I’ve never wanted to swear at a fox before but there’s a first time for everything. Just as I had got into bed, a fox started screaming outside the window (nature’s most beautiful mating call) and threatened to wake Mister Baby. When you have a sleeping infant, suddenly all interruptions make you volcanically (but quietly) annoyed. Fuck off, Mr Fox.
Thankfully the baby remained asleep for the moment and I got another fragmentary night.
It’s a Sunday Bake recipe today! Earlier in the week I had been confronted by a choice between gluten free chocolate cake or Victoria sponge in a cafe. I had the chocolate cake but of course, also really wanted the sponge. I also wanted fairy cakes. So, here it is – mini Victoria cakes but with the addition of a cherry compote instead of jam.
150g plain flour
150g golden caster sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
Dash of vanilla essence
2 tablespoons of milk
500g cherries (i.e one bag of Tesco frozen cherries)
1 tablespoon brown sugar
As with a traditional Victoria sponge, it’s equal parts flour, butter and caster sugar. Cream these together.
Beat in the three eggs. If you’re sleep deprived and in a rush like yours truly, accidentally put the eggs in before you’ve creamed the other ingredients together and then spend a while cursing and trying to get lumps out.
Add the vanilla essence, baking powder and milk to loosen the batter.
Spoon the mix into 10 cupcake/fairy cake cases and bake at 180 degrees for 15-18 minutes. They should be golden brown and if you turn one over and knock on the bottom it will sound hollow.
Allow to cool while you make the compote. This is easy as anything – simply heat the cherries and brown sugar together until the cherries have reduced to a thick jam.
The compote is best warm, so dust the cakes with caster sugar and serve with Earl Grey or black coffee.