There are only two programmes in the whole year that I will make sure I can stay in for. If anyone tries to organise anything on these certain nights, I am immediately thinking about how I can't miss this week's show. One of these programmes is Downton Abbey, while the other is, of course, The Great British Bake Off. I need to get my weekly fix of Mary Berry guys, I just love her!
So you can imagine my excitement when the new season started a couple of weeks, and the first weeks challenge was cake! Cakes are very important to me; I feel like my motto should be 'Cake is Life'... Anyway, when I saw the technical challenge, I knew I had to have a go at it as well. Who doesn't love a cake containing glacé cherries.
Mary Berry's Cherry Cake
200g Glacé Cherries, cut into quarters
225g Self Raising Flour
175g Softened Butter
175g Caster Sugar
Zest of 1 Lemon
50g Ground Almonds
175g Icing Sugar
Juice of 1 Lemon
15g Flaked Almonds, lightly toasted
5 Glacé Cherries, cut into quarters
Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas Mark 4, and grease a 9inch bundt tin.
Cut all of the cherries into quarters, and put 5 cherries to the side to be used later. Wash the rest of the cherries in water, drain and pat them dry, and toss them in 2tbsp of flour.
For the cake batter, beat together the butter and sugar until light and creamy, before adding in the eggs one at a time, mixing between each addition. Finally, add in the flour and ground almonds, and mix thoroughly. Lightly fold in the cherries, and turn the batter out into the bundt tin.
Bake in the oven for 35-40 minutes, or until the cake is golden-brown in colour, and an inserted skewer comes out clean. Leave the cake to cool in the tin for 10 minutes, before cooling on a wire rack.
Meanwhile, make the icing by beating together the icing sugar and lemon juice, until the icing is smooth and glossy, and has a thick texture. You want the icing to be able to stick to the cake, and not run down the sides too much. At the same time, toast the flaked almonds in a pan over a low heat for a few minutes, making sure they don't burn.
When the cake has cooled, spoon the icing onto the cake until it is covered, or use a piping bag to make a nice pattern. Finally sprinkle the remaining quartered cherries and the flaked almonds on top of the icing.
As a side note, apparently sales of glacé cherries have increased over the past couple of weeks... This just shows how much of an effect Bake Off has on it's viewers.