Costa Coffee Cup

A friend’s daughter wanted a Costa Coffee Cup – but with a Starbuck’s logo! – for her 18th. It also had to be dairy-free, and chocolate!!! After trying a few recipes I finally found one which would lend itself to being shaped, and made an 8″ round cake.

To make the saucer I used modelling paste to cover the board, so it could be shaped upwards at the edges by moulding it to a dinner plate, and I left it to dry for a week to make sure it was fully set. I did the same for the tea-spoon, which i made using a metal tea-spoon as a mould, before painting it silver with edible silver paint.

DSCF1034   DSCF1001


I also made the handle well in advance, again from modelling paste, and inserted “candy sticks” at both ends to act like edible dowels for securing it to the cake.


I shaped the cake like on the the larger Costa coffee cups, split & filled it with dairy-free chocolate ganache and hollowed out the top, before marzipanning it, to seal in the freshness. Doing this as soon as it is cold ensures it will stay fresh for at least a week. I then iced it with white sugarpaste then added the handle.

DSCF1035   DSCF1045


For the top I used sugarpaste but textured it slightly and painted it with creamy-white petal dust mixed with clear alcohol to give it a “frothy” appearance. I made a template of the coffee beans from acetate and used chocolate brown food dust stippled onto the top.


I gave everything a day to dry then positioned the cake on the edge of the “saucer” and added the teaspoon and message.


I was really happy with the cake – as was Charleh!

Check out my other cakes at, or my website,


Posted in Baking, Cheshire, Chocolate, Coffee, Concept Cakes, Costa Coffee, Decorated Cakes, Food, Sandbach | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Aston JLS Cake

A customer wanted something really special for her daughter, who is a massive JLS fan, with Aston being her favourite.

Rather than just doing the usual models which don’t actually look like the person they are supposed to be, I decided to make a more detailed, realistic model.

I do have a basic template which allows the body parts to be made, but you then have to personalise the model. I made the body parts, and then put the legs into a sitting position, strengthening where needed with more modelling paste.

1-Body Parts

I then gave him some trendy trainers, which I also branded with the JLS logo. Then I started to dress him – black trousers first. With this type of modelling the individual pieces have to be positioned first, then assembled when dry.


While the paste was still pliable I shaped his face to make it look like Aston, added his hair, black ear-rings and the required six-pack!


I then assembled the torso & legs and left them to set.


Then I added his arms – I had already pre-shaped them, and put his right hand in the correct position to hold a mike.

8-Right Arm     9-Fully Assembled

I cut out hearts & stars in the JLS colours, plus the logo itself. I made a topper of wired hearts & stars, and printed an edible image of their latest CD.

10-Colours      11-CD Cover

Aston was then positioned on the edge of the cake, ready to serenade the birthday girl!


From the feedback I received (which you can see on my FB page –, or my website,, Chelsie loved it!!

13-Finished Cake

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How to make a Knitting Basket Cake

My latest request has been for a cake for an avid knitter, for her 70th birthday, so a knitting basket was the obvious choice.

First I made an 8” Madeira, which I split then filled with jam/buttercream. I then covered the whole cake with buttercream as a crumb-coat, so no crumbs got into the sugarpaste.

1-Buttercreamed Cake

I marbled some grey/white sugarpaste to use as the basket lining, which went over the top of the cake.

2-Silk Lining

I then coloured more sugarpaste with different shades of brown for the basket, and rolled it out before cutting strips of two lengths, the shorter ones just higher than the height of the cake.

3-Coloured Sugarpaste 4-Sugarpaste Strips

I then “wove” the sugarpaste, and tightened the weave using spacer bars. You then have to lift the woven paste very carefully to ensure it does not separate and attach it to the cake sides.

5-Basketweaving 6-Tightening 7-Applying Paste 8-Basket

I used modelling paste for the knitting needles, and gave them almost a week to dry and harden before painting them with edible silver paint.

For the balls of wool I made 6 domes of Madeira, using stainless steel dessert bowls (very 70’s!), which I joined together using buttercream, after levelling the tops. Again I crumb-coated with buttercream and put them I the fridge for the buttercream to firm up slightly

10-Balls 11-Buttercreamed

To make the wool I actually used a biscuit gun – you have to let-down the sugarpaste so it is a very soft, but not runny, consistency- “letting-down” means adding small quantities of water to the sugarpaste to create a soft paste – it is used for piping or run-outs, but works well here too – I filled the biscuit gun with the sugarpaste and used a fitting which created thick strands. I covered the whole of each ball then added more strands across them to give the impressions of a ball of wool.

