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4th July 2016 // 0 Comments

Our Macarons in Perfect Wedding Magazine!

Pink champagne macarons by Juniper Cakery

We LOVE Perfect Wedding magazine. It’s an amazing monthly mag that features anything and everything that could inspire your perfect wedding from stunning floral arrangements to delicious cakes! Our picture perfect ruffled peony wedding cake was featured in issue 117 (page 209 to be exact) and recently our freshly baked macarons graced the pages of issue number 121 as part of their sweet wedding favours feature. Glistening from the pages is a photograph of our popular Pink Champagne macarons; pretty pink shells filled with Gosset Grand Rosé Brut NV infused buttercream and splattered with edible 24k gold paint!

Selection of macarons by Juniper Cakery

Our macarons in Perfect Wedding Magazine… plus a macaron FAQ!

We thought we’d put together a little more information about our most popular treats. Macarons. Possibly the daintiest, alluring and strangely photogenic (if made well) of sweets. They’re also finicky little things and so hard to perfect. A lot of people contact us daily about how our macarons look or make them feel (seriously), what tips can we give them and how they can book them for their birthday/wedding/anniversary/weekend treat. We also get the odd “are they OK for people with nut allergies?”… the main ingredient in them is almonds. So treat (pun intended) this blog post of ours as a sort of F.A.Q on macarons if you will.

Juniper Cakery macarons in Perfect Wedding Magazine

Perfect Wedding Magazine

Please note: Prices for our macarons are correct at time of press (June 2016), however, they are subject to change.

Do you make your own macarons?

This might sound like a crazy question, but we’ve been asked this A LOT. We found ourselves utterly confused as to why this would even be asked until someone mentioned that they found out a cake shop bought in pre-frozen shells and macarons made by another company. Maybe it’s just the way we are, but that shocked us. Anyway, let’s get to our answer, which is a definite yes. YES we make our own macarons. In fact, we love making them. We also simply wouldn’t get the range of flavours we have if we didn’t. Plus it’s just plain fun for us to whip them up, think of fun flavours, add sprinkles and drizzles, style with them and photograph them. No mass made, pre-frozen, someone else’s hard work here.

How do you make your macarons?

They’re made of two baked shells containing mainly finely ground almond flour, confectioners’ sugar (aka icing sugar or powdered) and egg whites. Sounds simple right? Wrong. Getting our macaron recipe right took a process of 2 whole years of testing various recipes, adjusting amounts and bake times, experimenting with resting various stages or ingredients and also repeatedly banging our heads on the wall. We changed our recipe a total of 18 times before we established the one that worked for us. We even spent weeks baking the shells on different racks in our convection oven and with different brands of baking trays and silicone sheets before labelling each batch and assessing them. Our obsession did get that insane. So the short answer of that question is… our recipe came from hard work, pure stubbornness and a hell of a lot of testing.

Salted Caramel Macarons and Lemonade Macarons by Juniper Cakery

Are your macarons gluten free?

Macaron recipes don’t contain any wheat or gluten as the whipped egg white meringue is what makes them rise a little. Some flavours may contain a little gluten in, but this may come from the filling variety. Back in the day we tested amazing flavours like Cookie Dough and Brownie (which may come back so don’t worry). To get the flavour and textures the Cookie Dough included a no-bake and egg-free dollop of chocolate chip dough in the middle of Madagascan vanilla bean buttercream. Brownie featured Belgian chocolate buttercream and a small piece of chocolate brownie in the centre. Both due to the cookie and brownie fillings contained gluten.

Valentine's Day Macarons by Juniper Cakery

Are macarons OK for nut allergies?

The short answer is no. Macarons are created using ground almonds, which definitely aren’t suitable for nut allergies. Some people, however, are only allergic to peanuts and are OK with other types, but make sure that you check with any guests or anyone you’d love to purchase them for!

Can you ship to the US (or any other country outside of the UK)?

No. Sorry, but they just wouldn’t make the journey. They need to be fresh and given the amount of time it could take to get to you they just wouldn’t be. Also, your country may have restrictions on certain food items being sent through international mail. International postage can also get a little rough so these delicate morsels wouldn’t be in a fit state when they finally hit your doorstep!

