Saturday, March 21, 2009

Farewell to Craig with Beer & Walnut Cake; Some Little Cupcakes


On Friday, it was my colleague and friend Craig's last day with the company after 8 years. He is going on to a fantastic new role as a project manager with a charity organisation, so that he can give something back to the wider community, and I wish him well. However, I will miss him.

Now, I was not at all sure what sort of cake Craig might like for his farewell, but I know that, like most Australian blokes, he drinks beer. Accordingly, I searched the Net for beer cake recipes for which I had all of the ingredients. I didn't want to make a Guinness or stout cake, as I had been there, done that, and I had ordinary lager. I eventually settled for a beer, pecan and date cake recipe from the ABC website (that's the Australian Broadcasting Commission in the Antipodes ;)).


Here is the resulting cake:


I didn't use dates ('cause I didn't have any), substituted walnuts for pecans, used white sugar instead of brown, and used Crown lager (which has been living in my fridge since before Christmas). I frosted the cake with a simple icing made of beer and icing sugar, and used some Mike and Ike lollies that I received from Nikki in the last round of Blogging by Mail to decorate the top of the cake.

This recipe produced a rather handsome cake, but I have no idea if it tasted good, because I was not there. I am on secondment on Fridays, so I had to run this cake into my usual workplace at 7am (a bit like Santa) before going on to my secondment job. Craig very kindly sent me an email to say that it did taste good, so you and I will have to believe him.

This cake was nearly never made, as I didn't get home until 10.30pm on Thursday night after dinner with friends, and by the end of the week, I am kind of over everything. Accordingly, starting a cake from scratch late at night was not particularly appealing. However, I bucked up and did it anyway, and was glad that I did.

On Thursday, my friend Loretta and I went to Little Cupcakes in Degraves Street, Melbourne. These cupcakes are not the best or the prettiest that I have ever had, but they are certainly nice enough, and reign as the closest cupcake destination to my secondment job.

Here is Loretta modelling our cupcakes:





We bought two minis each - a cookies and cream each, and I got a lemon mini while Loretta got a white chocolate mini (the one at the back with the Tiny Teddy on top). The cookies and cream cupcake was the stand out for me - I found the lemon one slightly "meh". And of course, none of them challenged Cupcakes to Go.


Stay tuned for my next culinary adventure ...

17 comments:

Happy cook said...

Beautiful cake and goodluck to craig.

Sara said...

That's a great looking cake! The icing sounds really unique with the beer in it.

Maryann said...

I want to work with you! Your mates are so lucky :)

The Blonde Duck said...

Craig is one lucky fellow! And those cupcakes look divine...When I was little (before we found out I was allergic to chocolate), I loved cookies and cream ice cream...

Psychgrad said...

Very nice of your to make a cake for Craig and to incorporate his love of beer too. I've never heard of icing made of beer and icing sugar. Sounds interesting.

Arfi Binsted said...

Hey, good luck Craig!! Aren't you lucky to have such a wonderful lady bake this cake for you :)

Lorraine @NotQuiteNigella said...

Good on you for perservering-baking late at night is something I rarely do. It looks lovely and I'm very curious about the icing. It would really show the beer flavour through I suppose? :)

Cakelaw said...

Thanks Happy Cook.

Thanks Sara - I tasted the spoon once I had finished, and it tasted like sugary beer!

Hi Maryann, would love to work with you too - I'm counting on that coffee and cookies ritual!

Oh no Duckie - I didn't realise that you were allergic to chocolate!

Hi Psychgrad, lacking any other inspiration for the frosting, I hope this worked!

LOL Arfi ...

Hi Lorriane, my brief dabble in the icing tasted beery - though I am not sure that it woould have been very prevalent in the cake ...

A_and_N said...

Gosh, where do you work?

Ivy said...

I've said it many times, you do have some lucky colleagues. I am sure Craig enjoyed his cake.

The Caked Crusader said...

Great cake - definitely "one for the boys"! I love the use of jellybeans as decoration too.

Y said...

Beer cake with beer icing! How cool is that. Wish you could've saved me a slice :)

Emily said...

Cute cake. And cute cupcakes! I bet they were both scrumptious.

Goodbye Craig. The people in your office are dropping like flies. I'm going to have to talk to your management.

Teanna said...

What a creative cake! I'll believe Craig that it tasted great!

adele said...

Beer cake! I like this idea. :)

Tammy said...

Dont jellybeans make the most fantastic cake decorations!

Cakelaw said...

LOL A&N - about to move, so stay tuned ...

Awww, thanks Ivy :)

Hi Crusader, they are bright, colourful and quick - gotta love lollies to decorate a cake!

LOL Y - you are not so far away, so coulda mailed it to you ;)

Thanks Em. I know, it is rather chronic this month - and I am going too!

Thanks Teanna - creativity is not my strong point, but I try to think about what the cake recipient would like.

Absolutely Adele! A drink you can eat - what could be better?

Tammy, agreed - they are simple and effective.