12-Letdown Sugarpaste 13-Wool 14-Buttons

When they were in the basket I added more strands to look as though they had come loose from the ball, and also added a few buttons. Lastly I popped the needles into the middle, and the basket was ready for the knitter!!


You can see this cake and many others on my FB page –,

or on my website,



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Tunis Cake

A few weeks ago I was asked to make a Tunis Cake, which apparently was an alternative to Xmas cake in the 1950s through to the early 70s. I had never heard of it, but it was really special to this couple, so after some research I came up with this recipe –

325g self-raising flour (sifted)
250g softened butter
250g castor sugar
175g ground almonds
1 lemon juice, and rind
4 eggs

Chocolate topping:

150g dark chocolate; 40g butter; 1.5 tbsp water

– Place the butter and sugar in a mixing bowl and beat until pale

– Add the eggs, flour, lemon juice, lemon rind and ground almonds, mixing thoroughly.
– Place the mixture into a 8in greased and floured cake tin and bake in a preheated oven at 150oC/300oF/gas mark 2 for one hour or until springy in the middle when pressed.

Ensure the cake is totally cold before decorating.

The key to a Tunis Cake is the deep layer of dark chocolate – the recipe only uses 150g, but I doubled it, and the result was so much better. So the chocolate only coats the top, and does not go down the sides, tightly wrap some greaseproof paper around the sides of the cake, standing proud about 3cm of the top, securing with a piece of string.

1-Wrapped Madeira2-Glazed Top

Melt the chocolate & butter, stirring to ensure it is totally smooth, then leave to cool.
I then glazed the top with warmed apricot jam to stop any crumbs getting into the topping. I also glazed the sides as the customer would not be eating the cake until Xmas Day so I wanted it to stay as moist as possible.

I then very carefully poured the melted chocolate onto the cake top and smoothed it with a small palette knife. I then left it overnight to fully set.

It appears that the original Tunis Cake had three marzipan fruits, so I made an orange, which I textured using a nutmeg grater, a green apple, and a banana. To get the correct skin effect I used small pieces of pale brown marzipan, rolled into the yellow so it was still visible as brown & yellow. I left the cake overnight, then positioned the fruits in the centre the next day.

3-Marzipan Orange4-Blending Colours6-Marzipan Fruits

I was really pleased with the finished cake, and thankfully so was the customer!

7-Cake Top8-Tunis Cake

Posted in Baking, Cheshire, Chocolate, Concept Cakes, Decorated Cakes, Food | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Journey to Chocolate

Book Launch & Networking

I recently joined a networking group for business women – I’m not normally a networking-type, but when you are trying to promote your business I suppose you really have to try everything.

So far  I have attended a few events which have been very pleasant, but haven’t really led to a great deal of business, but it is early days…

However I was asked to make a cake for the 2nd “birthday” of the region I am in, and had the idea of using the business cards I have accumulated since joining.

I have a printer which creates edible images so I scanned the cards in then carefully cut them out and used them as decoration on the cake, which I had iced in the colours of the group, then made a stars & feathers “topper”, with a sparkly “TWO”. I think it is quite effective.

1 - Forward Ladies Business Card Cake

One of our members has managed to get her book stocked by Waterstones, and it was launched in the Knutsford branch. Her book is “Journey to Chocolate”, so naturally required chocolate cupcakes! Her colour scheme is purple with purple-pink fantasy flowers.

I topped the cupcakes with chocolate ganache before icing them with purple sugarpaste, before adding the flowers.

2 - Chocolate Cupcakes   3 - Levelled Tops

4 - Chocolate Ganache   5 - Iced Cupcakes

I actually used a large calyx cutter to cut the flowers, and shaped them in egg boxes to give the curve.

      6 - Calyx Shapes 7 - Egg Box

I used two layers of petals, which I then added more colour with metallic paint, before adding yellow centres, textured by a toothpick!!

8 - Two Layers 9 - Painted Shapes 10 - Adding Centres 11 - Journey to Chocolate Cupcakes

As you can see by the picture with the flyer, the result was quite a good match.

