Sunday, February 10, 2019

Peach and blackberry sour cream cake

Last night, I attended An Evening with Nigella (Lawson - who else!) at Hamer Hall.  This was the fourth time I have heard Nigella live, and I can honestly say it was the best yet.  For the first half, Nigella was interviewed in a scripted fashion by Gary Mehigan of MasterChef, and it was clear that they had a magnificent rapport.  Nigella just seemed so relaxed and happy, more so than at the previous speaking engagements I have attended.  The second half of the evening involved uncensored questions from the audience, which was a bit of a wild card.  However, she handled it with aplomb, even when there was the inevitable try-hard guy who tried to proposition her with the offer of a romantic dinner.

Some of the highlights of the evening included:
  • the fact that Nigella had worked for a time as a chamber maid in Florence;
  • that Nigella told her parents she was going to study at the British Institute when she was in fact working as a chamber maid;
  • that Nigella did try on the odd jacket or spray on the odd scent from guests' rooms;
  • that when Nigella introduced herself to Italians as "Love in the Mist" (the British name for the nigella plant) while in Italy, it got her into a bit or trouble;
  • Nigella's sage advice to young women (along the lines of "work hard and be true to yourself");
  • Nigella's admission that, especially when you are a mother with children, there isn't always energy to cook fancy meals, so an egg on toast or noodles with butter and kimchi is just fine;
  • that during the filming of Nigella Bites, the film crew had to hide the fact that Nigella's real oven had "danger - do not use" tape on it because of an issue with the gas;
  • that Nigella missed the publisher's deadline for completing the manuscript for How To Eat (for very good reasons), but that her very decent publisher paid her as if she had delivered it to help her over a rough patch.
It was all round a terrific evening, and I am so glad that I went.

I am not bringing you a Nigella recipe today.  Instead, as it is summer and the gorgeous summer fruits are still lingering on (just!) in Australia, I am bringing you a recipe for a gorgeous cake which takes full advantage of the wonderful summer fruit bounty.

This cake is a Peach and Blackberry Sour Cream cake, and comes from p18 of the Jan/Feb 2019 edition of Woolworths Fresh magazine.

This lovely cake features sliced peaches and blackberries nestled in a light as a feather sponge cake.  It is amazingly good, and is just the kind of fresh and fruity delight that I adore.  You could serve it with cream, icecream or even custard, but heck, why mess with perfection.

To make this cake, you will need:

160g butter
1/4 cup sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups plain flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 cup Greek-style yoghurt (I used sour cream instead)
3 yellow peaches, halved, stone removed
125g blackberries
1/4 cup apricot jam

Preheat your oven to 180 degrees Celsius and grease and line a 22cm round springform pan.

In a mixer, beat together the butter, sugar and vanilla until creamy.  Add the eggs, one at a time, and beat in well after each addition.

Sift the flour and baking powder over the butter mixture and fold in until just combined.  Add the yoghurt or sour cream and fold in.

Cube one and a half of the peaches and fold gently into the cake batter.  Spoon the cake batter into the prepared springform pan and smooth the top.

Thinly slice the rest of the peaches into wedges and place on top of the cake batter with the blackberries on top.

Put the cake into the oven to bake for one hour and ten minutes or until cooked through.

Just before the cake comes out of the oven, put the jam and 1 tablespoon of cold water into a cup and heat in the microwave until the jam melts (around 60 seconds).  Strain the jam, then remove the cake from the oven and brush the top of the hot cake with the strained jam.

Leave the cake in the pan on a wire rack to cool completely being unmoulding and serving.

1 comment:

Johanna GGG said...

cake sounds lovely and nigella is such a delight that I am a little jealous you have seen her 4 times - she is a real star and it is nice that she has quite an honesty about her.