Friday, 25 March 2011

Rye On Film

More photos from when we went to Rye in February. It was nice to be there but it was nicer to leave - I forget how scary small towns can be sometimes. 

Tuesday, 22 March 2011


A pictorial progression from winter to late spring, 2010. 

More on Flickr

Thursday, 17 March 2011

Flourless Orange Cake

After tasting Yusuf's version of this flourless orange cake at the Rag Factory Jumble Sale last July, I proceeded to hassle him for the recipe until he finally emailed it to me. It then sat in my inbox, cold and lonely, until about a week ago. The four pathetic oranges sitting in the kitchen were begging me to put them out of their juicy but tasteless misery, and it was then I remembered the recipe.
It may seem like quite a bit of work at first, but once you've spent an hour and a half boiling the oranges, the cake actually comes together very quickly and easily. There's also some good news for those watching their waistlines - the cake's moist, crumbly texture is achieved without the use of any butter at all. The only change I made to the original recipe was to add 50gm of crystallised ginger to it all, for a little hint of spice (and because the ginger's best-before date was rapidly approaching). 

Flourless Orange Cake (adapted from Yusuf's recipe)

3 medium oranges (I used 4 small ones here)
6 eggs, separated
200gm caster sugar
50gm crystallised ginger (optional)
200gm ground almonds
1 tbsp baking powder

- Place whole, unpeeled oranges (clean them if need be) in water, bring to the boil, then simmer for 1 1/2 hours or more until soft.

- Drain oranges, cut into quarters, discard seeds and leave to cool. When cool, whiz oranges and ginger (if using) into food processor.

- Preheat oven to 180 C and lightly grease/line a 9 inch springform tin. 

- Beat egg yolks and sugar together until pale, then beat in oranges, almonds and baking powder.

- Beat egg whites until soft peaks, then fold gently into mixture. Pour batter into baking tin, and bake for an hour until firm to the touch. 

- Cool the cake in the tin, then remove it and dust icing sugar over it before serving. Enjoy!

Tuesday, 15 March 2011

Early Spring Weddings

Knowing my penchant for old wedding photos, lovely Petra presented me with these two beauties she found recently.

Wednesday, 9 March 2011


You know, I always thought I would make an excellent Viking. Okay, maybe not the pillaging and killing bits (what exactly does pillaging involve, anyway?) But the wearing-a-silly-hat-and-lots-of-(fake) fur bits, as well as the running-around-with-a-big-sword-and-yelling-a-lot bit - those bits, definitely!

But hang on, what's being a Viking got to do with baking? Well, Vikings were one of the things that sprang to mind as soon as I spied these shiny barquette moulds in an antiques shop in Rye.
The other thought that sprang to mind? Financiers, finally! I may not have married one (opting instead for the poor but handsome IT geek), but I can certainly eat them. You can make the little cakes in cupcake tins, but that somehow seemed just a little wrong to me, which is way I was beyond excited when I spotted the little plastic bag of little metal boats in the shop.

Anyway, the whole point of this rather pointless preamble is to tell that 'Yes, I made some financiers'. Then dressed them up and pretended they were little drekars that were invading my kitchen. 
So, yes, I spent my Sunday making tiny little flags and pretending I was a Viking. But, whatever. It was my Sunday, after all. You probably would have done the same if you'd had these shiny new-old barquette moulds in your possession. 

The recipe is simplicity itself, although it does take a little time to butter and flour all those little boats. I followed this recipe from the BBC Good Food guide, swapping out the 50g of raisins for 50g frozen blueberries instead. I'm told that the recipe came from Gordon Ramsey. In that case, old foulmouth might have made a mistake with his measurements - it supposedly makes 24 financiers, but I struggled to fill up 15 moulds. 

Then again, it could very well be my fault, what with me being a financier virgin and all. Whatever the case, these are definitely worth making - you're rewarded with a dense, moist cake that's rich with the flavour of browned butter and almonds. 

I'm still looking out for other financier recipes to try though, so do pass them this way if you've got a good one!