When I set up 280 Bakes, I never thought about the international angle of cakes... We're getting more and more orders from people living in foreign countries.
It can really suck missing out on birthdays and family occasions when you live abroad (speaking from experience), but having a cake delivered really lets your loved knows know they are in your thoughts and you'd be there if you could!
From Australia to the USA, across Europe and India, we are receiving orders from well-wishers with family and friends living in Bristol, Stroud and Portishead.
Here's a recent customer - currently living in Spain - with her feedback on our service.
Of course, we'll also take orders from Brits on holiday too. One lovely lady placed an order in a panic because she was on holiday for her son's birthday, and only remembered when she was lying on a beach! Google saved the day, and found us. We'll always offer services via Whatapp too, to save your foreign phone bill.
Recent orders include:
-- Brownies for Diwali, from parents in India
-- Birthday cake and flowers for a mum from a son in the USA - he came back for a second order for his dad later that year!
-- A 'thank you' gift for a family in Almondsbury from their friends in France
If I were you, I'd tell all your friends who live abroad about 280 Bakes - you might receive a cake from them from across the oceans for your next celebration!
Owner, 280 Bakes
We love sharing our baking triumphs - here are the most creative cakes our wonderful home baking team have made in the last few months.
Petals, leaves and buds are our favourite to ice, they look really effective. Real flowers are so lovely to work with and they look so pretty - we plan to incorporate more of these into our bakes. Chocolate is fun to work with (like with the waterlily petals above), but more unpredictable. We do love a challenge though!
What's your favourite flower? Have you ever seen it on a cake?
The Team @ 280 Bakes
We celebrated our second birthday today, and this is how it went down!
From today, we have bakers based in Stroud, Gloucestershire, who are delivering our cakes in the town. Find out more here, including how to join our team of bakers.
Then, we actually WENT to Stroud!
Given the main part of our birthday celebrations was the above announcement, we decided to surprise a business in Stroud with a cake. This is where Spacehoppers Co-working came in - we delivered a 280 Bakes branded cake (see the logo and BRIGHT PINK nature of said cake in the picture below!) to three entrepreneurs who were at the time working in the shared office space. A complete surprise to all and a welcome tea break from their hard work!
We chose Spacehoppers because we've had previous experience in co-working environments and we love the vibe from entrepreneurs who work in such places. A big 'HELLO AND THANKS' goes to Ben at BeKagool who tweeted us a photo of the cake being enjoyed in the office after we left.
Finally, we popped along to St Andrew's Park, Bristol...
We had to celebrate on 'home turf' too, of course! Word got to us that the Bristol Vegan Parents Group was meeting with the kids for a half term get-together, so we took them some complimentary cupcakes to sort out a snack for that lovely lot. The meeting point was "by the coffee hut in the centre", so cake and coffee worked out perfectly!
A fabulous day - we feel well and truly celebrated!
Thanks to all our willing cake eaters and our hard-working team. Here's to another successful year at 280 Bakes!
Owner of 280 Bakes
Here are some of our latest bakes, all home baked and delivered. which one's your favourite?
We often post photos of our cakes on our social media, when they're off for delivery. Join us over on Facebook, Twitter or follow us on Instagram today!
The Team at 280 Bakes
BUTTERCREAM or fondant: The choice is yours on our cakes, but what's the difference?
When helping our customers decide what they would like as decoration on their home baked cakes, we normally recommend either buttercream or fondant icing (both can be made vegan and gluten free friendly). However, not everyone knows the differences between the two types of icing, and there are pros and cons to each, depending on what style you want from your cake, so here's your definitive guide.
Buttercream is our cheapest option, and is nearly always used on our cupcakes. We'd describe it as sweet and rustic looking, perfect for filling sandwich cakes like Victoria Sponge, or a base for decorating with other items, like your favourite sweets. We can do it vanilla or chocolate flavour, but have done lemon in the past. It's not great in hot weather though, be warned!
Some customers like to know fondant is "the kind you see on traditional birthday cakes". Fondant is sheet sugar paste, essentially, is used in modelling and can come in many colours. It is a little more expensive as more work and skill is involved in using it compared to buttercream, kneading it until it's smooth and pliable. A buttercream 'crumb coat' is normally applied underneath the fondant to ensure there's no lumps.
