Birthday Roses

by smartgirlssupper

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What seems like a million years ago I was invited by my friend Millie (it’s a LDN thing) to Cath Kidston’s birthday party. In reality too it was a long time ago and my lack of immediacy may go a long way to explaining my lack of invites to swanky events.

After being fed and watered on rose infused cocktails and little portions of British classics, like sausage and mash and fish pie, we were treated to a cake decorating class by Lili Vanilli. Having the hand equivalent of two left feet when it comes to fiddly icing and pretty cakes I was surprised at how easy it was to make my monstrosity of a cupcake look delicate with a camouflage of sugared flowers.

My sister and I recently missed a friends birthday and had some making up to do.

So here is my attempt at working some egg whites and sugar into a little protective jacket for my home grown roses, and I think it came out surprisingly well for my level of talent. It is easiest with flowers which have just a single row of petals.

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1 egg white

A few drops of cold water

Lots of caster sugar (I used 500g by the time I had enough presentable examples)

Plenty of the freshest flowers you can find

1 small paintbrush

1 drying rack

A handful of pegs!

Make sure the flowers are dry. Whisk the egg white with the water to break it up slightly. Pour the sugar onto a plate. Very carefully paint a thin layer of egg white onto every surface of the flower, not forgetting the backs of the petals. Sprinkle with sugar. Leave to dry in a warm place. I opted for pegging them upside down above our range cooker so that they kept an upright shape.

We made two large classic Victoria sponge cakes, cut each into three and filled them with apricot jam and a rose water scented cream cheese frosting (icing sugar, butter and rose water beaten together with cream cheese added in the last minute). Then smothered the entire thing in more frosting, threw a ribbon round it and covered all its flaws with flowers. Et voila.

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