Hip Hip Hooray!.
Celebrate Jetstar’s sixth birthday this month with some of Australia’s best birthday cakes
WORDS ROBERTA MUIR
Make them face the icing on the cake with Michel’s Patisserie birthday cakes featuring an edible photo of the birthday girl or boy. Michel’s will scan your photo of the guest of honour onto icing sheets with edible ink to top caramel or chocolate mud cakes, Black Forest, chocolate or strawberry gateaux, or chocolate or vanilla sponges. They’re a sure-fire hit with the kids. AU$37.90 at stores across Australia, www.michels.com.au.
Gelatissimo’s gelato cakes are handmade by combining their delicious gelato or sorbet with vanilla or chocolate sponge cake and smooth chocolate ganache, then topping with gorgeous little “bambino cones”. Choose from chocolate and hazelnut, Ferrero Rocher and tiramisu, or lighter options like sorbet cake made with raspberry and mango sorbet on a vanilla sponge base. From AU$45, at all stores in Sydney, www.gelatissimo.com.au.
Planet Cake, in Sydney’s bohemian Balmain, are couture cake specialists, having produced birthday cakes for celebrities including Rihanna, Celine Dion, Megan Gale and the 50th birthday celebrations for the National Institute of Dramatic Art (NIDA). Choose from designs like Tiffany boxes, giant chocolate bars and tool belts, or enquire about a bespoke cake designed especially for you. From AU$250. 106 Beattie St, Balmain, tel: +61 (2) 9810 3843.
Brisbane’s MySweetopia is cupcake paradise, with cakes baked from quality ingredients such as fresh fruit and berries, and decorated in a range of themes including ribbon roses, spring blossoms and the cutest little teddies. They’re also available gluten-free and can be stacked onto cupcake stands to create a stunning centrepiece for special occasions. From AU$3.50. Shop S08 Grey St, South Bank, tel: +61 (7) 3844 3732.
South American pastry chef Maria Lantelme (previously of Oyster Little Bourke) started Lollipop Cakes & Cookies to share her passion for baking and cake decorating with others. Her gorgeous cakes and cookies are brought to life with vibrant colours and fun themes that bring out the kid in everyone. Flavours include dark or white chocolate mud cake, banana and walnut, and vanilla and toffee. From AU$150. Rear of 734 Glenferrie Rd, Hawthorn, tel: +61 (0) 422 248 083.
Husband and wife team Alex and Angela Perry started The Cupcake Bakery from home, selling at weekend markets, festivals and special events, before opening stores in Sydney and Melbourne. Most popular by far is the Red Velvet, a traditional light chocolate cake from the southern states of the USA, coloured red, topped with rich cream cheese icing and a single heart. Available in a range of sizes from cupcake (AU$2) up to maxi (AU$55, which serves 20). In Melbourne: 495 Collins St and Melbourne Central, La Trobe St; in Sydney: Lower Ground floor QVB and 320B George St; tel: +61 (2) 9264 3130.
Wendy’s ice cream cakes are made-to-order in popular flavours including Boysenberry Swirl, Choc-honeycomb Smash, and Triple Choc Deluxe, in a range of designs suitable for everything from kids’ parties to a cake for serious sports fans. Try their ice cream cupcakes too — chocolate cups filled with a scoop of ice cream and syrup, topped with flavoured whipped cream. Cupcakes from AU$4.50, cakes from AU$39.95, at all Wendy’s outlets across Australia, www.wendys.com.au.
Bake It Good
British pastry chef Darren Purchese worked in some of Europe’s most prestigious kitchens as well as Melbourne’s Vue de Monde and The Press Club, and Sydney’s Guillaume at Bennelong. He then started Burch & Purchese Sweet Studio with fellow Brit, Ian Burch. The two now specialise in exquisite handmade chocolate work, cutting-edge plated desserts, celebration cakes, and delicious preserves and spreads. Their first store will open in Melbourne later this year.
Here are Purchese’s top baking tips:
• Always read the recipe from start to finish before attempting something new.
• Be meticulous in weighing ingredients, as baking is a precise science.
• Always pre-heat the oven and have dry goods, eggs and butter at room temperature.
• Make sure bowls are spotlessly clean before beating egg whites.
• Resist the temptation to keep opening the oven door once your creation is inside, as sudden drops in temperature can cause a sponge to fall or a soufflé to fail.
• Enjoy yourself and remember the more love you put into cooking, the more delicious the result.