If at first you don’t suceed…

try again and if you still can’t do it – swear violently and give up.

A tale of cakes, icing and butterscotch.

Hubby is going to have a birthday soon, so this weekend his brother and partner are visiting us. In honour of the birthday boy being another year past thirty (sorry love I couldn’t resist it!) and seeing Uncle Stevie and Aunty Kate I made cakes. Recently I spent a lovely morning learning how to decorate cupcakes (anyone who has read by blog for a while will know that I don’t decorate) I learned to colour icing, make roses, cut out shapes and use my icing bag and buttercream properly.

So.. the big cakes… Hubby is a banana and butterscotch lover, so what could be a better way to treat him than banana and toffee cakes topped with butterscotch flavoured buttercream? This is a big sacrifice as I hate banana so won’t be eating the cakes myself.

I made the banana and toffee cakes, popped them into my new silicon cupcake moulds and baked them. Yummy looking and yummy tasting but sadly broken. Silicon moulds and toffee resulted in my cakes all breaking up as I tried to push them out of the moulds. Some swearing followed and then I cut my losses. The cakes weren’t that hard to make, I could make another batch in the evening and for now my family would have to all pitch in the remove the evidence of my failed cupcakes.

I took a load to my parent’s house where my Dad, Ben and Ciaran manly worked their way through the damaged cakes.

I them spent a while colouring my icing, staining my hands bright red and green for the roses (and blue as Ben had insisted that his cake be blue) and making pretty flowers to go on the cakes.

In the evening once the kids were in bed I tried again with the cakes – this time using cake cases inside the silicon. Maybe they’ll still break when people take them out but they look pretty and that’s the main thing.

Next step – make butterscotch for the butterscotch buttercream. I had trawled the web and plonked for what looked like the simplest recipe, 30g of butter melted with 1 tablespoon of brown sugar, heat for a couple of minutes, leave to cool and add to the buttercream.

First attempt led to melted seperated butter floating above blacked sugary lumps and an acrid burning smell. Never mind. With such tiny quantities I could afford to try again. This time don’t heat for so long…

Second attempt resulted in lumps of yellowy fatty sugar at the bottom of the pan and seperated buttery liquid floating on the top. At this point I decided that I couldn’t make butterscotch and that I didn’t care any more.

The sous chefs get high inhaling icing sugar!

This morning I finally finished the cakes by making buttercream (amazing how far icing sugar travels – without eating any buttercream I have ingested hundred of calories through inhaling the icing sugar), wiping the icing sugar off the kitchen surfaces, added some colour to the icing to make it look banana-ey and then (after uttering a prayer to St Jude – patron of lost causes) started piping the icing.

Amazingly this worked! I did some flat iced and covered in chocolate sprinkly bits, some dome iced and some with little icing stars. I put on my home made decorations and am pretty happy with the end result. Admittedly hubby had asked for red roses and has lurid pink but this is a small detail.

Banana and toffee cakes a’la the tired mummy!

The recipe for banana and toffee cakes is…

add mashed banana to your standard cupcake mixture and then fold in some chopped up toffee’s (I used 5 toffee’s worth for ten cupcakes).
Make sure that you pop cases inside your silicon moulds!
Bake cupcakes for 16 minutes at 180 degree’s.
To make the buttercream icing mix 175g of butter with 350g icing sugar (expect icing sugar to fly everywhere) a drop of boiling water and some vanilla extract.
I added two cocktails sticks worth of wiltons yellow food dye and 1 cocktail stick of ivory food dye to get a hint of banana colour in the icing before putting it in by icing bag and piping it onto the cakes and topping with little decorations!
Bon appetite!

1 Comment

Filed under recipe

One response to “If at first you don’t suceed…

  1. very yummy looking! i love the idea of banana cakes K will adore them (not that he doesn’t already love cake)

    im more of a ‘dump the icing on so it looks rustic’ kinda girl but do streach to using a pallet knife in an attempt of making it smooth lol

    hope you all enjoy them (maybe you can make carrot cupcakes for yourself) xxx

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