Monday, April 1, 2013

Fresh Gingerbread With(out) Lemon icing

Woke up at 5.30am two weekends ago and couldn't go back to sleep, so I decided to bake something for Sunday breakfast. It's not Christmas but I fancied something wholesome and comforting. This recipe was categorised under "Cooking for School F├ęte" in Nigella Lawson's HTBADG book and I could see why. It was so easy to slice them in slabs and old-fashioned enough to get them sold! As its name, the recipe called for fresh ginger. Fresh ginger is abundant here and it's important to note that you use fresh young ginger. We get both types here and old ginger is usually used in cooking but for baking, you need to use the juicy young ones. The method is melt-and-mix like for brownies, quick and simple. I didn't do the lemon icing. It wasn't necessary at all in my opinion. It's just a tablespoon of lemon juice in icing sugar and water. Nothing great. The children enjoyed it as much as we did, especially when we had it warm. Have to remember to bake this during Christmas.

Orange, Almond And Yoghurt Loaf

I received a beautiful recipe book from Little Miss for my birthday early this year and I've been marking the pages for all the cakes and loaves I planned to try out. I don't know why I bothered because I wanted to bake everything from the book - Cake Days by The Hummingbird Bakery. Little Miss saw me browsing this thick hard cover treasure in the book store during the holidays and asked if I liked the book. Well...who wouldn't. It's such a beautiful book, very much like Jamie Oliver's Jamie At Home recipe book. But the key thing was it had some lovely cake recipes using very easily-available ingredients. Plus, I've been long curious about this American bakery's success in London! I wanted to know what they were serving in the UK (just like I got Magnolia Bakery's book just to find out what they served in the US!).

Back to my birthday present...well, Little Miss conspired with the MOTH and got the book. I was over the moon, of course...yes, it takes very little to please me these days. I'm always happy receiving recipe books *hint* (not from the MOTH though, in case he gets any idea from this easy way out of his gift-giving years ahead) but this was extra special because of the little card that came along with it.

I know...doesn't that just make you want to bake and feed her all the cakes in the world?? Yes, she loves cakes and all things sweet. Sugar is definitely doing something right in her! So, I started with Orange, Almond And Yoghurt Loaf. I had leftover yoghurt... It was an simple loaf recipe and turned out to be a good tea cake. Flavours weren't strong. The orange didn't stand out, but the ground almonds and flakes used on the cake did. The little amount of yoghurt used for the cake was enough to keep it moist but it was a bit crumbly due to the ground almonds. Very light cake though.