Let them eat Cake!

If like me you love the idea of baking your loved ones cakes for their special day but break out in a sweat at the thoughts…. I have the answer to your prayers!!

This classic recipe was swiped from my old Home Ec book last year when Home Ec books came en Vogue! It inspired me to resurrect mine! You simply can’t go wrong with it! It’s a total Bish Bash Bosh one!

You will need!

Cake

•300g Self Raising Flour.

•300g Butter, at room temperature.

•300g Caster Sugar.

•1½ tsp Baking Powder.

•6 Eggs, beaten.

•3 tbsp Milk

Buttercream

•375g Butter, at room temperature.

•500g Icing Sugar.

•1tsp Vanilla Essence (optional).

-Preheat your oven to 180°C/Gas 4.

-Grease and line three 18-20cm tins with parchment paper.

-Combine all ingredients in a bowl and beat until it becomes a smooth batter containing no lumps (yes, really, bung it all in).

-Divide into 3 tins and cook for 25/30minutes. (Knife should come out clean, you know the drill!!

-Cool on a wire rack. (If they are bellied after cooling simply level off with a bread knife)

Buttercream: Beat the butter until soft and slowly add the icing sugar, beat until mixture becomes stiff! Add vanilla extract towards the end if you are adding


  • Build the cake:

    Put a small scrape of buttercream onto cake board to stick bottom layer of sponge.

    Spread buttercream with pallet knife or spatula and repeat until 3 layers are done.

    If you wish, you can add a layer of jam before the butter cream on each layer. I always do this with a very plain simple strawberry or raspberry jam, this is not the time for your top shelf special reserve jams, unless you like very sweet cake!

    Now cover the outside of the cake with the remainder of the buttercream using a pallet knife, flat edge knife or spatula. You can decorate with sweets (easy option if you don’t fancy getting messy)

    For mine I applied sprinkles using the flat edge of a large knife and spill the sprinkles between the knife and the cake in an upwards motion.

    I then used the remainder of the buttercream by adding blue food colouring and piped his name and pipped the edges as seen in picture. Take a peek at the nozzles I use for this effect. ( tip: It’s a good idea to refrigerate remainder of buttercream before piping as it can melt quite quickly when doing this. )


    Rainbow Surprise Cake!

    • For this particular cake I tweaked the method a tad. I wanted to make a fun cake for my little boy who was turning 4.

    Before putting the mixture into the tins I divided the batter evenly into 3 bowls and added food colouring into each mixture. (At this point I would like to point out that Aldi Blue food colouring IS NOT blue. As you can see, but it didn’t cause any harm… well, a little. I’m OCD like that!! But, not OCD enough to drive around looking for it at night time. I just pretended I was aiming for “Duck Egg blue”.)

    Whilst building the cake I cut a generous circle out of the centre sponge and filled it up with chocolate sweets! It added a little bit of a surprise!


    Bakers Tip!!

    Less is more with this cake, it is simple and tasty and a real crowd pleaser, your classic buttercream birthday cake! What’s not to love?

    I added the vanilla essence to the butter cream and the sweets on the inside as well as the sprinkles outside, it really was fun but sweet experience!! Bare this in mind if you are trying the rainbow surprise version, I keep it a lot more simple for adulty do’s and the likes !

    I hope you give this a go and find it as simple as I do! Let me know how it goes if you do!! Tag me , I would love to see.

    Cassandra – @theschoolgateadventure 💛


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    The Boys Banana Bread

    I’ve been making this banana bread religiously for about 3 years now, and it’s a firm family favorite! It’s ridiculously easy!

    It’s adapted from a recipe my friends mom shared with us. It was amazing from day one but I have excluded the sugar content with the boys in mind… and added a few optional extras to change things up a bit from time to time !! Lemon zest and poppy seeds are my old reliable extras!

    Top Tip; When you see those brown bananas in the fruit bowl, don’t dump them , peel them and store them in the freezer until your ready to make some banana bread. Store in batches of 3 or whatever amount your favorite recipe needs. (Defrost in a sieve as they hold a lot of water)

    You will need:

    An oven preheated to 180•C

    • -3 Mashed bananas
    • -1.5 cups of flour
    • -1 beaten egg
    • -1/3 cup melted butter
    • -1 tsp of vanilla extract
    • -1 tsp of baking powder

    Optional extras

    • -Coconut (1 tbsp approx)
    • -Poppy seeds (1 tbsp approx)
    • -1/4 cup sugar (original recipe has 1/2 – 1 cup)
    • -Blueberries (handful)
    • -Zest of a lemon
    • -Chocolate Chips
    • -Flaked Almonds to sprinkle on top.

