Itching Up To Get In Your Kitch-eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeen!
March 25, 2014
That Was The Food Week That Was!
January 25, 2014
It’s time to give baking a bash. How hard can it be? Let’s find out, fellow Marsala Ramas…
I’ve chosen Milk Chocolate Cake from Mary Berry’s ‘Fast Cakes’ for two reasons. Firstly, because she describes it as “a richer chocolate cake” (and I’m all for a rich chocolate cake) and secondly because the making time is 10 minutes.
This is my kind of recipe.
“Grease and line with greased greaseproof paper” says Mary (that’s a lot more grease than I like the sound of but I do as I’m told). Actually that’s not strictly true, my baking guru Jacks told me life was too short for lining the sides of tins so naturally I cut that corner immediately.
In go the sugar and beaten eggs…
Et voila, les ingredients - flour, sugar, butter, cocoa, evaporated milk and water. Can I really turn this mess into a real, live cake?How about that for an action shot? Taken just before I hit the flour at the bottom of the bowl and things turn messy.
So there it is. One bowl of cake mix (spoon in there for tasting purposes – delicious, feel a bit sick).
Feeling pretty pleased with myself until I realize I’ve forgotten to grease the sides of the cake tins. No mean feat when the mixture is already in there but little Ferrer hands triumph.
I have no idea what the mixture is supposed to look like at this stage but I’m feeling quietly confident. This is going to be the mother of all chocolate cakes.
And on to the icing. Butter, cocoa, evaporated milk and water are all in the pot.
I sieve in the icing sugar but it’s not looking good. Why is Everest in (and all around) my saucepan? Mary, for the love of God, why didn’t you warn me I needed a giant pan to fit it all in?
I consult the cook books recipe…which is obviously what I should have done properly in the first place.
The icing sugar isn’t supposed to be in there. At least not yet. It’s supposed to be beaten in right at the end, off the heat. I’m not wasting it so we’re going to fly in the face of Berryism and cook the whole damn lot right now in one tiny pan.
Baking doesn’t get more extreme than this…
Ok, perhaps not completely perfect but flipping good enough for me. And the smell coming from the oven is pretty damn good too. We are WINNING Ramas…
Time’s up and those puppies are look GOOD! Very excited.
I’m clearly a natural. You’d better watch your back young Ruby…
Screech of brakes…Needle drags across record…
What the HELL is THAT??
Fellow Marsala Ramas, let me introduce you to the world’s first sponge pancakes (the little rascals – clearly trying to publicly humiliate me). So just to add insult to injury, let’s see what the scores on the doors are… I’m no expert by I’m guessing that’s less than ideal. Without further ado let’s press on and ice these skinny chocolate wafers.
It’s coming together nicely when I turn my back for a second and the top layer tries to make a bid for freedom. A most unruly pair of sponges. A bit of repositioning and the sponges finally agree to play nicely together. And there we have it. One finished Milk Chocolate Cake…. And it doesn’t taste half bad! The sponge is moist and quite dense (in a good chocolatey way). I’m not so keen on the icing though, it’s a bit too sweet for me (but of course that could be something to do with my icing cock up freestyling). I served it with raspberries and blueberries to cut through the sweetness and add a little bit of fruity freshness to it, which I think it needs.
On another note, I can safely say that I could have Mary on the Trade Description Act based on the title. “Fast Cakes”? Those slippery little suckers (bonus points for the film reference) were supposed to have taken 10 minutes to prepare. Let me tell you, they most certainly did not. 36 minutes to be precise.
I’m sure with practice (and a little less prancing around trying to whisk cake mixture with one hand and take photos with the other) I could speed up the process a bit but the question remains… Why didn’t they rise? Where did I go wrong?
Help me, dear Ramas, help me… Please tell me how to be a better baker…
PS This is the wild-eyed look of someone who has struggled, fought and won(ish) in the face of baking adversity.