Thursday 31 December 2015

2015: Year in Review

For the past couple of years I've written new year's resolution blog posts but then not really looked at them again, so I've ended up ticking a few things off the list but not many. I thought that this year instead I would look back over some of my favourite recipes and blog posts from 2015. If you didn't see these first time around I'd encourage you to take a look!

As of the end of December, page views on my blog had reached more than 1.16 million. The most popular post ever on my blog is still my pigs in mud cake from 2013, followed by this strawberry and cream fraisier and thirdly jap cakes - which I am being contacted about by people from all over the country even three years after writing this post.

In terms of posts from 2015, here are some of my highlights:

This Konditor & Cook Curly Whirly cake was amazing - and is on the front cover of their cookery book. I also posted this Bertie Basset Liquorice Allsort cake which I made a few months previously for a family birthday.

In February I finally cooked a salmon in the dishwasher which I'd wanted to do for ages, I made this (fake) wedding cake on a cake decorating course, some chocolate hearts for Valentine's day. I also made a memory jar which I plan to open on this new year's eve; and took my fiancé to Cambridge for the first time for dinner at my old college. I hosted Alphabakes this month and the letter was V.

In March I learned how to make marshmallows from scratch, made this amazing floating malteser cake for comic relief - which won the work bake-off and has led to complete strangers knowing who I am because of it! I also launched a new blog challenge, Formula 1 Foods, which never had many people take part but was fun for me to do.

April saw these gooey caramel filled chocolate brownies which I made for my then boyfriend's birthday (he's now my fiancé!) and threw him an Aston Martin themed party complete with car cake. I also made a very light and moist lemon cake for a work colleague's baby shower and various things for Easter including this carrot cake shaped like a carrot! I hosted Alphabakes this month and the letter was B.

In May I took part in a Food n Flix challenge to make something inspired by the movie The Goonies, and my own creation of these Babe Ruth cupcakes were some of the best I have ever eaten. I also made doughnuts for the first time.

In June I finally got a chance to use my ice cream van cupcake stand for these cupcakes; I made this shirt and tie cake for Father's Day and a Louis Vuitton handbag cake which I thought looked a lot like the real thing. I hosted Alphabakes this month and the letter was O.

In July I discovered you can cook pizza on the BBQ, got into spiralizing, celebrated summer with this Pimms cream cake and wrote a long step-by-step blog post on how to make a wired sugar flower.

August stood out because I got engaged! I also threw a strawberry-themed baby shower for a friend, went to a BBQ event with Quorn, I discovered that you can make a vegan meringue and cream without using eggs or dairy; Ros from the More Than Occasional Baker came across this great trick to make a watermelon cocktail; I  also made this family photo word collage which has pride of place in my living room. I hosted Alphabakes this month and the letter was Z.

I love Singapore Sling cocktails and in September recreated the flavours of the drink in cake form! I made a beautiful sugarpaste rose in a cake decorating class and this Sonic the hedgehog bas-relief; I also shared several recipes and ideas from an Italian themed buffet I did earlier in the year and showed my readers the birthday cake that my sister made for me (also much earlier in the year!).

Halloween gave me lots of baking opportunities in October including this haunted gingerbread house and toffee apple cupcakes, while I did some crafting and made my mum and mother-in-law-to-be these decorated notebooks for wedding planning notes. I used some mini Reese's Pieces I got in America to make this amazing chocolate peanut butter bundt, and best of all - easily my baking highlight of the year -I made the wedding cake for my good friend Ros from The More Than Occasional Baker. I finally got around to posting another wedding cake on my blog - actually a fake cake but I did the decoration myself in a cake decorating course earlier in the year. I also spotted the ultimate cheese toastie, wrapped in bacon, on the internet and had a go at making it myself - it's definitely more of an occasional treat and in fact I haven't made it again but it was very good! I hosted Alphabakes this month and the letter was W.

November's blog posts included this Ferrari Formula 1 birthday cake I made for my dad, French toast stuffed with cream cheese inspired by a breakfast I had on holiday in America, and I created a new twist on a Christmas pudding for Waitrose, with a melting caramel middle and salted caramel sauce.

And finally December saw a lot of Christmas baking: this chocolate fondue cake was inspired by The Pink Whisk, and is a great dessert for a party; I made a chocolate gingerbread house, some chocolate Christmas tree cakes filled with homemade mincemeat; a chocolate igloo cake complete with polar bear, and these chocolate santa lollies. It sounds like I ate nothing but chocolate in December but I assure you that wasn't the case - I didn't even try any of the igloo cake myself and everything else was made for sharing! I also hosted the Alphabakes challenge this month and the letter was N.

So that just leaves me to wish all of you a happy new year; thanks for reading, commenting and taking part in the Alphabakes and Formula 1 Foods blog challenges. I wonder what next year will bring?


  1. The igloo is the best one i have seen yet....

  2. Well, the ones from November look great. I would definitely check them out.

  3. I love all the pictures. Best I've ever seen.


Thank you for your comment, all feedback is appreciated - even the negative! However due to a lot of spam comments on this blog I have had to turn on captcha. If you have problems leaving a comment please email me at