Friday, February 5, 2010
Mango Lime Syrup Cake
Last night, my friend Jane and I went to see Daniel Kitson's latest show, 66A Church Road. For those who have not run across Daniel, he is an English comedian - and if last night was anything to go by, a very good one. If you are in the UK, this show is old hat for you, because I notice that he started this show in 2008 - but for us Down Under, this is his latest material.
I absolutely adored this show - it was funny in a way that only English comedians are, subtle and gentle rather than "in your face" begging for a laugh. As the name of the show suggests, 66A Church Road is about an address in the London suburb of Crystal Palace where Daniel lived for 6 years. Daniel loved that flat, with all its flaws, and desperately wanted to buy it and the entire building which housed it, but was continually rejected by his landlord, who figured he could make more money out of it by keeping it. Daniel had created clever little models of various aspects of the flat in old suitcases, but the focus of the show was on what he had to say rather than the models, which were very much background props.
Daniel thought that he loved the physical entity that was the flat, hence why he desperately wanted to buy it. However, when the inevitable happened and he moved out, he realised that it was not the physical flat that he loved, but rather, the memories that had been created there. Having moved oh so many times in the last decade myself, I understood what he meant. It is those memories that create the familiarity that grows into love of a particular place or time. It also brought home to me how much my heart has hardened against where I currently live, and why I must summon the courage sooner rather than later to go back to the place where I know my heart lies.
This creates the perfect opportunity for a segueway into Mango Lime Syrup Cake. What do Daniel Kitson and Mango Lime Syrup Cake have in common? Well, Daniel is currently performing in tropical Brisbane, and this is a very tropical cake. Ta da!
I tore the recipe for this cake out of the Brisbane News. I can't tell you the date (other than that it was this year), as there is a rubbish Bunnings ad stuck where the page number and date should be. The recipe comes from Andrew Mirosch, a regular staff cookery writer at the Brisbane News.
The combination of nutty vanilla cake with tangy lime and mango topping is very good. However, don't be tempted to leave out the syrup - the cake would be rather dry without it.
If it's mango season where you are, and you'd like a little bit of edible tropical sunshine in your life, the recipe is as follows:
3 small mangoes
3/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups self raising flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 tablespoon grated lime zest
1/4 cup lime juice
1/2 cup finely chopped macadamia nuts
For the syrup:
1/2 cup lime juice
1/2 cup sugar
Preheat your oven to 180 degrees Celsius, and grease and line a 24cm cake tin.
Scoop the flesh out of the mangoes and slice thinly, then lay it in a pattern on the bottom of the lined cake tin.
Using a stand mixer, beat the butter and sugar until light and creamy. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each one.
Sift the flour and baking powder together into a bowl, then fold into the batter with the lime zest, lime juice and macadamias.
Spoon the batter over the mangoes in the cake tin, smooth out evenly, then bake in the preheated oven for 45 minutes or until cooked through.
While the cake is baking, put the lime juice and sugar for the syrup into a medium saucepan, and stir over low heat until the sugar dissolves. Increase the heat, bring the syrup to the boil, and simmer for ~ 8 minutes or until the syrup thickens slightly. Cool.
When you take the cake out of the oven, immediately poke small holes in the top of it with a skewer, and pour 3/4 of the syrup over the top of the cake. Leave the cake stand for 10 minutes in its tin before unmoulding onto a wire rack.
Brush the mango on top of the cake with the reserved syrup, then leave the cake to cool.