what? bread?

a blog about making bread at home

Archive for the tag “cinnamon”

Cinnamon cake with blackberries

A Dan Lepard recipe from Short and Sweet, but also available on the Guardian website. It’s a whisked fat-free sponge made of eggs, sugar and golden syrup, with a little milk in it, only half a teaspoon of baking powder, wholemeal flour and cinnamon. The cinnamon mixes with the wholemeal flour to give an agreeable pinky-brown colour. For the flour I used some standard supermarket wholemeal plus some from our local windmill. The mill doesn’t sieve the flour before sending it out, so it has some ‘nuggets’ of barely ground wheat in it for extra texture. I also drizzled some Chambord raspberry over the fruit to make it a bit more adult. My mother-in-law has a glut of blackberries so in they went, and some double cream was easily whipped to fill the cake. Over the top goes the icing sugar to hide the cracks that appear as the cake cools. Result!

Cinnamon cake with balackberries

Cinnamon cake with balackberries

 

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Scandinavian cinnamon buns – Guardian recipe

Tired of mince pies? Can’t face another bit of stollen? Don’t want to eat your Christmas cake yet? Need a bit of something sweet and bready? Today’s Cook supplement in the Guardian had a lovely front page picture of cinnamon buns and the recipe couldn’t be easier. I did give the dough a couple of quick Dan Lepard style 10 second kneads while it was resting. I used some spelt flour because I had some, and I didn’t have any demerara sugar so it got topped with some soft brown sugar. My tin is also a bit smaller than required, so I added a few extra minutes baking time. Here’s some pictures while I wait for it to finish cooling.

after mixing

after mixing

a quick knead after 10 mins

a quick knead after 10 mins

another quick knead

another quick knead

dough patted out to size

dough patted out to size

filling spread across

filling spread across

rolled up into a sausage

rolled up into a sausage

popped in the pan

popped in the pan

after 30 mins rising

after 30 mins rising

with egg and sugar before baking

with egg and sugar before baking

baked, but in the tin

baked, but in the tin

out of the tin in one go

out of the tin in one go

sometimes less is more

Sometimes I think I think too much about baking. However, I do think that bakers should think a bit about what goes into their bakes and what it contributes to the diet (in the old-fashioned regime sense of the word rather than the current emphasis on weight loss) of the person or people eating it. Sweet stuff is of course a treat and should not be a staple part of any regime, although sometimes I argue that cake is one of the major food groups along with protein, fruit and veg, carbs and fats but it really should only be the thin slice on that food plate the health people would have us use.

Readers of previous ramblings will know that I often cook with older cookbooks that have a bit of a wholefood spin to them. And on balance, that’s pretty much where I like my cakes and breads and stuff to be, full of interesting tastes and textures and hopefully not doing too much damage to anyone. Now I know I’m swimming against the tide here most days because yet again popular new books are all about the ‘look’ and not about the contents and what that contributes to the diet. I will admit to making too many rather worthy chewy efforts in the past, and I try to look for the more inspiring ones these days. However, you probably won’t find cup cakes here unless they have something special about them not just a fancy topping.

So this week I have baked the caramel layer cake from Great British Bake Off’s latest book. I halved the quantities because it is a mighty thing.  You can find the whole recipe on the web here (but please come back if you go there!) and we did manage to eat half of it before I caught it for a photo.

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So, that’s all well and good but it is a lot of butter and sugar all in one place and while it does taste lovely it is a lot of ’empty calories’ that I’d rather not eat myself. I thought about having something a bit more nutritious about the house too. A recent census of the kitchen cupboards revealed a pack of dried figs I’d forgotten about so I cast about for a recipe to use them up and found a Dan Lepard cake, cinnamon honey fruit cake which luckily for everyone is available online for free as well as in his book “Short and Sweet“. What a difference in the ingredients – raisins, apricots from Daily Bread, figs, not much butter, honey, brown sugar and treacle! Dan suggests a tray bake so I did that baked it for about 45 mins and it made 16 lovely solid slices of goodness.  That’s a lot for me to eat if the others here don’t like it but I’ve also put some in the freezer for another day.

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What ever your favourite is, remember cake is a treat not a staple food group.

Writing this while ‘enjoying’ Terry Leahy on Desert Island Discs, sadly his taste in music so so apt for Tesco, middle of the road and cheap! Must remember to put a link up when it’s available! Listen again.

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