HAPPY BIRTHDAY HANA!!!!

Today is my Sister’s 28th Birthday, so last weekend she was home to celebrate with the family. I’ve mentioned a keenness to develop my confidence in baking before now, so while she was out on a birthday shopping trip with my Mum I set to work making her a birthday cake to be proud of!

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The Chequered Neapolitan birthday cake consists of 3 sponges- one chocolate, one strawberry and one vanilla. It’s brilliant because it actually looks 1000 times more complicated than it really is, so results in you (the baker) receiving far more praise than you really deserve. I wanted to make this for her, as I have a vague child-hood memory of us seeing two-flavour version of this being made on How To (or was it The Handy Men?) when we were little, and then my Mum baking it after sufficient nagging.

You’ve seen me make the strawberry sponge before, back when I was at Battersea Dogs and Cats Home, but this time I developed the recipe ever so slightly by adding a tablespoon of powdered Strawberry Milkshake mix… You know, for extra strawberry oomph!

So. Here’s how it’s all done.

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LOOK WHAT I DID!

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To the untrained eye, the above will appear as nothing more than a set of lazy cupcakes, bashed together through the aid of a “just add an egg” kit, and in the unexplainable theme of One Direction.

But look a little more closely, and you will see something else.

Something special…

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A break-through in my baking habits, notoriously lacking in confidence…

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Yes. That icing… Is piped.

And a not too shabby job, if I may be so cheeky to say!

A nice change from my usual “just dump it on” approach.

Perhaps my baking will be just a tad bolder from this day!

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This cook just grew a little more.