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the cake nest

Support Cake for CAFT! #CharityTuesday

Posted on 3rd April 2012 in #charitytuesday/ cake/ Childrens Adventure Farm/ the cake nest/ Whitehaven

I am delighted to hand my #CharityTuesday page over to @C2C_Run Abi (from @TheCakeNest) today. She is going to tell you about the incredible charity run that she is doing to raise much-needed money for @AdventureFarm. I know that there is no way I could even contemplate running 180 miles so it is deep respect and admiration that I added my donation and with much pride that I’m sharing her story. In her own words, over to Abi:

I will cover the breadth of the country at Easter, running 180 miles coast-to-coast between Tynemouth and Whitehaven on my own, with just my husband Stephen for support and our dog, Crackers.


Abi hopes that Crackers will run in the same direction as her one day!

I am a mother-of-two and hope the two-week challenge, hot-footing the famous Reivers Coast to Coast cycle route, will raise over £2,500 for The Children’s Adventure Farm, which provides holidays and activities for terminally ill, chronically sick, disabled and disadvantaged children from all over the North West. They are an amazing charity that rely solely on donations, providing special holidays to special children.

My inspiration for the challenge has come from Eddie Izzard, who in 2009 completed 43 marathons in 51 days for Sport Relief, despite no prior history of long-distance running. I am not an athlete, up until 3 years ago I’d never run for more than a bus!

I just thought he was amazing, the way he kept going. I do think there’s going to be a point in my challenge when I’m tired and don’t want to get up. But I have made a commitment to the charity, and it is also something that I want to do for myself as well. In January I completed my first marathon as a “mini-event” in the lead up to this. It was the hardest thing I’ve ever done but the feeling at the end is indescribable. I felt like I could do anything – except walk the following day!

I set off on Saturday so please join me with your support on twitter (@c2c_run) and facebook and if you have a few pennies to spare…. Please donate here.

Jenny from CAFT, Crackers the dog, Abi and Linda Arkey – the Mayor of North Tyneside

The Great Brownie Bake Off! #GBBOchoc

Posted on 17th September 2010 in 9 October 2010/ brownies/ chocolate cake/ GBBO/ the cake nest

*PLEASE NOTE – THE TIME OF THIS EVENT HAS BEEN CHANGED TO 12noon-6pm*

What are you doing on October the 9th?

Do you have a brownie recipe that friends and family drool over and repeatedly ask you to bake?

Are you a home cook who has a passion for chocolate loveliness?

Do you think it’s time the world knew how great your brownies are?

Would you like YOUR recipe to be added to the fabulous ‘a piece of cake‘ range from The Cake Nest?

OR maybe you just like eating brownies?

If you answered YES to any of the above then you need to read on!

The Chocolate Consultancy has announced the first edition of the Great Brownie Bake Off; inviting the UK’s home bakers and non-professional cooks to compete in the search for the perfect brownie.

Taking place on Saturday October 9, 2010 at Old Street cycle café, Look Mum No Hands, the event will be a celebration of the most popular patisserie in the UK.  A panel of brownie-experts will decide what makes the perfect brownie; Derbyshire cake company, The Cake Nest, will incorporate the winner’s recipe into their A Piece of Cake range, using it exclusively as their brownie recipe. The winner will also receive a six-month supply of Divine chocolate.

As well as the judging, The Great Brownie Bake Off will also be celebrating all things baking by hosting demonstrations through out the day, including an appearance from Edd Kimber, contestant on BBC2’s The Great British Bake Off and writer of fantastic food blog, www.he-eats.com, as well a guided fine chocolate tasting from Louise Thomas of The Chocolate Consultancy Ltd.

The Great Brownie Bake Off was inspired by an on-going collaboration with West Country bakers, Hobbs House Bakery, in search of creating the perfect brownie and as a step further in their search, the team has decided to turn to the UK’s home bakers for help.