12 - With Flyer

You can see all of my cakes on my website at or on my FB page –



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Mrs Potts Teapot Cake

Mrs Potts Teapot Cake

A customer’s daughter is Mrs Potts the Teapot in her schools production of Beauty & The Beast, so this was the perfect choice for her daughters’ 18th birthday cake.

I made the handle first as it was quite thick so would take a while to dry & harden. The white “sticks” at each end are the “edible dowels” I use – ie candy sticks!!

I then made a one-off stand for it, because the cake would be quite heavy – too heavy to make the stand just out of cake or icing, so I adapted a cake card, bending the sides down & securing them with double-sided tape, before recovering the card with cake-board foil.


I then attached the smaller cake card to a larger board & let it set before icing them, ready to make the multi-coloured stand for the teapot. While it was drying I coloured some sugarpaste in the colours of the stand, cling filming them to keep the fresh until needed.


I used a ball cake tin, and a 6” tin, as I needed the outer part of the cake to be rounded mike a teapot. I had to jam/buttercream this cake from top to bottom instead of the usual way, to stick the three pieces together!! I used buttercream as the marzipan base this time, and cut a flat base ready to stand the cake in the right position.


Then I shaped the face, using marzipan to make the cheeks & spout, and hollowing where the eyes would go.

I have to admit at this stage I did think it looked more like turnip-head than a cute teapot…….

Icing it was a challenge, as the spout kept tearing the icing – no matter how thick it was. In the end I iced the face separately, and carefully blended it to the rest of the icing.

Eventually it was iced & ready for colouring, then all of a sudden it took shape!

I’m really pleased with it now that it is done – challenges and all!! It’s being collected tomorrow so as usual I’ll worry until then…..

My totally edible 3-D decorated cakes are suitable for every occasion – have a look at my website, or my FB page – – and you will see what I mean when I say all my cakes are “individually iced”

Posted in Baking, Cheshire, Concept Cakes, Cute, Decorated Cakes, Disney, People, Sandbach | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

A Bit of a Catch-Up…

Wow – what a busy few weeks!! Despite my best intentions, I haven’t had two minutes to myself since my last blog – which has been great, but really, really tiring.

Since the Charity Fayre, things really have been non-stop – in fact my husband has labelled himself a cake-widower (although he has enjoyed all the golf he has been encouraged to play to keep him out of the prep-room!!)

I haven’t even had time to take my “preparation  pictures” which I normally do, but thought you might like to see what I’ve been up to anyway.

After the Fayre I had a 3D airplane to do for a Thomson pilot – it also happened to be that really hot spell, so getting the modelling paste to harden for the wings & tail fin was a nightmare!!! However the perseverance was worth it when the customer called to collect it, thankfully.

Then I got a request for a Manchester City football shirt for a 16th – had to keep this away from my husband who is a Newcastle fan!!

A couple of days later I made this lovely cake for an 18th, with a picture of the birthday girl on her beloved horse – I think these edible photos are a really lovely way to truly personalise a cake.

Then I had a Ruby Wedding Anniversary cake to do – I really love the elegance that Garrett frills give a cake, and combined with the beautiful ruby roses, that was a lovely, classic cake.

Then it was back to my novelty themes – this time for a Podiatrist – a foot!!! To do this I cling-wrapped my husband’s foot, the made a mould out of aluminium foil! Luckily it worked really well, and she loved the cake.

After that it was Tinkerbelle, but with the added twist of a baby Peter Pan!! The birthday girl had just had a baby, so the customer wanted to include him on the cake….as with most of my cakes, both Tinkerbelle and Peter Pan were totally edible, although I’m pretty sure they have been kept as keepsakes.

Finally for now is Rafiki – I have to admit this model was a real challenge – because of the weight of the body, the model just didn’t want to stand up – especially on those very oddly shaped legs!! But thankfully I eventually managed, although this model is not edible- but the customer was quite happy with that – she just wanted this cake as it was perfect for her boyfriend.

Phew…..all this in about 4 weeks – then my husband & I disappeared off to Bruges for a long weekend to celebrate our own wedding anniversary, which was lovely, and totally cake-free!

But rest over…. I’m now starting the Teapot out of Beauty & The Beast – 3D and fully edible of course!! Back to reality…..

I also go part-time at the end of this month to devote more time to my cakes – yippee!!!

See my other 3D cakes & cake sculptures at or visit my Facebook page at

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