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Food and Ingredients News

Celebrate National Cupcake week – 17th-23rd September

If you’re into your cookery, baking especially, you may already be aware that we are almost upon National Cupcake Week. Yes, yes, I know. But don’t be fooled by the femininity that the name ‘cupcake’ imbues – in the land of online baking, they are big business.  Let’s put it this way – if they were a football player for Team Cooking, Manchester City or Chelsea would be vying to pay them £250k week for the potential ROI this delicate little buttercup of baking has.

To ensure that they’re not missing out on the impending baking frenzy, the baking mad kitchen’s latest news letter leads with the story, citing famous chefs’ recipes and even suggests we throw a ‘cupcakes and cocktails’ party. I may not be so well blessed in the cake field, but I know enough about cocktails to suggest that even this frangipane of an idea is stretching the imagination, somewhat. Would you really spoil a measure of Cointreau by mixing it with egg and flour? Okay, maybe it’s just me, then.

Could you imagine beetroot cupcakes? Or, indeed, any type of vegetable ingredient going into this favourite mother-and-child baking lesson favourite from down the ages? No, me neither, but that’s what’s being suggested. I think I may get a little more sympathy for that than the cocktail comment. But I don’t know – if you’ve got your own experiences – even if it’s just blowing something by adding too much rum and applying an aggressive flame – share them with us in the comments, below.

To be fair, it’s not all whacky cupcake ideas. Eric Lanlard has christened a traditional recipe with his own twist the ‘red velvet’, which incorporates natural vanilla and dark chocolate – now that’s doable. Like, very.

But Lanlard’s not the only one getting in on the act. As you’d expect, there are a host of associated products being featured that, rather handily (somewhat contrivedly so, the cynic may proffer) there is a range of extracts just perfect for cupcakes and that just happen feature in Lanlard’s recipes. You can, however, win 20 sets of said extracts and see if you can marry them with the Cupcakes and Cocktails section, which lists everything from daiquiri recipes to Bailey’s cupcakes.

The red velvet is both the featured recipe of the month and is available in his Home Bake book, available at Amazon.co.uk with free shipping to the UK in paperback format – see, we can do promos, too!

And I know I’ve perhaps jibed about the ‘coincidental’ nature of some of the ingredients that go together – as if by magic – hand in hand, here, but there is the opportunity to win 10 copies of the MacMillan Little Book of Treats  launched to raise awareness of the World’s Biggest Coffee Morning and, of course, to raise funds for the irreplaceable cancer charity – worth signing up to Lanlard’s site (a condition of competition entry) just to support the group.

Okay – the recipes are not exactly cookery courses per se, but the community feel of the site and the openness of the forum is perhaps as close as you’ll get to sharing a cooking experience with other fledgling chefs without actually turning up to a cookery class yourself. And from the comfort of your own chair, you can become the creator of cupcakes, cocktails and catastrophes along with me in the member’s only community area. See you on the inside.

 

 

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Cookery Courses London News

BakingMad cookery course and cook books up for grabs

How are your baking skills? Could do with a top up? Have one of those bread-makers at home that you bought, used once, couldn’t be doing with the mess, thought about putting it on e-bay but seen there are a thousand other budding bread chefs like you beat you to it? Yeah, I? know where you’re coming from.

Well, here’s a chance to put all of that right. In conjunction with BBC Good Food, we have news about the chance for you to win a half-day cookery course learning how to turn dough into bread, not an hour and three quarters in the oven for it to turn out D’oh! Instead.

Not only is it an intense cookery class in everything to do with baking but the winner of the competition will be under the expert tutelage of Channel 4’s Eric Lanlard, he of BakingMad With Eric Lanlard fame.

Of the many cookery courses on offer in London, this one is perhaps one of the most renowned. Obviously, with eyes on customers giving it star ratings given the media spotlight surrounding his Cake Boy cookery school in Battersea, you are guaranteed to come away with the knowledge Eric imparts as you stroll through some of his favourite recipes and patisseries as well as the inherent experience of what it must feel like to bake on television. For what that’s worth.

As well as the half-day cookery course, the competition winner will take home the staple branded apron, everything that you have baked during the course of the cookery class and a handy BakingMad gift bag in which you can put the recipes you also win as part of the prize.

In order to celebrate the show’s return to the TV screens earlier this month, Eric’s giving away a prize a week. There is also a freebie to claim on his site plus the opportunity to win an Allison’s herb Garden and a separate competition to win one of five cook books he currently has on offer. The question for the cook book is simple enough: What is the name of Eric Lanlard’s Baking Mad With television show called? It’s all going on over there, I tell you.

You do need to sign up to access the competitions, but you will get plenty of recipes in your inbox and there are many on the site, ranging from Almond Cheesecake to Brioche made in a bread maker. For the intuitive, there are enough recipes on there to start a cookery class of your own, but I didn’t say that…