Just loafing around…in every sense!
Today has been a lovely day; really quite relaxing – which is welcome as I’ve recently been working extra specially super hard! It isn’t often that I don’t find myself with a deadline or three to be working towards, so when I do I like to make the most of it!
First thing this morning, Mr Cupcake and Bake and I took a good lungful of sea air at the local nature reserve at Farlington Marshes, which is at the top end of the beautiful Langstone Harbour, Hampshire. Although quite close to the traffic hurtling along the A27 this tranquil spot really is a little oasis of calm, with wading birds, grazing cattle and “diving & swooping” birds on view this morning. The sound of the wind blowing through the reeds and grasses never fails to relax my mind…
Once back home, garden tidying duties beckoned for Jeremy – who was joined by our 10 chickens in spending a pleasant afternoon pottering around. For me? Well, believe it or not, I was out to the kitchen to bake up some flapjacks for hubby’s lunchbox this week AND to try out a new recipe for a Boiled Whiskey Loaf Cake. Yes, on a day off, I still head for the kitchen (coals to Newcastle and all that!).
Whilst my Ginger flapjacks were baking away, I started to prepare the ingredients for the loaf cake; you need to take 275g of raisins & currants, mix them with 8floz of water, 100g of butter and 225g of light soft brown sugar in a saucepan on the hob. Slowly bring the mix to the boil. This plumps up the fruit a treat. Meanwhile you mix together the dried ingredients. 225g plain flour, couple of teaspooons of mixed spice, a good helping of ground ginger (to taste), 1.5 tsp of bicarb of soda all get mixed together in a bowl. Beat together 2 large eggs and mix in 50ml of whiskey (I used a blended whiskey).
When the liquid has come to the boil, I turn down the heat and just let it bubble away for a wee while. Then set aside to cool. After a few minutes mix half of the dried ingredients into the liquid. This is such fun, because the bicarb hits the warm water and starts to fizz and hiss away…I must investigate the chemistry behind this one in this blog! Mix all the ingredients together well and leave to cool again. Once cool, mix in the remainder of the dry ingredients and the eggs and whiskey. Stir together thoroughly and pour into a greased/lined 2lb loaf tin.
The cake needs to bake for approximately 1.5 hours in a gas 3 oven (160 deg C). Once cooked, it will be firm to the touch and you should bring it out to cool in the tin.
Here is the final bake already for munching….
I can report that it tastes amazing and the added benefit of baking this little beauty is the smell it exudes whilst you’re mixing and baking it! The whiskey and dried fruit just makes you feel so Christmassy!!! In fact, it has turned my mind to scheduling in my Christmas cake baking over the next few weeks/months!
Yes, all in all, a lovely relaxed day. So, how did you spend your Sunday?