Saturday, July 24, 2010

Laura's Carrot Cake

I first ate this at a friend’s wedding. I then spent six months asking around to find the woman who’d baked it for the recipe. Huge thanks for Laura for writing out the below on the back of a scrap of paper for me – she works at CafĂ© Concerto in York, where the cakes are wonderful, and this is their recipe. I’ve only amended it slightly (the recipe I was given was expressed in catering quantities and baked 5 cakes, I suspect is a bit more than most of us would take on). The honey and high lemon content make this carrot cake something really special.

Cake Ingredients

170g strong white flour
145g wholemeal flour
100g raisins
100g sultanas
270g grated carrot
2tsp bicarbonate of soda
1tsp baking powder
1tsp ground cinnamon
1/2tsp ground nutmeg
50g chopped nuts (walnuts are traditional, however I like pecans and could imagine this working with hazelnuts
170ml milk soured with
the juice of half a lemon
3 eggs (mixed)
140g butter or margarine
½ a jar of honey

Icing Ingredients

140g cream cheese such as philedalphia
75g butter, softened
360g icing sugar
Grated zest of ½ a lemon
1 tablespoon lemon juice
20g whole nuts to decorate (note as above).

You will need
A large springform tin
To bake the cake on gas mark 3 (160 degrees c)

To Bake

Put the oven on to pre-heat (160 degrees c, gas mark 3)
Mix all of the dry ingredients in one bowl.
Melt the butter and honey gently and put aside to cool slightly.
Whisk the eggs, and mix the lemon juice with the milk.
Then add all of the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, mix quickly (it will be quite a liquid batter), flatten the top and pop into the preheated oven.
Bake for 45 minutes (a skewer inserted into the centre of the tin should come out clean.

Leave the cake in the tin to cool.

When completely cool, remove from tin and put on display plate.
Mix all of the icing ingredients together until well combined and spread evenly over the cake, using the nuts to decorate as desired.

Friday, July 16, 2010

picnic in the park

To celebrate’s second birthday we’re meeting up for a picnic in Rounday Park on Sunday 25th July at 1pm.

Last year was such fun, we wanted to do it again! The Park Rangers are expecting us this time ;-)Also, we were recently contacted by Twinings tea, who very generously offered us some of their huge selection of teas for tasting. We’ll bring them on the day for you to drink and give us your feedback for the website.

We’ll have:-
- Golden Oolong
- Spring White
- Blossom Earl Grey
- Limited Edition Rose Garden
- Green Tea Selection
- Mint Tea Selection
- Fruit and Herbal Selection
- Black Tea Selection

Oh and some Yorkshire tea too... so please bring along your own mug, and a thermos of hot water (we'll provide the tea bags!) if you can manage it and any cakey creations you’d like to share.We’ll be at the bandstand near the top lake (just look out for the bunting!) with an assortment of teas, cakes & sandwiches and we’d love to see you there.

Where: Roundhay Park, LeedsDate: on Sunday 25th July
When: from 1pm

Fingers crossed for a fine day, and we hope you can come along and join us

Janine, Sam and Mike

P.S. This isn’t a formal organised event, there are no fees for attending, and we don’t have public liability insurance or anything, so come at your own risk. The biggest risk factor we can identify is the British Weather, the bandstands in Roundhay are fairly big, so we’ll be there regardless!

P.P.S. If you can't make it along, don't be too disappointed - there is still a way to join in with the tea testing! Order a couple of teabags from Twinings: & send your feedback on what they taste like through to us at ! :D

P.P.P.S afternoon tea in London?
Are any of you familiar with London and places for afternoon tea? Janine is looking for a place to go in London for a special occassion afternoon tea. Please email with any suggestions! Many thanks in advance