- Food & Drink
It’s Great British Bake Off time and I am eating cake. I’d be a fool not to. Watching GBBO without a slice of sponge is torture. Cruel and inhumane. Last year I started the series with a square of Carrot Cake with Gingerbread Spicing (a good cake, you should make that one). This year, because I have grown sillier with age, it’s 99 Ice Cream Fairy Cakes.
At the last Band of Bakers I went to, RachelKoz had made ice cream cupcakes baked in the flat-bottomed ice cream cones we used to be given as children. She’d swirled the top of them with raspberry ripple icing and made raspberry sauce to squirt over the top. It was pure cake joy and I decided to make something similar for a colleague’s birthday a few week’s later.
First flaw in the plan was the cones: none to be had in the supermarkets near me. The heatwave had just struck, so there may have been a run on them. Second flaw: no chance of getting the raspberry ripple icing sugar from Sugar And Crumbs in time. Third flaw: couldn’t track down those mini Flakes they used to sell in boxes ether. I was doing some seriously bad shopping and would have to go jazz with what I had in my kitchen cupboards.
Result: 24 fairy cakes in little paper cases, covered in old school buttercream, sprinkles and stabbed with pillars of chopped up Flake (secondary result: a bowl of Flake crumbles that I ate with a teaspoon while the cakes baked). Given that I am a declared disaster area when it comes to cake decorating, I thought this a fairly impressive turn out.
I’ve made another batch for Bake Off and expect to spend the evening with my jaws firmly clamped round a moist sponge. #GBBOSmut
99 Ice Cream Fairy Cakes
For the cakes
200g salted butter, softened
200g caster sugar
3 medium eggs
50ml whole milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
200g self raising flour
For the icing
300g salted butter, softened
300g icing sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
Sprinkles and Flakes, to decorate
Heat your oven to 180°C/Fan 160°C/Gas 4/350°F. Tuck 24 fairy cake cases into two 12-hole bun tins.
Cream the butter and sugar together with electric beaters or a wooden spoon till they are soft, fluffy and yellow. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, then beat in the milk and vanilla extract.
Sift in the flour and fold it through with a flexible spatula, lifting and cutting the batter to mix it together without squashing out too much of the air. Spoon the batter into the cake cases. Bake for about 15 minutes till the cakes are golden and risen – they should be springy to the touch when you press them.
Make the icing by beating the butter till it is soft and creamy. Sift in the icing sugar and add the vanilla extract. Gently beat until the sugar is combined.
If your cakes have little volcano peaks, slice them off so you have flat surfaces. Spoon your icing into a piping bag fitted with a star nozzle. Pipe the icing in swirls onto the cakes.
To decorate them, gently push a chunk of Flake into each pile of icing (I found one normal sized Flake just about chops into three, although some of them kind of had to be jammed back together and basically only held with lots of cement icing). Cover in sprinkles. Eat within two days.