Wednesday, 13 March 2013

Recipe 9: Bakewell cake

Yes, I’m back. No, I did not fall off the edge of cyber space. My official line is that I was ‘experiencing technical difficulties’. Well, isn’t that the most diplomatic way of describing the complete broadband nightmare that we went through over the past few weeks. Seriously, if I was to go into all the details (which I won’t bore you with!), it would be the equivalent of a mini-drama series although I don’t think RTE would be in any hurry to buy the TV rights. So many clichés come to mind but, believe me when I say this, if it isn’t broke then don’t fix it! Seriously. I mean do you ever do something to get ahead only to find that you leave yourself further behind? Remember how I told you before how I have a habit of taking a ‘short cut’ to avoid traffic only to get lost resulting in a journey that actually takes longer had I stuck to the heavy-traffic route? Well, I went through the broadband equivalent of that story. The shortened version is that I got a call from my mobile phone provider asking me to switch my landline and broadband. Seeing as I had been with them for 15 years and not one problem, I said ok whilst explicitly explaining how important broadband is to Dear Husband and me. So, the phone switched over but the broadband didn’t. We were left weeks without it and, in the end up, out of sheer frustration, switched back to Eircom. Oh, Eircom – I love love love you and promise I will never never ever switch again. Promise. Oh, why did I ever think switching away in the first place would ever have worked out?! Lesson learned.

Anyway, the net result is that whilst I’ve been busy baking away each week, the blog posts have been queuing up on my laptop. So I thought I’d start with the one I made this week and work my way back so seeing as it was Mother’s Day, I thought I’d bake myself a cake. Sad I know but, well, who else is going to bake me one??! Somehow letting Dear Son or Baby Daughter within 3 feet of my oven is a no-no and, come to think of it, the same for Dear Husband…for different reasons. Either way, that’d be some cake. I’ll give them another 10-15 years. Seeing as one of my all-time favourite cakes are Mr. Kipling’s Almond Slices, I decided on the Bakewell cake recipe. Here’s how it went…

After approximately 40 minutes of looking for the base of my cake tin (seeing as Baby Daughter loves hiding things), I gave it a good clean before wiping it with some butter. Then, I got working on the mixture which was butter, caster sugar, eggs, milk, vanilla essence, flour and ground almonds. The last thing I had to do was add in fresh raspberries to the mixture and fold them in without mashing them up. Well, that didn’t work out too well if you look at the first photo! I spread it onto the baking tray and sprinkled with flaked almonds before popping it into the oven for almost 52 minutes. I then let it sit for 10 minutes before transferring it onto a plate and giving it a dusting of icing sugar. Just to prove that I wasn't using the icing sugar to cover up a burnt cake, I've included the before and after photos! :)

Oh, and in the midst of me making the cake, Dear Husband happened to see me washing the raspberries and just had to let me know (again!) that he doesn’t like cherries. “Erm, they’re not cherries, they’re raspberries!”, I said. “Aw great!”, he says. So after me actually managing to let the cake cool for 40 minutes, I whipped up some double cream and served up.

The verdict…

Dear Husband’s verdict was 7 marks out of 10. He said he would have given it higher marks only for the ‘cherries’. Again, I said they weren’t cherries, they were raspberries. Six of one and half a dozen of the other and all that. Yes, another cliché but you get the point. However, I would safely say that this was one of the nicest cakes I have ever cooked. It was totally delish and I just had to give Dear Mother half of it who loved it. Don’t worry, I did have other presents for her other than half a cake!

Of course I’m going to make this cake again. It was straightforward, simple and wasn’t time consuming not to mention how much it really, really tasted like a proper cake;  proper cake that I made. The only part I didn’t do right was folding in the raspberries without breaking them. So I suppose I didn’t do so bad with this one…

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