What you need to do:
1. Weigh out the sugar and butter/baking margarine and beat together until smooth.
2. Add the eggs one at a time and continue beating, add the vanilla extract at the same time.
3. Sieve in the flour and add the milk, and continue to beat the mixture, remember to scrape down the sides of the bowl and mix in all the ingredients together.
5. Add the food colouring and beat together again. I apologise for the funny colour of this photo, I have quite yellow lighting in this particular spot in my kitchen.
6. Here is a better picture of the colour of the mixture- I went to a room with more natural light for this one! You can see that even though I have used Red Extra as the colouring, the mixture is still pink. You need to add a lot of colouring to it if you need it to be red. I like it this colour, and it will darken a bit when it is baked. Line your tin (a roasting tin will do) with greaseproof paper, and pour the mixture in. Bake for about 20 minutes on 160 degrees. Check it by sticking a knife into it, it should come out clean.
7. Leave it to cool in the tin, then turn it upside down onto a board or your work surface and peel off the paper. Using a small heart cutter, cut out the hearts you need. You can save the cut offs for making cake pops, or just to eat with a bowl of custard!
8. Here they are cut out ready to decorate.
9. Using a sharp knife, carefully slice the hearts in two. I used a 1M nozzle to pipe the buttercream. To make the buttercream, beat the butter, then add the icing sugar slowly, with the vanilla extract and mix until it is the consistency for piping. Too runny? Add more icing sugar. Too stiff? Add a touch of cool boiled water.
10. Pipe three stars of buttercream and then place the other half on top…..
11. Dust with icing sugar and serve!
Here they are at the meeting of Cake Eater’s Anonymous that I made them for. (I’ll have to write another post about that!) As you can see the icing sugar has pretty much dissolved into the moist sponge as they were in a box for a few hours before I took them along. In which case, make sure you dust them with icing sugar just before you serve.