CH31 Large Cakes

FRUIT BASED SLAB

1. Basic Mix

2. Cherry

3. Currant

4. Raisin

5. Sultana

6. Dundee 

UNCLASSIFIED

7. Chocolate

8. Ginger

9. Madeira

10. Rich fruit cake

11. Simnel 

Introduction to Large Cakes

LARGE RICH CAKES

1. Large rich cakes are a bakery product usually made by the creaming method and based on four main ingredients which are flour, fat, sugar and eggs. By combining additional ingredients a variety of types can be produced. They can be made in any shape but are usually round or square.

BASIC GUIDELINES

2. To achieve good results when making these cakes it is important to follow certain guidelines and these are that:

a. All ingredients must be carefully and accurately weighed.

b. Baking tins must be well oiled and preferably lined with greaseproof paper. Rich fruit cakes are best baked in wooden frames. Wood, being a poor conductor of heat allows the cake to bake slowly and evenly and reduces the risk of the sides scorching.

c. Cakes with a top dressing such as nuts or sugar must be protected either by using steam or covering the cake top.

THE CREAMING METHOD

3. Beat the fat and sugar together. This softens the fat, dissolves the sugar and aerates the mixture ideally to almost a foamy texture. While continuing to beat vigorously add the eggs gradually. If too much egg is added too quickly the mixture will curdle. Should this happen add a little flour to return the mix to its original state then continue to gradually add the remaining eggs.

4. Add the flour to the mixture by carefully and lightly blending it in with a folding action, preferably by hand to ensure that as much aeration as possible is retained in the cake structure. The mixture should be at dropping consistency. If it does not easily drop from the fingers adjust the texture with a little milk. It should be noted here that there is a fault, quite common in the making of fruit cakes where early in the cooking process the fruit sinks to the base of the cake. The two main reasons for this and the remedies are:

a. The fruit, having been washed, has not been thoroughly dried before adding it to the mixture. Do not dust wet fruit with flour to attempt to dry it as this can provoke fermentation during baking and the flour will not blend with the mix.

b. The oven temperature being set too low, allowing the fruit to sink before the mixture can set. This is particularly prevalent where glace cherries are used. They must be well washed and dried and the cooking process should be started in a hot oven to set the mixture quickly then the temperature can be lowered to complete the process

5. To test if the cake is cooked insert a warm metal or wooden skewer into the centre of the cake. If any mixture adheres to it on removal the cake requires, longer cooking. 

The Art of Large Cakes

FRUIT BASED

1.BASIC SLAB CAKE MIX

Ingredients

Flour                                                                    200 g

Baking powder                                                    5 g

Eggs                                                                        3

Milk                                                                    25 ml

Margarine                                                          150 g

Salt

Caster sugar                                                     150 g

Method

1. Break the eggs into a bowl and whisk lightly.

2. Sieve together the flour, baking powder and salt.

3. Cream together the margarine and sugar to achieve a smooth well aerated texture then gradually add the egg beating vigorously.

4. Lightly fold in the flour and milk to achieve a smooth mixture.

2. CHERRY CAKE

Ingredients

Basic slab cake mixture                                       500 g

Glace cherries                                                        75 g

Milk                                                                         25 ml

Method

1. Oil cake tins and line them with greaseproof paper.

2. Cut the glace cherries into halves, wash and dry them thoroughly.

3. Add the cherries to the cake mixture when folding in the flour.

4. Place the mixture into the cake tins, smooth the top with a little milk and cook in an oven at 180°C for 1½ hours.

Notes on variations

3. Current cake. Add 100 g of washed and dried currants when folding in the flour. Bake in an oven at 180°C for 1½ hours.

4. Raisin cake. Add 100 g of washed and dried raisins when folding in the flour. Bake in an oven at 180°C 1½ hours.

5. Sultana cake. Add 75 g of sultanas and 25 g of mixed peel washed and dried when folding in the flour. Bake in an oven at 180°C for 1½ hours.

