Wednesday, 1 November 2017

Dithering

Where shall I start today?
I have ideas for posts about cake (of course), about rag rugs, social media, family... I could go on. But the chance of actually getting around to all of them as individual posts is pretty remote so I bring you a jumble of my past week instead. Shall we start with cake?


I dithered and dallied with the technical bake from the Bake Off semi final... could I really be bothered with all those ingredients, all those different steps, all that time? But in the end I caved in and made Les Miserables. They were a complete faff from start to end. So many pans, so much mess and I still can't make a proper Swiss buttercream, I didn't temper my chocolate and I certainly wasn't going to cut raspberries in half. Why would you? I guess they looked okayish, although more like sandwiches than cake, but I thought they were overly sweet and sickly and most of them ended up being binned... the ones that Stewart didn't manage to eat that is.


Last night I went to watch the final of the Bake Off with other members of the Cambridge Clandestine Cake Club at a rather nice establishment called the Grain and Hop Store. We had to bring along our signature bake so I brought along a gluten free chocolate and almond cake. It wasn't this particular one as it was too dark to photograph the one I made, but it was pretty much like this minus the strawberries. All the cake that was brought along was delicious... not a Miserable in sight! I may have had several portions of cake for my dinner! I managed not to hear the Bake Off winner in advance, as leaked by Prue Leith on Twitter yesterday, but pretty much guessed it would be Sophie. Now I'm dithering about whether to apply for next year?


I have also been busy trying to get one of my Textile Art newsletters out. Having dithered for ages about whether to send one, I had one all ready to go last Friday and then my laptop died. I had wanted to promote my rag rug wreath course that I'll be teaching at Missenden in a couple of weeks. But the newsletter didn't go and the course was cancelled... that was until I posted a photo of a second wreath in a different colourway on social media and got several enquiries about the course... it seems that blue and silver was a popular choice!  And so it is now back on again because the lovely people at Missenden School of Creative Arts have decided to take a gamble and run the course even if we don't get enough people. Fingers crossed that we do to make the gamble pay off!

 

I always dither when I send out newsletters mostly because without fail within an hour or so of sending it I get at least half a dozen people unsubscribe. It is swings and roundabouts because I pick up at least as many new subscribers over the weeks between sending them out but it still fills me with doubts... have I said something wrong, am I boring, do people just hate my work? In my heart I know it is nonsense because I can't please everyone all of the time but it doesn't stop me wanting to! Anyway my laptop was fixed and the newsletter went out, I have had seven people unsubsrcibe (only one of whom I actual know... that bugs me!) but I've also had interest in a course, two orders of my DVD (which is on sale at only £5 + pp) and an absolutely lovely email from a lady called Barbara who reads this blog... Hello Barbara! So it was definitely worth sending it and should you want to receive the occasional newsletter from me too, you can subscribe via the button on the sidebar... as long as you promise not to unsubscribe straight away!

20 comments:

  1. 'Shall we start with cake?' is one of my very favourite phrases. The chocolate cake looks amazing, and I do love almond cakes very much. I'm glad your course is going ahead, the wreaths are lovely. Re next year's Bake Off, oh yes, it would be fun to apply wouldn't it? If you fancy it, go for it. Who knows where it will lead. CJ xx

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  2. I've subscribed (and promise not to unsubscribe!). I first found your blog through your textile work so would love to receive your newsletter. The chocolate cake looks amazing and I say go for it and apply for next year. Good luck with the course - I'm sure those lucky enough to attend will have a wonderful time.

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  3. I've subscribed (I don't why I hadn't already) and I promise not to unsubscribe.
    I would love to see you in next years Bake Off, it would certainly make it more interesting for me, it didn't have the same draw for me this year unfortunately.

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  4. I don’t think I would have watched the final at all with all that delicious cake around. I will definitely be watching if you are on next years and willing you to win. B x

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    1. The tv was very much in the background as we ate cake and talked about cake! I have applied in the past but didn't even get a reply so I don't hold out too much hope!

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  5. I am sorry you spent a lot of time on a cake that you didn't like to eat. I am please to hear that your wreath workshop is going ahead. And yes, please, put in your application for the bake-off! You'd be pure brilliant. xx

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  6. How disappointing to have put all that effort in and not enjoy the result, however good it looked. If you do get to take part next year I shall be keeping everything crossed for you. Love the wreaths and that chocolate cake with the beautiful feather icing. You may not be able to please everyone (none of us can do that) but you certainly bring pleasure to the great majority.

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  7. Using too many pans gets too thumbs down from me. Who wants to spend more time washing up than actually eating (or tossing!) the actual cake. I love the choco spider webby looking cake! The blue wreath really does sparkle. I always like blue and white for Christmas decorating as it always looks crisp and new. Glad your class was put back on. You should definitely apply for the bake off. You'd be in it to the very end!
    Wendy

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  8. I think you should definitely apply! And the wreath looks very pretty.

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  9. Yes, do enter Bake Off next year. They don't know what they're missing! I'm glad your wreath workshop is going ahead. The blue has a lovely feel for winter and doesn't even have to be restricted to Christmas.

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  10. Nah, you're not getting rid of me! Good luck with the Rag Rug workshop.
    And I can't believe you threw cake out. Is it too late to rummage through your bins?

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  11. The chocolate and almond cake looks amazing and you should definately apply for Bake Off next year. I find green cake a bit off putting for some reason. Green food should be healthy green veggies or avocado, yummy, or is that just me being odd? Love the wreaths - in both colours!

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  12. You simply must apply. I'm sure even the auditions would be an experience worth having. And if you got through I would definitely start watching again.

    Can't help thinking there's a life lesson in your comment about not cutting raspberries in half. You are so right.

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    1. That is funny... it was the cutting the raspberries in half that seemed to annoy me more than all the dirty pans and endless processes!

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  13. Definitely go for bake off. That choccy cake looks delicious! X

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  14. Why are you hesitating? You'd be brilliant. Go for it, please?! Catriona

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  15. Cakes look amazing! You should be very proud and good for you teaching and sending out newsletters you are braver than me. Super stuff so get on and do it. x

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  16. Ooooh, the thought of seeing you on the Bake-Off next year (well, in two years haha) is very exciting -- Do It!!!

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  17. I unsubscribe from emails I was defaulted into. Especially if I see the same content on Facebook - one source is enough for me. Perhaps your unsubscribers are tidying up a duplicate?
    So long as you get new subscribers coming in ... and the total climbs steadily.

    What is the layer in the cake which looks distinctly like avocado??

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