Time always seems to move faster in the first couple of months after Christmas and New Year and already we find ourselves heading towards the end of January! Next month some of our cakes and bakes will be taking on a hint of romance!, but January on The Wynd has been all about going back to basics and looking at some of the baking flavours and traditions that have delighted cake lovers over the generations. Here are a few highlights from the month so far…
First up we decided to make a traditional overnight tea loaf. To be honest, we weren’t sure how you would react to this after the season of fruit cakes and mince pies, but the homely, basic flavours of this moist, tasty cake definitely won you over. The photo above says it all! Delicious mixed fruit, slowly soaking up the flavours of tea, demerara and muscovado sugars – wonderful aromas that follow through to the finished cake!
Will we be making it again? You bet! But watch out for seasonal variations as we put our own spin on this tea time favourite!
Since opening last May it’s been clear that you have two firm favourites – our lemon drizzle cake and our coffee cake. Both are our own recipe, developed through trial and error to now achieve the perfect balance of texture and flavour!
Our lemon drizzle is made with real lemons and almost every bit of the fruit is used! The zest is grated into the cake batter and the juice and some of the flesh then goes into our homemade syrup, which is poured over the hot cake to create its unique, soft moist texture!
This month so far, we’ve swirled our traditional coffee batter magic into cupcakes! We know from feedback and reviews that you love this flavour! Several of you have even told us it’s the best coffee cake you’ve ever had, for which we thank you and we will continue to work hard to keep this crown!
Why is Coffee such an enduring flavour, when new flavours and twists are being created in the cake world all the time? We put it down to pure nostalgia! It brings back memories of childhood tea times, family, pots of tea and sandwiches on the table and a homemade cake, perhaps with walnuts on top that (if you were like us!), you’d carefully pick off! Definitely more of this wonderful flavour to come!
Here’s a traditional cake of a different kind that was very much enjoyed this month! It’s a lemon and blueberry bundt, it’s wonderful taste and texture underpinned by the flavours and consistency of soured cream added to the batter.
Bundt cakes are traditionally made in a circular pan with a hole in the centre. Inspired by a very traditional European cake, the Gugelhuft, they gained popularity in North America in the 1950’s and 1960’s when Minnesota firm, Nordic Ware, introduced their now iconic baking pans to the market. Indeed it was Nordic Ware who trademarked the name “bundt”. Was it all plain sailing? No! The initial run sold so poorly that they considered discontinuing them. They kept on though and an article in Good Housekeeping magazine in the early 1960’s helped to boost their profile. However it wasn’t until the mid 60’s when a bundt cake called “Tunnel of Fudge” (hands up who definitely wants a slice of that!!!) won second prize and $5000 in a Pillsbury baking competition that they really took off. Publicity from the competition saw them receive over 200 000 pan requests and they quickly became the top selling pan is North America.
Our own bundt cake above has also been created in a Nordic Ware bundt pan and a great half hour can be spent browsing shapes and sizes on the internet! They are definitely investment pieces of great quality and you’ll be amazed at the range of designs on offer! Such a long way from the fledgling business that almost threw in the towel back in the 1950’s! We’re so glad they didn’t!
So that’s our quick tour of some of the traditional cakes we’ve baked so far in January at an end. Hopefully we’ve inspired you to either pop into our little shop on The Wynd to try a sample or two or have a bash at a traditional bake of your own. If you do have a go, send your pics to firstname.lastname@example.org and we may feature you on our social media. Whether a baker or a taster, we wish you happy caking for the remainder of the month!