This is another rock cake moment. I say to the Beloved in one of our favourite tea shops, “What would you like with your cup of tea? ”
“I’ll have a slice of cherry cake please.”
“But you don’t like cherry cake.”
“Yes I do!”
So on the way home we make a detour to the supermarket so that I can buy the ingredients for cherry cake. I quickly scanned cherry cake recipes on my phone and realised that I had most of the ingredients at home – but I did need to buy glacé cherries and almond essence. I did have problems with the almond essence, as the supermarket didn’t have any. I bought almond flavouring instead which I didn’t really like because of the unnatural ingredients it contained but as I only needed to add a couple of drips I tried not to worry too much.
When I made cherry cake many years ago, the cherries would very often sink to the bottom. To stop this happening, rinse the glacé cherries under water and dry thoroughly. You should also follow this recipe to the letter and not add more milk to make a more sloppy dropping consistency. You want the cake mixture to ‘hold’ the cherries so that they don’t sink. Another tip: measure out all your ingredients before combining them. It’s so much easier (and more fun) making the cake than messing around measuring out the ingredients after each instruction.
You’ll need a round cake tin, 8 inches (20 cm) in diameter and 4 inches (10 cm) deep. Line the base and sides of the tin with greaseproof paper or baking parchment, then grease the paper with butter.
- 225g butter at room temperature
- 225 caster sugar
- 4 large eggs lightly beaten
- 225g plain flour
- Half teaspoon baking powder
- 250g glacé cherries washed and quartered
- 210g ground almonds
- A couple of drops of almond essence
- 1 tablespoon milk
- 2 tablespoons Demerara sugar
- Preheat oven to as mark 4.
- Cream the butter and sugar together until light, pale and fluffy.
- Gradually beat in the whisked egg a little at a time.
- Sift the flour and baking powder together, and carefully fold this into the creamed mixture using a metal spoon.
- Toss the washed and quartered cherries in together with the ground almonds, and carefully fold these into the cake.
- At the same time add one or two drops of almond essence and the milk.
- Spoon the cake mix into the prepared tin, level off the top with the back of a spoon.
- Sprinkle the cake with with the demerara sugar.
- Bake the cake in the centre of the oven for 1 hour.
- After 1 hour cover the cake with foil and continue cooking for a further 30 minutes, or until the cake has shrunk away from the side of the tin and the centre is springy to touch.
- Cool the cake in the tin for 15 minutes before turning it out on to a wire rack to cool.
- Wrap the cake in foil and store in a tin.