I’m fast coming to the conclusion that cake and all things cake-related speak the universal language of friendship. It’s all very well having a pie and a pint, but nothing beats that tooth-sucking sweetness and crumby cakeiness of sharing a large cake with your mates.
It was an absolute pleasure to make the wedding cake for our friends Liz and John who were married yesterday. I’m an enthusiastic amateur rather than a professional perfectionist, so prefer to concentrate on flavour and content over smooth, level icing and curlicues.That’s my excuse for wonky cakes and wiggly edges.
The raisins, sultanas, cherries and currants have a damned good soaking in brandy for a couple of weeks before the baking begins. Once it hits the oven, the house smells heavenly for hours. I’ve convinced Noel that this type of cake needs to mature and so can’t be eaten as soon as it’s baked. I’ve got away with that so far, he does like his cake!
The top tier was vanilla sponge, I found the recipe on the interweb, faffed around with quantities and volume, quite a risk for my mathematically-challenged brain, though I did have help, stuck it in the oven and crossed my fingers. Success!
Liz had asked for the cake to be complemented with chocolate-dipped strawberries, so reinforcements had to be called in the night before. We had a fair assembly line going, with the only hiccup being the shortage of fridge space to cool them down, so we had to eat some. The sacrifices we make…..
Finally, because I hadn’t challenged myself enough, I decided to try my hand at making cake pops, it was Liz’s 40th as well as her wedding, so that certainly couldn’t go un-celebrated and of course cake was the way to do it. Cake pops are the new rage, they’re cake on a stick, though it means baking, crumbling, then re-constituting with, in this case, chocolate and butter, shaping into balls, then coating in chocolate. As it was very new to me, I broke the habit of a lifetime and did a test run – staff and colleagues at work were MOST appreciative, they were voted a success.. Again, help was at hand with the chocolate-dipping,a great way to spend an evening.
The proof of the cake was in the eating, especially those of us from Yorkshire who like a lump of Wensleydale cheese with our fruit cake. Friends, friendship and cake, is there anything better?