It’s been a busy few months recently, as I’ve probably mentioned too many times to count in previous posts. (And yes, I promise that this is the last time I’ll talk about it, for fear of boring you to tears…) Still, I didn’t really realise how far behind I’d gotten in blogging terms until I delved into my collection of food photographs last week and discovered that my backlog goes way back into April. April. That’s two whole months that I haven’t kept up with! I knew the situation was bad, but not quite to that extent. That said, I think it’s high time to begin remedying this state of affairs…the question is, where do I start?
Well, one of my (ex)housemates turned twenty-one in late-April and, being an avid baker herself, she decided to throw a cake and pudding party. The rule was that everyone had to buy/bake/bring something to the party, whether a cake, a pudding, drinks or any other food item that caught their fancy. We ended up with (amongst a whole host of other things) a sticky-toffee pudding, millionaire’s shortbread, key-lime pie, chocolate and raspberry torte, chocolate brownies and a victoria sponge.
Of course, I took the opportunity to bake and to try out a new recipe that I’ve been longing to attempt ever since I was given Dan Lepard’s book, Short and Sweet, as a Christmas present last year; coconut cake with cream cheese frosting.
The cake itself was a four-layer coconut sponge made with desiccated coconut and coconut milk, which resulted in a nicely-textured sponge, not too dense but not too airy-light either. The cream cheese frosting was a little heavy for my taste, but the richness of the cream cheese complemented the lightness of the coconut beautifully while the coconut on the outside added some crunch, creating a nice contrast with the softness of the cake. You can’t really tell in this photograph, but the cake was actually a little (by which I really mean a lot) wonky; my cake-levelling and layering skills still need some work! However, the cake went down very well with the birthday girl (and the other guests), so wonky or not, it was still a success taste-wise!
As well as the cake, I also made up a small batch of macarons.
These were filled with lemon curd (not homemade, I’ll admit now), the citrus sharpness of which balanced well with the sweetness of the meringues. I was actually pleasantly surprised that this batch rose so well, considering how temperamental the oven in our student house
is was (since I don’t live there any more!)
All in all, the cake and pudding party was a great success, but I kid you not when I say that we had enough leftovers to feed our house of six for at least a week. Not that it was a problem in a house full of girls who all love cake…!
(Cake recipe by Dan Lepard, taken from Short and Sweet. Macaron recipe by Bravetart.)