Monday, January 17, 2011

Cake Inventing

Sometimes I need to keep track of my thought processes when making cake. Or inventing it. You see, I can't always work out how I get from A to C and on more than one occasion I start off thinking that I want to make one thing and end up making something totally different. This happened on Sunday when I started off wanting to make marmalade and ended up making a tea loaf.

What happened was this:

  • I was sat thinking "I want to make some marmalade, but have no seville oranges. Where will have some oranges? Twitter will tell me."
  • So I went on twitter and asked. While I was waiting for a response I looked up "marmalade recipes" on Google. This took me half an hour.
  • Ah, I got a response on twitter. Leeds Markets have some! Great, I thought. Then I realised it was Sunday. Markets closed on Sunday.
  • That's ok, though, because what I really want is a cup of tea.
  • Oh! Tea bread, that's an idea. Is it tea bread or tea loaf? Hm. Best google that.
  • This took me half an hour.
  • All the recipes said "soak your fruit overnight in tea." Bugger, thought I, because it was Sunday and I can't make cake on Monday because of that pesky work thing.
  • Then I saw a thing for "boiled fruit cake" which said that this would be the easiest christmas cake ever. I don't like christmas cake but thought the principles would still apply.
  • So I came up with this:

    • 225g dried fruit, whatever you have in the cupboard. Apricots, mixed dried, currants, sultanas, what the hell there's some glace cherries that I'll never use that can make up the weight.
    • 300ml black tea, strong as you like, earl grey, tetleys, twinings, whatever you've got.
    • 200g soft brown sugar. Or white sugar. Or probably honey. I know I've got 200g of "sweet" in the cupboard.

  • put all these in a pan, bring to the boil, leave to boil for about 3 minutes, then turn off the heat and go & have a shower, or a nap, or read a book. Watch some Simpsons, maybe.

    • Then crack an egg into the cold mixture and stir it in.
    • Then throw in, say, 250g self-raising flour.
    • Some mixed spice would be nice. There we are. About 2 teaspoons.
    • That lemon looks a bit sad. Tell you what, let's zest that into it.

  • Stir it so it's all well mixed, then pour into a lined 2lb loaf tin.
  • Bake at GM3, or whatever the metric equivalent may be, for about an hour and a quarter. Don't open the oven door until at least 1hr is up.
  • If the top looks a bit singed, stick some baking parchment on it.
  • Stick a cocktail stick in it and if it comes out clean, it's done.
  • Tip it out, remove the lining, and leave it to cool completely before breaking into it.


It's bloody lovely.

eta: I should perhaps point out that the little postcard that I wrote out my recipe on reads:

225g fruit, 200g SBS, 300g tea. Boil 3m. Cool.
1e, 2tsp GMS, 250g SRF.
GM3 75m.

Yeah, I know.

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