This year is definitely turning out to be a Year of Weddings. We had one wedding last weekend, another one today and we have six more to fit in between now and the end of August.
So when my friends Clare and Adam asked me to make some cupcakes to serve at the end of the their wedding service, it seemed fitting that I should turn to Samantha Blears' Love Bakery: Cupcakes from the Heart. This is an extremely pretty book, with loads of cupcake ideas.
As with all cupcakes, the icing really is the main event, and the prettier the better. I am definitely not the world's best with a piping bag, so I was pleased to read Samantha Blears' advice that the best thing to do is to 'Add the love' as she puts it, with flowers, sprinkles and other embellishments. These are designed to cover up the mistakes, but actually end up making the cakes look even more special.
With a good quantity of cakes to make, I invested in some flower and butterfly cutters as well as some pink royal icing from Hobbycraft. I had not discovered their cake-decorating aisle before, but I may well be hooked! Pink glitter sprinkles also helped to hide where my swirls had become more splodge.
The cakes are rose flavoured - to regular sponge cake batter, add a teaspoon of rose extract, and with rose buttercream icing (again, just add a teaspoon or two of rose extract to the icing). Now I'm off to find a large star-shaped icing nozzle...