My Biggest Project : Rainbow Cake

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Layer cakes were never a specialty of mine, but when the opportunity came up to make something special for a first birthday, I just couldn’t resist! If you follow me on instagram (@lianneelow) I’m sure you’ve seen endless photos of Paige who turned one last year. I love her like she’s my own, so I wanted to do something special for her as well!

Stacking the layers

Rainbow was the theme of her party, so inevitably, the only cake I could think of was rainbow cake! Being ambitious, I also wanted to make all 7 layers out of natural colouring and flavouring. So after much research, I came up with the flavours and decided to give it a try. As much as I wanted natural colouring, the colours of the fruits just didn’t stand out as much as I wanted to after being baked, so for the actual cake, I decided to put a drop or two of colouring paste just to make it pop!

Cupcake pops

On a side note (just cause the word pop reminded me haha), I also made some cupcake pops for the party! Though it was time consuming to make them, I enjoyed every single moment – from molding them into their shapes, dipping them into melted chocolate (like yummeh!) and to sprinkling them with 100’s and 1000’s! Could totally imagine a kid doing it as a fun activity too! Hehe

plan drawn

So here’s a draw up of my plan: 7 flavours and all stacked and iced with my favourite cream cheese frosting! Mmmmm!

I wasn’t too worried about baking the 7 individual layers, I was more worried about constructing it and how high it would actually be! It was definitely the highest cake I’ve made in my life!  The only thing I was really worried about was transporting the cake to the party as I was going to be driving alone! I think my life was shortened about 10 years in that 10 minutes of driving! Haha

It was all worth it though, to see the faces lit up at the party and hearing all the compliments from the guests! Definitely made my day! The next thing that made my heart beat really quickly was the cutting of the cake and revealing to see if there were 7 distinct layers. And….

Revealing the layers inside

TADAH!!! (: I couldn’t be happier with how it turned out! I’m sure I let out a loud sigh of relief the moment I took the first slice of cake out and served it! A happy dance was definitely in order! Hehe  I have to admit, there were some layers that I was probably a bit too heavy with the colouring towards the end (was going colour happy haha), cause I really wanted the colours to stand out. But please know that you can always cut that down to your own preference, or you can just cut that out too!

Rainbow Cake 

Ingredients : (20 cm round baking tin, repeat 7 times)

120g plain flour

80g caster sugar

40g unsalted butter, room temperature

120ml milk

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp vanilla paste

1 egg

Wilton icing food gels (I used a toothpick to add the colours)

For the different layers : (add food gel colouring till desired colour or leave it out if you wish)

Red – 3/4 cup fresh raspberry, mashed + red food gel

Pink – 3/4 cup fresh strawberries, mashed

Purple – 3/4 cup blackberries, mashed + purple food gel

Blue – 3/4 cup blueberries, mashed + blue food gel

Green – Zest of 2 limes, 3 tbs juice + green food gel

 Yellow – Zest of 2 lemons, 3 tbs juice + yellow food gel

Orange – Zest of 1 naval orange, 3 tbs juice + orange food gel

Steps : 

1) For each layer of cake : Grease and line the baking tin with baking paper. Preheat oven to 165 degrees celcius.

2) In a medium bowl, combine the plain flour and baking powder. In a mixing bowl, add the butter, sugar, egg and vanilla paste and mix till pale and fluffy. Alternate the flour mixture with milk (flour,milk,flour) until well combined.

3) Fold in the flavouring and colouring for each layer. Careful not to over mix.

the red layer - raspberry

4) Pour the batter into the prepared baking tin and tap it on the counter to allow all the air bubbles to come to the surface. Bake for 18 mins or until the skewer comes out clean. Allow the layers of cake to cool completely before assembling.

The yellow layer - lemon

Cream Cheese Icing (From the Hummingbird Bakery Cookbook)

900g icing sugar

375g cream cheese

150g unsalted butter, softened

Steps :

1) Beat the icing sugar and butter in a mixing bowl until well combined.

2) Add the cream cheese in one go and beat until completely incorporated. Turn the mixer up to medium high, and beat until it’s light and fluffy (about 5 minutes). Do not over beat as it will turn runny.

Cream cheese icing

3) To assemble : Place the red cake layer at the bottom, place 2 heap tbs of cream cheese icing on the cake and spread it out uniformly using a palette knife. Place the orange layer on top and repeat the process. Once you reach the top layer (pink), frost the top and side of the cake till it’s smooth and even.

