In case you haven’t noticed, summer is here. In England right now it’s hit the kind of temperatures we spend the whole year complaining we don’t get, and then the few days it does we say things along the lines of; ‘can’t function’ and ‘I’m not built for this kind of heat’ while we sit in the shade in a beer garden or lay on top of the covers at night. I decided to bake on what was the hottest day of the year so far, so all of these things were uttered in the first 5 minutes. In all fairness, I baked this cake at about 8am, when the full heat of day hadn’t hit, but the oven was happily sat there making up the difference as it pre-heated. I had decided to make something fit for summer and baked a White Chocolate & Raspberry Cake with White Chocolate Buttercream and Pistachios.
As alluded to previously, before I popped up to Leeds for the Bloggers Blog Awards, I went to my parents in Scotland and due to the weather on a couple of the days, I ended up doing a good amount of baking. Ingredients up there can be slightly more awkward due to a need for things to keep. My dad also has a bread machine, and because of this he has a large stock of different flours. We unearthed a bag of rye that he practically begged us to use as he had no plans to and didn’t want it to go to waste. After raiding the cupboards we worked out that honey was probably the best ingredient we had at our disposal for doing something cake-y. Some quick (by my parents island internet standards) googling took place and we found that honey & rye cake is actually a particular french special.
Admission: I had never made Olive Oil Cake before a week ago. I have since made it twice, and had to talk to myself seriously about making it a third time in less than a week. The thing is, it’s that easy to make. Yes it takes a good amount of time to bake and then cool, but it’s simple. A simple bake that you just want to sit and eat with a fork in one go is a rare find. There’s a great many simple recipes which I love, but I think this one has now taken its place as my favourite. I’d rather make this than yet another Victoria Sponge, for instance. It also works perfectly well without any frosting, so you haven’t even got to worry about decorating it. See, it’s simple.
We’re well into British Summer Time and every now and then, between the heavy rainstorms, the sun has been showing itself. This means I want fresher, less rich bakes. With more fruity and floral flavours. Last year I made an Earl Grey and Poppy Seed loaf for the people across at Realm & Empire, and I wanted to do something similar this year. Raspberry & Earl Grey aren’t necessarily the first things you’d match together, but they complement each other perfectly and with a little lemon rind mixed through you get that fresh but floral taste I’d been craving.
As you’ll have seen from my last post about our time in Glasgow a couple of weeks ago, we went to see my parents in Scotland over Easter. Before the rest of the talk about my time there I wanted to do another recipe, which I know have been rare over the last few weeks (oops). On my Birthday in March I had a day off and spent it being a tourist in London. We went to Dishoom for lunch and checked out the Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibit at the Natural History Museum, but before we did any of that we grabbed breakfast from the Nordic Bakery. We specifically went for their cinnamon buns which are excellent, but while in there the Blueberry & Raspberry Oatbake caught my eye.