The truth be told, I have quite the juxtaposition problem when it comes to baking. I have a fond love of pastry goods, namely the classic Bakewell tart, but an irrational fear of baking shortcrust pastry. I've always promised myself I would get over this and, one day, when the nightmarish visions of a pregnant woman scorned by mince pies 'gone wrong' subside, I'm sure I will.
Fate, or Fay, as it happens, came to me in the form of one of Fay Ripley's recipes showcased on the 'Lorraine' programme; the 'Easy Bakewell Cake'. Nothing could be more 'Ronseal' about that title. I watched in amazement as Fay casually chucked a load of base ingredients into a mixer to form a sumptuous Bakewell inspired cake.
I've never been a 'chucker' when it comes to recipes, but I was compelled to discard my usual need to conform by the gram and give this one a go.
Here is the link to Fay's recipe, as featured on Lorraine, with ingredients and quick method:
150g Self Raising Flour
150g Ground Almonds
150g Soft Butter (I always cube it to ease mixing)
150g Caster Sugar
2 Large Eggs
6 tsp Raspberry Jam
150g Fresh Raspberries
50g Flaked Almonds
1 tsp Vanilla Extract
1. Preheat oven to 160 (fan), 180 C or Gas Mark 4. Line a 22-24cm springform cake tin with baking parchment.
2. Use a food processor or electric whisk and whizz the butter, sugar, flour, ground almonds, eggs and vanilla extract. Put half of the mixture in the tin and smooth.
3. Dot the jam, 1/2 teaspoon at a time all over and scatter the raspberries. Drop the remainder mixture over the fruit and smooth over with your fingers.
4. Scatter the flaked almonds on top and bake for 45-50mins until golden. Cool and then serve with ice-cream, custard or just have it on its own!
I think what is so lovely about this recipe is that it is quick, light and bound to be a winner with any friends or family in need of a quick cake fix. For anyone with a busy lifestyle, it's a perfect 'throw together and chuck in the oven' recipe I am slowly starting to introduce myself back into the joy of baking, as opposed to the stress of icing 100 cupcakes in a shared kitchen with one mixing bowl, and this was the perfect recipe for that 'quick-win' baking feeling.
The sponge itself is really light and fluffy, the perfect accompaniment to a cheeky afternoon tea. I would be tempted to try substituting the jam for different flavours and would maybe try using fresh cherries for a sour kick. Drizzling fondant icing over the top might also work - a Peachy homage to the classic Cherry Bakewell!
Overall, fabulous recipe, perfect timings and Fay Ripley's 'What's for Dinner?' cookbook, has shot to the top of my wishlist!
Tried it? Love it? As ever I would love to hear your thoughts. If you have a go at your own, why not upload it to the Facebook page, it's so nice to see everyone's results!