All posts filed under: Cakes

What to Do With the Urge to Cook

I cook an evening meal for my family every night and eighty per cent of the time I enjoy the process more than I enjoy the meal. I’m a good cook, (she says with eyes modestly downcast), but as with most cooks, I tend to lose interest in the product of my labour by the time it’s placed on the table. I think this is related to saturation of the senses during the cooking process and, more prosaically, nibbling as you cook. This lack of interest in the finished dish is no bad thing as I, like most middle-aged people, have to keep a weather eye on unwanted weight gain. Yes, terribly dreary, but this is how it is. And given this state of affairs – enjoying cooking but not the weight gain associated with eating all that I make – what can I do? I cannot force-feed my family or harass passers-by to come inside and eat cakes and jellies. So I decided to harness my cooking urges and, through a simple online arrangement …

‘The’ Sicilian Apple Cake

I’ve been blogging for 7 years, primarily about books and writing, but I always loved to slip in the occasional food post. I nicked this post on the Sicilian Apple Cake from my other website because it deserves to be here in this dedicated food environment. I have to say that in all the traffic to my writer website over the years, nothing … absolutely nothing, has generated as much traffic as this recipe. I’ve no idea why, except maybe the world knows a good cake recipe when it sees one The cake, full of apple and raisins, also has the distinctive Mediterranean combination of citrus, vanilla and cinnamon and is so good it should be cooked every day and offered up to the apple spirits. I first ate it in Lucia’s Cafe at Adelaide’s Central Markets, discovered what it was called and scuttled home to research the recipe. I found it on the local South Australian ABC website and reproduce it here for your cooking and eating pleasure. 120 gms butter, melted 50 gms …

A Storied Plum Cake

A good orchardist knows the plum varieties in their orchard, but somewhere between the orchardist and the shop the name of the plum simply becomes ‘Plums $6.99’. I love any sort of plum and I love their names too but because I rely on the shop for identification I can never be sure I know what I’m talking about. What is a Mariposa at the shop up the hill is often a Satsuma at the shop down the hill. The plums I used for this cake have a red, sweet flesh and could have been Mariposa, Elephant Heart, Dorrigo Blood or something else, but they were definitely blood plums. I’m sure you could use sweet yellow fleshed plums too but a splash of bloody red on a cake is always a good look. I found the recipe to this cake on the Smitten Kitchen blog where you can read about the cake’s pedigree.  Smitten Kitchen recommends Italian Prune Plums which are also known as Empress Plums but I’ve never seen them here, unless they are cunningly …