I was asked to bake for a tennis tournament charity event to raise money for charity - half to Macmillan Cancer Support and half to a homeless charity. Initially, I thought I'd bake some brownies, biscuits and possibly a Victoria Sponge cake. However, one sleepless night, I started thinking about themed cakes and as it's for a tennis event I decided to make a tennis court cake and tennis cupcakes! Cake decorating is definitely not my strong suit but I tried my best and was pleased with the final result. It definitely needs a lot more work (especially the icing) but it did the job and raised a fair bit for charity! The tennis court cake sold for £58!! All the cupcakes were sold as well at a suggested donation of £1 per cupcake.
I've just watched this week's episode of the Great British Bake off and I have no idea how they created their showstoppers in 4 hours as this took me longer than that and doesn't even come close to what they produced! Just as well I'm not in the show!
Anyway back to the cakes- the tennis court cake is a vanilla sponge sandwiched with vanilla buttercream and strawberry jam. It was then covered in buttercream and placed in the fridge to set before being covered with green fondant icing. The finishing touches were made with royal icing. You will notice that the icing is terrible as I decided to use egg white powder (instead of fresh egg whites) for the icing and ended up with clumps which prevented me using a smaller tip. The tennis ball cupcakes are lemon cupcakes covered with a thin layer of buttercream followed by a circle of yellow fondant icing. Royal icing was used to pipe 2 lines to resemble a tennis ball.
For vanilla sponge
250g caster sugar
250g self raising flour
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon vanilla paste
For vanilla buttercream
500g icing sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 -2 teaspoon of milk
Makes 10 cupcakes - I tripled this recipe
110g self-raising flour, sifted
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
110g unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 large eggs
grated zest and juice of 1 lemon
For royal icing
1 sachet egg white powder
10 teaspoons water
1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
- Preheat oven to 180C
- To make vanilla sponge - cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time. Mix in the flour and vanilla extract and paste.
- Pour into a baking tin and bake for approximately 45-50 minutes or until risen and golden brown and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.
- Allow to cool before decorating.
- To make the lemon cupcakes - cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time. Mix in flours, zest and juice of lemon.
- Spoon into cupcake cases and bake for approximately 15-18 minutes until golden brown and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.
- To make the buttercream - mix all ingredients in a mixer until smooth.
- To make the royal icing - mix egg white powder with warm water until smooth. Beat in sifted icing sugar and lemon juice. You may need to add more water or icing sugar to get the right consistency.