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027 (800x533) 162 (800x533)313 (533x800)On Sunday I had the wonderful opportunity of attending the Cake and Bake show held in Earls Court. Cake and Bake show is in its second year running and I am so glad it is! Saturday night and Sunday morning I was like an excited kid looking forward to Christmas. The idea of a whole expo dedicated to cakes, baking utensils, workshops and more was just too exciting an opportunity to miss. As an added bonus, courtesy of Nudge PR, I was fortunate enough to receive two press tickets and therefore had access to the press room where I got the opportunity to meet all the bake off contestants!

c5With plenty of cake and lovely treats, the bake off team were more than happy to talk about their experiences on the show and their future plans. Of course I couldn’t get too much information from those still in the show however Toby was happy to share that he is working on a food blog called Bake Down and will continue his baking despite his early exit from the show. Rob (below) said he absolutely loved the experience and i got the impression he got about halfway through the show but I guess we will have to wait and find out!

c4c1310 (800x533)I was also lucky enough to chat with John Whaite who won Bake Off last year. He was absolutely knackered from a full on weekend but I’m sure his bake off experience was just as full on. He was promoting his latest book “John Whaite Bakes” which was a sell out on the day- I’m sure mostly by people who were looking forward to the book signings!c2c3After catching up with the Bake up stars it was time to explore the exhibition and we just didn’t know where to begin, there was so much to see and do. From cookie decorating, cake baking, bake offs and cake catwalk we decided to take our time and explore the expo in sections.c7

It didn’t take long before Molly Bakes caught our eye! Find out more about Molly Bakes here: http://www.mollybakes.co.uk/about/our-storyc11c8c9c10A lover of Snickers bars since I first clasped my hands on one (probably at the age of 5) I couldn’t resist paying the £2.50 for this indulgent treat from Molly’s Bakes. There was so much choice but I was happy with my decision. Next time I will most definitely try the crownie, a cookie and brownie mixed together. That reminds me I still need to try the cronut. If you haven’t heard of this yet, get down to Greggs bakery and try it, a croissant and donut combined- sounds like heaven!c12c13c14Here is Susan who owns Susan’s Heavenly Delights. As cheesy as it sounds she was an absolute delight herself with such a positive upbeat attitude I couldn’t help but be drawn to her stand and her lovely array of glittery cakes. Not only did they look beautiful but they tasted delicious, especially the coconut vanilla velvet. c15c16c17c18c19c21

fiThe standard of cakes were so impressive, some you couldn’t believe were actual cakes. 079 (800x533) 081 (800x533) 097 104 111 (800x533) 120 (800x533) 134 (800x533) 135 (800x533) 137 (800x533) 148 (800x533) 154 (800x533) 155 (800x533)

Paul A Young’s marmite brownie was a clear winner in sampling. I heard one of the members say he couldn’t believe how well it was doing. I was intrigued to try it as I can’t stand marmite but somehow mixed with chocolate it’s not too bad at all!

157 (800x533) 158 (533x800)180 (800x533) 184 (800x533) Another stand I absolutely loved for the super lovely staff and exciting display was Devilishly Good Brownie Co. I had already bought four chocolate indulgent treats yet somehow managed to walk away buying three more brownies.200 (800x533) 204 (800x533) 205 (800x533)208 (800x533)210 (800x533)341 (800x533) 349 (800x533)220 (800x533)227 (800x533) 236 (800x533)240 246 (800x533) 249 (800x533) 250 (800x533) 253 (800x533) 255 (800x533) 259 (800x533) 263 (800x533) I had never tried Little Round Cake Company Cakes before but oh my god they are to die for. This time I didn’t have chocolate and actually went for a vanilla sponge with lemon topping and it was delicious!!Several of the cakes were already sold out by 3p.m which shows just how popular they are. Definitely one to check out. 266 (800x533) Cakes inspired by London Fashion through the Decades was absolutely breathtaking and showed the wealth of talent there is in cake decorators. From classic to futuristic there was such a range in design and shape and I easily spent over 30 minutes looking at all the cakes and the intricate details. 267 (800x533) 270 (800x533) 271 (800x533) 272 (800x533) 276 (800x533) 279 (533x800) 280 (533x800) 281 (533x800) 298 (800x533) 304 (800x533) 306 (800x533) 307 (800x533)319 (800x533) 334 (800x533) 337 (800x533)340 (800x533)338 (800x533) 339 (800x533)c22 (800x534)c23 (800x534)

Cake on the catwalk was one of my favourite parts of the day. With over 40 cakes laid out covering the length of the catwalk, there was a catwalk competition where a certificate was given to the top three in both professional and non-professional categories. It gave me hope to think that the girl who won in the non-professional category has only been cake decorating for 7 months. Get me to the kitchen now and start practicing or next year!

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365 (533x800) 371 (533x800) 375 (800x533) 376 (800x533) 380 (533x800) 388 (800x533)392 (533x800)397 (533x800) 407 (533x800) 410 (800x533)413 (533x800) 417 (800x533) 420 (800x533) 423 (800x533) 429 (800x533) 432 (800x533) 433 (800x533) 434 (800x533) 435 (800x533) 436 (800x533) 443 (800x533) 444 (800x533) 447 (800x533) 449 (800x533) 451 (800x533) 452 (800x533) 453 (800x533) I absolutely love these cupcakes. They were the result of a competition that Cupcake Heaven magazine had in their last edition where they asked bakers to send in cupcakes which were then judged and the top ten were displayed at the cake and bake show. By the time we got to the stand some of the contestants had already taken their cupcakes home with them but fortunately these lovely ones were left including the winner (features below). 454 (800x533) 455 (800x533) 456 (800x533) 457 (800x533) 462 (800x533) 463 (800x533) 464 (800x533) 474 (800x533) These candles were selling for £20 and smelt like cupcakes with flavours ranging from ginger, chocolate and vanilla.475 (800x533) Another stand I absolutely loved as they had so much choice in decoration from jelly babies, coconut, different flavoured buttercream and lots of sprinkles! Craig and I got super excited decorating our cupcakes nest to the two ten year olds also taking part! Decorating cupcakes can make anyone act like a kid!476 (800x533) 478 (800x533) 482 (800x533) 485 (800x533) 487 (800x533) 490 (800x533)492 (800x533) To end the day we watched Stacie Stewart give tips for making her amazing brownie meringue cake. I love her bee-hive style hair and absolute passion in cooking and baking. I also love the fact that she taught herself and now is doing so well with a book out already and another one on the way. At the end, she invited people up to try thr cake and I have never seen people rush so fast to sample some cake. It was a nightmare to try to get in and take a picture but luckily I did and managed to get a cheeky sample at the same time. She used yoghurt to sandwich the layers as she said buttercream was far too sweet and somehow the yoghurt works with the chocolate brownie and meringue. 506 (800x533) 508 (800x533) c25 (558x683)After a cake filled, sugar rush, eyes bigger than the belly fantastic day, the cake and bake show had come to an end and the hard workers who had been slaving away all weekend packed up their goodies not before trying to sell off their last final bits. I managed to pick up another bag for the journey purchasing 8 scones for the price of a pound. All in all it was such an incredible day, not only did I pick up some tips about sugar paste and the procedures that go into starting a cake business from home but I met some absolutely lovely people who simply love cakes and baking and it is for this reason especially that I love forward to Cake and Bake show 2013 and hope to see more events like this in the near future.

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1070 (800x600)Oh and on the way out I got to meet the lovely James Morton. He was rushing to catch his plane back to Glasgow but was still kind enough to stop and take a picture. I missed his wooly sweater though!