Tuesday, 30 July 2013

A lesson in cupcake decorating with the Butterlicious Cake Company

My finished creations!
I struggled slightly to think of birthday present ideas for myself this year - I must have had too many birthdays! But it wasn't long until I hit upon an idea that satisfied a couple of things that I miss in my new life as a Mummy. Firstly, a chance to do something by myself (whilst Bobble enjoyed some Daddy time) and secondly, having the opportunity to do something creative.

As you know, I love baking, but if you remember Bobble's birthday cake fiasco, my enthusiasm doesn't always equal a particularly creative output! I love making cupcakes, but in my own words, they do often look like they've been decorated by a very eager child. So with this in mind, I decided that what I would love to do, was have a cupcake decorating lesson. A little research led me to booking a lesson with Lynne, a very lovely lady who runs the Butterlicious Cake Company right here in St Neots.

What we covered in the lesson

I had a 3 hour 1 to 1 lesson with Lynne, at her beautiful home, from where she runs the Butterlicious Cake Company. During the course of the lesson she shared with me some fantastic tips and advice about how to make stunning, (verging on too-good-to-eat!) cupcakes. She talked about the importance of selecting the right colours for the decorations as well as how best to present the finished cupcakes in their box.

Lynne is a former teacher so is a complete natural at running the workshop. She explains things extremely well and gives lots of support and encouragement as you try to replicate what she's demonstrated.

As well as showing me the tools of the trade, it was very much a hands-on lesson during which I decorated 6 cupcakes of my own which I took home and devoured with my very impressed husband. The cupcakes had been baked in advance by Lynne and were by far the most delicious vanilla cupcakes I've ever tasted. I have to confess that I always skip past vanilla flavours in recipe books and go for chocolate, red velvet or something more adventurous. Not any more, I've been converted!

During the lesson I got to use a variety of cutters and moulds and worked with florist sugar paste to create delicate flowers, shells and even a Lego man! The decorations were given a final flourish in the form of luster dusts and edible paints. I've never felt that I have a particular fine touch when it comes to delicate work, but for a beginner, I couldn't quite believe what my (usually heavy hands) had created.

After the lesson

Lynne provided workshop notes to accompany the lesson which are fabulous. I will definitely be referring back to these, and I've already starting shopping for some of the tools of the trade so that I can attempt to create some of these beautiful cakes at home. While I don't think I'll ever be up to selling my cakes, I'm delighted with what I was able to learn in one lesson and having now shared these pictures with my friends and family, I think I've raised the bar for future birthdays and celebrations!

A small note about my rather sinister looking Lego man! Unfortunately he wasn't quite dry at the end of the class so putting his face on didn't go that smoothly. Left a little longer, he wouldn't have such hollow eyes and such a manic grin! Bobble's Daddy didn't seem to mind at all and wolfed this cupcake down first!

Food for thought?

I think a workshop like this is a great activity if you want to indulge yourself, or for a group of friends sharing a love of baking. It would make a brilliant activity for a hen party, or even for a birthday party for little ones. Lynne is planning on running more workshops in the future, so do get in touch with her to find out more.

A little bit about The Butterlicious Cake Company

Specialising in de-licious flavours and beauti-licious toppings, their cupcakes are freshly made with the finest ingredients. Their regular flavours include Classic Vanilla, Decadent Chocolate, Luscious Lemon, Carrot, Coffee, Lemon Meringue and a family favourite, French Toast! Toppings include the creamiest buttercream in vanilla, cream cheese, chocolate, coffee and other flavours or their stunning sugar paste creations. Gluten Free cupcakes are also available. So if you're looking for a utterly delicious cake maker in the Cambridgeshire area, I would definitely recommend The Butterlicious Cake Company.

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