Monday, May 30, 2005

is baking becoming a problem?

Nell asked me this yesterday when I told her I was going home to bake for the third time in the week. "Hmmm. Every 48 hours." she said "Could be a cause for concern."

Do I bake when I feel upset or angry?
Possibly. But it works.

Does my baking cause injuries?
Well, just a couple of burns. And a belly.

Am I binge baking?
No I never bake more than 6 cakes a night, unless you count cupcakes.

Are friends or co-workers worried about my baking?
Hell no, I don't hear any complaints from those doing the eatin.

On Wednesday, for Eve's birthday I made these cupcakes.
What is with that American thing where white cakes are Angel food and Chocolate ones are Devil's food. White-supremacy with your baking? Yes please. But the cupcakes were great. Very childhood tasting. And they travelled well so I could take them to dinner.

Friday, I made an amazing Prune and Whiskey cake in my brand-new kugelhupf tin.
(Or bundt tin if you prefer.) This was an adaptation from the prune and armagnac recipe in my desserts book. I'll post the recipe soon as I can because it was a winner - it looked awesome and was moist, sticky and irresistible. (Despite all the rude comments people made about prunes... c'mon, they're just dried plums!)

And yesterday I baked this cake - a Spicy Chocolate Gingerbread.
I think all the other perfectly risen, well formed, easy to turn out goodies had made me over confident. This brought me back down to earth - it sunk in the middle like a swimming pool. I blame the weirdo silicone bakeware my Mum gave me. But it tasted bloody delicious, had a real chilli kick and was gobbled up appreciatively by housemates and my guest.

This week I think I'll have to make some savoury foods.


Stephanie J. Rosenbaum said...

hello Esther! So glad the cupcakes turned out well--and just to shed a little light on the devil's-food issue, all American chocolate cakes aren't devil's food, although the distinction is pretty much lost these days. But originally, devil's food cakes were made with a combination of cocoa and something acidic--buttermilk, sour milk, or vinegar--and the chemical reaction gave the cake a reddish tinge. That was the "devil" aspect, not the chocolate part! And angel food cakes are those special sponge cakes made with only egg whites, flour, and sugar, so they are completely white (not yellow like a regular sponge cake made with eggs). Hope that's helpful, and happy baking!

esther said...

thanks Stephanie,
this does clear things up a bit. i knew that devil's food cakes were meant to be nice and crumby but I didn't realise they were meant to be reddish. i guess i should really do a bit more research before I start throwing accusations of KKK conspiracies around.
I always love baking history - it's strange how we have lost a lot of the specific terminology now. I'm ashamed to admit that I often used cake names a bit interchangeably before I figured out the difference between sponge cakes and pound cakes. And now angel cakes too!
Thanks for sorting me out.

gaylourdes said...

hey esther, thank you so much: the chocolate gingerbread recipe was soooo good! i made it for lou's farewell picnic and put silver balls all over the top so it looked studded like an armchair/pincushion/masochist. (plus a heart in the middle).
there was considered debate about what to actually call it, cos it seemed to span both types of brownie that i love (cakey around the outside, and deliciously gooey in the middle). although someone called it a slice, which i didn't agree with, though i don't know how to really say it's not a slice! and i made it vegan too, whith no-egg and half a banana and soy milk, which was perhaps the most exciting thing.

esther said...

hey liz,
so glad you made the choc gingerbread. it's pretty awesome isn't it. I think brownie is way closer than slice - which sounds like some gross lemon thing... Guess it depends a bit on tin size and height cos mine was more cake height but with the texture of brownie. so yours was gooey in the middle too huh?

i'm extra excited you made it for lou... i like the idea of our recipes travelling all around like that and so it's almost a tiny bit like i gave her a tiny bit of a going away cake...kinda.

yay for baking.

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