How a tin of Mandarin oranges saved me from a #cakefail
We had our Easter family meal on Monday. No traditional roast lamb for us, in fact I don’t remember us ever having one of the traditional meals on any of the holidays. It’s just not what we do, my parents tend to take the opportunity to try something new or we go out.
We spent one Christmas Day in an Indian restaurant, which had been a good idea but turned out to be dire in reality thanks to mass cancellations and a chef who needed to get rid of a lot of food. It took me a while to be able to face an Indian takeaway again.
So this Easter, Dad was producing a Hungarian Goulash and bread dumplings and I was on cake duty. My plan was for a Victoria Sandwich filled with freshly whipped cream, strawberries and raspberries, dusted with icing sugar. Lovely.
My reality was two sponges already baked, cream about to be whipped and the discovery of my lovely piles of berries covered in mould and fruit flies. All thanks to the surprise appearance of sun and warmth and my inability to remember to put them in the fridge on Saturday. I need to think more sometimes.
So, a bit of a panic, a rummage in the cupboards only producing a scraping of jam and the decision to send Rich to the shops in search of more fruit left me with the sponges, cream, a couple of slightly suspect kiwi’s and…a tin of Mandarin oranges triumphantly carried back from the shop by a very proud Rich. He had been sent for fruit and he had found fruit.
Now, I haven’t seen a tin of Mandarin oranges since I was very young and they would appear at teatime in a bowl with some evaporated milk at my Gran’s house. I wasn’t entirely sure they would work but my parents had glimpsed them and to the cries of “Oh! Mandarins! What a treat they used to be” I slipped on my apron* and set to work.
I whipped, sliced, drained and arranged. I invented (or rather I prayed I would produce something edible at least) and came up with…a fresh fruit creamy cloud cake (I don’t think that’s it’s proper name but it’s what came out of my mouth as I placed it on the table).
It seemed to go down well. I was still slightly alarmed (and probably somewhat snobbishly) that I had made a cake with tinned oranges but could only conclude that everyone else was happy as plates were scraped and seconds asked for.
That left me with the second sponge. Rich was all for just eating it with a bit more cream and fruit but I thought a little play in the kitchen was called for (plus the snooker championship is on TV, I’m avoiding the living room). Apron back on**, a bit more whipping but for butter-cream this time, remembering the scraping of jam from earlier and a lot of sponge circles cut out with an egg-cup, I produced a plate of mini Victoria Sandwiches.
Rather sweet and perhaps perfect for a little treat whilst watching a certain wedding at the end of this week.
*I have to confess this in fact a lie. It just sounded good. I don’t wear an apron. I do own one and have in fact made one but I don’t wear one. Though I have happily accepted that I am a 2011 version of a 1950′s housewife, an apron is a step too far for me. I would rather spend the rest of the day with my clothes covered in icing sugar and the odd blob of god knows what about my person. But that’s just me, a sensible person would have slipped on an apron.
**Sorry, I’m lying again.