We get the above question with cakes and cupcakes too and our answer is the same.

Strawberries and Champagne macarons by Juniper Cakery

Luxurious pink champagne macarons by Juniper Cakery

Can you ship macarons across the UK?

Right now when it comes to larger quantities (e.g, parties or wedding favours) we sure can! In fact we have a number of macaron orders booked in for 2017-18 for wedding receptions and birthday parties in London, Essex, North Wales, South Wales, Harrogate, York, Edinburgh, Nottingham and Manchester. Our minimum order is 100 macarons which vary in price slightly depending on flavour choices. Macarons that include champagne flavours for example cost a little more than a more straight forward vanilla bean flavour. All our macarons will be baked and filled fresh, packed up in boxes with acid-free tissue paper and other packing materials before being posted out via Next Day/Sign For delivery. We’ll continuously check tracking (as well as send over the details so you can track them yourself too) then text, email or call you (or your venue) to make sure they’ve arrived safely!

Pink candy cane macarons by Juniper Cakery

How do I store my macarons?

We advise our customers to store them in their fridge if they’re not going to devour them immediately (which to be honest doesn’t always happen – we get a lot of emails for customers who only just managed a few minutes of looking at them before polishing them all off). To make them last even longer a great tip is to transfer them into airtight containers before placing them in the fridge.

When should I eat / serve them?

As soon as possible. Macarons are hygroscopic which means that they soak up the moisture around them and get softer and softer with time. It’s best to enjoy your macarons within the 48 hours of purchasing them so you can taste them at their best of course! If you’re planning a wedding or dinner party make sure that you don’t buy your macarons too far in advance.

Assorted macarons by Juniper Cakery

There you have it! As well as lots of images of our gorgeous macarons (including a fabulous press article too) we’ve tried our best to answer some of the most frequently asked questions regarding those petite treats. We do get lots of queries every day via email, Instagram comments and Facebook messages about how/what/where/wtf we make and even photograph our macarons. If we tired to answer every single one then we’d never be able to make them ourselves so here are the basics! If you have any quick questions feel free to comment!

24th November 2015 // 0 Comments

Our Cute Snowman Cookies Tutorial via Craftsy!

Make these adorable snowman cookies for Christmas

Cute themed treats are always a certified winner at every Christmas dessert table. Kids scurry them away to nibble on with marshmallow studded hot cocoas and milk whilst adults will happily sink a sweet tooth into a sprinklecoveredcartoonsnowman type cookie (or several… we’re grown ups and we’re not scared of dentists… much). At this time of the year you’ll want to whip up all kinds of show-stealing desserts, but lack of time, energy and practice can suck you dry. These adorable snowman cookies are pretty pain free you’ll be happy to hear. Not a dollop of royal icing in sight! Head on over to the lovely Craftsy blog for our FREE and easy tutorial on how to make this little cuties!

Frosty the Snowman Cookie tutorial from Juniper Cakery

Royal icing is one of those things that unless you’re a glutton for punishment like us you’ll hate it or feel sweaty and nervous at the very thought of it. That’s OK… a lot of people feel the same way. We’re just weird. Seriously, we get super excited at the prospect of working with it. Even whipping it up in a mixer gives us a strange thrill. Anyway… these cookies are royal icing free. They’re decorated with good ol’ fondant / sugar paste, some blossom dust, black sugar pearls and a smidgen of black edible paint. That’s it. No frightening, fiddly and frustrating royal icing within a 50 mile radius.

Make these adorable snowman cookies for Christmas

The other fantastic thing about these sweet little bites is that they’re easy to customise. Change the colour of its winter hat, add a snowflake pattern on top, change the bobble, add a name, use black sprinkles or edible pearls for the mouth or nose, use light pink heart sprinkles to stylise the rosy cheeks… you don’t have to stick to the design in the tutorial if you don’t want to. Why not go a little glam with burgundy hats jewelled with gold edible sequins and a fabulous gold pom pom. Or don’t have a hat… keep the face fully white with a circle of fondant and then add cool earmuffs with pom pom type balls on each side and a twisted ‘rope’ of fondant spanning from one to the other across the head. Festive and fabulous!

