Monday, 25 January 2016

No eggs, low fat, reduced sugar.... it's Bachelor Cake

Here’s a cake for my friend Charlotte. She loves baking but can’t eat eggs. Help is at hand with this old recipe from Grandma’s collection. Bachelor Cake is egg free, low fat and reduced sugar cake, so it hits a few buttons into today’s healthy eating world. It works well with gluten free flour if you add extra liquid to the mixture. 
Bachelor Cake topped with almonds 
12oz/340g plain flour
1 tsp mixed spice
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
3 ozs/75g butter
12 oz/340g dried fruit
2 oz/50g sugar
2 tbsps marmalade
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
2 cups of milk (approx ½ pt/10 fl oz/275ml)
Almonds for topping (optional)

Preheat the oven to  160-170C/Gas 3/325F. Grease and line  2 loaf tins or a 9inch x 9inch (23cms x 23cms) square tin with baking paper. Sieve the flour and spices into a bowl. Rub in the fat until it resembles breadcrumbs. Add the dried fruit, sugar and marmalade and mix well. Stir the bicarbonate of soda into a cup of milk and add to the centre of the mixture. Add the 2nd cup of milk to make a dropping consistency. Beat thoroughly and transfer to the tin. Decorate the top with almonds if you wish. Bake in the oven for 40 minutes. Then reduce the heat to 150C/Gas 2/300F for another 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool before turning out.

Meryl’s tips : The taste of this cake is excellent and improves over time.  It keeps very well in a tin for up to a week , if you can resist it before the week is over!
So what's the story? Bachelor Cake was originally intended for a young girl to bake to impress her young man (and maybe keep him fit and slim?). But you don’t need to be a Bachelor boy to enjoy it!

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