Rainbow cake success!

Enjoy! (: I love how I could actually taste the fruits in every single layer, and they actually do work well together although it’s impossible to fit all 7 layers in one bite! haha

Paige eating the cake

It was such an honour that my cake is the first cake Paige has eaten (:  How pretty is her dress!

Happy 1st birthday Paige

It is many months after the actual birthday, but happy 1st birthday Paige! Can’t believe how quick it has been and she’s such a big girl now! (:

Paige and Us

I can’t wait till I am able to make my own bub’s cake and I will definitely be more than happy to make this cake again!

Have a good mid week everyone! (:

Remember to always bake and cook with love! Till the next post, xx

{Giveaway} Savour Singapore 2014

Good afternoon dear readers. So sorry for the lack of posts! I’m still trying to get back into the pace of blogging after the long rest I had when I went back to Singapore. Plus, if you haven’t already heard, we are expecting our first bub and thus I’ve been a little more tired of late. So please forgive me! I will come back with more posts soon, I promise!

Savour 2014 Giveaway Logo

There is something exciting I want to share with you, and this is exclusively for those readers in Singapore! I’ve got a giveaway that would definitely get you foodies on your feet! Savour is back and I’m sure many of you would love to go! Fortunately for you, and thanks to Nespresso Singapore, I have been give 2 tickets to giveaway to a lucky winner to attend the largest gourmet festival in Singapore, SAVOUR!

Once again there are a plethora of chefs to meet and a spread of different cuisines to try, so it’s one event food lovers wouldn’t want to miss! Foodies who are also coffee lovers will no doubt, not want to miss the brand new custom-built NESPRESSO MAISON, located right in the heart of the new SAVOUR event space in the lush greenery of The Promontory @ Marina Bay. So what can you expect at the Nespresso Maison? Escape to the extraordinary and experience ‘Your Perfect Pleasure’ through the art of bespoke coffee crafting with our very own Nespresso Barista. How exciting does that sound? 

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 Besides the Nespresso Maison, Nespresso will once again be bringing back their ever popular Coffee Atelier classes, where fans can discover and learn the subtleties, nuances and origins of coffee. Coffee experts will be sharing with fans how to create the perfect cup of coffee. I’ve attended one of these classes before, and even though I won’t categorise myself as a coffee lover, I really enjoyed learning more about the art of making coffee!
This year’s SAVOUR is held at The Promontory @ Marina Bay! It’s a 5 day event, however, the tickets I was given were for Thursday, the 6th of March 2014, between 5-11pm. The tickets will also come with 30 Savour $ each! So if you love your food, and would love to also experience some coffee magic, this is an event you definitely don’t want to miss!
So how do you win these tickets? Just leave a comment telling me who you would like to attend this event with and why! This giveaway will end on Wednesday 5th of March 2012 at 5pm, and the winner will be announced and notified at 7pm (Singapore time). I do apologise for this short period of time to enter the giveaway, but I assure you, it’s an event you food lovers wouldn’t want to miss!

Watch the video to see the highlights of Savour 2013!

So don’t wait any longer, leave me a comment and best of luck! Definitely looking forward to award the lucky winner!

PS: The giveaway is for the residents of Singapore only. Unfortunately, due to the short period of time, we won’t be able to give the tickets to readers overseas, as you won’t be able to attend the event on time. I do apologise! I’m sure there would be other events in the future!

Disclaimer : This is a collaboration with Nespresso Singapore and Crowd SG, tickets were given in compliments of the organisers and I wasn’t paid to run this giveaway. 

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And the winner is….. ALENA!! Congrats babe! Hope you’ll enjoy the event with your girlfriend! Time to take that break you deserve!! (: x
Winner of SAVOUR 2014 tickets
Winner's comment
Will be emailing you to let you know how to collect your tickets!

Yarra Valley Chocolaterie : Hot Chocolate Festival

Yarra Valley Chocolaterie

I have a love-hate relationship with chocolate. More love than hate of course. But after scoffing down too much chocolate, that’s when the hate sets in. But it doesn’t last for long. My love for it is overpowering. haha So you can imagine my face when I walked through the glass doors of the Yarra Valley Chocolaterie! Yeap! You guessed it right! Wide grins, round eyes and I marched straight to the huge bowls of chocolate that are for free tasting. How generous! But just so I don’t look greedy, I just took a (heap) tablespoon full of the dark chocolate buttons and stepped away.

