Posts Tagged ‘cake’

International Day Against Homophobia

Friday, June 23rd, 2017 | Life

Last month, we had a bake sale at Sky to support International Day Against Homophobia. The crowning jewel of the sale was this…

…which was self-described by the bake-sale team as “the gayest cake in the world”. It was also delicious.

Nappy cakes

Friday, October 7th, 2016 | Family & Parenting

nappy-cakes

Yeah, apparently they are a thing. It is a bunch of presents, predominantly nappies, arranged into a cake shape. I had never heard of it until Elina came home from her last day at work carrying one. Then, in a pleasant coincidence, we arrive at my parents to be handed another one from my auntie. More are welcome: you can’t have too many nappies!

Sky Cupcake Bake-Off

Monday, March 21st, 2016 | Food

Following on from the success of the first Sky Leeds Bake Off, we held another to raise money for Sports Relief. In the end we raised £275, which feels like a good effort. I blogged about my preparation last week.

Here was my final creation:

bake-off-beach

The beach was made of gingerbread. The sea was made from buttercream frosting, with a chocolate finger jetty. The sea cupcakes were blueberry with lemonade frosting. The beach cupcakes were brown sugar with a salted caramel centre and salted caramel frosting.

judging

Alas, the judging was changed from the Great British Bake Off-style present all twelve as a piece, to one cupcake from each batch being selected and given to the judges. While mine were tasty, they were not tasty enough to sway the judges on that alone. However, all was not lost. Gaz did Editorial Ops proud with a 3rd place.

Kenwood Chef KMC010

Friday, February 26th, 2016 | Food, Reviews

kenward-stand-mixer

I had been mulling over the possibility of getting a stand mixer for months. At Christmas I finally decided to take the plunge and carefully picked over the options. The KitchenAid Artisan mixer looks beautiful. However, the Kenwood Chef gets a better write-up for performance and so I eventually convinced myself to go practical over pretty.

It put me in a bad mood immediately as it had a “5 year guarantee” sticker on the side that is incredibly difficult to get off. I had to peel it, then scratch it with my nail, then scrub it several times to get it off. Since then the whole experience has been far more positive however.

The box is massive. Probably because there is a stand mixer, a food processor and a blender in the box.

stand-mixer-box

The main reason I wanted a stand mixer was to allow me to make continental bread and enriched doughs, which often require a long machine kneading. I got to work straight away.

bagettes

Fifteen minutes of kneading feels like a really long time. However it actually does take that long to pick up all the dough onto the hook and give it a good spin.

ciabatta

Ciabatta requires fifteen minutes of kneading as well. Elina thinks it looks really ugly. However, it is pretty much supposed to look that way. It also tastes great. In general, it’s nice to be able to throw everything into the mixing bowl and have it mix them for me.

I have also tried beating cake ingredients using the k-beater and Elina has tried the whisk for making meringues, both with success. After you are done, it is super easy to clean. Everything is stainless steal, so I just throw everything in the bowl and fill it with hot soapy water.

The food processor sits on the top. This comes with the standard food processor blades, which I used to make the mayo that accompanied these squid rings. Even better, it comes with a set of six cutting disks that allow you to slice and grate.

So far, so good. I am using it more than I expected. Time will tell if it was worth the money, but it is proving a good purchase so far.

Desserts

Friday, November 20th, 2015 | Food

biscuits

I have been working my way through Paul Hollywood’s book Pies & Puds. Having done most of the pies, I moved on to part two: puds. Thus invading what has traditionally been Elina’s territory in the kitchen. She can probably keep it to be honest. Desserts are hard work. You have to be exact and everything sticks to everything else, until you want to stick, then it just falls off.

Sky Leeds Bake Off

Friday, September 18th, 2015 | Food

Not all of my work as a consultant is about driving better use of best practice software development techniques. Much like Neelix, I also take it upon myself to improve the moral of the people I work with, even though that is neither required, nor wanted, by the companies I am working with.

Thus when the Sky Leeds Bake Off was announced I jumped in straight away.

chocolate-mud-cake

Sky’s slogan is “believe in better” so I was originally going to write “believe in butter” on the cake. However, I soon realised there was not enough space, so opted for some simple branding instead. In turns out I was the only person to suck up like a spineless worm in this way.

bake-off-entries

Competition was tough. Mine scores well for taste but ended up only ranking in the middle of the field with a score of 15/20. The runaway winner was Dave, by a clear 1.5 points. His dedication really has to be admired. He demonstrated he had the skill, the dedication, and the balls, to drag his 8-month pregnant wife out of bed at 4am to make the cake for him. You just can’t compete with that tenacity.

After the results were were encouraged to throw some money into the put and have a slice of cake. Most people threw some loose change in, so doing the maths I put a note in and covered a dinner plate in cake. I have no idea which ones were the best because it was all mixed in to one mountain of cake. I felt so sick. Totally worth it.

Easter Potluck

Wednesday, April 8th, 2015 | Food, Friends

Massive success.

Thanks to the hearty contributions of savoury from Anna and sweet from Elina and Gabrielė, we were treated to a rich variety of treats from across Europe. I would have taken some pictures but thanks to the Instragram-generation, you’re now a complete dick if you take a photo of your food.

Instead, here is a picture of a hamster:

syrian_hamster

Norman’s 30th birthday

Tuesday, September 30th, 2014 | Friends

For Norman’s 30th, we decorated the house, made him a cake (and by made I mean his mum made it but Cara carried it from the kitchen to the dining room) and even sang happy birthday with a guitar accompaniment.

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Toastmasters and cake

Sunday, May 26th, 2013 | Public Speaking

white-rose

Earlier this month we held the elections for White Rose Speakers. Erik was elected president, Jane will be taking over from me as Vice President of Education, I’ll be moving to Vice President of Public Relations, Tony will be remaining as Sargent At Arms and Michael will be remaining as Treasurer. Kartik and Sam will be joining the committee as Vice President of Membership and Secretary. Congratulations to everyone who was elected!

We also celebrated our District Governor Anthony’s birthday with some cake.

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