I decided to have a go at one of Bill's afternoon tea cakes from Bill's Open Kitchen (more about Bill here) ....
... a nutty cake...
... with lots of proper icing that would look good on a cake stand...
It turned out quite well and had an unexpected lightness to it. The icing, made with lime juice, had that delicious tangy sweetness that I love, and had Mr. P and I bickering over the drippy bits on the cakestand.
Here then is the recipe for Coconut and Lime Macadamia Cake:
200g macadamia nuts
40g self-raising flour
a pinch of salt
6 eggs, separated
finely grated zest of a lime
45g desiccated coconut
Preheat the oven to 180°C
Place the nuts, flour and salt in the bowl of a food processor and process until the nuts are ground. Place the egg yolks and sugar in a bowl and beat for 3 minutes, or until the mixture is pale and creamy. Fold through the zest and coconut, then the nut mixture. Place the egg whites in a clean, dry stainless stell bowl and whisk until stiff peaks form. Using a large metal spoon, fold lightly through the nut batter.
Spread the batter evenly into a 23 cm greased or non-stick springform cake tin. Bake for 40 minutes, or until the cake is lightly golden. Remove from the oven and leave to sit for 10 minutes in the tin. Turn the cake out onto a serving plate. Spread the lime icing over the warm cake, allowing it to drizzle down the sides.
125g icing sugar, sifted
2 tablespoons lime juice
1 teaspoon finely grated lime zest
Combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix until smooth and glossy.
Nigella's rhubarb cornmeal cake.
I think the kindest thing to say is that this did not end prettily. There will be no slice shot. All the fruit sank to the bottom. I have since learned on the internet that this is because the fruit bits were too big and that I should have coated them in flour before going in the cake mix. And I took it out of the tin before it was cold so it's a bit saggy...
|Not quite Nigella...|
Recipe for rhubarb cornmeal cake:
300g caster sugar (please remember to split into 100g and 200g portions and not pour the whole lot over the rhubarb and get in a panic about rescuing it... Yes indeed.)
150g plain flour
155g fine polenta or cornmeal
1tsp ground cinnamon
1tsp bicarbonate of soda
1/4 tsp salt
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
125g unsalted butter
250g plain yogurt, preferably bio
23cm springform cake tin, greased with butter and base lined.
Preheat the oven to Gas Mark 4 / 180C.
Trim the rhubarb and cut into 1/2cm slices. Place in a large bowl with 100g of the sugar and leave aside whilst you prepare the rest of the cake. Don’t leave for longer than 30 minutes, otherwise too much juice will leach out of the rhubarb.
Mix the flour, cornmeal/polenta, salt, cinnamon, bicarb in a medium bowl. In a large bowl, cream the butter and remaining sugar until light and fluffy. In a small bowl or ramekin, beat the eggs with the vanilla extract and then slowly add this to the creamed mixture. Beat well until mixture is fluffy again.
In alternating spoonfuls, add the flour mixture and yogurt to the creamed mixture. Mix these in very slowly to preserve the fluffiness of the mixture. Finally, fold in the rhubarb and all the sugary juices.
Pour into the tin and smooth the top. Bake for approximately one hour until the top is springy and a skewer comes out almost clean. Check after 40 minutes and cover with foil if the top looks as if it is going to overbrown. Let it cool, in the tin, on a wire rack until just warm or leave to cool completely if not eating immediately. It can be reheated in the oven if wrapped well in foil.