Thursday, 20 September 2012

Pinnies And Petticoats

The first rule of Cake Club is Don't talk about Cake Club.
The second rule of Cake Club is Don't talk about Cake Club.

Thankfully Aberdeen's new Pinnies and Petticoats Cake Club has no such Fight Club type rules. Otherwise this would be a rather empty blog post.  I first heard about the inagural meeting of this informal Aberdeen based baking club on Twitter (@foodiequine) Someone once said to me that the difference between those on Twitter and those on Facebook is that you want to punch your Facebook 'friends' but go out for a beer with your Twitter ones.  In this instance substitute #cake for #beer

The first meet was scheduled to take place at Tiger Tiger with instructions to "bring along a homebake and a copy of the recipe used".  Open ended or what?!  Inspired by a demo from Charlotte's Chocolates at The Forfar Meerkat I decided to give Cakepops a try. Killing two birds with one stone when I went to buy the ingredients I remembered about the Foodies 100 #bakeitfair challenge so these are Fair Trade Cakepops.


There are three main parts to your cakepop. The cake, the butter icing and the chocolate decoration. Actually I forgot the vital forth part. A stick is prettymuch essential. I used what were classed as toffee apple sticks. For my cake I followed the most amazing chocolate cake recipe that a Kiwi friend (hence the cups) had been kind enough to share. I don't know its original source but its amazingly rich and moist. If you'd like to make a vegan chocolate cake check out the recipe at Veggie Desserts.

THE CAKE
185g butter (room temp)
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 tsp baking powder
1-1/2 Cups FAIRTRADE sugar
2 Cups flour
1 Cup cool tap water
3 eggs
2/3 Cup FAIRTRADE Cocoa Powder

Beat everything together in a mixer or with an electric whisk until the colour lightens. Bake in two sandwich tins (greased and lined if yours are not silicone) at 160 degrees for 30 minutes.



THE BUTTER ICING
6oz Icing Sugar
4oz Butter
2oz FAIRTRADE Cocoa Powder
couple of tsp water if required



When the cakes are cool blitz one half in a food processor until it forms breadcrumbs. Then gradually add the butter icing and keep blitzing until it starts to form a dough like consistency. Half a cake and half the icing should give you 25 cake pops. Ice the other half with the remaining butter icing and I can assure you it will be gone in no time or keep going with the pops if you want 50.


Next you roll the cake/icing mix into balls. I was rather anal about this and weighed out 25g balls. Those with less OCD tendancies can freestyle it. Secure sticks to the pops by dipping in melted chocolate then pressing into the ball and leave to set in the fridge.


Now the fun part. Decorating your pops. I used Fairtrade Dairy Milk Chocolate (it was actually the only Fairtrade milk one I could see in my local Tesco) as the base and sprinkled with an assortment of coconut, butterscotch chips chocolate crispies and chocolate strands.  My self created Blue Peter style patented egg tray cakepop holder wasn't entirely the success I'd hoped for so I'm going to have to work on another method to keep them upright whilst they set.


I was pretty chuffed about how they turned out for a first attempt but still very nervous bringing them along to "Cake Club" in case they fell below the expected standard. I needn't have worried as the small but perfectly formed group of Cakies had none of Mr Hollywood's sacastic put downs.  Adorned with sticky label name badges we quickly bonded over tales of baking disasters and got straight down to the serious business of taste testing.

Rye Apple Cake from Dan Lepard "Short and Sweet" 
Peanut Butter Cookies and Passion Cake
There was a fantastic spread of goodies on offer. Rye Apple Cake, Black Velvet Cake, Sherbet Lemon Meringues, Pale Ale Parkin, Peanut Butter Cookies, Cupcake Bites, Peanut Butter Cookies, Passion Cake, Peanut Butter Chocolate Balls and Tablet. I hope I haven't forgotten anything. 

Lots of food history too. We learned that Passion Cake does not contain passion fruit but is so named because it was the cheaper alternative to traditional wedding cake. The tablet recipie used was a traditional family one typewritten on a worn sheet of paper with olde worlde measurements and instructions for cooking on the fire. It was also lovely to discover that one of the attendees has her very own "bun in the oven" due to be fully cooked on Valentines Day. 

There was no competition element at all to the evening (everyone's a winner at cake club!) but my own personal favourites were the Peanut Butter Cookie's and Lou from Please Do Not Feed The Animals Rye Apple Cake.   

Tablet. Peanut Butter Chocolate Balls, Passion Cake
Cupcake Bites
My first plateful (yes there was a second...)

After the cakefest you would have thought that the night just couldn't get any better. Bit it did when we were invited to go downstairs to Tiger Tigers new Polynesian themed Kanaola Bar and sample a complimentary cocktail. I couldn't resist the Pina Colada served in a real life pineapple. Surely that must count as one of my five a day.


Cake and Cocktails quaffed, new friendships formed, tupperware boxes full of baked goods and alas it was time to head for home.  But first we had to finalise our next cake meet.  The date for your diary is Wednesday 17th October, 7 pm at Tiger Tiger.  Bring along a spooky / Halloween themed sweet or savoury bake - all welcome.  Leave me a comment or drop me an email if you fancy coming along and I'll put you in touch with Ms Pinnie or Ms Petticoat.

Until next time - keep baking.  And if you can make it Fair Trade then so much the better #bakeitfair

3 comments :

  1. Sums it up brilliantly. Spread the word. I can't wait for the next one.
    I loved your cakepops - they just looked brilliant and were obvioulsy yummy too. I use florists oasis to stand my cakepops in and that works well. If I want to display them, I wrap the block of oasis in a pretty wrapping paper.
    See you next month. :)

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  2. Love it! Glad you enjoyed the first of, hopefully, many Pinnies & Petticoats events. All the bakes were yummy and my team enjoyed your cake pops today :)

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  3. Looks like you all had great fun. I will make it sometimes, with a special needs child, kids allowing can be difficult. Thanks for entering Funky Foodies, cake pops are a nightmare to make. I did it once, and I'll never try them again....

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