buttercream | Contemporary Cake Designs

Xavier Proves Bee Wrong!

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That’s right; a few months back Xavier got an idea into his head that he could make vanilla essence from scratch– an ingredient that we use a lot in our products – most notably in his infamous butter cream.

Anyway, when we were in the kitchen one morning I said “don’t be stupid we can buy some vanilla essence in” and Xavier, well, being Xavier did what he normally does and completely ignored me and made it anyway! A few months later (as we had to wait for the syrup to infuse with the vanilla) and a jar of beautifully scented vanilla essence arrived; Xavier had proved me wrong and I was very impressed!

Homegrown and straight from the jar

Homegrown and straight from the jar!

Today the ingredient is a mainstay in our kitchen cupboards and we’re using our home grown vanilla essence now more than ever in our products.

Xavier is a bit of a maverick in the kitchen to say the least and he only wishes he could have more free time to innovate new products because he loves trying to come up with new creations. It goes to say Xavier deserves a round of applause for his majestic work and we can now be proud of yet another product being made completely from scratch in our kitchen.

Mille-Feuille Series: How to make Buttercream

By | Contemporary Cake Designs, Top Tips, Video Tour | One Comment

The great thing about Mille-Feuille is that it allows for a variety of topping. Traditionally the French dessert is covered with a layer of fondant or a dusting of icing sugar but if you’re feeling a little creative you can decorate it with whatever takes your fancy, just think about the flavours and textures! For us, it’s all about Xavier’s famous buttercream which is made from the following ingredients:

9 egg yolks

1kg butter

500g caster sugar

160g water

If you would like to learn how to make Xavier’s watch the video below. Buttercream is used for all sorts of desserts, cakes and pastries so this recipe isn’t just a one trick pony!

Here are our top five tips to make a gorgeous butter cream filling:

  1. Cook the sugar to the correct temperature
  2. Make sure you don’t cook the egg when pouring sugar into it
  3. Create an emulsion
  4. Make sure mixture is cool enough before adding the butter
  5. Make sure you don’t add the butter to quick

Mille-Feuille Series: How to create a Mille-Feuille

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The finished article

The finished article

Recently we’ve been busy in the kitchen whisking up some fantastic treats ready for everyone to enjoy. Why we hear you ask? Well after 20 years in the trade we’ve learnt a thing or two along the way and thought it was about time we passed our knowledge onto the aspiring bakers/pastry chefs of this world. That’s why we are releasing not one, but three ‘How to’ videos as part of the re-launch of our YouTube channel this week.

Our first demonstration is based around a French classic, the Mille-Feuille, or as us Brits like to call it – custard slice. Mille-Feuille is a three layered pastry based deserts that’s as far from your classic English pud as you can get but adds a real touch of class to your dessert palate.

With layers of light, golden pastry, creamy vanilla custard and home-made strawberry jam this Mille-Feuille makes for a scrumptious dinner dessert or afternoon tea delight. So without further ado our very own experienced pastry chef Xavier Pelloux is on hand to guide you through how to make this delicate French dessert.