Tuesday, 27 September 2011

Let's just say...

...I'm not a natural baker.
Last Saturday I had a notion to make a cake. Now this doesn't happen often and when it does I have to go out and buy all the makings. I daren't have butter in the house because it haunts me, flour is not something I use much unless I am making a cake and we already know that's a rare thing, the only one who eats eggs is the old man, so naturally I never have any of those...

Anyway, I found a recipe for Victoria Sponge that being my favourite. Bear in mind that I have an O level in Housecraft and have actually made one of these on more than one occasion. The book I was looking in (I realised this at a later stage) assumed that one would be using a big mixer. I don't have one of those and tend to rely on the wooden spoon and hand blender from about 1978 method of mixing. So, this recipe tells you to bung it all in and get mixing. Not being a natural baker, or it seems, clever enough to suss out the fact that a mixer was required here, I did it. In my bowl I had butter (not softened, why bother? I soon found out.) Flour, sugar and beaten eggs. For those of you who are indeed natural bakers you can imagine the state I got myself into. And my kitchen. Embarassed though I am, I took pictures.
At about this time, when I had splattered the kitchen with so much cake mixture it looked like a plasterer's radio, Teenage Daughter#2, who is 14, walked in and told me I was doing it wrong. After I beat her severely about the head and put her in a children's home, I carried on, doing my utmost to get this bowl of floury, eggy lumps to resemble something of a 'soft dropping consistency.'
Eventually, after leaving it in the oven a tad too long and enjoying licking the bowl out a little too much, I ended up with a cake.
It tasted ok, if a bit biscuity, I pretended it was lovely when the rest of the family refused to eat any. The half that broke into three pieces was used on the bottom so it didn't show and it sort of stuck together with the buttercream icing. (Did I mention that I bought that in a tub?)
On Sunday, said Teenage Daughter, (on a jolly from the children's home) made cup cakes. I have to say that they were so light and fluffy and spongy they could have been sold in a shop. Little mare.
I have decided that one of my ambitions has gone up the swanee. Just because I am good at buying china doesn't mean I would be any good at owning a tea shop. Unless I employ the teenage daughter to do the cooking.
No danger of me entering The Great British Bake Off.


  1. That's positively Mary Berry standard compared to what my husband made for me on Mother's Day - a coffee walnut cake which could be (and was) worn as a beret by boy2. He didn't bother icing it. We broke chunks off and once softened in coffee, it was...interesting.

  2. The cake looks OK.
    Have a look on my "It Works for Me......."blog then have another go!
    Julie xxxxxx

  3. Looks like a cake to me. Cake making doesn't come naturally to me either but I'm persevering. Even though my family laugh at my attempts somehow it all gets eaten and there may be an occasional - "quite nice that cake" comment. Persevere, I'm still trying to conquer the awful mess I make when I muster up the courage to bake!
    Love from Mum

  4. Missy, I'm with you all the way on this baking lark. Cakes that resemble biscuits are my forte dontcha know! I blame the oven (I really do), I think it just overcooks the mixture. Yes, that's it, it's the oven what ruins a perfectly good cake mixture.

    I have to say that your cake looks a perfectly fine one - and who cares whether your family eat it or not - all the more for you. Result!

  5. Hello Missy ~ I would certainly eat a slice of your cake ~ it looks good to me...... Also sounds like a good idea to get teenage daughter slaving away in the kitchen doing all the baking ~ they say practise makes perfect and then she would be prepared just in case you did get a tea room ~ lol! I didn't know you could buy butter icing in a tub either. Then again if I do go shopping with my hubby we only buy what's on the shopping list, there's no time for browsing ....... Have a good Wednesday x

  6. Oh my goodness - this is so funny. It mildly reminds me of my kitchen after the kids got done with it. But I am sure that it was delicious!!! Your family's loss for not eating it!! And don't you just love a know-it-all kid - back to the home with her - lol!!


  7. I think your cake looks just fine , Now following your lovely blog xx Ava

  8. I certainly wouldn't turn down a slice of that cake :) Baking can be messy work..I am a super messy baker (some of the cake mix does eventually end up in the cake tin though :P). When I can't be bothered, I will sometimes cheat a little and buy a boxed cake mix. A chocolate cake mix (shop bought), with whipping cream and a can of pie cherries, makes a really yummy (and easy) 'Black Forest Cake'.

  9. So pleased your daughter hasn't inherited your baking gene although I have to say the cake looks delicious to me. Do hope you got her to sweep the chimney before she went back to the 'dumping ground' (as they say in Tracy Beaker)!

  10. Ha Ha what an adventure!!! Licking the batter out of the bowl is the best part anyway. I've hid many a busted cake under the top layer and icing. Your cake looks good enough to eat, pass the teapot!

  11. Missy, I must confess that I'm a pretty fine baker but in my book, a cake is a cake is a cake and should never EVER be sniffed at as cake is one of life's simple pleasures. My advice would be, don't give up, stick to the all-in-one method cakes and you'll be a whizz :) x

  12. I blimmin' love your blog, so sorry I haven't commented before.
    BUT your comment on my blog made me laugh (yeah I want a boyf called Valentino too!!!) so I felt compelled to comment now, even if my dinner is getting cold.
    Your cake is ACE compared to mine. Once, I made one so bad, even the birds wouldn't eat it. I left it out there a week and then embarrased, I had to do the humble walk out there to the bird table and empty it all in the bin.
    Yours looks fab. Mine goes biscuity and either flops over the sides of the tins when baking or sinks. Or explodes.
    Have a lush weekend

  13. My cakes always look like that!, no matter what I do, they just arn't proper cakes. I figure I am not a baker either, practice makes perfect is total poppy cock in my opinion....how many of the flippin things do you have to bake before they are perfect, I just eat my mother in laws ...now they are perfect xx

  14. Well, it certainly looks lovely!! I could just eat a slice with a cup of tea!!

    Thanks for stopping by my blog, I've become a follower of yours, how have I not seen it before?!!

    S x