Friday, 30 September 2011

Olive oil crackers

I noticed these in the Ottolenghi cookbook last weekend when I made eight of its dishes including the Parmesan and poppy biscuits on the facing page to these, which is a story for another day. These are the sort of thing for which one always has the ingredients, for a change. And they’re pretty good, even without the dip one has failed to procure for Friday-night office wine.

Adapted from Ottolenghi: the Cookbook, p186

250g plain flour (I used 100g each of plain and bread flour, and 50gm wholemeal flour)
1 tsp baking powder
115ml water
25ml olive oil, plus extra for brushing (I used extra virgin)
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 tsp cayenne
¼ teaspoon black pepper
course sea salt for sprinkling – I found Maldon a bit too coarse on the first tray’s worth, so ground normal salt over the rest

Combine all the ingredients except the sea salt in the mixer bowl, and knead it with the dough hook until it all comes together in a firm consistency. (Or do it by hand.) Wrap in cling film and leave it to rest for an hour in the fridge.

Preheat the oven to 220°C. On a well-floured surface, use a rolling pin to roll walnut-sized bits of the dough as close to paper-thin as possible – or at least attempt this for one long, oval ‘witch’s tongue’, feel despairing at the result, have a brainwave and GET OUT YOUR PASTA MACHINE!
It really does look like a sulphurous witch's tongue...

Oh, it’s so inexpressibly pleasing when I find an unexpected use for such a guilt-provokingly underutilised utensil as the Imperia Tipo Lusso SP150. Putting the bits of dough through the largest setting and then the second-or-third-smallest to produce perfect thinness was the easiest task in the world, even though I’ve carelessly lost the attachment that bolts the machine to a benchtop, so that most of my left hand was employed holding the machine down while a few leftover fingers had to elevate the dough as it fed through the rollers.

Lay the pieces on trays lined with baking paper, brush generously with olive oil, then sprinkle on the sea salt, or topping of your choice – I tried fennel and cumin seeds for the third tray. Next time I might try chopped rosemary or thyme.
Bake for about 6 minutes, until crisp and golden brown. Allow to cool and store in an airtight container.

Thursday, 29 September 2011

Red-velvet and chocolate-hazelnut cupcakes

A long, long time ago, back in January before-the-blog, there was a red velvet cake. I don’t remember where the recipe came from, but I did buy The Hummingbird Bakery Cookbook for the occasion and then didn’t use it. So I felt it time to put it to use and enter into the world of cupcakes, albeit years after the rest of the world.

I find mildly interesting the whole circulation of hand-me-down wisdom surrounding achieving the greatest redness – whether the cocoa shouldn’t be dutch-process, and what the whole vinegar–bicarb soda relationship is all about. I wish Harold McGee would weigh in, but to my knowledge he hasn’t.
There’s a million red-velvet cake recipes out there, so I had a look around on the internet before quite committing myself to just one. And the upshot was that I took a leaf out of Hummingbird, and also smitten kitchen, who is always great at doing her own roundup of the best of all the offerings out there. Amid all my tweaks I kept more or less to the Hummingbird quantities, which promised 12 cupcakes, but met SK halfway in substituting oil for some of the butter in pursuit of greater moistness, and ramped up the cocoa quantity very slightly.

I found that the mixture was barely enough for 10 cupcakes, let alone the promised 12, and the wrappers didn’t end up quite full.

Red-velvet cupcakes
Adapted from smitten kitchen and The Hummingbird Bakery Cookbook

150g cake flour
15g unsweetened cocoa (SK suggests not Dutch process, Hummingbird doesn’t say)
½ teaspoon salt
100mL vegetable oil
60g melted butter
150g sugar
1 large egg
½ teaspoons vanilla extract
½ teaspoon Wilton’s red gel food colouring
120mL buttermilk
¾ teaspoon bicarb soda
1 ½ teaspoons white wine vinegar

Preheat the oven to 180C. Sift together the dry ingredients and set aside. Beat together the oil, butter and sugar, then add the egg, vanilla and food colouring to produce a brilliant red batter.

Add the sifted dry ingredients and buttermilk in two alternating stages, beating on low. The colour will now be dull.

Combine the bicarb and vinegar in a cup so it fizzes like mad, adding it to the mixture as it does so. Three-quarters fill cupcake papers and bake for about 25 minutes.

