"Make, Bake, Cupcake" baking folder review

I am a huge fan of cake. Any cake really but I am particularly fond of cupcakes, preferably topped with some form of creamy flavoured topping.

For my 20th wedding anniversary I decided we would have a huge celebration with a church service, balloons, bubbles, music and my absolute favourite - afternoon tea complete with fabulous cupcakes.

cupcake tower wedding cake I am a bit of a control freak and wanted to make them myself - I love baking but knew even as organised as I am I was not realistically going to be up at 5am on the morning of our huge anniversary party making and decorating cakes.

I knew I could make the cakes ahead of time and freeze them but wondered about how the cases would fare and if I could freeze them with frosting. Waiting in our cramped pre-school foyer (this was a couple of years ago before Grumpy went to full-time school) I spotted a mum famous for her baking. I didn't know her very well but knew she made cakes professionally so asked her opinion on how far I could prep the cakes in advance of the big day.

She told me what I suspected - cake cases do not survive the freezing and defrosting process very well and with her next breath offered to make them for me -all 150 of them- for free! All she wanted was the cost of the ingredients. I was incredibly touched by her kindness and jumped at her offer!

I think by the time my actual anniversary day arrived she was as stressed as me especially since the expensive pastel-coloured cake cases I bought faded horribly during the cooking process so bless her she decided to spend hours tying colour co-ordinating ribbons round each and every cake. Then she frosted and glittered.

There's a story behind that - just days before our anniversary it was all over the news that edible glitter was in fact not edible and would pass straight through you. Shops every where withdrew edible glitter from the shelves. Should we go ahead and use the glitter we had already bought we wondered or go glitter free? A quick research session found that the glitter was not dangerous so we went ahead and glittered up!

The day before our big party my friend assembled a huge perspex tower and arranged each cake to be facing the "right" way then topped the lot with a large cake and the OTT feather topper I had designed. Yes, it was mad but then so am I apparently! (clue is in the blog name)

She left the venue (my friend's house which has a huge gorgeous garden) with threats of death if the household's two dogs were allowed to get anywhere near my cake! Sighs of relief all round when we walked to the party from the church and found our centrepiece cakes intact and dog bite/hair free.
cupake cookery book
So cupcakes hold a special place in my heart - every time I eat one it reminds me of our extra special day.  Imagine how pleased I was when Parragon the book firm which publishes an amazing "love food" range of titles sent me a cupcake baking folder to look at.

"Make, Bake, Cupcake -my cupcake folder" is a sweet little folder containing a cupcake recipe book and sticky notes with cute cupcake designs on. You can use the sticky notes to add top tips or notes alongside your favourite recipes in the book or just use them around the kitchen.

Flicking through the book really fired my imagination - I loved the idea of Lemon Meringue cupcakes baked in ramekins which would make a fabulous pud at a dinner party and my mouth watered at the idea of coffee syrup-soaked, marscapone and choc topped Tiramisu cupcakes.

If fruit is your thing you might be impressed like I was by the originality of the Hummingbird cupcakes which contain chopped pineapple and banana and my mouth watered at the pictures of the frosted berry cupcakes which would earn you millions of smug mother points if you took them to a coffee morning!
frosted berry cupcakes

But my absolute favourite cake in this lovely book would have to be a sweet but simple one - cream tea cupcakes topped with strawberry jam, fresh sliced strawberry and clotted cream. Yum!

Disclaimer: I was sent a free copy of "Make, Bake, Cupcake" (ISBN 978-1-4723-2696-6 rrp £10) for the purposes of this review. Views and opinions remain honest and my own.