This is going to be one of those posts where I waffle on about a lovely event I was invited to and show you lots of photos. But I’m going to bookend it with something serious.
The particular event I’m writing about was to do with Breakthrough Breast Cancer. These guys are one of the biggest breast cancer research charities in the UK. They provide funding for doctors and scientists to work together to help destroy the nasty, shitty disease that breast cancer is. But to provide funding, they need funding. So they’re asking for your help.
Everyone is going Great British Bake Off mad at the moment, so they’re asking you to organise a Great Pink Bake Off at work this Friday, the 18th October. Have fun baking delicious treats, have even more fun eating delicious treats and raise money for a frankly amazing cause. I thoroughly encourage you to do it. If I had a workplace rather than a team of people working from home spread out over the country, I’d do it. And I’ll pop some ideas for what to bake at the bottom of the post.
But for now, let me tell you about the event.
Food bloggy events are always fun. You get to meet a group of people who think pretty much exactly like you and you get to meet a few bloggers you really admire. I’d met Hannah before, but I was introduced to Lucy, Beverley, Emine and the utterly brilliant Kate, who is Welsh and the most cheery person I’ve ever met.
And then, of course, we got to meet our teacher for the day – the incredible Bea from Bea’s of Bloomsbury. You know, that one who used to be pastry chef at Nobu. Yeah. Her.
And, with all the controversy surrounding Duffingate, we of course had to make duffins.
A duffin, for those of you who don’t know, is a doughnut crossed with a muffin. It has a doughnut-ty texture, but it’s baked like a muffin.
And then dipped in butter and rolled in sugar like a doughnut.
…and then filled with jam. It’s a heart attack in a bite, basically. Bloody tasty, though. Like a big, sweet hug in a a baked good.
We also learnt how to write using chocolate, for cake decorating. Bea showed us how to make little piping cones out of greaseproof paper, first…
(Vlog on this to come, I promise!)
….then she demonstrated writing with chocolate…
and then she let us loose on it ourselves.
Not bad for a first attempt! I was relieved it turned out well. The pressure to get this right when you’re with an ex-pastry chef from a Michelin starred restaurant and a room full of bakers is quite intense.
The final thing Bea showed us to do is how to make Italian buttercream. Your pour boiling sugar into meringue and add butter until you get something huge and delicious. Which we flavoured with raspberries so that it was pink.
It feels so different from normal buttercream that my piping skills went to crap.
I was still proud of my little take-away box, though.
If this has inspired you to bake (and I hope it has!) then why not hold a Great Pink Bake Off on Friday 18th October to support Breakthrough Breast Cancer in all the frankly amazing work they do to researching better ways to fight this awful, awful disease?
Here’s some ideas of what you could do:
- Nigella’s recipe for red velvet cupcakes will always go down well, and red is close enough to pink for it to fit the theme
- If you’re feeling fancy, how about a chocolate and pomegranate tart?
- If you’re a seriously dedicated baker, these love heart biscuits are incredible
- These raspberry and white chocolate cookies formed the base for all my cookie recipes. It’s delicious
- If you’re up for a wee challenge, I love these Little Lousie cupcakes. A splodge of raspberry jam makes them shocking pink!
- If you’re a novice baker, this recipe for Vanilla Shortbread is incredibly easy and has a very high yield. You’ll get lots of biscuits for your effort.
- Use red apples to make this stunning rose-decorated apple pie
- Take your favourite cupcake recipe and pop it in a pink case. Here are my cupcake recipes, and here are ones from BBC Good Food
- Sod the pink theme and sell slices of this magnificent Malteser cake. I’ve sold this at charity auctions before and it always goes down well
- Bakewell. Tart. Biscuits. YUM.
- Bake scones and top them with raspberry or strawberry jam and cream
- Meringues + pink food colouring = impressive, bite sized treats
- For savoury fans, try this tomato tart
- Look at the amazing celebrity suggestions on the Great Pink Bake Off page
And if you do make anything and participate in the Great Pink Bake Off, let me know!
Love Amy xxx