How to make super cute snowman cookies for Christmas parties

19th November 2015 // 0 Comments

Recipe: Chewy Gingerbread Cookies!

Recipe for soft and chewy gingerbread cookies - perfect for Christmas

One of THE best things about Christmas being just around the corner (Less than 6 weeks away… eek) is the smell of gingerbread filling every room. It’s so comforting and warming when the weather gets frosty. Sometimes, however, gingerbread cookies can be a little time consuming when it comes to getting those shapes cut just right or the royal icing work perfect. Take the stress out of festive cookie baking with our simple chewy gingerbread cookie recipe! There’s no need to decorate them and their perfect for guests where prefer a softer crunch. We LOVE them. Whilst creating this recipe and post we admit we ate our fair share… especially with ice cold milk and frothy coffee!

Soft and Chewy Gingerbread Cookies!

Christmas chewy gingerbread cookie recipe

Ingredients needed to make chewy gingerbread cookies

  • 340g plain flour
  • 225g soft brown sugar or brown caster sugar
  • 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • 115g of butter
  • 3 tablespoons of gold syrup
  • 1 lightly beaten egg
  • 1 teaspoon allspice
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg

01:
Pre-heat you oven to 180 degrees C, 350 degrees F or Gas Mark 4.
02:
Mix all dry ingredients together in a large clean bowl. You can put them straight into a stand up mixer bowl if you like, but they’re not too much mixing with this dough so can easily work it by hand and save the extra effort of washing paddle/mixer attachments etc.
03:
Melt down your butter along with the tablespoons of gold syrup. You can also use runny honey or even maple syrup instead which will yield slightly different flavours (be still tasty ones).

Amazing soft gingerbread cooke recipe
04:
When your butter has melted and mixed in with the syrup add this to the dry ingredient mix with the egg and mix.

Spiced and soft gingerbread cookie recipe
05:
You cookie mix should look like the above. When it does tip it out onto a clean and dry surface to lightly work together. If you’re mix is a little dry and doesn’t bind just add a little extra gold syrup and work the dough.

Chewy and soft gingerbread cookies by Juniper Cakery

Recipe for yummy soft gingerbread cookies by Juniper Cakery
06:
Separate your dough into balls. For small to medium cookies aim for them to be the size of a ping pong ball. For larger cookies roll out balls a little larger than a golf ball. Arrange these on a greaseproof lined baking tray approx. 2 inches apart from each other.

Addictive soft gingerbread cookie recipe
07:
Flatten each ball slightly. The flat base of a clean glass or tumbler works really well for this, but it’s ok to press on the cookie with just your fingers. You can even use a rolling pin if you like!

Recipe for soft gingerbread cookies by Juniper Cakey
08:
Place on the top shelf of your oven for 12 minutes. Make sure to turn the tray at the 6 minute mark so that the sides can bake evenly! If you’d like a little more crunchy then leave them in for an extra 2 minutes.
09:
When done remove and leave them to cool down before eating all of them uhh… giving them to friends and family!

How to bake chewy gingerbread cookies by Juniper Cakery

If you want to make these tasty treats extra festive then try dipping them in white chocolate and adding cute snowflake sprinkles on top? They’re perfect on their own, but they definitely wouldn’t be crazy topped with fun sprinkles and chocolate drizzles!

Lovely recipe for soft and chewy gingerbread cookies

Deliciously soft gingerbread cookie recipe for Christmas

17th November 2015 // 1 Comments

Tutorial: Chic Christmas Bauble Cupcakes

Chic and stylish Christmas bauble cupcake tutorial

Stylish Christmas bauble cupcake tutorial

Pinterest is one of those amazing phenomenons that comes along and completely changes everyone’s lives. Suddenly people are more crafty, aspirational Christmas gift wrap ideas turn up under the tree and gold D.I.Y style decorations hit the shops like crazy. That’s what heavily inspired our stylish Christmas cupcake tutorial. Bauble cupcakes aren’t a new fangled thing – they’ve been doing the rounds for years now – BUT these festive bauble cupcakes are surely going to be the most chic and Pinterest inspired yet right? Keep reading to find out how to make them in time for Christmas!

