Who we love – Jo Neville Photography

At The Dandelion Bakery we are lucky enough to get to meet a lot of wonderful wedding suppliers. When we’ve used or worked with those suppliers a number of times and seen what they can do, they sometimes become people we love.

This month I wanted to tell you about the lovely Jo Neville of Jo Neville Photography. Jo did a lovely set of product shots for us a while ago, so I know how great she is to work with but she also does head shots, nursery shoots, family portraits and, of course, amazing wedding photography!

Jo Neville of Jo Neville Photography

Jo Neville of Jo Neville Photography

Jo is great because she is a second generation photographer who learnt how to spot a great shot from a very early age. She has an instinctive eye and puts everything she has into her photography. She also developed her skills in an old school way, with proper film and developing her own images in the dark room, which means that she has a natural eye for getting a great shot. She is a very talented lady!

Jo has also recently won her round of The Herts and Beds wedding of the year competition, and is now in the final. Jo’s experience of photographing children at Nurseries works brilliantly for couples that have children – she is great capturing expressive shots of children as well as beautiful shots of the couple. Her top tip? Ask your photographer for their creative ideas as they may be able to suggest things that will make your photos extra special.

So why do we love Jo so much anyway? Well, she cares. she really does. She likes to spend a little time with her couples before hand so that she can really get to know you. She makes the effort to get to know who is who so that on the day she knows family members by name and can pick them out of a crowd (and that must really help with the formal photos!). She cares about what is important to the couple and their family and she makes people feel relaxed and comfortable. She works hard behind the scenes to make sure she gets the perfect photographic record of your day, but you’ll never see any of that – you’ll only see a smiling, relaxed photographer and great photos! For me, that is what makes a supplier stand out. We love people who care about their couples rather than just treating them as another customer, and that’s why we love Jo.

You can find out more about Jo by visiting her website.

Birthday Battenburg cake

At The Dandelion Bakery we can turn our hand to pretty much anything. Darren, who is a friend of TDB used to DJ in his younger years and had the moniker DJ Battenburg, so when he celebrated his birthday recently it seemed only fitting that we make him a Battenburg cake. As you can see, I chose a particularly subtle shade of pink…
IMG_0002
IMG_0003IMG_0006IMG_0004IMG_0007

We can make battenburg cakes in almost any colour so if you love someone who loves battenburg, or if you would like one in pink or blue for a baby shower or christening please do get in touch.

Classic Vanilla Shortbread recipe

Our classic vanilla shortbread recipe makes a beautiful biscuit. We use it in our Christmas gift boxes and our decorate-your-own biscuit kits.

PROD Vanilla Shortbread (3)

Classic Vanilla Shortbread

Makes 12 egg-shaped biscuits

Ingredients

125g Organic unsalted butter
40g Granulated sugar
25g Icing sugar
225g Organic plain flour
1 egg yolk
1 tsp Organic Vanilla bean paste

Method

1. Pre-heat the oven to 175 degrees and grease two baking trays.
2. Place the butter, sugar, icing sugar, flour and vanilla bean paste into a food processor and blitz together until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. If you don’t have a food processor you can rub the mixture lightly between your fingers until it reashes the breadcrumb state.
3. Empty the mixture into a large bowl and add the egg yolk. Use a fork to lightly mix the yolk through the breadcrumbs.
4. Using your hands, pull the mixture together and lightly kneed it. If you need to, add some milk to pull the mixture together then do so, adding it 1 teaspoon at a time.
5. Wrap the dough in cling film and chill for at least 30 minutes.
6. Roll out the dough to around 7mm thick, then cut into shapes of your choice. Transfer to the baking tray and bake for 10-15 minutes until very lightly golden.

If you’d like to print or save this recipe, here is our Classic vanilla shortbread recipe card. And if you would like to try our shortbread but don’t have the inclination to make it yourself, why not order one of our biscuit kits.

The Catherine Naked Wedding cake

This weekend we made a naked cake for Catherine and Dominic’s wedding in The Meadow Barn at Tewin Bury Farm Hotel.

Catherine and Dominic chose a naked wedding cake to fit with their more informal wedding that included a huge hog roast (which smelt amazing) and more relaxed decorations in rich, jewel tones.

When they originally came to the tasting they were most interested in light coloured sponges like vanilla and lemon, but as soon as they started tasting cake it quickly became clear that we were going to take another route – Dominic adored our white chocolate ganache. The couple eventually settled on chocolate cake with white chocolate ganache and red velvet cake with cream cheese frosting. The cake was then decorated with fresh berries and flowers to match their colour scheme.

IMG_0117
IMG_0123IMG_0122IMG_0121IMG_0120IMG_0119

The slight problem was that Catherine and Dominic had 300 guests, but a round cake to serve that many would end up being ridiculously tall, which wash;t in keeping with their day so we provided extra cutting cakes behind the scenes in both flavours so that their would be enough for all their guests.

Catherine and Dominic, you can look at a field of Dandelions and see 1000 weeds or a 1000 wishes. Through your married life, may you only see the wishes.

What’s new pussy cat?

We recently made a cake for Julie, who wanted a personal size cake for her husband styled to look like their pet cat Marvin.

I always feel the pressure when making a cake for someone who is creative in their own right and Julie is a wonderful artist but thankfully she was thrilled with the cake!

Marvin has bright green eyes and the habit of sticking his tongue out, so naturally we had to include that. IMG_0051
IMG_0053
IMG_0054

Would you like your pet caricaturing in cake? if so, contact us!