Browsing Tag

bake

1st January 2021 // 0 Comments

5 Tips for Perfect Bakes

Tips for Perfect Bakes by Juniper Cakery

One of our most read posts is our 5 Tips for Perfect Buttercream. It makes sense. There are sooo many different recipes and techniques out there to try. It’s easy to get bamboozled. If you don’t have go-to recipes or a method you like to stick to finding tips can be handy. So with that in mind here’s our top tips for perfect bakes! If you’re finding your loaves sinking or your cupcakes overflowing why not sit down with a cup fo tea and read though our advice!



Tips for Perfect Bakes

1: Read

This one seems silly, but it is amazing how many people don’t read every word of a recipe or tutorial before starting. It’s easy to skim read… especially if you’re in a rush. Don’t worry, everyone at some point ends up doing it. One of the simplest ways to end up with a baking fail, however, is to not pay attention to the ingredients list or instructions. If it’s for a weekend treat sit down with a coffee, a few minutes and your chosen project. It’ll save you the stress in the long run. For bigger or more ambitious recipes like a festive centrepiece it may be worth printing out your recipe and making notes. A trial bake isn’t going to hurt too… plus that means a trial treat!

 

2: Plan Ahead & Don’t Rush

Another sure fire way to find yourself in the middle of sinking cupcakes is to not plan ahead. Make sure you check those cupboards to see if you have everything you need in. If not pre-plan a trip to buy all your ingredients. Or remember to order any specialist items you need in advance. Also, try to set aside more time than you think you’ll need to bake and decorate. It’s easy to think that pretty drip cake is just going to take an afternoon to whip up, but it won’t. (We do this for a living and it takes longer than that for us!) De-clutter or prep your work area. Set up your stand mixer, bowls, etc before you start. You can even pre-weigh all your ingredients too. Why would you want to cause yourself more stress and anxiety? Whether you’re a complete novice or have more experience every project should be a fun project.

 

3: Check Your Ingredients

Always make sure that your ingredients are in date… even things like baking powder or bicarbonate of soda. They generally have long shelf lives, but if they are past their Best Before date they start to lose potency. The last thing you want is your levelling agent to give up mid-bake right?

Another part to checking your ingredients involves weights and measurements. Weighing ingredients is a lot more accurate than relying on the cups (or volume) system so this is the method we recommend. All our recipes are in this format. We know there are recipes out there that just involve cups with no conversions though. Converting those kinds of recipes are usually hit and miss too. Why? Because a cup are just not as accurate as scales! So each different ingredient needs its own specific conversion. A cup of milk is not going to weigh the same as a cup of icing sugar. If you’re used to cups then that’s great and if it’s never failed for you then stick with it. Weighing ingredients or looking at a weight lead recipe really isn’t hard though. Some people can be put off by it, but it’s just a case of investing in some kitchen scales!

 

4: Practice, Practice, Practice

If you know you’ve got an event or dinner coming up then make your life easier and practice! So if you’re hoping for a cute Christmas dessert table start a few weeks before with a little time set aside. Don’t go crazy and think you can practice several bakes in one day. We’d recommend testing one or two. Keeping a set of notes on your progress is going to help. We know not everyone is going to be this in-depth, but even a couple post-it notes would help. You might even think of some cool flavour or decoration options for next time.

5: Think Before You Substitute

If you need a recipe that uses a substitute (low fat, no gluten, vegan friendly etc) then look for that recipe. We wouldn’t recommend just taking a standard recipe and swapping ingredients out. We’ve had people ask why certain bakes haven’t worked and that all they did was replace the butter with a low fat margarine. The two things aren’t the same and they definitely don’t have the same ingredients. Simply put, margarine (especially low fat) has a higher water content than butter so your bake isn’t getting the right ratio of fat it needs.

Another example is a panicked email we received one Christmas. Someone used our go-to gingerbread cookie recipe, but swapped plain flour for gluten free plain flour. Everything seemed great, but after a few hours the cookies were soft and falling apart. The problem was that there was nothing to replace the gluten that was taken out when the plain flour was replaced. Gluten helps bind ingredients in a bake together so without an alternative like Xanthan Gum it was always going to easily crumble or break. Our recipe wasn’t a gluten free specific recipe to begin with too.

Hopefully, with these handy tips you’re on your way to perfect bakes. The key here really is to not make life harder for yourself. If you don’t have the time then try and go for a simpler bake. Don’t be so hard on yourself and instead have some fun!



16th September 2013 // 2 Comments

National Cupcake Week: Banoffee Pie Cupcake Recipe!

