easter and sugar overload ...
Inbetween shifts at work this week, I managed to fit in making a Simnel cake. I've always wanted to make one, and for my first attempt I was a bit chuffed at how it turned out.
I took the recipe from Mary Berry's Ultimate Cake Book, one of the first ever books I bought when J and I set up home together in the eighties from the Lakeland Plastics catalogue. No internet ordering in those days!
I didn't really have the time to be too fussy with its appearance, ending up using a more rustic approach.
I wanted to put the eleven balls of almond paste (marzipan) on the top, each representing the eleven apostles (excluding Judas) present at The Last Supper.
I have every other Thursday off work, and must admit to feeling a bit jammy today. After the foul weather of yesterday, in complete contrast out came the sun.
Perfect for taking photos.
Talking of feeling jammy, a few week's back I was lucky enough to win one of Simone's lovely giveaway crochet jam-jar covers. They are made to fit a Bonne Maman jam-jar, but not having one mine is just slipped over a glass, perfect for these eleven tiny narcissi I picked from my garden.
Simone sent me the one in Cornishware colours!
I made my own almond paste (marzipan), and a recipe is in the book too. It's so much nicer than the shop bought stuff, very easy to make, and you can store it in the fridge wrapped in cling until you need it.
All you need to make about 1.5lb is 8oz ground almonds, 8oz caster sugar, 8oz icing sugar, two whole eggs and 6 drops of almond essence. Once mixed, knead lightly.
A layer of almond paste is placed inbetween the cake mix, and once baked gives the cake a moist pudding-like texture.
For the complete Mary Berry golden look, brush the top with egg and finish off for a few seconds under a hot grill.
I had my family over this afternoon for a cup of tea and slice of cake (Worzel Gummidge), and for those not keen on dried fruit and marzipan, there was Coffee Sponge.
Made in the style of a Mary Berry traybake, but in a round tin not rectangle, as I couldn't wait to try out the round cake tin liners I bought the other day from Julian Graves.
If you love baking, check out Simone's Friday Cake Bake. I haven't been able to join in the fun 'cos I work that day, but lots of others have.
Happy Easter weekend everyone!