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Clandestine Cake Club

A 1st Birthday Party for a Clandestine Cake Club!

On what felt like the coldest night of the year, I wrapped up myself and my Orange & Almond Cake and ventured outside into bitter winds to find the clandestine location of Cake Club.
From the street outside I could see through the window what looked like a birthday party, napkins and paper plates and a table laden with cakes.  Appropriate for the theme: 1st birthday party, to celebrate a year of this particular club. 
I made my way inside, unpacked my cake and put it on what seemed like the last available space on the table.  I got some welcome “ooohs” for my cutout of the 1 that I’d dredged icing sugar over, which was kind given that there was a lot of very impressively decorated cakes on the table.
Orange & Almond Cake
My Orange & Almond Cake
Chocolate Hedgehog Cake!
A much more impressive, chocolate hedgehog cake!

Five more people arrived after me, three of them with cakes, which we managed to squeeze onto the table making 11 in total.  My greedy eyes were alight with delight!
Clandestine Cake Club
Cakes - ready for cutting!
Though relatively chocolate-heavy, this was a great mix of cakes:

Chocolate & Guinness
Chocolate & Salted Caramel
Double Chocolate Tower
Coffee & Walnut Cake
Lemon Layer Cake
Red & White Velvet Marble
Banoffee (Banana Cake with Toffee Buttercream)
Lavender Cake
Chocolate Hedgehog
Blue Peter Chocolate Clock Cake (made with mayonnaise)
Orange & Almond Cake
Just after 7.30pm, our lovely host Emma welcomed us all and suggested we introduce ourselves and our cake, if we brought one.  Whilst there were four men in the room, they were the only four “eaters” who didn’t bring a cake; they were there as the guest of someone who did.  Sigh.  And I thought more men were baking these days.  Perhaps it’s just men are not very likely to go to an event which describes its main purpose as talking over tea and cake.  I suppose it is all a bit W.I.-like.  Except I think have of this group were probably not yet 30.
Clandestin Cake Club Red Velvet marbled cake
Red Velvet Marble Cake - the bringer of this cake even made the horses herself!

Ashamedly, after our run of introductions around the table I could remember every single cake description but not a single person’s name.  I had to reintroduce myself to the people closest to me.  Then we got stuck into the cake.  Emma handed around some knives and some more napkins and I got cutting with the advice, “for new people”, to cut small pieces.  I eked out miniature slices of the lavender cake in front of me and passed the knife on to someone else and we got tasting! With so many cakes to try there really wasn’t any possibility of fitting in seconds during this sitting. The positive of this is it means each cake gets equally eaten so it doesn’t feel like a competition as it might if one cake was devoured completely and quickly.
Cutting into the Clandestine Cakes
Cutting into the cakes
After about an hour and a half of tasting and getting to know our neighbours we called it a night and the slicing of the cakes began, to allow people to take home some of what they didn’t come with.  This is where it is important to come properly prepared.  The experienced within the group pulled out plastic bags and foil, ready to go, to take cake into work for colleagues.
Remains of the Clandestine Cake Club
The remains of the cake feast
What a wonderful reason to test out new cake recipes, try a whole variety of cakes at once (this definitely appeals to the greedy side of me) and to meet new people in your area.   If you like cake at all (if you don't, I'm not sure why you're reading!) then get yourself to a Clandestine Cake Club.  Most of them accept guests to come without a cake on the first occasion, but they are very relaxed and there's certainly no pressure to be a master baker or decorator.  I’m already planning what I might bake for next month’s April Fool’s theme.  I'm sure I've got some popping candy in the kitchen somewhere...

Posted: 13/03/2013 10:02:06

Great Cake Places Blog

Jennifer Earle

Welcome to the Great Cake Places blog. I'm Jennifer Earle, the Content Director for Allegra Publications. I love cake. All kinds of cake. Lemon drizzle, coffee & walnut, chocolate, ginger, carrot… I love trying new cakes and baking them too. I’'m particularly obsessed with chocolate and quite partial to cheese scones, straight from the oven, spread with real butter. This job makes me a very happy girl. Please do register for access to discounts we’'ll be adding and say hi in the comments of the blog!

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