The Great Brownie Bake Off will be a wonderful opportunity to learn what the British public conceives the perfect brownie to be.  Is it fudgy and moist, should it have a crackling crust? Should it be large enough to pick up with both hands, or should these be dainty bites of indulgence?  Should it include nuts and fruits or should it be made with milk, white or dark chocolate?  What makes the perfect brownie and how do we make it?

The judging panel includes Founder of The Cake Nest, Abigail Phillips, Square Mile’s Award-winning Barista, James Hoffmann, Award-winning London chocolatier, Paul A. Young, Hungry Cyclist, Tom Kevill-Davies, chocolate experts, Lee McCoy and Jennifer Earle, also of Chocolate Ecstasy Tours, Jane Manson, Founder of Virtuous Bread, Food Bloggers, Kavita Favelle and Mathilde Delville and Fred Ponnavoy, Head Chef at Gü Chocolate Puds.

Home bakers and non-professionals have until October 2, 2010 to submit their entry; please contact Louise Thomas for further information.  Profits raised at the event from entry fees shall be donated to cycle charity, Wheels for Wellbeing.  Baking enthusiasts will also have the opportunity to sell their home baked goods on the day, with 10% of the profits to be donated to this charity.

THE GREAT BROWNIE BAKE OFF

DATE:             Saturday October 9, 2010

TIME:              12:00 – 18:00

ADDRESS:     Look Mum No Hands, 49 Old Street, London, EC1V 9HX

TUBE:             Old Street (Northern Line)

PRICE:            £1.70, including re-entry.  £1 of which to be donated to Wheels for Wellbeing

CONTACT: Louise Thomas

TELEPHONE: +44 (0) 7729 287198

TWITTER:       @TChocolateC / #GBBOchoc

EMAIL:            louise@thechocolateconsultancy.com

WEBSITE:       http://www.thechocolateconsultantblog.info/

About The Chocolate Consultancy Ltd

Ex-pastry chef, Louise Thomas, created The Chocolate Consultancy to raise awareness of the world of fine chocolate.  Through speciality chocolate events and freelance consultancy for the retail, hospitality and chocolate industries, Louise Thomas aims to bring the best, fine-flavoured chocolate to the consumer and create an understanding of this beautiful product and how we can use it to enhance the flavour of our baking and cooking.

www.thechocolateconsultantblog.info

www.thechocolateconsultancy.com

About The Cake Nest

The Cake Nest is a small, family-run business based in High Peak, Derbyshire. The founder, Abigail Philips, gave up her previous employment as a bank manager to be a stay-at-home mother for her two children. Following her love for making cakes for friends and family, she decided to officially launch The Cake Nest in 2009 to create a cake for every celebration.  Since then The Cake Nest has also launched their A Piece of Cake range, which enables customers to have a fresh slice of cake delivered to their door across the UK.

The Cake Nest aims to keep things traditional only using free-range eggs, inspired by their own chickens, with no added preservatives. Their cakes can be made to customer’s specific requirements to avoid any allergy issue and specialises in wheat-free.

www.thecakenest.co.uk

About Fred Ponnavoy, Head Chef at Gü Chocolate Puds

Ponnavoy trained as a pastry chef in Burgundy before travelling across Europe to hone his skills.  He further developed his passion for chocolate and patisserie by studying at the prestigious culinary Parisian school, Lenôtre, before arriving in the UK.  Here he worked in patisserie for Stapleford Park Hotel, Leicestershire, and Alexander House, in West Sussex, before being offered Head Pâtissier at Westminster’s Bank Restaurant.  From here, Ponnavoy worked under reputable Italian chef, Giorgio Locatelli, in Ceconni’s in 2001 before joining Gü in 2003.

http://www.gupuds.com/

B is for… Business Ideas That Float Through My Mind

Posted on 16th September 2010 in business/ diets/ entrepreneur/ ideas/ procter & gamble/ rosemary conley/ slimming world/ weight watchers

People often say to me that I am ‘full of ideas’, sometimes they even mean it in a nice way 😉

So I thought I would share some of my creative suggestions with you – maybe someone with more cash and more inclination than me could make one of them work?! If so do let me know and obviously send me a huge cheque by way of thanks for the original idea….

