You know i love to partner with other small local businesses... Well, Here's what I've been cooking up over the festive break!
Sweetly Special Breakfasts is a small Bristol business, run by a lovely lady called Lilly. She delivers delicious breakfasts to people all over the city, focussing heavily on sweet treats to start special days off with a good feeding. That's where I come in!
Lilly firmly believes (and I agree!) that special days like Mothering Sunday or birthdays should be memorable from start to finish. Hampers from Sweetly start the day off perfectly, and keep you going throughout the day, enough goodies for lunch, elevenses, afternoon tea, supper... The delivery includes fresh flowers, balloons, tea and coffee, a personal card and of course, cakes. And if you're vegan, your home baked cake comes from me at 280 Bakes! If you're ordering for a child, the package also includes a party bag.
The main product I am helping Lilly (see her sunny face below) with is the Perfect Gift Breakfast - see above to the left - and is now available!
Check out Sweetly on Facebook and find them also on Instagram. Marballoons, a balloon artist in Bristol, also work with Sweetly, so it's a real team effort!
Support local business and why not shop with Sweetly next time it's a special day in your household - it'll be like sending a hug to your favourite person!
Fab Fudge are probably my favourite Bristol business of mine, and not just because they gave me their Christmas fudge to review!
Imaginative. Delicious. Dairy-free.
Those are the three words I would use to describe what comes out of the kitchens of Fab Fudge. You can find out more about Fab Fudge on a blog I wrote back in 2017, but what you need to know is right here: Their (plastic-free!) fudge is UNBEATABLE.
The company's founder, Jill, started her business in 2016, two months or so behind me, and we met at a local networking event. Since then, we've been working together every so often to help each other out, and keeping each other in sweet treats!
Jill and her team have released their Christmas selection for 2020, and I was lucky enough to taste the first batches off the shelf.
At the time of writing, Gingerbread fudge wasn't available on Fab Fudge's online store, but it's coming - and you'll be glad it did! I am a late convert to ginger flavoured things, but I'm really into it now. My firey gingerbread is YUMMY! So when Jill said she had a ginger delight up her sleeve, I jumped on it! Smooth, melt-in-the-mouth, and (like all Fab Fudge) 100% vegan. The ginger kick is subtle, but the creamy taste really won me over.
Christmas cake fudge
Christmas cake may be my favourite cake, and the fudge version didn't disappoint. I love the triple layer fudge design - new for 2020. Rich, fully-festive, and it looks just like a mini slice with actual marzipan and icing! Christmas Cake fudge is my new favourite (sorry apricot fudge!).
If you're looking for the perfect gift, I can only say, GO FAB FUDGE!! Even Theo Paphitis is a fan - you simple have to try something new with Fab Fudge's dairy-free fudge.
Thanks Jill, and I hope it's not too early to wish you and yours a very merry and profitable Christmas.
-- A personal blog today, and I'm attaching a trigger warning right here. --
We've had a lot of great news lately in our family - three of us getting new jobs, El Husbandio's residence being confirmed, our house move progressing... But a tragic event knocked me a bit sideways last week: a very good friend of mine's partner passed away unexpectedly.
Cake isn't the answer to everything, but baking for her, my customers, and my other friends and family managed to take my my mind off such horrible circumstances for a short while.
There's something cathartic about mixing, baking and decorating a cake; I've always baked when I feel sad or low. It helps me stay productive, it's a great way to find a 'flow' state of mind (a recognised tactic in mental health - Very Well Mind explains it better than I can), and I can share the cake with friends and family. I remember saying to my housemate several years ago, when a boyfriend had broken up with me, that I was going to bake my way through the shock and pain. And since it's World Mental Health Day today, I thought it was time I posted about my therapeutic kitchen fun.
Distraction tactics are very useful sometimes, and my lil' business certainly provides that, for which I am grateful. So if you need some cake, don't be shy, drop me a line, I need to keep busy!
Does anyone else bake to keep the dark away?
P.S. No part of me is using a tragic event to capitalise on here, that would never be my intention. I'm simply sharing how important baking is to me and how it's helped my mental wellbeing. I'm a supporter of mental health awareness - I guess you may be sick of me talking about it if you know me!
A, you've left broken hearts behind you in wonderfully caring and loving people. You'll be missed.
We'll be at a local event this week, serving hotdogs and home baked cake!
Missed out on trying a sample from the Foodies Festival? We've posted the recipe for the vegan chocolate Guinness cake on our blog so you can try it yourself. And if you don't fancy baking, just contact us to order one!
Big thanks to Charlotte White at Restoration Cake and the Foodies Festival team for inviting us along. See you again, we hope!
The Team @ 280 Bakes
Our biggest corporate cake yet was baked this week for the Environment Agency's flood conference.
The Agency had sold it's 100th boat, which gave them a fabulous reason to celebrate.
The cake was cut by the Chef Executive of the Environment Agency Sir James Bevan, the Director of Flood and Coastal Risk Management John Curtin, and Louise.
Feedback on the cake, a chocolate sponge decorated in an eye-catching lime green to mimic a real ARC-boat, came... flooding in, post event on our Twitter.
Thank you to the Environment Agency and in particular, Nick Everard, for the opportunity to bake for the occasion. We're more flood aware than we were before, that's for sure, and a small part of the flood family.
The Team @ 280 Bakes
The team will be out and about this season with our cakes - come and find us at the following local events!
Subject to change, but we'll be there if we most possibly can.
We do take pre-orders, if you'd like anything in particular - save yourself delivery and enjoy the community event at the same time!
The Team @ 280 Bakes
Our Louise has just come back from Costa Rica, bearing photos of cakes from the Latine American country. No tasters, but the photos look awesome!
A true baker snaps photos of cake while she's on holiday...
The white cake to the left was made in a cake shop for another birthday party we went to on our short break. It's 'very Costa Rican' (in my opinion) because of the creamy style icing they use. Fondant doesn't do so well in the heat! This kind of cake is kept in a fridge, unlike our traditional birthday cakes in the UK. It's decorated with local Passion Fruit, and the sponge is a sweet, vanilla cake. Doesn't it look delicious?
Pictured below the Passion Fruit cake is what Costa Ricans call 'Pudding', a type of bread pudding. It's found in cafes all over the country, and is perfect for cake lovers who like something moist and spiced. Bake your own using our recipe!
Finally, the cake to the left is, believe it or not, a Victoria Sponge I attempted to make with local ingredients: Guava Jam and Caramel Sugar. It came out quite different, (especially with the absence of a sandwich style tin and very little icing sugar!) but tasted fab!
Look out for more cakes from abroad, whenever one of our bakers goes on holiday. You can follow our 'cake holidays' on #280ontour on Twitter.
Thanks for reading,
Louise & Team.
Welcome to the 280 Bakes blog! Most posts are by myself, Louise, but if you fancy guest blogging, give me a shout!
280 On Tour
Celebrate With Us
Friends Of 280 Bakes
I'm A Mum
Just For Fun
Low Sugar Cakes
Team 280 Bakes
The Great British Bake Off
Work For Us
Zero Sugar Cakes