For The Love Of Christmas!

Salut, ca va?

It is 25 °C outside, and I am slouching indoors away from the scorching sun, after spending about 2-3 hours in the blistering heat. Had a very good lunch in the city with Dan! Our favorite go-to lunch is bratwursts from Fritz Weiners (that’s the name of the stall, I promise). The container malls were very busy, packed with kids off school and holiday makers. Also, pretty Christmas displays are up outside Ballantynes and they are gorgeous! I am such a Christmas person. I could celebrate Christmas all year if it didn’t make me look or sound so crazy!

Quieter part of the city

So, I have just recently found a love for making cake pops! I stumbled upon Elise’s Youtube channel and fell in love with the cute cake pop tutorials she had on her channel! For those who don’t already know this, Elise is pretty famous on Youtube! Her channel has heaps of cute and creative ideas and tutorials for cupcakes, cake pops, sweets and many more.

Since Christmas is creeping closer, I decided to give cake pops a go and chose an easy one to make. The results were really good so I made 20 more cake pops after that. Gave samples of my cakepops to my sister and friends to see what they thought, and they loved it!

Christmas Pudding cake pops

Above are my Christmas pudding cake pops! Not too shabby for my first attempt, if I must say so myself. The holly leaves looked a tiny bit queer cos I didn’t have a holly leaf plunger and could not find holly sprinkles at both Ballantynes or Living & Giving! So I had to make do with a small star shaped cutter and green modeling chocolate! Realised that I just can’t deal with ugly holly leaves on my cake pops, so I went out and bought a holly leaf plunger today! I was beyond happy that I grabbed the last one just before another lady got there and had to ask the shop assistant if there were any left (there was none left)! 😀 They must be popular for this time of the year.

Santa!

I was on a cake pop roll! After the success of my first few cake pops, I made some Santa cake pops as well. The beard is made of dessicated coconut, stuck on with some melted white chocolate! I recently bought an edible marker from a craft store out in Hawkesbay and was pretty darn delighted to have found one. However, I tried it for the first time yesterday and the ink was dry and nothing was coming out of the tip! I was super disappointed. However, I came up with a solution of dipping the tip of the edible marker into dark blue food dye and it did the trick. Still would love another one that works though. If anyone knows where to get a good one, please advise! 😀


Stay tuned, recipe will be in the next post! ♥

Lemon Meringue Cake With Marshmallow Meringue

Just a few days ago, I made a very lovely lemon meringue cake for Dan’s sister Erin. She requested a lemon meringue pie for her birthday but I took it up a notch and made cake instead. My mom reckons I’m a little bit very rebellious, I think maybe I do have the teeniest rebellious streak in me. But hey, I am a middle child…

Velvety smooth lemon curd

I adapted this recipe from the coolest baker on earth, Jemma Wilson, otherwise known as Cupcake Jemma! The recipe was tweaked a little bit and it turned out really really good! I was pleasantly surprised as it was my first time making meringue and using a gas torch. Speaking of gas torches, I was also very excited to make this cake cos I’ve been wanting
a gas torch for the longest time. It was a bit pricey for a uni-tasker, especially when you’re a student who is barely making ends meet… I lie, life isn’t that bad! Anyway, the cake was a big success except for when I was driving like mad around corners and the cake got smushed on one side 😦 Link to the original recipe/video will be below!

Cake in all it's glory


Lemon Meringue Cake

Adapted from Cupcake Jemma

Feeds 15 people easily, or 12 greedy people.

Lemon Sponge Cake

  • 375 grams Caster sugar
  • 375 grams Softened butter
  • 6 Large eggs
  • Zest of 6 lemons
  • 375 grams Self-raising flour, sifted
  • 2 tbsp Whole milk
  • 2 1/2 tbsp Freshly squeezed lemon juice
  1. Prepare 3 8″ cake tins. Grease the sides and bottoms with butter, sprinkle flour then shake excess off. Preheat oven to 170 C.
  2. Mix sugar and butter with a hand mixer or in a stand mixer till pale and fluffy, about 5 minutes.
  3. Crack 6 eggs into a bowl. With the mixer on low, add one egg in at a time, mixing well in between.
  4. Add in lemon zest and self-raising flour, mix on low speed.
  5. With the mixer on low speed, pour in both the milk and lemon juice.
  6. Finish off by folding the batter gently with a spatula to ensure all that air whipped into the batter doesn’t get knocked out.
  7. Divide batter into prepared tins and bake at 170 C for 25-30 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the middle of the cake comes out clean.

Lemon Curd

  • 5 egg yolks
  • 2 whole eggs
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • Juice from 3 large lemons
  • 110 grams caster sugar
  • 60 grams cold butter, chopped into small chunks
  1. Add the first 5 ingredients into a heat proof bowl.
  2. Cook over a Bain Marie on a low simmer till thick and custardy, stirring constantly. (Failure to do so will result in scrambled eggs!)
  3. Take bowl off the heat, add cold butter and stir till well combined.
  4. Strain into a jar and then chill. If kept in the fridge, it should be good for a few days. I wouldn’t recommend keeping it for more than a week as there are eggs in it.

Lemon Buttercream 

  • 200 grams softened butter
  • 400 grams icing sugar, sifted
  • 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  1. Mix butter on medium speed for 2-3 minutes till pale and fluffy. You can use a stand mixer or hand mixer.
  2. Add half the icing sugar and mix on low, then add the other half. Mix till combined.
  3. Dump in the lemon juice and then mix on high till light and fluffy for about 5 minutes.

Marshmallowy Meringue

  • 175 grams caster sugar
  • 2 egg whites
  • 5 tbsp golden syrup/ corn syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp cream of tartar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp water
  1. Add all the ingredients into a heat proof bowl.
  2. Cook over a Bain Marie, with the water on a low simmer over medium high heat.
  3. Start mixing immediately with a hand mixer on high till soft peaks form and the meringue is sticky and white in colour.

Assembly Time!

  1. Level cakes with a cake leveler or serrated knife.
  2. Trim sides of cakes using a slightly smaller cake board or round piece of cardboard. This is optional!
  3. Scoop a tiny dollop of buttercream onto a cake board to secure cake from moving about.
  4. Place a sponge cake on cake board, then add a layer of buttercream and then lemon curd.
  5. Repeat with the next sponge.
  6. Top with the last sponge.
  7. Slather on a thick layer of meringue onto cake.
  8. To create swirls or patterns, stick fingers into meringue bowls and then gently make patterns on the meringue-topped cake.
  9. Use a gas torch to toast meringue, using the flame to just gently lick the meringue, constantly moving it around the surface of the cake. I found the meringue very much nicer tasting when it was slightly more burnt/toasted, but this is just personal preference!