Wednesday, 2 January 2013

Your Top Ten of 2012

A slightly belated Happy New Year to you all! Where do all the days (weeks, months, years) go?

New Year is a time for looking over our shoulders and contemplating  the year that has gone and making plans for the new year that is beginning. This time last year I have barely even heard of a Blog, let alone contemplated writing or publishing one. And when I did, I had no idea that anyone else would be interested in looking at it.

I started my blog when one of my friends told me about her favourite cake that I had made, a chocolate cupcake as it happens. Do you know, I couldn't even remember making the cake never mind maybe recalling what recipe I had used and I realised I needed to keep a record. So in April last year, my Web Log, Adventures in Sugarland took its first tentative steps into the blogosphere and by the end of this year has had almost 10,000 visitors. For me that is quite a serious WOW! A big thank you to all those of you who have popped by to share my journey.

In the best Blogosphere tradition, in reverse order (what else) here are your top 10 posts from 2012.

Number 10. Pina Colada Cupcake

Tasted even better than they looked and made with a new product - I-Zing, a tangy pineapple icing. Photographed on vintage pressed glass cake stands

Number 9. Vintage Brooch Champagne Celebration Cookies

One of my favourites. Lovely champagne flavoured Sugar Cookies topped with hand painted moulded fondant. These beautiful old-fashioned roses were picked from my garden. The pedestal the cookies sit on is a miniature vintage Shelley tea cup with its saucer on the top.


Number 8. Hope-Lace Romantic Brownies

Simple but effective sugar-lace topped Brownies with a David Austin rose also picked from my garden. 


Number 7. Pink Peppermint Cupcakes

The cupcakes underneath this icing are green in colour and I remember putting in too much green!. A surprise Oreo cookie nestles in the bottom of this cupcake's case. A friend at work, kindly gave me these glass cups, she had bought a set on EBay and only wanted one, so donated the rest to me. Underneath, a selection of early hydrangea flowers from my garden, making great cupcake stands.


Number 6. Old Rose Cookies

One of the first cookies, I ever decorated. I did loads of colour combinations, this one being my favourite. This is my most attention grabbing and commented on cookie. When I look at it now, I can't quite believe I made it.


Number 5. Lavender Chrysanthemum Cookies

So simple. I love the way this cookie seems to glow. Lavender flavour as well as colour.


Number 4. Dahlia Cookies

One of my really early cookies and very much an experiment. I am amazed by the popularity of this cookie, the post topping my chart for months and months, only recently being overtaken



Number 3. Green Tea Springerle Cookie

Another experiment. I was astounded at how well the impression survived being baked. Presented with a vintage tea cup and saucer by Aynsley and a Quercifolia Hydrangea flower from my garden. The almost glowing green tea in the tea cup is made from the same matcha powder as the cookies and allegedly brimming over with good stuff


Number 2. Dark Chocolate Rose Cake

This cake was made for a cake sale at work and never intended for the blog. I posted a picture on Cake Central and the response was such that I thought it deserved its own post and here it is at number 2! People tell me it's allure is to do with that icing, a Dark Chocolate Fudge. Underneath is a four layer banana and chocolate cake. Indulgent.

 Number 1. Lavender and Lace Cookies 

Another lavender flavour as well as colour cookie. This is such a simple cookie made with a rather special lace mould from Karen Davies, to me this looks more like lace than fondant. If you have never decorated a cookie before and want to have a go, these are a great place to start. The post also includes an indulgent shot of this gorgeous vintage plate without the cookies
















Publishing a blog involves a lot of work and more than a little luck, so I thought I would share with you a few of my cakes and cookies that didn't quite go according to plan, or I just couldn't take (enough) successful photos.

Outtakes!


First up this berry butter cream cake, based on a beautiful cake from Peggy Porschen's Boutique Baking book, I may have overdone the icing sugar with my stencil just a teensy weensy bit


The cookie below is part of a batch I made in pastel colours, but I didn't quite get enough good photos to share and this one, I think I had a little "overdecoratitis" with the silver. I still like the idea so this one may well be about to get a pre-valentines make over



This is an Earl Grey Tea cupcake I baked for a bake sale at work. I spent ages making and painting tiny cups saucers and teapots to decorate them (although I think, maybe, this looks more like a coffee pot), but just didn't have enough time to get decent photographs. And that butter cream and piping is, erm, not to my usual standard. Another one due a re-make soon


This cookie below was my second attempt at making Cameo Cookies and the cookies themselves were really rather lovely. Unfortunately, however, hard I tried, I just couldn't get a decent photograph. The silver just looks grainy, the colours would not come out right and I couldn't get my camera to focus how I wanted it. I have recently had another go at these and if you  are one of the lovely people that has "liked" my Facebook Page, you may have seen a sneak preview of the made-over version recently.

If you want a sneak peek, check them out on my flickr here


So, if you like what you have seen so far, please keep popping back, I was lucky enough to get a load of sugar flower making equipment for Christmas and there will be Adventures with sugar flowers coming up along with bigger and better cakes and cookies throughout 2013. You ain't seen nothing yet!

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