Mini flowerpots

Mini flowerpots

Elderflower and lemon cake

The Birthday Cake Book
Laura Edwards

Pack these charming little elderflower and lemon cakes into a seedling box or a trough as a gift for a gardener.

For the cakes:


Quantity Ingredient
18 fairy cake dark brown paper cases
40 mini muffin dark brown paper cases
225g self-raising flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
225g unsalted butter, really soft
4 eggs, lightly beaten
1 unwaxed lemon, finely zested
225g golden caster sugar
2 tablespoons elderflower cordial

For the buttercream

Quantity Ingredient
200g unsalted butter, softened
2 unwaxed lemons, finely zested
300g icing sugar, sifted
2 tablespoons elderflower cordial

To decorate

Quantity Ingredient
100g white sugarpaste
selection food colour pastes
icing sugar, to dust
selection flower, leaf and butterfly cutters
60 g bag white royal icing, fitted with no. 1 nozzle (optional)
nylon piping bag with medium star nozzle
selection bought sugar flowers
selection small edible flowers and leaves, such as primulas and primroses, violets, violas and pansies, sprigs of mint
pearlised sugar pearls
strands raffia or ribbon


  1. To colour sugarpaste, place a piece of sugarpaste on a work surface. Dip a cocktail stick into a pot of food colour and knead in. It is much better to add the colour little by little and mix different colours. If it is sticky, add a little icing sugar. Knead until the sugarpaste is an even colour you like. Seal in a polythene bag and leave overnight, if possible, to firm up.
  2. To bake and decorate, dust a work surface and rolling pin with icing sugar. Roll out the coloured sugarpaste to 2–3 mm thick. Using a cutter, cut out shapes as close together as you can. Re-roll the pieces and repeat. Dry on a baking tray lined with baking parchment. (Pipe details with royal icing, if you like.) These keep for months, in dry conditions in a cardboard box; not in an airtight container.
  3. Preheat the oven to 180°C/fan 170°C. Place the fairy cake cases into two fairy cake tins, and the 40 tiny ones into a couple of small-hole baking trays. You may need to bake in batches. For this cake, I use an electric mixer and beater attachment, but use a food processor, or a bowl and electric whisk, if you prefer. Sift the flour and baking powder into the bowl, add the butter (in knobs), eggs, lemon zest and sugar, adding the cordial towards the end. Beat until well blended; be careful not to over-mix. Divide between the cases and bake until the cakes spring back to the touch. The tiny cakes take 10–12 minutes and the larger 12–15 minutes. Remove from the oven, leave in the tins for a minute or two, then cool on a wire rack.
  4. For the buttercream, beat the butter until really pale in an electric mixer, or with a hand-held electric whisk. Add the zest and icing sugar and beat for five minutes until fluffy. Add the cordial slowly, tasting as you do so; you may not need it all. Put the buttercream into the piping bag with star nozzle, and swirl on each cake.
  5. I like my flowerpots bursting with blooms so don’t hold back! Lay all your decorations – sugarpaste and fresh – in front of you. Stick them on to the cakes. Tie raffia or ribbon around each paper case to finish.
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