Quickly! Quickly! Make this before summer is over!
Because, frankly, it's going to be another 11 months until we get weather over 20 degrees again.
I've seen some posts about cakes and cookies and baking-in-general being the perfect cure of POB (Post Olympic Blues)... but, wait! Is that the sound of the Paralympic Opening ceremony? Surely we can't forget that!
Well, it won't actually be the sound of the Paralympic Opening ceremony, seeing as it's not for another two days and all. But you get my gist.
So, I totally thought I was good at sports. I never really dreaded sports day that school. Except that one fateful day in year 7 when I fought another girl to run the 1500m (for an 11 year old, that's like running the marathon), because I thought I was though (come on? Have you seen me? I don't know what I was thinking). So... after being lapped the first time, the sneering cheering started. After being lapped the second time, I'm pretty sure the cheering was just out of pity.
Man, that was awkward.
...I now play the piano.
So, back to cake (it's ALWAYS back to cake). I've wanted to make this cake ever since it graced the front cover of my copy of BBC GoodFood magazine August 2008. I've finally gotten round to it. You could say that I'm a good procrastinator.
Oh and a word of advice! One mistake that I made, and advise you NEVER to do, is to put the cream filling in whilst the cake is warm, since it will melt and you'll have to save it by eating the squidgy bits of cream that ooze out of the sides (hey, someone has to clean up the mess). Really, eating the squidgy cream sounds yummy (okay, it IS yummy) but the cake will probably collapse.
The cake's also a little complicated to make if you haven't made meringue before, but it's definitely worth trying! One tip for whisking egg whites well (for the merginue) if to use a clean grease and water free bowl - it helps the eggs volumise better when you whisk it.
Have a great week!
Blackberry & Almond Meringue cake
From BBC GoodFood
Cuts into 8 generous creamy slices
For the cake
200g/7oz/1 cup butter , softened
200g/7oz/1 cup golden caster sugar
200g/7oz/1 1/3cup self-raising flour
50g/2oz/ ½ cup ground almonds
2 eggs and 2 egg yolks, beaten
2-4 tbsp milk
150g/5oz punnet blackberries
For the meringue topping
2 egg whites
100g/4 oz golden caster sugar, plus a sprinkle
2 tbsp flaked almonds
For the filling
200ml/7 fl oz/¾ cup double cream, lightly whipped
4 tbsp bramble/blackcurrant jelly
Line the base of two loose-bottomed 20cm non-stick sandwich tins with baking parchment. Heat oven to 160C/fan 140C/gas 3.
Put all the cake ingredients (except the blackberries and using just half the milk) in a bowl, then beat until creamy and well mixed. Stir in 100g blackberries, along with the extra milk if you need it to loosen the mixture a little. Divide between the sandwich tins and level the tops.
Quickly whisk the egg whites in a clean bowl, adding the 100g sugar, a spoonful at a time, until really thick and glossy. Lightly spread onto one of the cakes, then sprinkle with the flaked almonds and extra sprinkle of sugar. Bake both cakes for 40 mins, then take the cake without the meringue out of the oven and set aside. Bake the remaining cake for 30 mins more until a skewer inserted into the cake comes out clean. Carefully remove cakes from the tins and cool on a wire rack. When the cakes are cold, peel off the paper.
To serve, spread the cream on the plain cake right up to the edges. Spoon over the bramble jelly, then sandwich with the meringue-topped cake and decorate with the remaining blackberries.