Allow to cool before even thinking of icing them.

60g butter
200g icing sugar
150g cream cheese
½ teaspoon vanilla extract

Beat butter and sugar together, then add cream cheese and vanilla and beat for a few minutes until smooth and fluffy. Put into a piping bag fitted with a generous star tip and swirl it on. I found this quantity a bit small for my ten cupcakes, even though it had more cream cheese than Hummingbird suggested (but less than their 300g sugar). It might have been fine for their spreading with a spoon, though; I was getting all fancy-pants swirly.

I dipped the tip of a teaspoon in more red food-colouring gel and bashed it around a tablespoon of turbinado sugar in an espresso cup to produce the red sugar crystals to sprinkle on top.

I felt this batch of ten wouldn’t be enough for the office, so got up early this morning to do another batch from Hummingbird that had caught my eye, despite it being a bit too closely related in the chocolate area and not overly complementary. Again, I tweaked it to add the Nutella straight into the mix rather than dig holes out of the cupcakes to fill with Nutella after baking.

And this amount of batter made a paltry six cupcakes! Six! What could be up with their quantities? Twelve might work for mini-cupcakes, not a good honest afternoon-tea-sized cupcake of which my colleagues are deserving.

Hazelnut and chocolate cupcakes
Adapted from The Hummingbird Bakery Cookbook

100g plain flour
20g cocoa (I used Dutch process this time)
140g caster sugar
1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
pinch salt
40g butter, room temperature
120mL milk (I used leftover buttermilk instead)
1 egg
about 50g Nutella

Preheat oven to 170C. Beat flour, cocoa, baking powder, salt and butter to a sandy, combined consistency. I found it curious to involve the flour at the outset rather than adding it to the beaten butter and eggs and sugar and only just beating it in, as Maida would do, but followed it to the letter.

Slowly pour in the milk and beat well before adding the egg; again, beat well. I was becoming wary of all this beating of flour, and hand-stirred this bit, along with the scoop of Nutella I’d decided to add.

Spoon the mixture into 12 6 cases and bake for 25 minutes.

I wanted to involve the leftover cream cheese in the icing rather than Hummingbird’s recipe, so I borrowed from Tartelette to make my own. 

100g cream cheese
50g butter
150g icing sugar
50g Nutella
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
I couldn’t help but add a splash of Frangelico.

Same process as for the icing above, but with chopped hazelnuts sprinkled over.

They were both pretty okay. What the hazelnut version lacked in looks over the red-velvet, it made up for in chocolatey, buttery delightfulness.

Tuesday, 27 September 2011

Peanut-Butter Pillows

I had a dream, a terrible dream, in which every one of my colleagues went on a detox diet.

I woke with the remnants of a scream in my throat, thrashed my way out of the twisted sheets and went straight to make something chockablock with as much fat and sugar as I could find. Maida Heatter’s Peanut-Butter Pillows seemed just the thing to stabilise my universe.

Her recipe would make about 16 filled cookies, she said. Well, that wouldn’t do for force-feeding my workplace out of any consideration of diets, so I doubled everything.

Adapted from Maida Heatter’s Book of Great Cookies, pp 142–3
380g plain flour
1 teaspoon bicarb soda
½ teaspoon salt
230g unsalted butter
260g smooth (not chunky) peanut butter
200g raw or white sugar
170g light corn syrup (I used glucose syrup)
2 tablespoons milk
an additional cup or so of peanut butter for filling
I added about 50g roughly chopped dark chocolate

Sift together the flour, baking soda, and salt, and set aside. Cream the butter. Add the peanut butter and sugar and beat thoroughly. Beat in the syrup and the milk. On low speed, add the sifted dry ingredients, scraping the bowl as necessary with a rubber spatula and beating only until smooth.

Turn out the dough, knead it briefly and then form it into an even log about 20cm long and 5cm in diameter. Wrap the dough in clingwrap and refrigerate for at least a couple of hours.

Preheat oven to 180°C. Line trays with baking paper.

With a sharp knife, cut slices 5mm thick and place them 3cm apart on the trays – they spread quite a bit. My dough was still fairly soft and lost its roundness as I sliced it, but this is magical self-healing dough, and the most messy, oval, cracked biscuit sorted itself out in the cooking – not that these are exactly the epitome of elegance, they’re more your hearty gobstopper variety of biscuit.