How to make chic Christmas bauble cupcakes!

Materials and tools needed to make Christmas bauble cupcakes

  • Freshly baked domed cupcakes
  • Buttercream
  • White fondant / sugar paste
  • Ice pink fondant / sugar paste
  • Circle cutter (a little larger than the top of your cupcake)
  • Gold edible lustre dust
  • Confetti / sequin type sprinkles
  • A few drops of vodka or lemon extract
  • White edible lustre dust
  • Snowflake plunger cutters
  • Rolling pin
  • Food safe paint brushes
  • Blade tool
  • Small ball tool
  • Cake smoother

How to decorate cupcakes for Christmas
01:
Smooth a small amount of buttercream onto the top of your cupcake. If you want more buttercream it’s best to core out your cupcake and fill it instead of adding more on top which will end up squishing out from under the fondant!

Make this pretty and chic bauble cupcakes for Christmas
02:
To flat ice your domed cupcakes begin by rolling out some fondant / sugar paste.

We worked to a bigger thickness of 5mm so that once placed on top of the cupcake the fondant can then be smoothed out to the edges better.
03:
Using your circle cutter cut out a series of circles in the colours you need and for the amount of cupcakes you want to ice.

It can help to cut a circle out to test and see if it’s wide enough as you’ll need to think about the addition of buttercream as well as the size of the dome on your cupcake!
04:
Now lay your circle of fondant on top and gently pat down before smoothing the edges out to where the cupcake case ends and the top of the cupcake begins. You can use the palm of your hand to smooth the fondant out too, but don’t be too heavy handed or you’ll be left with dents or an uneven surface.

Tutorial for Christmas bauble cupcakes
05:
To make the attachment or ‘hook’ part of the  bauble take a little white coloured fondant, roll it into a small ball and mould into a ‘drum’ like shape. Add a linear pattern up the sides with a blade tool if you wish.
06:
On the top of the attachment base use a small ball tool to indent two circles on opposite sides.
07:
Attach to the side of your iced cupcake with edible glue, hold until set.

Stylish Christmas ornament cupcake tutorial
08:
To finish the hanging attachment take a tiny amount of fondant and roll it into a small ‘rope’ before forming into an unfinished loop that fits the indents you made in step 06 and set aside to fully dry.
09:
Attach the loop with edible glue. Hold in place until set.
10:
Once dry carefully dust or paint the hook attachment with lustre.

How to create a gold sequin bauble cupcake

How to add a gold sequin look to cupcakes
01:
On the frosted gold sequin bauble we added lots of confetti sprinkles to the base of the bauble scattering upwards.

Gold sequin cupcake
02:
Each multicoloured sprinkle then needs to be hand painted with gold lustre dust mixed with a tiny amount of vodka (the alcohol completely evaporates so they are kid friendly when dry) or lemon extract.

When mixing up your edible lustre paint you want to achieve a runny paste-like consistency. We generally add around a quarter teaspoon of lustre dust to approx. 5-6 droplets of vodka or lemon extract.

How to make a snowflake bauble cupcake

Christmas cupcake decorating tutorial
01:
For this cupcake we decided to keep our ‘background’ matt and instead make the snowflakes shimmer! Alternatively, you could add a nice lustre sheen to this by either using a white pearlescent lustre dusted over the surface or a light pink.
02:
Roll out some white fondant / sugar paste to a thickness of around 3mm.
03:
Cut out and texture some snowflakes using snowflake plunger cutters. Tala make a great pack of three in varying sizes which we used on our cupcake.
04:
With some edible glue attach your snowflakes onto your cupcake. You only need a small amount painted onto the back of each flake or else you’ll be left with a mess of glue squishing out from underneath.
05:
Finally, mix a little white lustre dust with a few drops of vodka or lemon extract (approx. a quarter teaspoon of dust to 5-6 droplets of vodka / lemon extract) and paint onto your snowflakes giving them a hint of sparkle!

