Hands down, this is my favourite time of year. Mainly because an awful lot of celebration is involved. In 34 sleeps it is of course Christmas but this weekend also sees my sister and brother celebrate their birthdays. As a child, in order not to feel left out, my phenomenally kind parents would buy me a present too. It took me until the age of eighteen to stop feeling like the Queen with two birthdays a year, my official birthday in May and my unofficial one each November. Spiffing stuff, as I'm sure Her Majesty said when she too realised she'd get to have two birthdays a year.
This year we've moved to the same city as my brother and sister. Hurrah, I get to bake them each a cake that hasn't spent two hours sweating in a tin precariously balanced on a pile of luggage on the Great Western Railway London to Cardiff train. I baked my brother a Chocolate and Coffee Battenburg Cake (his fave). It turned out to be more of a Leaning Tower of Battenburg as the baby choose the exact moment of construction to enter what we *fondly* refer to as 'The Milk Rage'. This cake was more successful, a bake that has become very much a family favourite in recent years. Its rather a perennial cake as not only is it super in the summer with fresh berries but it is the perfect cake baked with frozen fruit to use up any leftover amaretti biscuits from a festive glut.
Raspberry and Amaretti Biscuit Cake
100g golden caster sugar
75g soft brown sugar
3 large eggs, beaten
225g plain flour
2 tsps baking powder
1 tsp almond extract
100g amaretti biscuits
150g frozen raspberries or summer fruit
Icing sugar for dusting
1. Preheat the oven to 140C fan/160C/Gas Mark 3. Grease with Clover and line a loose bottomed 20cm round cake tin.
2. In a large bowl, place the Clover, sugars, eggs, flour and extract and beat together until thoroughly combined
3. Spread half of the mixture in the prepared tin and scatter with half of the biscuits and half of the fruit. Dollop over the remainder of the mixture and sprinkle with the rest of the biscuits and fruit.
4. Bake for 75-80 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean
5. Allow to cool in the tin for 15 minutes before turning out. Once cooled, dust with icing sugar (or see below)
- Depending on your oven, it may be worth checking the cake after 60 minutes and you may need to cover with foil to avoid the fruit catching for the remainder of the cooking time
- Serve warm with single cream or amaretto ice cream. Alternatively, the cake can be stored for 48 hours in an airtight container
- Frozen fruit works brilliantly this time of year in this bake
- For more details on the Clover challenge please visit Tots 100