Some people are coming over tomorrow morning at 10am to discuss a business proposition involving CEI (the Council of Italian Bishops) and the environment - don't ask - so I have been making cupcakes. If you're not immediately seeing the link between baking and bishops, that's ok, you're not alone. I just thought some sort of cake might be appropriate to the Sunday morning meeting thing.
2 large eggs
250g plain flour
250g caster sugar (or mix of caster & demerara)
2 tsps ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
3 large cooking apples
Preheat the oven to 180°C.
Peel, core and finely dice the apples. (Squeeze some lemon juice over before preparing the other ingredients, to keep from turning brown.)
Beat the eggs in a roomy mixing bowl. Melt the butter slowly over a low heat. While it is melting, measure out the flour, spices, salt & baking soda and mix in another bowl. Once the butter is all melted, pour it very slowly into the beaten eggs, whisking vigorously all the time. The mixture will thicken to a smooth creamy consistency (essentially this is the same technique as making a hollandaise sauce, but don't let that worry you).
Next mix in the sugar to the egg mix, beating thoroughly to combine well, then add the flour mixture slowly, bit at a time. When you have mixed it all in you will have a very thick batter. Take the diced apple and gently fold it into the batter, spoonful at a time, taking care not to lose all the air in the batter mix.
Place a dollop into each paper cup-cake case - the mix will expand less than a conventional cake mix - or else make one large cake in a well greased 25cm tin. Bake for about 20-25 mins for individual cup cakes or 40 mins for a single cake: Or until cooked. You ought to be able to tell when that is or what are you doing baking?
I have iced these with a cinnamon cream cheese icing (or frosting as our American friends would say) - cream cheese, a knob of butter (helps it to set), icing sugar, cinnamon. But they are delicious un-iced too, very light in texture and moist and fruity. You could whack some raisins in too.
Drinks for Saturday afternoon baking: Delirium Tremens Christmas special (a yummy dark brown spicy affair, a very drinkable and, ahem, light beer. A mere 10% ABV). Music for Saturday afternoon baking: Ice Cube. If You Can Do It doens't make you dance then you are clinically dead. Consequences of dancing tipsily around the kitchen while trying to bake: flour everywhere. Oops.