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January 31, 2018
January is the Marmite of months; you either love it or hate it. Out of all the months it does certainly seem to drag on but with today being the 31st we've withstood it for another year. Personally I always quite enjoy January, I see it as a fresh start and get excited about what the year is going to bring.
For me this month saw me make a shark themed birthday cake, an Italian themed dinner party and a very summery themed wedding tasting.
Holding a wedding tasting on the second week of the year, trying to create a taste of summer is not ideal. Luckily I was feeding four very open minded people who were doing their best to imagine that it was not four degrees outside ,pouring with rain and almost pitch black regardless of the fact it was only lunch time. Fast forward six months from now and I am sure the sun will be shining and that day will seem a very distant memory. For the tasting I served up a selection of the salads that they have chosen such as a roasted vegetable salad with couscous and oregano and a warm beetroot and goat’s cheese salad with a honey and balsamic dressing.
The shark cake was a really fun project, the cake itself was a chocolate sponge and then I used a combination of blue and white fondant icing. I rolled two long strips of each and then entwined them together before rolling them out to give the cake a sea/wave effect. For the shark head itself this is where Pinterest becomes my favourite friend, after looking at many other attempts at shark novelty cakes I made some teeth out of white fondant icing and moulded the head out of grey fondant. I always use Renshaw icing for all of my cakes because it is much more forgiving than some other brands and so easy to work with.
Lastly my Italian themed dinner party, for this my clients chose to have canapés and then two courses. The canapés included courgette ribbons with gorgonzola and sun dried tomatoes, Parma ham crostini with mozzarella and olives and some smoked salmon on toasted brioche with avocado cream. Canapés were followed by ricotta and thyme stuffed chicken breast wrapped in Parma ham with a parmesan risotto. Finally for dessert there was a chocolate almond cake with a coffee and amaretto cream.
There are lots more exciting things booked in already this year and I can’t wait to see what else comes along. One week I am especially excited about is heading off to France in August to cook for a family whilst they are on holiday. It is an area of France I have never been to before and I am told there are some fabulous markets just one mile away from the house!
Until next time, H x
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