Hot Chocolate Festival

It wasn’t my first time at the chocolaterie, but this time I was really lucky to be asked to the Hot Chocolate Festival by Yarra Valley Chocolaterie & Q Strategies to try 8 out of the 31 limited edition flavours they’ve come up with for the month of August! I went with the blogging gang (Shellie, Daisy, Thanh, Agnes & I-Hua) and we were allowed to bring our partners (and Melissa!) along, so it was like a fun road trip with a whole huge foodie gang!

8 flavours that we tried

These were the 7 + 1 flavours we tried that morning. Yes, we had hot chocolates for breakfast! hehe What could be better yes?

Josh - Head barista

We were introduced to Josh, the head barista at the chocolaterie. He’s the one who comes up with all the different flavours! Amazing! From the moment we gathered infront of him, pots and pots of hot chocolate arrived and were served! We were definitely in hot chocolate heaven!

toppings

Each cup (thank goodness they were mini ones!) had a different topping to match the flavours!

Pouring the hot chocolate

So without further ado, here comes the hot chocolates! I’m introducing them in the order that we were having them! Of course, I have my top three choices of the morning and you’ll see them next to their flavours! hehe So, first up….

Gingerbread

Gingerbread (2nd place)! This was made using their milk couverture chocolate and had quite a strong cinnamon and ginger taste to it, which I love! It was served with some gingerbread crumbs which gave a slight crunch to the drink.

Mint madness

Next up was mint madness! This was also made with their smooth milk chocolate and served with a fresh mint! I actually quite enjoyed this, as it reminded me of an After Eight chocolate! hehe and I absolutely love those thin pieces of chocolate! hehe

Cookies & Cream

Cookies & cream was somehow known as the King Kong of all flavours made with smooth milk chocolate and topped with crushed oreo cookies! This was delicious but it kinda of tasted like normal hot chocolate, and nothing too special. Though the crunch of the cookies added a good texture!

pina colada

I’ve been into coconut everything these days, so I was quite excited when I saw Pina Colada (3rd place) on the tasting menu! It had a strong coconutty flavour made with white chocolate and topped with toasted coconut! DELISH! hehe It was quite a favourite among us that day to be honest!

Indian Chai

When the next flavour was indian chai, Shellie and I were smiling at each other, as we both love our chai! Unfortunately, the dark chocolate was a little overwhelming and I couldn’t really taste the chai spices. Sad face! I really thought this would make number 1 on my list!

Snickers

This, ladies and gentlemen, is SNICKERS! The champion of the day! It was so delicious, and it really felt like you were having a snickers bar. It was nutty and chocolatey. Everything a hot cup of hot chocolate needs! Topped with roasted slithers of almond – A perfect cup! I secretly wanted another cup! haha But had to safe some space for the two more to come!

Lemon myrtle

If you’re a fan of lemony and citrusy drinks, this would be the one for you! I never thought that lemon would go well with chocolate. But after drinking this, your mouth is left with a subtle taste of lemon, kinda refreshing! Each cup is topped with a candied slice of lemon.

Jaffa

Our last cup for the morning was Jaffa. It was a special addition to the tasting menu we had! Before we could taste it, Josh grated some orange zest and the aroma of oranges just filled the air!

Handmade marshmallows

After all the hot chocolates, we were also introduced to some handmade marshmallows! There were 4 flavours (from top) : tropical, vanilla, strawberry & chocolate ! They were all so FLUFFY (imagine me saying this in Agnes’ voice, from Despicable Me! haha) !!! Loved it and they weren’t overly sweet! I had to stop at one though, cause I definitely reached my sugar quota for the day! hehe

Chocolate freckles

After the private tasting session, we walked around the chocolaterie and it was like being in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory! Every where you walked to, you would see chocolate of all kinds!

Rocky road

So do go and visit the chocolaterie before the end of August and taste all the different flavours of hot chocolate they have to offer and hit a sugar high! (: You’ll definitely enjoy it as much as we did!

chocolate cups stacked

So what flavour of hot chocolate would you love to try? I really want to try the popcorn flavour that’s coming up next week! hehe What are you waiting for? Head over there asap!

Yarra Valley Chocolaterie & Ice Creamery on Urbanspoon

Lianne @ Food Made With Love attended the hot chocolate festival as a guest of the Yarra Valley Chocolaterie and Q Strategies. Thank you so much for this yummy opportunity! 

