pass the teapot.
 
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Here it is, my very first number made of cake. I've secretly always wanted someone to put in a request for a number cake, just to have an excuse to have a go. They are so brilliantly retro. And I really did kitsch it up with classic sponge and strawberry jam layers, butter icing, piped edging and number candles. I chose not to use number cake tins and did it the hard way (why??), assembling each cake like a jigsaw. The eight was simple enough. Two vicky sponges, one slightly smaller than the other, with their middles removed. The zero, which required two cake halves joined by long loaf cakes, was trickier. Hence the slightly wonky sides (can I pass wonky sides off for authenticity?) At one point I thought I may have to make do with an 8th birthday cake and hope no-one noticed.

I love the result. Perhaps next time though I will avert potential number cake disaster and buy the damn tins.

 
 
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I have a new favourite market. Ashton Court Farmers Market has shot straight into the top spot after Pass the Teapot made its debut appearance there today. Not only does it benefit from being in one of Bristol's prettiest locations, it is full of gorgeous companies selling everything from falafel to scotch eggs, cross stitch to dog blankets. I have already started to make plans for the Christmas Food and Craft Fayre which I will be serving festive cakes at on the 4th December. These cake pops went down particularly well today - a new addition to the stall and something of an experiment. Another new favourite.

 
 
My 'Pass the Teapot' stamp has arrived. So have my new mini labels. Here they are together, all ready to be hung around the necks of jars full of lemon curd, tied to boxes of mince pies and strung onto bags of Christmas cookies. Christmas gifts here we come.
 
 
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If you have some spare peanut butter hanging around in your cupboard, please make these. They have the highest pleasure to effort ratio that I have come across in my baking days.

Minimum effort, maximum pleasure.

Click on the peanut butter bites for the recipe, coutesy of Nigella Lawson. She suggests using smooth peanut butter but I used crunchy. Crunch or no crunch, you decide.