect' Carrot Cake recipe from her food blog on the Guardian - I've used this recipe a few times and it is always a winner! Find the recipe here. We then coloured the cream cheese icing using some green food colouring, and decorated using some pre-made sugar flowers, and of course, the May pole (made from doweling, curling ribbon and Sellotape).

our May pole cake 

This was the cake last night, however, after popping it in the fridge over night we found the ribbon didn't want to stick to the glass stand this morning, so we left the ribbon hanging - and actually I preferred how it looked. 

our cake at Clandestine Cake Club today

There were, of course, loads of other scrummy and very impressive cakes at Clandestine Cake Club today, and this time we'd made sure we'd not eaten any lunch - so as to free up some tummy space for extra cake! 

The other cakes:

Amaretto sponge

Coffee and Walnut with a dash of Tia Maria!

Fudgey Pecan Cake

Double lemon drizzle cake with poppy seeds

Ginger sponge with lemon icing

Chocolate and vanilla sponge 2 layer Spring May Pole cake - what a show stopper!!!

What a fantastic array of cakes we got to tuck into! My husbands favourite cake (after mine of course!) was the Fudgey Pecan cake - which was absolutely delicious. And my favourite was the Double Lemon-Drizzle Poppyseed cake, it was so dense and sharp and lemony! :-)

During this months meet we were treated to a wonderful sugar-craft demonstration - we watched how to make the most exquisite roses, carnations and petunias from sugar-paste. They were actually far simpler than I ever imagined, and used only a few pieces of key equipment which is easily purchasable from eBay or Hobbycraft (I can feel a little shopping spree coming on -sorry Husband!)

the sugar-craft demonstration

stunning sugar carnation

such delicate sugar-roses

lovely little yellow petunias

hand made sugar paste flowers

The demonstration has most definitely inspired me to have another go at sugar-paste. I've had a play before, and have a few of the tools at home, but I really want to have a go at some of the flowers we saw at today's this space. 

As always, one of the greatest parts of cake club is coming home with a box full of assorted cake slices! 

The staff at Limes cafe were so friendly and helpful, and they seemed to really enjoy seeing all of our cake creations. Limes is a great little cafe tucked away on Lime Street in the town centre offering a range of yummy fresh cafe foods, coffees, teas, soft drinks and sweet treats; well worth a visit if you get a chance! 

follow Limes on twitter @LimesofBedford 
Clandestine Cake Club @clandestinecake
Carmela Hayes @carmela_kitchen

Has anyone else done any baking this week/weekend? 

I hope you've all been enjoying the sunshine!

Mrs B