Sunday, 29 July 2012

RussellHobbs Cake Bake Competition

And the winner is ...... ME!!  I was invited to enter a competition sponsored by RussellHobbs recently to create a themed cake using their new Creations Food Machine.  I had never entered a compeition where I baked anything before which made this one all the more scary. 

New Creations Food Machine
First of all RussellHobbs asked their Facebook followers to vote for the flavour the bloggers would use.  The choices were Chocolate, Lemon, Coffee and Strawberry.  Unsurprisingly Chocolate won.  We were each given a category to bake a cake and mine was 'Celebration Birthday Cake'.  I am generally a competitive person once I say I will take part in something so the first thing was to sit down and plan the actual cake, filling and icing.  I decided to make my cake a Chocolate and Macadamia Nut Sponge with a Maple Caramel Filling and a Dark Chocolate Buttercream Icing!

Maple Caramel Filling using My Secret Kitchen Maple Caramel Sauce
We were sent a new and still unreleased Creations Food Machine to use to make our cakes and invited to bring the finished creation up to a London hotel for champagne and cake.  When the food machine arrived I set out to do a trial cake to get to know the machine and to make sure the recipe would work.  The first sponge I made was from the recipe book of a well known cooking celebrity and was so dry that it broke up when trying to put it on a plate!

The second attempt was not dry but didn't rise very well so I was quite nervous when starting the third attempt.  I opened a fresh bag of Self Raising Flour and double sifted it to make sure the final cake would be light and airy. The only other difference to the third cake was that instead of creaming the butter and sugar, adding the eggs one at a time etc, etc, I followed the instructions in the booklet which accompanied the Food Machine!  It directs you to put all the ingredients into the Food Machine and turn it on. Three minutes later pour the mixture into your two prepared cake tins.  I did this and the cake came out moist and well risen.

2nd vs 3rd attempt!
When the cake was finished I took it up to the competition in London.  Upon arrival we were offered a glass of Prosecco and put our entries on the counter top.  They all looked so good there was no way anyone could predict which one would win.  The Judges introduced themselves and then we introduced our blogs and told them a bit about our entries.

The Line-up
Judges tasted, keeping silent as they went along the line and making copious notes. Then whilst the judges went off to confir and decide on the winner we all got to try each other's offerings and drink some more Prosecco.  When the judges came back they gave a quick summing up of their notes on each entry and I was impressed how they gave their critiques without giving any hints to the winner.  The entries were judged on taste, smell, texture, overall look.


I have never baked a cake for a competition before so you can imagine how gobsmacked I was when I was the winner!

The Final Cake - let the judging commence!!
My prizes for winning have started to arrive with the rest due on Monday!

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