Place a teaspooned blob of the additional peanut butter in the centre of each round, flattening it slightly to leave a 1cm border. Still enmeshed in my nightmare, I extended a chopped bit of dark chocolate to each, as garlic to a vampire.

Slice the remaining dough and place the rounds over one of the peanut-butter-topped biscuits. Let stand for a few minutes to allow the dough to soften slightly. Then seal the edges by pressing them lightly with a fork. Don’t worry about slight cracks in the tops – all that will happen is that peanut butter (and chocolate) will glimmer shinily through them, and since when was that a bad thing?

Bake for 15 minutes until lightly browned. Let the biscuits stand on the trays for about a minute. Then, with a wide metal spatula, transfer them to racks to cool.

And they were good, all crunchy and buttery and salty and sweet. There was no stopping at just one, or three. I stand by the chocolate, too.

Maida must have been making dinner-plate sized ones (perhaps to better allow for the pillow mound of peanut butter, which I didn’t achieve – more of a flattish layer in mine) to get only 16 out of one quantity – I got about 60. Too many, in fact, for the kitchen biscuit jar, but my colleagues were quick to resolve that issue.

Monday, 19 September 2011

Pinwheel biscuits

I’ve always had a thing for a spiral (and in fact am frittering away my life looking for a suitably worthy garment on which to sew the red-and-white spiral buttons I got many moons ago from Buttonmania. (I have a lot of buttons experiencing that fate. Button paralysis, it’s called – a subcategory of that infamous scourge of the amateur sewist, stash paralysis.) And I fear I would be one of those unfortunates to be sucked into a whirlpool just by contemplating it a moment too long).

These are Vertigo-in-a-biscuit! I’m sure I remember these on a table at a school fete in 1982, and I was pretty delighted with them then, and curious about how they were done – in the same way that I remain curious about Castlemaine Rock.

I made the straight chocolate-and-vanilla recipe from Maida Heatter’s Book of Great Cookies, and no sooner had I slid the rolled log into the fridge than I got to thinking of all the other two-toned flavours that could be made. So I immediately got to making a matcha and white chocolate version.

220g plain flour
½ teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon salt
30g unsweetened chocolate
115g butter
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
150g sugar (I used raw)
1 egg
1 teaspoon powdered instant coffee (I used not-instant ground coffee)
¼ teaspoon almond extract
1/3 cup pecans, finely chopped (I used walnuts)

Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt. Melt the chocolate in the microwave. (Or in a double boiler like Maida, although 30g would get lost in the corners, I’d imagine.)

Cream the butter, add vanilla, sugar and egg one by one, beating well. Drop the speed to low and add the dry ingredients just until it all comes together.

At this point, Maida says to take out a cup of the dough. That didn’t seem exact enough for me, so I added up the weight of all the ingredients and took out 270g. The melted chocolate and coffee went into one half, and the almond extract and pecans into the other.

Sandwich one lump of dough between two sheets of baking paper and roll out to a 14"x9" oblong. I have no concept of what this would look like even in centimetres, so I took a leaf out of My Little Kitchen’s book and taped the dimensions on the bench, where they showed through the paper as a guide. When it was more or less the right size overall, I peeled off the top layer of paper and trimmed off the excess from the sides, using it to fill in the corners. The dough was sticky but quite malleable, so this wasn’t too hard. Same for the other lump of dough, and then carefully, carefully laid one evenly atop the other.

Then the paper beneath the dough can be used to help roll up along the long side to form the roll. It all seemed to come together pretty well, and into the fridge to firm up for a few hours.

Then it’s all fun – slicing the log into ½ centimetre rounds, exposing the nice even spiral.

They’re baked for 12 minutes at 180C until golden at the edges, and out they come, pretty and buttery and crunchy.

For the second version, I simply replaced the chocolate and coffee with a tablespoon of matcha, and the almond extract and walnuts with 30g white chocolate. They were okay, and nice-looking, although the white chocolate didn’t come through strongly – to be expected, really. I might try more white chocolate next time, paired with lemon.

Saturday, 17 September 2011

Mondrian marchpane

It may seem counter-intuitive, but on certain blustery, eucalyptus-smelling Saturday afternoons in spring, all one wants to do is to slather one’s face with white lead, pop on a John Dowland playlist, and blanch one’s own raw almonds to make an Elizabethan marchpane. 