How to make a typographic Christmas bauble

01:
We made our typographic bauble in a light pink fondant to match the other designs. You can obviously use whatever base colour you like (black would look amazing with gold on it too). Make sure the surface of your iced cupcake is sugar or cornstarch free as this can form into unsightly clumps when painting onto the fondant.
02:
Pick out what font you’d like to use for your cupcake. We looked at lots of beautiful brush type fonts that are insanely popular at the moment before we painted ours during a test run using watercolours. After a bit of practice we were then ready to commit…

Pretty Christmas cupcake decorating tutorial
03:
Using a good quality food safe brush paint your word across the top of your cupcake. For a brush style font like ours Japanese calligraphy brushes work best. You can also use a medium sized brush with a pointed tip too.

Tutorial for stylish Christmas bauble cupcakes from Juniper Cakery

Ta dah! Now you should be left with some exceptionally stylish cupcakes ready for one magical Christmas. If you’re giving these little beauties away as gifts try cupping each cupcake in a small square of ruffled up tissue paper before placing in their box. They’ll end up looking like real ornaments ready for the tree!

These pink and gold Christ,as bauble cupcakes are perfect for the party season!

10th August 2015 // 0 Comments

Black Forest Gateau Naked Cake!

Tempting naked cakes seem to be quite the popular trend at the moment! We’ve been gathering an impressive amount of requests for them in a fun variety of forms from macaron toppled birthday treats to towering rustic wedding designs. This super bright Black Forest Gateau inspired naked cake is definitely one of our favourite cakes we’ve made this year. It’s also the pinkest cake we’ve seen let alone created! Read on for more about how we made this cherry macaron adorned delight…

Pretty pink naked cake with cherries, macarons and roses by Juniper Cakery

Back when we held the consultation for the couple who requested this cake we were left with a few definite cake must-haves… a pink colour palette, Black Forest Gateau flavour, macarons, roses… and for the end cake to be an absolute surprise! They wanted a naked cake a little different to the usual, but wanted their wedding cake to be top secret until the big day. In other words we got full creative control!

Naked wedding cake with pink cherry macarons by Juniper Cakery

One of the first things we established were the flavours. Obsessed with cherry flavours the couple were pretty certain what tastes they wanted, but we added in our Cherry Ripple and Sour Cherry macarons as well as splashes of German Kirsch, fresh Picota cherries and liberal servings of Morello cherry preserve inside the cake. Perfect for making chocolate cake a little more exotic!

Bright pink Black Forest Gateau naked cake by Juniper Cakery

Pssst… inside of our macarons are home made Morello cherry confiture, Madagascan vanilla bean and white chocolate ganache with Kirsch buttercream and tangy cherry sherbet crystals! Kirsch is an amazing ingredient- it’s like Chambord in that it seems to pump up the fruit flavour a little more. Adding a matching fruit liqueur into buttercream or preserves gives it another level of taste – great for parties or receptions without kids!

Gorgeous pink naked cake by Juniper Cakery

To make this naked wedding cake a little more different we planned on scraping bright cherry Swiss Meringue Buttercream outside of each tier, much like a crumb coat, before arranging the flowers, macarons, foliage and cherries in a sweet garland formation around the top of the bottom tier and then as a ball on top of the cake to add a little bit of extra height and drama.

We’re both huge fans of wild arrangements and bouquets so we tend to include lots of berries, textural herbs and pretty foliage in our florals (sugar and real). A fabulous herb to use is Rosemary as the sprigs look somewhat like plumes of feathers; with these we added in stripped rose leaves too.

NOTE:

If you’re planning on using Rosemary sprigs to add detail to a naked cake or buttercream cake don’t go overboard and pair your flavours well. It can be quite fragrant and also has a distinct taste. Our tip is to combine it with strong fruit flavours such as lemon, cherry, or raspberry – perhaps with lighter notes of white chocolate and vanilla.

Pink cherry and chocolate naked cake by Juniper Cakery

As with every cake we’re always sad to see it leave, but we’re happy to say that the surprise cake design went down a treat with the couple! Some very eagerly received slices were even saved just for us – they didn’t last long though…

 

 

 


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