    Get creative….. OH! Berries are fab too!

    METHOD

    •Combine all ingredients by hand or in food mixer. Viola!

    •Grease your loaf tin well.

    •Place in oven at 180•C for 30-40 mins.

    I hope you enjoy it as much as my guys do. I like to give them this as a treat on Fridays in their Lunchbox, or as a snack before after school activities. You can also make it into muffin cases, I just reduce the cooking time. It freezes really well so I tend to double the recipe up and keep some for emergencies!

    Let me know if you make it and how it goes!

    Cassandra

    February Beauty Faves

    Having lived a previous life of being a Beauty Therapist and Make Up artist, I am card carrying self confessed product addict!! If a new product is buzzing I-am-on-it! It doesn’t mean I buy it and it most certainly doesn’t mean I’m looking like I’m wearing them! But I do research!… I do weed out the “fads” and I eventually buy the ones worthy of a seal of approval.

    My “Oily” hair was somewhat of a lifelong battle. I have oily hair. That was it. I wash and blow-dry my hair daily. What a pain in the ass! (As I write this I now begin to wonder what sounds more dirty, oily or greasy, but, as Sabrina from New Hair Revolution would say!… “O-I-L-Y HAIR , you have Oily hair!”). Alas…. que said Sabrina’s Snapchat rant and my.life.changed.for.the.better! 20 odd years of washing my hair daily and one product changed all that… Alphaparf Balancing Shampoo! This stuff is amazing!!! I now get 2-3 days from my blowdry (MY being the operative word; my self blowdried hair, don’t be getting notions of me in a hairdressers every few days)! Anyway , It’s what my hair dreams have been waiting for! (FYI It does leave the hair sqqqqquuuueeeakkkkky clean, I describe it as ‘draggy’, that’s about as technical as the description is going to get… so to combat this, I always quickly brush my conditioner lightly through for a few seconds with a tangle teaser just to loosen out any tangles at the scalp. )

    Sticking with the haircare, my absolute fave conditioner is the KPak Colour Therapy Conditoner by Joico. Ive been using it for ages now and never have any issues with the condition of my hair, if I slack and pick up a supermarket brand every now and then I notice a massive difference!! I also have the mask and use that regularly too! Joico is an amazing brand. It’s the highest quality haircare but yet, the price point won’t make you actually tear like its competitors!

    Movvvving swiftly along to my favourite find of 2018 so far!!! In a world full of; “To Peel or not to Peel”. “Manually exfoliate, no, cosmetically exfoliate”. “Professional skincare v luxury skincare!” It’s all a bit of a headwreck…. what I do know is I bought Pixi Glow Tonic Exfoliating Toner recently and it has , nearly, transformed my dull blotchy complexion. I always buy big when I buy skincare but this is the only item I’ve ever bought that I’ve instantly seen noticeable difference, and at a fraction of the cost of my normal buys. My skin is hydrated, clear and my uneven skin tone is definitely improving, dare I say, I even look a bit glowy! I don’t care who’s saying what, I’m using this on my mug and it’s working like a dream baby!…

    My next find will have you smelling like a Refresher Bar!… in a very good way. Dr Hauschka Lemongrass Body Milk is going to be your best summer body lotion if you decide to purchase. It’s light, it dries quickly, doesn’t stick to delicate clothes and does what it’s supposed to, keeps your skin hydrated!! It’s the most refreshing lemongrass smell and instantly makes you feel invigorated! It makes me long for summer. Believe me, your skin will thank you. Disclaimer:My children did sniff me, asking was I eating sweets, they do that, it’s for another days story though….

    Last but not least! What mom can be without a concealer? Not me, although I’ve half gone past the caring stage, there are those couple of days a week when life is more hectic than getting out the door with concealer on! However, on the days that I do manage I find this Maybelline Eye Erase so handy! I leave a few around the place, and blend them out on high colour areas if I suddenly need to pop in somewhere that requires me to look human! Viola!! In car essential.

    I will try to bring a few products to you all every month or so, but let’s just see how this blog world goes first!! Oh yeah, did I mention this is my first “blog post”!!? Here comes the cringe bit! If you like what your reading and want more, you will find me on my Instagram or Facebook @theschoolgateadventure ! If you could give the pages a like that would be SHAMAZING! Sharing is caring and all the jazz!

    Have a great week x