 The urge may have had something to do with accumulating these delightful and very beautifully Coralie-Bickford-Smith-designed books from the Penguin Great Food series and wanting to actually make something from them, as does the intrepid @PenfromPenguin.
It may have had something to do with procrastination as well.

So this 1615 recipe from Gervase Markham calls for Jordon almonds – I’m pretty sure he didn’t have pastel-coloured wedding bonbonnière in mind, so I reached for 250g raw almonds. (I briefly considered going straight for almond meal, but wanted to display some integrity for a change – and there was the procrastination thing.) I poured boiling water over them, waited a minute, drained and doused them in ice water.

Their skins remained stubbornly attached, and after painstakingly removing a few by way of scraping at them with a thumbnail, I repeated the blanching process and then found it all much easier – they started to just pop obligingly out of their skins when squeezed.

Then, continuing in the spirit of integrity despite the time wasted messing about with skinning the almonds, I cast them into a mortar and pestle and started bashing away. It wasn’t long before my integrity slipped and pooled around my alabaster feet, and out came the food processor. I added 140g icing sugar and blitzed it all into a paste with 2 tablespoons rosewater. It turned out smoothish, though nothing like wedding-cake marzipan.

I kept back a small lump of it to create conceits and subtleties for decorating later, and rolled out the sticky bulk of it between two sheets of baking paper to line the bottom of a cake tin.

Then I bashed up the reserved lump with a speck of purple Wilton’s gel for a regal touch, and tried various sculptures, shapes and patterns to arrange into a decorative whole, but eventually gave up on that and decided to keep it simple so I could wash the white lead off my face, kill the sounds of Emma Kirkby and Anthony Rooley, and generally get on with my life before I should mourn that the day had with darkness fled. I have a twenty-first-century attention span, you see.

I rolled out the purple paste, squished it into right-angled lines here and there, and – this is how slow I am – saw all the bright Wilton’s gels and thought I’d make with icing sugar and rosewater a little round Mondrian-inspired piece of artwork, all for me.

I baked it at 170C for half an hour, after which it was decidedly the worse for wear, with the icing having bubbled up and oozed where it shouldn’t, causing Mondrian to roll even more in his grave than my unmathematical distribution of colours had.

And it tasted just like macarons.

To make the best marchpane (Gervase Markham, The Well-Kept Kitchen, p74)
To make the best marchpane, take the best Jordan almonds and blanch them in warm water, then put them into a stone mortar, and with a wooden pestle beat them to pap, then take of the finest refined sugar well searced, and with it, and damask rose-water, beat it to a good stiff paste, allowing almost to every Jordan almond three spoonful of sugar; then when it is brought thus to a paste, lay it upon a fair table, and, strewing searced sugar under it, mould it like leaven; then with a rolling pin roll it forth, and lay it upon wafers washed with rose-water; then pinch it about the sides, and put it into what form you please; then strew searced sugar all over it; which done, wash it over with rose-water and sugar mixed together, for that will make the ice; then adorn it with comfits, gilding or whatsoever devices you please, and so set it into a hot stove, and there bake it crispy, and so service it forth.  Some use to mix with the paste cinnamon and ginger finely searced, but I refer that to your particular taste.

Friday, 16 September 2011

Hermit Bars

It seems this is an Early American classic of which every nineteenth-century Cape Cod woman had her own version to send with her sailor-man to sea, so well did it keep. 

I made this recipe because the heroic blogger who baked every single one of Maida’s Book of Great Cookies recipes really liked these, and even sent them on the two-week trip through the post to test their keeping and transport capabilities.

These remind me of Xmas, somehow – maybe reminiscent of the panforte I’ve made for Xmases past. At work, they reminded Our Fearless Leader of her mother’s Lebkuchen.

Adapted from Maida Heatter’s Book of Great Cookies, pp 99–100

320g plain flour
¾ teaspoon bicarb soda
¾ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground cloves
¼ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
¼ teaspoon mace
1/8 teaspoon allspice
120g unsalted butter
100g raw sugar
2 eggs
½ cup molasses (I used blackstrap, which was all I had – tasted like metallic liquorice, so I cut in a third of malt syrup)
140g raisins, soaked for a few minutes in boiling water and drained
115g roughly chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 180C. Butter a 13x9 inch slice pan – no, really, butter it, as Maida says. Don’t just ignore that instruction, like I did, and line with baking paper instead, as I always do; no, not for this one.

