Monday, 22 November 2010

In which pictures of cake are sadly absent

As the title suggests, no pretty pictures of cake this week. I apologise. I've had a couple of bakings to post about but no accompanying pictures for a variety of reasons (greed, disaster, and not-yet-finished).

Greed: The ginger cake that I made sadly disappeared before I got any pictures. This was partly because it had to be left for a couple of days to "mature" before eating (how hard is that?!), and I somehow forgot that it had not been photographed. The recipe came from the Camper Van Cookbook and was pronounced extremely good; perhaps because there was far more sugar and treacle in the recipe than anything else!

Disaster: I really wish I'd taken some pictures of Saturday's disaster which had me in tears and doubting my baking abilities. I decided to make the toffee apple cake that Cornflower blogged to accompany the reading of Elizabeth Taylor's A game of hide and seek as it sounded lovely. I decided to make a round version, rather than a loaf version, but made a bad decision in choice of tin and put it in one that was far too small. The cake overflowed, somewhat akin to a volcano, but fortunately onto a baking tray in the bottom of the oven rather than onto the oven itself. Cake mixture adhered all round the side of the tin and the cake had to be cut out. The resultant mess was apparently exceptionally tasty, and K even ate the overflowings with his coffee, but it was a mess and I was too embarassed to photograph it (but I do wish I'd got a picture of it in the oven to send to Cake Wrecks).

Not-yet-finished: Our Christmas cake is currently wrapped in foil; it's a vegan recipe from Fiona Cairn's book Bake and Decorate which I have de-glutenised, substituting a mix of ground almonds, rice flour and buckwheat flour for the wheat. It needs to be left to mature, and then to decorate, at which point I'll share some pictures. I'm not sure we're big enough fans of Christmas cake to manage to eat a WHOLE one but I did want to practice sugarpasting, and we're planning to make some model penguins to go on top.

This week marks the start of seasonal baking as we have a friend coming round for tea and cake on Saturday, acting as santa between me and a friend who is too poorly to travel - if I can't see her, it's the next best thing to see her husband, and as a thank you I shall ply him with the first batch of shortbread of the season, assuming I can find my Christmas cutters. The following week is my annual Advent Tea Party so I shall be making some goodies for that, and K is wondering about making a gingerbread house again. Watch this space!


  1. Cakes that have to mature for more than an hour? That sounds like something I'd find impossible to do!

    I'm not sure what Christmas cake is, I think I need to read up a little on UK cakes :)

  2. Haha, I love your reasons! Greed is a very good reason for a lack of photographs although disaster is less pleasing to hear about - yikes. Penguins on the christmas cake, that will be amazing!!! Happy baking!

  3. I do love to read about what you have made. I am presently trying to find a selection of star cookie cutters going down in size in order to make a recipe I found in the Sainsbury cards of a star Christmas tree.

  4. Re: vegan cakes. Excuse my ignorance, but does their vegan-ness mean that they're missing fat and eggs? or is a different kind of fat used? I have high cholesterol... no, I HAD high cholesterol, but by eschewing saturated fat I've brought it down - but now a) I can't add it back in b) I don't want to as things with sat fat in taste and even smell really unpleasant to me.

    So I'm always searching for fat free or sat fat free versions of cakes, biscuits etc and vegan might be the way to go...

  5. Your one baking disaster sounds like all my baking experiences! Like the sound of the ginger cake though, not sure if I would have been disciplined enough to leave it for 2 days.

  6. Iris - Christmas cake is a very rich fruit cake usually decorated with marzipan and icing - I'll photo it when it's done!

    Jane - I can't wait to make them - I saw them in a book in July and have been desperate ever since. Mind you they may look dreadful as Iewas never very good with plasticine...

    Vivienne - I've facebooked you about this, but for other readers, the cuttersd you need are from Lakeland!

    Lyzzybee - vegan means dairy and egg free - I'm afraid the recipe isn't fat free, it uses vegetable/sunflower oil, but only 150ml for an enormous cake so I would say that it is quite low fat overall...

    Dot - I hid the cake from K!

  7. Has it really been almost a year since the shortbread Nativity?

    Sorry about the tears shed over your toffee apple cake but I must admit to smiling with affection. I've had my fair share of disasters but it sounds like you made the best of a bad baking situation.

  8. So often the overspilling disasters still taste delicious. Sounds delicious - I made toffee apple cupcakes for halloween.

  9. Darlene - yes! Might do it in orange flavoured biscuit this year...

    Joan - mmm they sound good - where as the recipe from?

  10. I wonder if you can use olive or linseed/flaxseed oil in a cake - has anyone here tried?

  11. I wouldn't as they have quite a strong flavour.


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