We're having the missionaries over for a Boxing Day supper tonight. I'm baking a ham that I bought from Piper's Farm (and it looks mighty good too!) and I have a Pork Pie from Piper's Farm as well, and am doing an assortment of side dishes . . .
Potato Scallop, Green Bean Casserole, carrots, swede and parsnips (leftover from yesterday), Pineapple Slaw, some great homemade biscuits and cornbread and then for dessert, the piece de resistance . . .
A delicious Maraschino Cherry Cake!
Oh sure we also have the resident mince pies, leftover Christmas pud and Christmas Cake . . . but I know that these things are not really a favourite of North Americans, although I also know the lads would eat them to be polite . . . I wanted to make them something special though that they would enjoy.
This is an oldie but a goodie . . . once again a recipe from my Big Blue Binder.
It's a deliciously light and moist cake, stogged full of pretty red maraschino cherries and toasted pecans!
Slathered and filled with oodles of scrummy Vanilla buttercream icing!
I think . . . it just may go down a real treat! (I used the Opie's Maraschino Cherries that you can get over here. The syrup on them is not as thick as the one from back home, but it will do!)
I hope the lads enjoy! I do sooooo love to spoil them. Hmmm . . . I wonder what they'll think about the missing piece??? Cook's treat!
*Maraschino Cherry Cake*
Makes one 8-inch round layer cake
Two delicately pink layers of cake flecked with bits of red maraschino cherry and toasted pecans. What's not to like?
12 ounces (weight) of plain flour ( 2 1/2 cups)
7 ounces (weight) caster sugar (1 cup)
1 TBS baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 fluid ounces of maraschino cherry juice from the jar (1/4 cup)
6 fluid ounces of milk (3/4 cup)
1 tsp pure vanilla essence
1/2 tsp pour almond essence
4 TBS unsalted butter, softened
2 ounces (weight) of white vegetable shortening (1/4 cup)
4 large free range egg whites
18 maraschino cherries, quartered and dried with some kitchen toweling
2 ounces (weight) of chopped toasted pecans (1/2 cup)
your favourite vanilla buttercream of cream cheese frosting
Preheat the oven to 180*C/350*F/ gas mark 4. Butter two 8 inch cake tins. Line the bottoms with baking parchment and butter the paper. Set aside.
Whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt and sugar. Whisk together the milk, cherry juice and essences.
Put the flour mixture into a bowl along with the butter, shortening, and milk mixture. Beat together until smooth. Add the egg whites and beat for 3 minutes at medium speed until light and fluffy. Fold in the quartered cherries and pecans.
Divide the mixture equally amongst the cake tins. Smooth the tops over and give them a tap on the counter to settle out any air bubbles. Bake in the centre of the heated oven for 30 minutes until wthe tops spring back when lightly touched, and a toothpick inserted in the centre comes clean. Cool in the tins for 10 minutes before inverting onto a wire rack to finish cooling completely. Peel off baking paper.
Once completely cooled fill and frost with your favourite icing. Delicious and pretty!
*Perfect Vanilla Buttercream Icing*
Makes enough to fill and frost a layer cake
8 ounces (weight) butter, softened (1 cup)
12 ounces icing sugar, sifted (3 cups)
1 tsp vanilla essence
1 to 2 TBS double cream
Beat the butter and sugar together on low until well blended and then continue to beat on mdeium for another few minutes until it begins to become fluffy. Beat in the vanilla and 1 TBS cream, only adding the second one if needed until you have a frosting of spreading consistency.
Cooking in The Cottage today, some delicious Haricots Verts with Pancetta and Pinenuts!