This is a ‘real time’ post…today I won the ‘free from’ home home baker category in the National Cupcake Championships! This was my first time entering any kind of baking competition, never mind such a major one. I’m still pinching myself.
Remember way back at the beginning of all this cake stuff, I made some grown up banoffee cupcakes? And do you remember me telling you that they were exceptionally good? Apparently, I didn’t lie!
I entered my original roast banana cupcake recipe, with dulce de leche and dark chocolate buttercream on top, as before. However, this time I used Italian meringue buttercream rather than American, thus making it 1000x better than the prototype. I then dressed them in fine jackets and renamed them ‘Banoffee After Dark’.
Big Sis and Medieval came with me to the competition final, which is held within the Birmingham Cake International show. We had to get up at the crack of dawn to be there for 9.30am in order to submit my entry. Announcement of winners wasn’t until gone 3pm. Having such a strung out waiting period could have been pretty unpleasant; however, the brilliant company and the wonders of Cake International (exhibits, stands and demonstrations) were the perfect distractions.
When I entered the competition I did it for the experience and to challenge myself. I honestly had no expectation of winning, and only the vaguest entertainment of a hope that I might get a Highly Commended. In fact, so convinced was I that I wouldn’t win, when my name was announced I experienced some kind of processing delay and just carried on sitting there 😀
My brain finally caught up with my ears and I leapt to my feet, grinning like an idiot (I’m still grinning like an idiot). I received my trophy from the fantastic Mich Turner of Little Venice Cake Company. I was so thrilled I even managed to (mostly) override my normal discomfort and dislike of those ‘thrust into the limelight; everyone’s looking at me’ situations and actually enjoy being the centre of attention in this way. It was superb fun and very exciting!
Big Sis and Medieval were too busy clapping to take any pictures – they have their priorities right 😉 So, this is a picture of Mich Turner (who, by the way, has really lovely skin – which is definitely a weird thing to have noticed, but there you go….)
I’m exhausted now, but what a truly incredible day – I wouldn’t change a second of it!