Happy 2013 !

Happy New Year

Happy New Year everyone! (: Sorry for the lack of posts as I’m back in Singapore for a holiday and to spend time with my family! But don’t worry, I will be posting some yummy food that I’ve been having soon!

I would like to wish all of you a very Happy New Year! May 2013 be filled with endless happiness, good health, yummy food and happy bellies! Thank you for your constant support in 2012, and hopefully I will be able to bring you more delicious recipes and reviews in 2013! Have an awesome year ahead everyone!

Remember to always cook and bake with love!

Happy Birthday My Love

To my one and only hubs :

HAPPY HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

Thank you for always being there for me, being my rock. Someone I can always depend on and someone who loves me unconditionally (: May this year be blessed with endless love, care, happiness! Of course, lots and lots from me! hehe You will always be my best friend, husband, trainer and my life.

I love you! ❤

I could not ask for anyone better (:

Back in a Jiffy!

Sorry for the lack of posts guys. I have been slobbered by a sudden influx of assignments due on the 7th of Nov!

But I will definitely be back with more posts of yummies soon! Stay tuned! (:

Salted Caramel Macarons

It has always been my dream to buy a Kitchenaid mixer but I never had the heart to spend that much on an item. haha BUT I JUST DID. (: I’m a happy and proud owner of one! Thanks so my wonderful parents who is ever so supportive of me.

And immediately after getting it, I had to use it and bake something. Especially when I haven’t baked in a long long time. And one thing at the back of my mind that I wanted to try again was of course, macarons.

I have been having Lindt’s macarons for the past 2 months, cause whenever family and friends come. Lindt Chocolate Cafe is one place I will definitely bring them to have their macarons. And we all have our own favourites: mine is their vanilla and the mr loves their salt caramel. So what did I decide to bake for the first time using the sexy toy? Salted caramel of course (:

Although it didn’t turn out perfect, but I was really quite happy with the way it looked and the texture of it, cause it is wayyy better than my last attempt of chilli chocolate macaron. hehe

So the first thing I needed to get was fleur de sel. and boy was I shocked at how much it costs! haha but then again, it is the caviar of salt, so I guess its worth as it really made the caramel magical.

love the shape of the salt crystals

the verdict ? The mr LOVED it. and it made me a happy girl. (:

so here’s the recipe I used :

adapted from Chef Pang Kok Keong (a recipe on Chubby Hubby)

the macaron shell :

250g ground almond

450g icing sugar

220g egg white (aging for 48 hours)

60g castor sugar

Steps :

1. Sieve the ground almond and icing sugar into a mixing bowl. Make sure the mixture is lump-free. They call this the Tant Pour Tant (TPT) mixture.

2. Beat the egg whites using an electrical mixer with a whisk attachment at high speed until you can see a line made by the whisk going round. Then add in the sugar while the mixer is at medium speed. Make a stiff meringue.

3. Fold the meringue into the dry sieved ingredients until you get a homogeneous mix, taking care not to overfold it, as normal meringue are very delicate.

4. Pipe the mixture onto a silpat with a no. 5 plain tube into 3cm balls. Allow space in between as the cookies will spread to approximately 5cm. If the mixture is too thick, you’ll see a tip sticking up from the balls (from where you piped them) even after you finish piping the last row. If this happens, give the tray a little tap so that you’ll get a nice smooth surface.

5. Leave the piped macaron cookies out to form a skin before baking them (about 30 mins) at 160 degrees Celsius in a fan oven for approximately 14-16 minutes. When totally cooled, sandwich two cookies together with the salted caramel filling.

I did the happy feet dance (: SUPER HAPPY!

Salted caramel :

200g sugar
1 tsp vanilla paste
200g cream
3.75g fleur de sel
140g butter, chilled

Steps :

1. In a 1 litre heavy based pot, cook the sugar with a little of water, stirring all the time to get an even caramel.

2. Then add in the vanilla paste.

3. Add in the warm cream a bit at a time as it will bubble up and splatter. Then add in the fleur de sel.

4. Stir to make sure all the caramel has dissolved. Cool the mixture to approximately 40 degrees Celsius.

5. Add in the well chilled butter, cut into cubes. Using an immersion blender, blend in the butter till you achieve a smooth glossy paste. Line the surface of the caramel with plastic wrap or greaseproof paper to prevent a skin from forming and chill in the fridge until needed.

All packed! (: Enjoy !