Waiting for Agnes

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Loophole number three… September 8, 2010

Filed under: Beautiful baking — titchandboofer @ 3:38 am
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…The virtuous use of leftovers:

Beloved, from bathroom where she is in bath with small (thus trapped and unable to patrol the kitchen) –

“I hear something! What are you doing out there?”

“Nothing, just, you know, putting stuff away”

“What stuff?”

“Um, dishes?”

“Why can I hear chopping?”

“I don’t know. What, do you have supersonic hearing now?” ¬†…whispering “usually you can’t hear me when I’m talking to you from two feet away”

“I heard that! And WHAT ARE YOU CHOPPING?”

“Nothing”…whispering veeery softly “rhubarb”.

Pause. General baby-bathing noises resume. Plug pulled. Bath toys clatter about. Small complaining about end of bath.

Back in the kitchen I am trying to bake and hide evidence as quickly as possible. Mainly this just makes more mess.

“Why are you opening the fridge?”

“Just looking in it.”

Footsteps approaching kitchen. Quick appraisal of scene of crime. “YOU’RE BAKING! I SAID NO BAKING UNTIL SUNDAY! IT’S TUESDAY!”

“Did you just want me to let this rhubarb go off? Did you want it to be wasted and thrown into the compost? SHALL WE JUST THROW SOME MONEY AWAY TOO?!!”

Thrifty Rhubarb Muffins

leftover rhubarb from Wintery Whinypants Cake approx 100 grams (after trimming leaves and ends off), finely sliced (finer than cake, as cooking time is shorter)

160 grams of self-raising flour, sifted

125 grams of brown sugar

1 teaspoon of vanilla extract

1 egg

90 grams of ricotta

65 grams of unsalted butter, melted

handful of white chocolate pieces, originally intended as snack, sliced up finely and thrown in at end for the hell of it

Preheat your oven to 180 degrees celsius (160 fan forced)

Line a muffin tin with cases, or grease it very well, or use the little flat-bottom-and-smooth-side paper cases that can just sit on a tray (you will need 9 or 10)

Mix the flour, sugar and chopped rhubarb in a medium bowl.

Mix the vanilla, egg, ricotta and butter in a small bowl/jug.

Add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir to combine.

Stir in the white chocolate.

Spoon into muffin tin/cases

Bake for 15-20 minutes. They are done when risen, golden and springy to touch.

“I’m not eating any.”


“But I will take two to golf tomorrow.”


Everyone’s a little bit whiny September 1, 2010

Filed under: Beautiful baking,Cakes to covet — titchandboofer @ 11:47 am
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I have a cold. The beloved has a cold. Small has a cold. Fun times. Day spent mainly curled up in an armchair, drowsily feeding a drowsy small. Then I remembered we had rhubarb in the house. Glorious, sweet, tangy rhubarb. Perfect for cold wintry days. Turn it into crumble or sponge pudding, pie or fool, something very American called grunt, or just stew it and heap it over vanilla ice-cream, or tuck it under custard. Or make cake.

Wintery Whinypants Cake

~300 grams of fresh rhubarb (roughly half a bunch, exact amount not essential Рjust go with your preference, although a massive amount will destabilise the cake a little)

310 grams of self-raising flour, sifted

250 grams of brown sugar

1 vanilla pod

2 eggs

125 grams of plain yoghurt

125 grams of unsalted butter, melted

Preheat your oven to 180 degrees celsius (170 fan forced)

Butter and line a 20cm springform tin

Crack your eggs into a small bowl. Put your yoghurt in another small bowl.

Split the vanilla pod and scrape out the seeds. Stir the seeds into the yoghurt. Immerse the split pod in the cracked eggs. Set aside (If you like, you could do this a few hours ahead of time, putting the bowls in the fridge. If you were super keen, you could put your uncracked eggs in an airtight container with the vanilla pod for 24 hours beforehand to really infuse the flavour in. Conversely, if you can’t be bothered with any of this faffing about, just use a teaspoon of vanilla extract.)

Trim the leaves and ends from the stalks of rhubarb. Slice finely (<1/2 cm thick if you can).

Put the flour, sugar and rhubarb in a large bowl and combine well.

Remove the vanilla pod from the eggs and beat them lightly.

Add the eggs, yoghurt and melted butter to the bowl with the flour, sugar and rhubarb. Mix thoroughly to combine.

Spoon into your prepared cake tin, smoothing out the top. The mixture is very thick but don’t worry, this is just how it should be.

Bake for 40-50 minutes, depending on the force of your oven. It is done when an inserted skewer comes out clean and the top is a little springy.

Leave in the tin to cool for ~15 minutes, then turn onto a wire rack.

Eat while it’s still warm if you can, drizzled with a little cream, or served with a scoop of ice-cream.

Just right for a cold evening. Warm, rich cake, studded liberally with tangy little jewels of rhubarb. Perfect remedy for a whiny family.