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Marble cake 16 May 2013

Posted by uggclogs in Baking, Cooking, food, Happiness, Life.
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Marble cake

It’s been a while since I have been baking, but last night I brushed off the old skills. I had no idea that I had become so rusty, and was making rookie mistake after rookie mistake! The result was still tasty, but I think I will have to relearn my old tricks by getting back into baking!

An oldie but a goodie – marble cake

Ingredients:
200g butter (room temperature) (mistake number 1: the butter I used was too cold. It needs to be soft, but not melted).
250g sugar
3 eggs
vanilla (1 tsp of essence, 2 tsp of vanilla sugar, OR 1 vanilla bean)
250g plain white flour
2 tsp baking powder
100ml butter milk
2 tsp cocoa

Bread tin, 175 degrees, 45-50 minutes

Method:
– Take all the ingredients out of the fridge and measure out the necessary amounts.
– Make sure the butter and all the other ingredients are at room temperature.
– Butter a bread tin and line the bottom with baking paper (mistake number 2: I forgot the lining, meaning the cake is still in the tim now.)
– Turn the oven on so it pre-heats to the correct temperature.
– Whisk the butter and sugar together in a mixing bowl. Make sure it becomes a fluffy texture.
– Add an egg at the time, whisk until just combined between eggs.
– Add the vanilla, combine.
– Sift the flour and the baking powder into the mixture.
– FOLD the flour through the eggs to maintain as much of the air in it as you can.
– Fold the buttermilk through.
– Separate about 1/3 of the mixture into a separate mixing bowl, and sift the cocoa into it. Fold through gently.
– Pour another third of the vanilla mixture into the baking tin, then the cocoa mixture, then the remaining vanilla.
– Use a skewer to gently draw a line through the mixture (ziggzag about 2.5 cm apart one way, then the long way). Don’t overdo this.
– Place in oven, and leave to bake.

Enjoy with coffee!

This cake also freezes well.

Pavlova 5 July 2010

Posted by uggclogs in Baking, Cooking, Happiness, Life.
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After my recent baking adventure making custard buns, I still had a whole lot of egg whites in the fridge. Being Dutch at heart, I really dislike throwing away food, so I thought I should attempt to make that fantastic cake Australians call their own (although the origins of the ‘Pav’ is sometimes disputed).

It turned out to be far easier than I had expected, and the result was divine. I even have a plan on how to make a cake derived from the Pavlova (although the Aussies might find this sacrilege…), but more on that in due time. First, here is the Pavlova.

Pavlova

Ingredients:
6 egg whites (the original recipe called for 4, but I had 6 left, so I increased all the amounts by half)
1.5 cups of castor sugar
0.75 tsp corn flower
1.5 tsp white vinegar

Whipped cream (300 mL), sugar and fruit to decorate.

Oven at 130 C, 75 minutes.

Method:
– Firstly, it is essential that there is no grease that comes into contact with the egg whites, or they will not stiffen! So use a clean bowl and make sure the beater is clean, too. I always wipe everything down with some extra vinegar, just to make sure, because there is nothing worse than eggs that won’t go hard.
– Whisk the egg whites until soft peaks start to form. Add the sugar one tablespoon at the time, continually beating.
– When all the sugar is in, beat until stiff. You should be able to hold the bowl upside down without the egg falling out at this point. Be careful, though, if you fail at this stage, you will have a very messy kitchen, and no more egg whites.
– Sprinkle the vinegar and corn starch over the lot, and carefully fold into the egg. Make sure not to deflate the egg too much.
– Spoon onto baking paper on a baking tray in a circular shape.  Make it about 4-5 cm thick, with a slight indentation in the middle.
– Place in a hot oven, and bake.
– When it is finished, leave the Pavlova in the oven to cool slowly. It will crack and sink a little, not too worry.

– When you are ready to eat it, decorate with cream and fruit.
– I used mango and strawberries (the latter of which I threw through a food processor, because they were frozen) with great dollops of cream.

Enjoy!