It's not for everyone, as it's a little sticky to eat and is fingerprint prone if you have little hands around, but fondant gives you a beautiful smooth finish on a cake, like you can see here:
This is the third type of icing we use at 280 Bakes. It's not a common request, but it's good if you want something a little less sugary. Meringue icing basically a sugar and egg white mix, creating a meringue style finish. Glossy white, fluffy, and very pretty, we love this one. A word of caution goes to our bakers on this one: Another cake for cooler days, this icing needs to be stored in the fridge. Make sure there's no strong odours from other food in there. Meringue icing picks up strong smells and ends up tasting a little off. Garlic icing, anyone...?
The Team @ 280 Bakes
With just one week left of Veganuary, when a huge swathe of new vegans join the movement, here's our final January vegan blog: Can you spot the difference between a vegan and non-vegan cake?
What do you think of when you think vegan cakes? Unless you're a regular customer of ours, you might not think of much! No eggs, no margarine or butter, no milk chocolate, no milk... What could a vegan cake look like?!
Well, a vegan cake looks just like a normal cake, actually. And no, we don't use kale... Take a look at some of our recent bakes, and we challenge you to spot the vegan ones! (Answers at the bottom of the blog post)
Chocolate Swirl Cupcakes - not vegan, but they're gluten free. Switch the chocolate to dark chocolate and you have it vegan!
Banana Cake - vegan, using banana instead of eggs.
Spring Flower Cupcakes - vegan, using vegan-friendly dark chocolate.
Peanut Butter Chocolate Cake - vegan, and our best seller!
Unicorn Cake - this particular one wasn't vegan, but we can totally make it so with dairy free buttercream and a vegan vanilla sponge.
Chicken Cake - vegan, yes, fondant is vegan!
Thanks for reading, you're one of over 1200 who have read our blog this week!
The Team @ 280 Bakes
Our Louise has just come back from Costa Rica, bearing photos of cakes from the Latine American country. No tasters, but the photos look awesome!
A true baker snaps photos of cake while she's on holiday...
The white cake to the left was made in a cake shop for another birthday party we went to on our short break. It's 'very Costa Rican' (in my opinion) because of the creamy style icing they use. Fondant doesn't do so well in the heat! This kind of cake is kept in a fridge, unlike our traditional birthday cakes in the UK. It's decorated with local Passion Fruit, and the sponge is a sweet, vanilla cake. Doesn't it look delicious?
Pictured below the Passion Fruit cake is what Costa Ricans call 'Pudding', a type of bread pudding. It's found in cafes all over the country, and is perfect for cake lovers who like something moist and spiced. Bake your own using our recipe!
Finally, the cake to the left is, believe it or not, a Victoria Sponge I attempted to make with local ingredients: Guava Jam and Caramel Sugar. It came out quite different, (especially with the absence of a sandwich style tin and very little icing sugar!) but tasted fab!
Look out for more cakes from abroad, whenever one of our bakers goes on holiday. You can follow our 'cake holidays' on #280ontour on Twitter.
Thanks for reading,
Louise & Team.
If you're reading this from the USA, you may know it's Vanilla Cupcake Day today!
These are rose cupcakes and almond buns...
Lego inspired cupcakes for a little dude's birthday...
Straight up vanilla, seasonal blackberry cupcakes with vanilla frosting, and one of our 'Sweet Temptations' range for those with an extra sweet tooth!
Which would you choose to tea tonight? It's not too late to order for tea...
Yours, vanilla-ly so,
The Team @ 280 Bakes
We've chosen today, World Vegan Day, to launch our new vegan range of cakes: Sweet Temptations.
Sweets used in the new range include... Candy Necklaces, Fizzers, Flying saucers (great on top of cupcakes!), Love Hearts, Parma Violets, Pear Drops, Rainbow Drops, Skittles, and vegan fudge from our friends at Fab Fudge.
If you discover any other vegan sweets we can include in our Sweet Temptations range, do let us know in the comments below.
The Team @ 280 Bakes
Welcome to the 280 Bakes blog! Most posts are by our team, but if you fancy guest blogging, give us a shout!
280 On Tour
Celebrate With Us
Friends Of 280 Bakes
Just For Fun
Low Sugar Cakes
Team 280 Bakes
The Great British Bake Off
Work For Us