I’ve never been a cake lover. When I was young my birthday cake was always one of those
awfully sugary ice cream cakes from the supermarket. You know the ones that look far better than they taste and leave a powdery residue behind in your mouth?
When I met Nick, one of the first things I found out about him (apart from the fact, that like me, he is not a fan of horses or Bono) was that he loves cakes so much he would eat them every day if they were on offer.
As it happened, a week after our first date it was Valentine’s Day and I decided to bake for him. I set about baking what was meant to be a decadent chocolate cake, the recipe for which I had copied out of a Gourmet Traveller I had been reading in a cafe somewhere.
Well, to call it a massive fail would be an understatement! Somewhere during copying the recipe, I must have forgotten to note down how much sugar was required and it resulted in me baking a sugarless cake (which incidentally would be all the rage these days). It was, to put it quite simply, vile.
Nick tried to be polite about it but it was simply impossible to eat and from memory ended up in the bin.
All these years later, I still wonder about that cake and if I ever come across the notebook I wrote the recipe in I will definitely try it again, and hopefully correct my mistake.
This Valentine’s Day, I baked another cake which was sublime. Even I enjoyed it’s fluffy, melt-in-your-mouth texture and ate more than one piece.
Mimi’s blog is one of my favourite’s, her storytelling, alongside her husband’s photography makes me want to pack it all in and move to Medoc. Even though I’ve been a long-time reader of her’s, the Italian Pear Cake is the first recipe from the site I have cooked and it was such a success I now want to try everything.
This cake was a pleasure to make, I savoured every step from watching the egg and sugar bind into a creamy mix, to pushing the pears deep into the batter. I did bake the cake for longer than the recipe called for, as after the recommended 30 minutes, it was definitely
undercooked. If you decide to bake this, I would suggest checking it at 30 minutes and going from there.
The second recipe I want to share is wildly different to the first. I discovered Eleanor via her Instagram and quickly fell in love with her wholefood recipes as they tend to use ingredients I have on hand, are usually quick to make and are always tasty. This Moist Fig and Nut Flour Cake certainly lived up to its name. It was squishy and dense due to the 1:1 ratio of almond meal and dried fruit.
I actually made mine using equal parts dried fig and date as when I set about to bake, I
realised that I didn’t have enough figs. I also considered doing fig and ginger (using crystallised ginger) and may try it in the future, although I doubt the result would be as moist.
Finally, I thought I would share this little lemon cake recipe that took no time at all to whip up. Kate’s blog, Lunch Lady, is a must for all time-poor mums, even if it’s just so you can giggle over way she titles her recipes.
I halved this recipe (using two lemons and half of all the other ingredients) as I didn’t have enough eggs on hand to make a full batch. To be a good wholefoodie, I also replaced the
regular caster sugar with golden caster sugar.
So there you have it, for a lady that doesn’t love cake, I sure bake a lot of them and I’m happy to report that I have not had another failure like the one I had many moons ago. I hope
everyone had a lovely Valentine’s Day and you were all able to celebrate it with your loved ones in a way that was just perfect.