It’s a sure sign the Summer holidays are over when you see “Book NOW for Christmas” posters outside restaurants and pubs! I think I even spotted a couple of these “lovely” little reminders before my girls had gone back to school.

I have to admit to a feeling of “Really?” when Christmas bits and bobs start appearing in shops – the festive build-up just seems to start earlier and earlier every year. But, like it or loathe it, the countdown to Christmas is definitely on. Well, it is here at VelvetFig HQ anyway.

In between baking a wedding cake, filming cake videos, doing cake demonstrations in a London kitchen company, trying out some new flavour combinations and walking Poppy (not forgetting trying to find five minutes here and there to soak up the last of the late summer/early autumn sunshine!), I’ve already got fruit soaking in brandy ready for my rich fruit Christmas Cakes.

Very soon I’ll be busy preparing delicious gingerbread wreaths, along with hundreds of festive gingerbread men, each with their own unique personality. I’m working on a new Velvet Fig Christmas Cake to go with my most popular designs from previous years – so watch this space (if you can bear to think about Christmas this early!) as my festive fancies and some other new edible treats will soon be revealed.

“Hang on a minute...” I hear you cry! “’s not even Hallowe’en yet!” You’re right. Talking of which, the hungry hoardes of trick or treaters will be here before you know it.

So here are a couple of tricks to try out for treats this Hallowe’en. These spooky delights are delicious, require minimum effort to make and you can grab all the ingredients at your local supermarket when you pop in for your pumpkin.

Mini Ghosts

Dip some strawberries in to melted white chocolate, let them dry on parchment and decorate with mini choc drops for eyes or pipe some milk chocolate eyes as ghostly treats.

Spider Cupcakes

Bake some cupcakes, top them with a disc of green roll out icing, melt some chocolate in a piping bag and pipe some legs, then top with 2 Maltesers as the spider's body and add two little dots as eyes.

Rice-Pop Pumpkins

Make your favourite rice crispy cake recipe (you can use marshmallows if you want a light colour) and mould them in to round ball shapes. Top them off with some green roll out icing to make a “stalk” and, if you like your pumpkins with personality you can add use icing to add eyes too! Chill in the fridge until it’s time to give your guests or trick or treaters the chills.

Happy Haunting!

PS I know it’s a bit too soon to get full on with the festivities, but if, like me, you’re determined to get some of your Christmas Shopping out of the way nice and early, why not jot down a reminder to pop along to one or two of the events shown below? You’ll find the VelvetFig team there of course - so if the idea of what to buy your awkward auntie all gets a bit too much, you can always come and try out our festive fare! Our Jars of Stars make perfect gifts and you might even fall for one of gingergread gentlemen too!

Sparkle, Contemporary Gift Fair with Gourmet Foods

Landmark Arts Centre, Ferry Road, Teddington TW11 9NN

Friday 18th – Sunday 20th November


Belmont Prep School, Holmbury St Mary, Dorking, Surrey RH5 6LQ

Saturday 26th November


Dulwich College, Dulwich Common, London SE21 7LD

Sunday 27th November

If you would like more info, get in touch!