One of my earlier ideas was sanitary towels that were different shapes to fit different knicker styles, but the market seems to have sussed that one out by itself now.

One that has been floating in my head for ages is that hair colours should also come in tester pots. So that rather than having to buy a whole pack to do a strand test, you could buy 3 or 4 tester pots so that you know you’ll be happy with the colour when you eventually do it. I would price these at 99p each Procter & Gamble #justsaying

There should be a sanitary pack for teenage girls, bit like the Bounty pack, which includes a range of sanitary items and advice. This could be a government initiative funded by advertising or a ‘for sale’ pack available from Boots, Tescos etc. It would take the embarrassment out of discussing it for families who don’t feel able to approach it directly (single dads possibly) and would provide the girl with choices and information that they may not otherwise get.

Similarly at age 16 there could be a contraception pack with samples and advice enclosed.

Why isn’t there a diet cafe? This would be easily franchise-able I would have thought. My idea is for a comfy, high street cafe which caters for those of us who are on a diet but would still like to meet our friends for lunch/dinner and be able to eat nice food. It would be so nice not to have to look through a menu and try and guess which of the meals would be least deadly to a diet. Meals could be arranged: Under 250 calories, Under 500 calories, Under 700 calories etc etc with WW points noted too.

Calorie currency. Either Weight Watchers, Rosemary Conley or Slimming World – come on one of you! This would be a range of tokens that have calorific values – so you simply start the day with the total number of calorie coins that you are allowed and then spend them as you go. Obviously with the aim being that you can easily see that if you eat the thing that costs half your currency for breakfast then you are in trouble!

An ageless play centre that caters for a wider age range. Once your children have grown out of soft play you have think about different places to take them – or if you have a big age gap it can cause problems if you have a toddler who loves soft play and a 10 year old who thinks it is lame! My idea is for a play centre that has a vast soft play, climbing area but also has a gaming area with gaming chairs and x-boxs, playstations etc. Plus a skate park area with expert skaters (ie local teenagers) employed to give tips on safety and tricks. Plus a wonderfully comfy seating area for mums and dads, with sinky sofas and possibly a Caffe Nero 😉 with an exclusive deal to supply @thecakenest‘s gorgeous cakes. Plus a darkened cave like area with bean bags where a film would be projected onto the walls. Plus table tennis tables. Plus free wi-fi. Plus a bank of iMacs. Etc Etc. And naturally it would be air-conditioned in the summer and properly heated in the winter.

I have other ideas too, but there’s no need to give them ALL away now is there :)

Do you have a head full of ideas like me? Can you share any of them – I’d love to hear.

Mmmmm Cake

Posted on 24th July 2010 in cake/ chocolate cake/ gifts/ the cake nest

CAKE

What is there not to love about cake?

Even the word is nice. It starts with a C, I like words that start with the letter C. It is one of those words that only has happy connotations – yes yes, I know if you are dieting then it becomes a tad taboo, but, that is because it is so nice.

Ooooh at this point I feel the need to say that this is NOT a sponsored post.

The reason I have pointed that out is because this post is about one specific cake maker. A very lovely lady called Abi who is @thecakenest and makes just the nicest cakes I have ever tasted. So much so that I felt moved to write this post. Good cake should not be kept secret!

What I love best about The Cake Nest is that you can join a cake club – you can sign up for a weekly or monthly slice of cake! Or, just order a one off. How fantabulous is that! They come lovingly packaged and Abi will happily add a personal note if you want her to – making this the perfect gift.

I have tried 2 different varieties of @thecakenest cake, I have tried a deliciously moist chocolate cake that has a hint of raspberry through the chocolate frosting – a very professional cake with deep, rich flavours.

I have tried the all chocolate cake – OMG yum doesn’t even come close!

I can see from the website that there are many other options – my only dilemma is what to try next? Think it is going to be the chilli chocolate cake – not sure that it could compete with the all chocolate cake but it sounds intriguing and just HAS to be tried!

WELL – are you ready? Feast your eyes on these!

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