What do you do when a recipe doesn’t work? Throw your floured hands in the air in exasperation, huff and puff around the kitchen, glare at the offending item sitting on the kitchen worktop hands on hips or do you gnash and grind your teeth or weep in exasperation?
At varying times I’ve been known to do all of the above and more… you can include swearing in that cake mix.
Mary Berry’’s Lemon Drizzle traybake recipe recently had this affect on me. What emerged from the oven was a flattened thin and mean looking affair – not the light fluffy treat I had in mind.
I hate the thought of waste – of time, effort and ingredients. Time to put the coffee on and have a wander and ponder. A recipe rescue was needed if I was to take these on my book group walk and talk. A restorative caffeine hit and I was gently heating up a few tablespoons of apricot jam, cutting the traybake in half and slapping the said warmed apricot jam on one side of the cake and unceremoniously gluing it to the other slice. A quick lemon drizzle and a sprinkle of lemon zest later and I managed, by the skin of my teeth to pull the cake from the bin abyss.
The cake was duly eaten and enjoyed – but to be honest by the time we took a break from our walking read and talk and ate our snacks almost any kind of treat would have gone down well!
Later, I went back over the recipe, I had definitely followed the instructions, measured the ingredients, allotted the right time and temperature. So why did it not work? A few days later the answer came in a blog article I read (and which I forgot to note down so the mystery blogger will have to remain a mystery to you and I). It was all about baking, ingredients and techniques. It mentioned baking powder and it’s freshness……. Ahh the proverbial baking light went on, let’s check the date on my baking powder….. yup definitely out of date…getting on for a year…… (please don’t be harsh and judge me too unkindly!). Time to go and buy a replacement.
Lesson learnt. Three cheers for bloggers, apricot jam and not giving up!
And the book group walk and talk? We read Margaret Atwood’s Cat’s Eye’s as our farewell to a dear friend. I know both the book and cake would have met with her approval, but probably not the fuss and attention!