Sift together all the dry ingredients. Cream the butter, add the sugar and eggs one at a time; beat until smooth. Beat in the molasses, stopping the mixer unless you want black strands of molasses whipped around the bowl and up the mixing shank to be found in all sorts of places afterwards. Add dry ingredients on low speed just until it comes together, and mix in the raisins and walnuts. This is a very thick, heavy dough by now, and Maida’s instruction to spread it smoothly in the pan is easier said than done, especially when you’ve gone ahead and lined the pan with baking paper that slips around everywhere.

Bake for 30 minutes until the top of the cake springs back when lightly pressed with a fingertip. Mine looked like the surface of the moon, and no springing was going on, but I took it out after 40 minutes regardless – I think it was a tad overcooked and dry.

Get going on the glaze, or have it done before the cake comes out – it needs to be applied while the cake’s still very hot.

150g icing sugar
30g butter, melted
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
3–4 tablespoons boiling water

Place the sugar, butter and vanilla in the bowl of an electric mixer, or prepare to stir it by hand – in which case, sift the sugar first against lumps. Beat on a low speed while gradually adding just enough of the water to form a medium-thick but pourable consistency.

Pour it over the hot base and brush to cover. It’ll melt into the nooks and crannies and become clearish in parts. Leave it to cool and dry before slicing into squares.

Monday, 12 September 2011

Alice B Toklas’s Tender Tart

Amid all the recipes in the Alice B Toklas Cookbook for chicken in a gallon of cream and 12 egg yolks, here’s a tart made by ‘sweet weak Kasper’, one of a vast progression of servants from whom Alice B Toklas drew most of her recipes. (Different times, that’s all I can say – though I seem to be increasingly on my own in not employing a house-cleaner still, given Gertrude Stein had to be waited on hand and foot and disliked seeing work being done, perhaps it was one way of keeping things slightly fairer for the devoted Alice B Toklas.) Unlike Gertrude Stein, Alice B Toklas uses commas, thank God, but no quote marks, and the meaning of a lot of her writing is difficult to untangle.

The recipe is also to be found in Gourmet Traveller, in which the top is latticed instead of solid, and a fluted tart tin is used – both of which I went with. But the quantities are quite different, higher ratio of butter and less sugar, and for the sake of the exercise I went with Alice B Toklas’s version, test-kitchenless though it probably was. It was delicious, but very sweet, which I imagine is why GT recommended serving it with goats milk yoghurt.

(p61 in my beautiful Folio Society edition with slipcase, velvety silver-topped pages and a line drawing of a painstakingly decorated carp on the cover and endpapers)

130g butter, 140g flour,* 1 egg yolk, blend with knives or pastry blender,** add only enough water to hold together, knead lightly, put aside in refrigerator.
Stir 2 eggs and 225g sugar for 20 minutes**** – do not beat. Add 1 teaspoon vanilla and 1 cup finely chopped hazel-nuts.

Roll out a little more than half the dough, place in deep pie plate, with detachable bottom, fill with egg-sugar-nut mixture. Roll out remaining dough and cover tart, press edges together so that the bottom and top crusts adhere.***** Bake for ½ hour in 180C oven. Exquisite.
*Quantities were all, like, ‘½ cup plus 1 tablespoon’ – thank you for conversions,, saving us all from trying to measure solid butter in a cup.
** Ha! Not likely. Hello, food processor.
***Paragraph breaks mine.
**** Ha! Not likely. Hello, KitchenAid on the slowest setting with dough hook. Though what on earth all this stirring-not-beating is supposed to do to the sugar and eggs is quite beyond me – a tedious chore devised to occupy the servants, perhaps.
***** I do not possess what might be known as a light hand with the pastry, but in my defence, and as frequently documented, I do not have a marble work surface, with which I remain convinced every obstacle to perfect pastry would be surmounted. In brief, I didn’t have much fun with this pastry – very breaky. I quickly gave up on the floured wooden board and went for the baking paper, which skidded around but was better – although the rolling pin kept picking up bits and ripping great holes in the rest, no matter how liberally floured it was. I patched up the base, but the 1/3 reserved for the top and scored with the lattice cutter fell to bits on contact with the tart filling and was generally a disaster. By way of apology to the tart, I went the extra mile uninstructed by Alice B Toklas and brushed it with a yolk* beaten with milk.
*On yolks, I have lots of them thanks to the macaron-making. Some sources say leftover yolks can’t be frozen; others say they can, with a drop of glucose syrup added to them. So I froze them accordingly in an iceblock-tray – and I find they’re not bad depending on what they’re being used for. They thaw fairly quickly, but remain much thicker than a fresh yolk, so are best suited for situations where they’re being beaten into other things. Great for when working from a cookbook such as Alice B Toklas’s where a full henhouse is assumed and something seems to be held against the use of the whole egg.

