I have a new bike.
Just in case you think I'm in the habit of buying very expensive items on a daily basis (see MagiMix), I had a bike accident a couple of months ago and my previous trusty-partner of a bike was sadly no more.
So, while still rather nervous of mini-cab drivers, the insurance money has finally came through and my new bike is....
Fluorescent, intense, bright-as-you-like fuchsia pink. Even Barbie would turn to Ken and comment: 'Maybe, Ken-dearest this is a little too shocking-pink of a colour, even for me! Shall we try the grunge look?' and promptly dress head to toe in black.
I've been thinking for a few weeks it is too bright a colour. I think of myself as a reasonably dedicated, serious all-weather commuter-cyclist. I wear lycra. I have wrap-around sunglasses. I have cycling shorts with 'go-fast' stripes (really). I look the part. Yet, when I stop at traffic lights I look down, in horror: it is just so pink! I've tried cycling through puddles to get the worn-in, muddy look to cover the pink up but to no avail- this bike is proud of being pink*.
And then I read in The Guardian last weekend that pink 'stands for arrested development, where princesses represent the pinnacle of ambition'.
And when I was cycling home this evening I passed a little girl with her Mother, who upon sighting me and my bike, exclaimed 'Mummy look! That lady has a bike like mine!'
My face turned the colour of the bike and I rode home, shamefaced thinking 'Gagh! There's clearly a four-year old girl inside me clambering to get out'.
So in need of embracing being a 4-year-old-Barbie-Princess, I made this Raspberry Bakewell Cake. It kinda matches the bike in a way.
Raspberry Bakewell Cake
(From Good Food Magazine, August 2009)
140g ground almonds
140g golden caster sugar
140g self-raising flour
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp flaked almonds
icing sugar, to serve
1. Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4 and base-line and grease a deep 20cm loose-bottomed cake tin
2. Pop the ground almonds, butter, sugar, flour, eggs and vanilla extract in a food processor and blitz until well combined
3. Spread half the mix over the cake tin and smooth over the top with a pallet knife
4. Scatter the raspberries over, keeping them about 1 cm from the edge
5. Spread the remaining cake mixture on top
6. Scatter with flaked almonds and bake for 50 mins until golden
7. Cool, remove from the tin and dust with icing sugar to serve
- This is a dead easy, very tasty cake
- You can use frozen raspberries, just make sure you have defrosted them fully and using kitchen towel, patted away any juice
- When spreading the second half of the mixture of top, this can be a bit tricky as it can be a little sticky- I used a small teaspoon to do this
- The cake keeps nicely for up to 3 days in an airtight container and can also be frozen
*You must be wondering what on earth possessed me to purchase such a pink bike. Well, the type of bike I have normally has a waiting list of 3-4 months and it was the only one they had left I could take away there and then.