Hurrah! National Cupcake Week has arrived in the UK (though if you’re abroad feel free to join in too)! To celebrate we’ll be sharing five delicious ‘Classic British Dessert’ recipes in cupcake form. Excited? We are too. Our first super tasty cupcake for you to re-create at home pays homage to the crowd pleasing Banoffee Pie. Our cupcake version is a fluffy and light vanilla bean cupcake filled with salted caramel sauce, swirled with creamy white chocolate and banana buttercream, drizzled with more salted caramel sauce and then finished with triple chocolate crisp balls. What a perfect way to begin the week!

Banoffee Pie Cupcake

Basic Vanilla Cupcake Recipe (Makes 12 Cupcakes)

4 free range eggs
226g self-raising flour
226g caster sugar
226g butter
1 bourbon vanilla pod

Cream your butter in a mixer then add the caster sugar. Add in the flour along with half of the eggs for around one minute. Once half of the eggs are combined add the remaining mix along with the seeds inside your bourbon vanilla pod and mix for about 5 minutes.

Separate the batter into each cupcake case until 2/3 full and place on the top shelf of a pre-heated oven at Gas Mark 3/325F/170C. Bake for around 20/25 minutes.

Once cooled core the centre of your cupcakes using a handy cupcake corer. Now begin making your delicious salted caramel sauce!

Banoffee Pie Cupcake

Salted Caramel Recipe

175g brown sugar
115ml single cream
60g butter (no low fat or margarine spread)
1 teaspoon of salt
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract

Add all your ingredients into a saucepan on medium heat. Whilst this cooks whisk your caramel mixture for up to 8 minutes until it thickens. Cook a little longer to thicken further. Finally, remove from your stove and leave to cool.

To add to your cored cupcakes simply use a teaspoon to add into the centre of your cakes! Store the rest of your salted caramel sauce in an airtight container and enjoy drizzled atop of sweets and desserts! This sauce should last for up to 4 days.

Ready to begin creating your banana buttercream?

Banoffee Pie Cupcake

Banana Buttercream Recipe

250g butter
400g icing sugar
6 – 12 drops of banana natural essence
70-100g white chocolate buttons or callets

Add half of the butter diced into pieces. Cream the butter in a mixer then gradually add icing sugar and the remaining butter (cut into cubes) until you get a smooth, creamy texture. Melt your white chocolate buttons or callets in a bowl sat in hot water. Once melted add to your buttercream and gently mix. Finally, add the banana natural essence to taste.

Banoffee Pie Cupcake

Swirl your salted caramel filled cupcakes with your silky banana buttercream, drizzle with about a teaspoon of caramel sauce and topple with sprinkles. At last, you should had a batch of banoffee inspired cupcakes ready to enjoy!

29th August 2013 // 13 Comments

Recipe: White Chocolate Cupcakes!

Here is a cupcake recipe for all the white chocolate lovers out there! This cupcake is a lovely creamy, soft and smooth white chocolate crammed delight. It’s perfect for the chilliness of the coming months, but if you want something with a bit of bite why not throw in some lemon extract into the batter with a handful of blueberries, raspberries or blackberries. Either way this is a wonderful cupcake for a well deserved treat!

Recipe: Triple White Chocolate Cupcakes

Recipe: Triple White Chocolate Cupcakes

Vanilla and White Chocolate cupcakes (makes approximately 12)

226g self raising flour
4 eggs
226g butter
1 Bourbon Vanilla Pod
226g caster sugar
2 handfuls of white chocolate chips or buttons

1: Preheat your oven to Gas Mark 3/325F/170C

2: Cream the butter with sugar and once well mixed add in the seeds from the inside of your vanilla pod, flour and then the eggs.

3: Set out twelve cupcake cases in your pan and fill each case 2/3 full. Tumble some white chocolate chips/buttons into your batter.

4: Bake from around 12-18 minutes or until a golden brown on top and leave to cool on a counter.

Recipe: Triple White Chocolate Cupcakes

Buttercream

We make our buttercream using our own intuition. We’ve tried countless recipes; all of which failed to pass our test (and stability) tests. It’s best that you begin to develop and ‘eye’, ‘feel’ and ‘taste’ so that you know when your frosting is perfect for you. For starters though, the recipe below is a rough guide…

250g butter
250-350g icing sugar
100g of white chocolate chips/buttons
Bourbon Vanilla Pod
Extra white chocolate chips/buttons to decorate
845 or 855 piping tip/nozzle
Piping bags

1: Cut your butter into small cubes and cream your butter until soft. Gradually add icing sugar until a good consistency and add the seeds from a vanilla pod..

2: Melt 100g of white chocolate buttons and once partially cooled add to your buttercream. Mix well. Add a little extra icing sugar if needed.




3: Fill a piping bag fitted with an 855 piping tip/nozzle (this tip/nozzle creates lovely ruffled buttercream) with your white chocolate buttercream.

4: Now you can pipe lots of generous and tasty swirls of buttercream on top of your cupcakes once they have cooled down and topple some tasty white chocolate chips/buttons on top!

Recipe: Triple White Chocolate Cupcakes