Sunday, 11 September 2011

Korova Sablés

These elegant, rich choc-chip slice-and-bakes are also known as World Peace Cookies in Dorie Greenspan’s Baking, but I prefer Korova Sablés, as they’re named at Pierre Hermé’s in Paris and in Dorie’s little earlier cookbook, Paris Sweets. Anything that touches on A Clockwork Orange is fine by me, my droogs, and these are good – in fact, you’ll be out of your rasoodocks with radosty to have these in your rookers, along with a nice moloko or chai.

175g plain flour
30g dutch-process cocoa
½ teaspoon bicarb soda
150g unsalted butter, room temperature
120g brown sugar
50g raw sugar
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
150g dark chocolate (I used Callebaut Strong 70%, the very last of my 2.5kg)

Beat the butter until creamy. Add the sugars, salt and vanilla extract and beat for a couple of minutes.
Sift in the flour, cocoa, bicarb, add choc chips and beat on the lowest speed or by hand only until the mixture looks crumbly – don’t overwork it. 
Scrunch the dough into a rough ball and then divide in half. Form each chunk into a log, wrap in baking paper or Gladwrap and put in the fridge to chill for at least 2 hours – it can stay there for three days, or can be frozen for future reference.
Preheat the oven to 165C. With a sharp nozh (I find a little serrated one good for getting through the choc chips), shive the logs into rounds about 1.5cm thick. If they crumble or break, just push them back together again – they’ll come good in the baking (I also roll their edges in sugar, for prettiness, but this is also a good moment to get them shapely again). Place lomticks onto a tray lined with baking paper, a centimetre or two apart.
Bake for 12 minutes. They mightn’t look cooked, but will firm up as they cool.

And then, oh my brothers, bliss and heaven, horrorshow gorgeousness and gorgeousity as you cram these into your rot.

Friday, 2 September 2011

Spanish orange cake

And more orange fun. This almost exhausted my supply of oranges, so great has been my zeal for using them up. And now I have a backlog of orange recipes.

This was a good, rather plain and no-nonsense cake, dense and very orangey. The marmalade couldn’t be done without; some crème fraiche wouldn’t have gone astray, although the tub I purchased vanished from the fridge overnight. I have no conclusions whatsoever about that; can't even blame the cats.

350g plain flour
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon salt
240g butter
270g sugar (I used raw)
finely grated zest of 2 oranges
2 eggs, separated
3 egg yolks
2/3 cup orange juice

Preheat oven to 180C. Maida calls for a nine-inch tube tin, but I used a 20cm square tin. Sift together flour, baking powder and salt.

Beat butter to soften, then add most of the sugar and beat for a few minutes until pale, keeping back a few tablespoons (as the sugar kept back is for strengthening the egg whites, I substituted raw caster sugar for that.) Add the orange zest and then the five egg yolks one at a time, beating well. Go to the lowest speed or hand-mix in the flour, alternating with the orange juice, until just incorporated. It will be quite a heavy, clumpy dough at this point.

In a clean bowl, beat the egg whites until soft peaks form, then add sugar and keep beating until they have glossy, firm peaks. Fold this into the batter, then turn it all into the cake tin.

Bake for about an hour or until a skewer withdraws clean. Cool cake in the pan for 20 minutes before placing on a rack over some greaseproof paper, or the sink, to collect drips from the glaze.

For the glaze, bring marmalade and 2 tablespoons water to the boil, then brush over top and sides of cooled cake. Let stand to dry for several hours (or overnight if you’re me) before transferring to a cake plate.