Wednesday, 9 January 2013

Afternoon Tea Baking School: Test Student # 2 - Lauren


As some of you know by now, I am now offering up my Afternoon Tea Baking expertise in the form of my new Baking School.. in your OWN home. 
You can read more about the plans for this here, along with my plans to get this 
spot on, I have recruited a few impartial Secluded Tea Party friends to allow me to use 
them as *Test Students* to iron out all the creases before I release myself into your very own home! 

I plan to be your very own "Fairy Cake Mother" - Resting by your side with a cuppa in hand showing you how to bake, but letting you do it all... you may even surprise yourself. In fact, I promise you that you will, I've had various people tell me that they "can't bake", I've popped over with my baking kit and they have made cakes to rival my own. It's a fantastic feeling knowing I can help you to do just that. 


And so... to my little *Test Student* case studies.... 

My second student was the lovely Lauren, a fellow Cricket Widow in my village and her baking repertoire was limited she told me one rainy Saturday afternoon sat by the cricket pitch watching our men play manly ball games ; ) 
Having mentioned to me a while back that her pavlova had been removed from the oven looking like the big stage at Glastonbury, she had sworn never to bake again and told me on various ocassions that she couldn't bake for toffee.

  
This sounded like a challenge to me, although knowingly not a huge one, Lauren just needed some encouragement and to be shown that she CAN bake, she just needed a good recipe to follow and the gentle nudge of an Afternoon Tea Hostess behind her and the mixing bowl to teach her the tricks she needed.


Lauren had wanted to bake some goodies for a Xmas party with her fellow mums, dads and babies that very weekend and she wanted to wow them with cakes that she had made herself and hasn't needed to buy in for it. 

This was a skill she wanted to learn to be able to whip up a cake each time they meet and feel included in the baking conversations that they have when they meet up. Previously, she would have bought from the supermarket and felt lost in the discussions, as she wasn't really baking herself. 

 
I also felt a little sad to hear that her mum had felt she hadn't been a good teacher on the baking front when Lauren was younger and felt worried that this was a part to play in Lauren not baking today. I don't believe that's the case at all, I simply think that Lauren's confidence had been knocked by the fun poked at her "disasters" and she was a little nervous about messing things up again.

But she truly has nothing to worry about, she was a natural...


As soon as the weighing of ingredients began and the kMix was in her hand, Lauren was whizzing up cake batters and Butter Creams and piping like a pro before I could even finish my second cup of tea!

Lauren had chosen to make a show stopping Chocolate Malteaser Cake and some "99" Ice Cream Cone Cupcakes complete with chocolate sprinkles and Cadbury's Flakes to make them look like real ice creams. They were made in waffle cones and we found a way to store them in an ice lolly mould to keep them upright - genius! 

 
I hardly had to do anything, I washed up the equipment as we went, so Lauren could concentrate on the creations she was dreaming up.
As I had found with my first Baking Student, Mark, the oven that Lauren had in her kitchen baked things a little differently to my own, which is the beauty of doing these Afternoon Tea Baking Lessons in your own home, we can help you to get used to your own equipment, which I think is essential


Lauren's cakes actually needed a little longer than my own, so I showed her how to ensure that no sponges were burnt, but made sure she knew how to tell when they were cooked.

By the end of our session, Lauren was buzzing, feeling so confident, even I felt amazing haha. She was piping my trademark chocolate swirls into her Malteaser cake and was adding her own finishing touches to her cupcakes, they were a work of art! 


Lauren ended our session racing into her lounge with cake in hand, showing off to her husband just what she could achieve, I was one proud Miss Sue Flay,
 I can tell you : ) 
I left Lauren with a few different recipes to play around with and she has done so since we baked on this evening, just before Xmas. 

In fact, Lauren reported to me after the party, telling me that the photos she had put up on Facebook prior to the event with her treats had scared off the competition (hehe), so much so that some of the mums who had planned to bake cakes didn't do so, as they couldn't beat her beautiful mountain of chocolatey goodness - Now that says it all, it truly does!


Now that's what I can call a very successful lesson and I truly hope that she continues to bake with this new found confidence, just amazing!   

Miss Sue Flay 



Lauren Says:

" As a novice in the kitchen I went into my first baking workshop with some trepidation. However, with Miss Sue Flay's professional, yet relaxed style of teaching she put me at ease straight away. A lot of effort had been put in to ensure the session was tailored to me personally. I thoroughly enjoyed it and would recommend to anyone with a keen interest in baking, who is skilled in the area or not at all like myself. I have come away with skills I can use to make lots of things and I know my friends enjoyed eating the treats I made. I was very proud to finally be the one to provide the cake and it certainly didn't disappoint! "

Simply email Miss Sue Flay at cake@secludedteaparty.com 
for more information or to book/buy 
gift vouchers for private Baking Lessons now. 

  I look forward to baking with you very soon!


You can Read about the other Test Students at the bottom 
of this blog post here.  
 

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