6. DUNDEE CAKE

Ingredients

Flour                                                                     175 g

Brown sugar                                                        150 g

Margarine                                                            150 g

Sultanas                                                               100 g

Currants                                                              100 g

Ground almonds                                                 25 g

Mixed peel                                                           25 g

Eggs                                                                        3

Fresh lemon                                                          1

Fresh oranges                                                       1

Split almonds                                                       25 g

Method

1. Oil the cake tins and line them with greaseproof paper.

2. Wash and dry the fruit, sieve the flour. Grate the zest and squeeze the juice of one orange and one lemon.

3. Cream together the margarine and sugar, then add the eggs one at a time, beating vigorously.

4. Add the zest of the orange and lemon then fold in the flour.

5. Fold in the prepared fruit, the ground almonds and the juice of the lemon and orange.

6. Place the mixture into the prepared cake tins, smooth the top then decorate the surface with the split almonds.

7. Bake in an oven at 180°C for 2 hours.

UNCLASSIFIED

7. CHOCOLATE CAKE

Ingredients

Basic slab cake mix                                                550 g

Cocoa powder                                                          15 g

Method

1. Oil the cake tins and line them with greaseproof paper.

2. Prepare the cake mix, substituting the cocoa powder for an equal amount of flour.

3. Place the mixture into the prepared cake tins, smooth over the top and bake in an oven at 180°C for 1½ hours.

8. GINGER CAKE

Ingredients

Basic slab cake mix                                               550 g

Ground ginger

Preserved ginger                                                    75 g

Golden syrup                                                           25 g

Method

1. Oil the cake tin and line it with greaseproof paper.

2. Dice the preserved ginger, retaining a few thin slices for decorating the top of the cake.

3. Prepare the cake mix, sifting the ground ginger with the flour and adding the diced ginger on the top.

4. Place the mixture into the prepared cake tins, smooth over the surface and place the slices of ginger on the top.

5. Bake in an oven at 180°C for 1½ hours. When the cake is cooked, remove it from the oven and brush over the tope with the syrup.

9. MADEIRA CAKE

Ingredients

Basic slab cake mix                                               550 g

Lemons                                                                      2

Method

1. Oil the cake tins and line them with greaseproof paper.

2. Grate the zest from 1 lemon and pare 2 thin slices of zest from the other.

3. Prepare the cake mix incorporating the grated lemon zest at the same time as the eggs.

4. Place the mixture into the cake tins, smooth over the surface and place the 2 thin slices of lemon zest in the centre of the surface of the cake. Bake in an oven at 180°C for 1½ hours.

10. RICH FRUIT CAKE

Ingredients

Flour                                                                    225 g

Butter                                                                   225 g

Brown sugar                                                        225 g

Eggs                                                                        4

Lemon                                                                    1

Orange                                                                   1

Currants                                                               400 g

Sultanas                                                                200 g

Raisins                                                                  200 g

Glace cherries                                                      50 g

Mixed peel                                                            50 g

Almonds                                                                50 g

Nutmeg                                                                ¼ teaspoon

Mixed peel                                                           ½ teaspoon

Black treacle 3 teaspoons

Brandy 3 tots

Method

1. Chop the glace cherries, almonds and mixed peel. Place together with the dried fruit in a bowl, sprinkle with the brandy, cover and allow to soak overnight.

2. Oil a cake tine and line it with greaseproof paper. Sieve together the flour, nutmeg and mixed spice.

3. Grate the zest of the lemon and the orange. Thin the treacle by warming it a little.

4. Cream together the butter and sugar then add the eggs one at a time beating vigorously.

5. Fold in the flour and spices and then the soaked fruit, almonds and mixed peel, the lemon and orange zest and the treacle.

6. Level and smooth the surface and cook in an oven at 150°C for 4 hours.

11. SIMNEL CAKE (Easter cake)

Ingredients

Rich fruit cake mix                                              1.5 g

Marzipan                                                              400 g

Apricot glaze                                                        75 g

Eggs                                                                        2

Method

1. Oil the cake tins and line them with greaseproof paper.

2. Prepare the rich fruit cake mix. Prepare the marzipan.

3. Mould half the marzipan into a ball then roll out a round approximately 300mm in diameter.

4. Place half the cake mix into the cake tins and smooth to a level surface. Place the round of marzipan on top of the cake mix then place the remaining cake mix on top of the marzipan.

5. Bake in an oven at 180°C for 50 minutes then reduce the temperature to 160°C and continue to cook for a further 2 hours.

6. When the cake is cooked remove it from the oven and allow it to cool completely. Remove the cake from the tin and brush the top with hot apricot glaze.

7. Separate the egg yolks from the whites.

8. Decorate the top of the cake with marzipan and then brush with egg yolk.

9. Attach a greaseproof paper collar around the top of the cake, approximately 15 mm higher than the marzipan decoration.

10. Place the cakes into an oven 220°C to glaze the marzipan top to an attractive colour.

11. Complete the decoration if desired with preserved or glace fruits.