Thursday, March 10, 2005


Well I decided the best way to solve the image problem is not to buy a digital camera, but to use my housemates scanner a bit more - thanks Tom. So from now on strange old pictures will be the order of the day - mostly thanks to food mania.

And so, a neurotic baking story.
On Saturday I invited Bindy around for a late afternoon tea. Feeling like a bit of baking, I dragged out a couple of recipe books and decided on a chocolate sherry cake. Only problem was - I realised my favourite one requires chestnut paste and I've had trouble finding that in my hood before.

So I thought, maybe an upside down apple tart (tart tatin?). But I wasn't in my usual organised frame of mind, so it wasn't until I had measured out the flour, butter and sugar into a bowl that I realised I didn't have the pyrex pie tin the recipe called for. And caramelising sugar on the stove in my pie tin didn't appeal. By this stage I was feeling a bit frantic - none of my ideas were working and it was pissing down outside so I didn't feel like going out for ingredients. I rifled through recipe files and started to think maybe I should just go for pikelets.

Finally I found a recipe that used the stuff I'd already measured out - a streusel kuchenor crumble cake with a banana topping. Again I leapt into it and started measuring stuff out. Then of course Bindy arrived - an hour early - and just as I'd realised I didn't have the yoghurt the recipe called for. She helpfully offered to go out and get it and so the day was saved. I swapped bananas, which didn't sound that traditional, for apples, replaced the brown sugar I couldn't find for white and all was saved. Bloody yum actually. But why did I feel like the stupid kid who didn't learn to read your recipe through before starting?

Streusel Kuchen - Light cake with apple and crunchy topping.

This is a really easy cake to make. The yoghurt makes it very light and I love the crunchy topping. You can use any fruit you have handy.

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 6 tbsps butter
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2/3 cup plain yoghurt or sour cream
  • 1/2 cup soy milk
for the topping
  • 3 - 4 apples
  • 1/2 cup plain flour
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup soft butter, in pieces
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  1. Preheat the oven to 375F and oil a 9 or 10 inch springform pan.
  2. Put all the cake ingredients in a bowl and mix by hand or machine until you have a thick and smooth batter.
  3. Spoon the batter into the pan and smooth level.
  4. Grate the apples and spread on top of the cake batter.
  5. Rub the flour, cinnamon, butter and sugar together until they form a crumble. Sprinkle this over the apple.
  6. Bake for 40 - 45 minutes or until the top goes nice and brown.
  7. Serve warm, possibly with yoghurt or ice cream


Niki said...

I thought of you the other day in the supermarket when I saw tins of chestnut paste! Leo's supermarket in Heidelberg has it - I have no idea if that is anywhere near where you are, but I have a feeling you're in the inner northern suburbs, in which case it's only 15 minutes to Heidelberg (and Leo's is an AMAZING supermarket stocked full of unusual European things. I have a ball buying in there - coming away with Dutch stroopwafels, proper cocoa or jars of red cabbage & apple. That sort of stuff...mmm)

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