Thursday, July 28, 2011

Thursdays Recipes: Tea cakes & how to vary

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I've learnt that the basic ingredients and method of preparations essentially are the same, and i've tried three variations with much success.

Lemon Drizzle Cake (from BBCgoodfoods)
225g unsalted butter (one stick is usually about 227g, i like SCS), 225g caster sugar, 4 eggs, zest of one lemon, 225g self raising flour. For the drizzle: Juice of one lemon, 85g caster sugar (the drizzle is optional, some people find its too much lemon, but i like it. Just mix together the juice and sugar then pour over the cake, hot out of the oven.)

Banana Cake
225g unsalted butter, 140g caster sugar, 2 eggs, 3 large ripe bananas (mashed), 50g raisins (optional), 150ml milk/buttermilk/cream (i just use whipping cream or milk if i'm lazy. Buttermilk can be very expensive but if you want, just mix one cup milk with 1 tbsp white vinegar or lemon juice and let stand for 5mins), 170g self raising flour, 50g nuts (optional, any nuts you like, pecan, walnuts, etc)

Carrot Cake & Cream Cheese Icing 
225g unsalted butter, 140g caster sugar, 2 eggs, zest of 1 orange and juice, 170g self raising flour, 50g raisins, 1 tsp ground cinnamon, 1 tsp mixed spice, 140g carrots (grated). Cream Cheese Frosting: 100g unsalted butter, 300g cream cheese, 100g caster sugar, 1 tsp vanilla extract (Beat the butter til soft, then mix everything else in)

So from this you can see that basically you need butter, caster sugar, eggs, self raising flour, and whatever flavour you like (i put it under zest and spices). If you have additional things like carrots and bananas, then lessen/half the amount of sugar, flour and eggs. This way, i think you can modify the recipe to whatever you want!

Preheat oven to 180C.
1. Beat together butter and sugar. (Make sure the butter is melted/defrosted, hard butter is harder to beat)
2. Add eggs, one at a time.
3. Sift in flour.
4. Add zest and spices (this includes whatever else you want to put in, fruit or vege, raisins, nuts, spices)
5. Line a baking tin with baking paper/Butter up the walls of a baking tin and spoon the mixture in.
6. Bake for 45-50 mins (or until a skewer poked into the center comes out clean, which means no cake parts stuck to it)
7. The end! Or if you have a topping, then this is the moment to spoon it over the cake.

These cakes should probably keep for a couple of days. It can also be wrapped in two layers of aluminium foil and frozen, will keep maybe for a week or two this way. If you want, you can substitute the butter with vegetable oil (1/3 cup should do) but i think you'd need to add an additional egg if you do that.


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