July 10th, 2007

Children’s Birthday Cake – in shape of a fish!

Coco&Me birthday cake - fish

(Last Summer I was asked by my good friends N + C to make a birthday cake for their children! I jumped at the chance as it was the perfect opportunity to make this elaborate cake I’d been wanting to try!)

Coco&Me birthday cake - fish(stencil planning how the sponge sheet should be cut)


(ps: Next time, I’ll make all the letter white! Dark choc is not that visible against the colourful fruit… By the way, can you see that the letter Y’s broken? I had to make it from X & N because I didn’t have any more Y’s… And, have you noticed that the A from ALICE is a bit wierd? Yes, it’s V upside down…)


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For this week’s blog post, blast from the past, I’ve uploaded some piccies from almost a year ago. It’s a wopping A2 size genoise sponge cake with fresh fruit topping! I took the idea from a recipe book called ‘Green & Black’s Chocolate Recipes: Unwrapped – From the Cacao Pod to Muffins, Mousses and Moles


The book suggests making chocolate sponge with cocoa powder, & honeyed greek yogurt for a health-concious spread, but I decided I prefer the simplicity of a classic genoise with light chantilly cream (whipped double cream), just like the strawberry cake I loved as a child in Japan (苺のショートケーキ).


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From this week I’ve taken on another job title – ‘english teacher’. Yep, me. English teacher. Can you believe it? Laughable right? I’m far from perfect in English (as you can tell from my awful writing on this blog), yet, I’ll be teaching to a Japanese lady every Monday from now on (that is, until she decides to run away)! Today was the first lesson, an hour & a half long, while my boy is at nursery. Went well I think, a big relief. So handy too – making a bit of extra dough (£10 per hour) that could go toward that evening’s dinner!

I’ve been taking on other extra curriculum activities these days too. Last week I squeezed in baking another wedding cake, & I have promised another customer to provide serious amounts of cakes for a large scale party this August. Talking of things to do, this reminds me, I mustn’t forget that I’ve also been meaning to take process photographs of Pâte sucrée for the blog post from a couple of weeks ago



  1. That is so cute! I mean that is a simple, but beautiful cake!

    Comment by Jerry - July 10, 2007 1:33 pm

  2. Hey Jerry! Thanx!

    Comment by tamami - July 10, 2007 4:39 pm

  3. Hello. It is such a cute cake – perfect for children’s birthday! And the melon slices for the tail is superb.

    Comment by Louise - July 11, 2007 9:56 pm

  4. How you doin’ Louise! I’m so glad you noticed the melon tail! That’s my favourite part!

    Comment by Tamami - July 11, 2007 10:14 pm

  5. wuhaa, what a wonderful cake! i would jump to the ceiling if someone made me such a lovely birthday cake… melon, rasperry, strawberry.. it is too good to be true! you did a great job!!

    Comment by Julia - July 12, 2007 3:32 pm

  6. Thanks Julia! thanks for dropping by!

    Comment by tamami - July 12, 2007 4:14 pm

  7. Dear, Tamami –
    Thanks for leaving a comment on my madeleine post. I know that you work VERY hard to maintain that lovely stall of yours. It’s a lifestyle that appeals to me a great deal, to creative beautiful things that give others pleasure. I have been seriously considering an enterprise like this for a while, but need to wait until I have a more commercially viable kitchen that will satisfy the local zoning and health authorities. In meantime, I can hone in on the baking skills and enjoy the inspiration your site generously offers.

    Comment by Susan - July 13, 2007 10:59 am

  8. Hello there Susan! Thanks for leaving a message on my post too! And thanks for your kind words! Also, good luck with getting yr enterprise up n’ running! Keep in touch!

    Comment by tamami - July 13, 2007 10:13 pm

  9. Tamami, what a lovely surprise to see the fish cake on the blog. Especially as i opened the blog on A’s birthday. Alice still talks about the fish cake and asked for one this year. I only managed a few cupcakes. That was the most delicious and beautiful cake i have ever seen or tasted.
    Hows the packing going? We complete on our new house next week, but soooo much work todo.

    hope you are well


    Comment by nikki - July 14, 2007 7:46 am

  10. Hey Nikki! Oh I’m so happy that you liked the cake – it really was a pleasure making it! When I was writing this post, I was trying to remember when A+K’s birthday was! And, it’s so wierd that I wrote this spot on – that it coincided with their date! Well, I hope their party was a good one! Your girls are soo beautiful.
    Our packing – got the attic, garage + garden shed emptied. We’ve still got a month and a half to go so it should be okay by then. – So exciting that you are getting a new house! Remember to send me a email of the new address! ;-)

    Comment by tamami - July 14, 2007 9:14 pm

  11. Fabulous cake! I love, love, love the melon fish tail. I like this ‘healthier’ b-day cake option for kids (and adults). You always see sugary, frosted cakes for kids–yet adults seem to forget that kids love fruit just as much and combining fruit with sponge cake makes a perfect b-day cake. I’ll have to remember this for my niece’s upcoming b-day.

    Comment by poppy - July 15, 2007 9:02 am

  12. Hello there Poppy!
    Thanx. And you’re totally right – children really ‘go’ for fresh fruit. If you give my son the option of strawberries OR say, a muffin, he’d be straight for the strawberries.
    (well, atleast first he will, then his mitts would reach for the muffin!)
    The frosted cakes you mention – do you mean those super-thick icing in dire artificial colours?? I really, really, really hate them…!

    Comment by tamami - July 15, 2007 1:57 pm

  13. Thats an amazing fishy cake – Love the tail.

    Comment by Steamy Kitchen - July 30, 2007 11:49 am

  14. Hello~ ~Steamy Kitchen! And thanks! Next time I do this, I want to make the body part assembled a bit better…

    Comment by tamami - July 30, 2007 7:54 pm

  15. tamami, your writing is everything pleasurable to read! this is rather late a comment, i know, but am trawling through your previous posts with great delight. (: do the english classes still continue?

    Comment by kim - April 21, 2009 2:56 am

  16. Cheers Kim! RE: English class, no…, it just went pear-shaped in the end, as the student was just not ‘in’ to learning seriously & sincerely – skipping lessons on a whim and that. – I also couldn’t muster the passion for it. It was torture to have to teach. Mind you, I’m never one to ‘give up’ so I continued ’til the end…

    Never again…!

    Comment by tamami - April 21, 2009 1:39 pm


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