This is one of Mary Berry's most recent recipes, appearing in her latest TV series, the book that goes with it and in several places on the internet, one of which you can see here. I was dying to have a go at making it but was so busy with other stuff that I had to put it on the back burner, so to speak, until I had the opportunity.
That opportunity arose with last month's cake club meeting (which you can read all about here). It was hosted by a club member who lives in what is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful villages in the region, if not in all of France, a place called Angles-sur-l'Anglin. The village is steeped in ancient history with an old ruined château, prehistoric cave paintings, a water mill by the river, zillions of gorgeous old houses and oodles of charm. Yet it is not spoiled in a touristy way. Certainly in summer at the weekend you can't move for tourists but it still remains a largely unspoilt village.
The host's theme revolved around the village, suggesting a château gateau, a cake for a princess and many other options including, for those of us who had no idea what to make of it, our own Angle on Easter. Hence I chose to fill and top my cake with a lemon buttercream instead of Mary's way which was to fill with whipped cream with lemon curd swirled through it and a simple dusting of icing sugar on top. Which would have been more classy but did not allow for any decoration as per the brief. I needed a buttercream top to stick the decorations in!
I decorated my cake with triangles of a thin chocolate bar and mini Easter eggs that were not chocolate but fruity, thereby complying with the "Angles on Easter" theme. The rather good discovery referred to in the title of this post was the chocolate.
As it turned out it tastes absolutely like Caramac. A Caramac bar was a real treat when I was a little girl and its unique caramel flavour is to die for. I haven't seen it in the shops for years although to be fair, I haven't been looking - the confectionary aisle of any supermarket is out of bounds, being far too dangerous. Well now I have found a substitute which I can get my hands on any day I like (in France) so I'm dead chuffed with that.
I was not too chuffed when I took the cakes out of the oven as they didn't look very enticing. A good slather with lemon buttercream improved matters (until I decorated the cake) but the cake was actually quite lovely.
It had an excellent, even crumb and was nice and moist, as it was bound to be with the grated apple in it. I shall certainly be making this one again very soon although I think next time just a filling of lemon curd and a dusting of icing sugar might be enough without the cream, just like an apple Victoria sponge, which is what it is really.
That looks like a fine Easter cake. I'd much rather have a slice of that than another bit of mass-produced chocolate egg. I seem to remember Caramac being a slightly strange beige colour and tasting REALLY sweet. But - and this may be good or bad news - I think I saw Caramac buttons on sale in a supermarket recently.ReplyDelete
Caramac is really sweet, as I recall. And buttons.....oh dear.....I shall not rest until I have bought some......Delete
I think you can also still get Caramac bars. This sounds delicious. I've just bought the new Mary Berry book and make her version of the cake, which was also delicious.ReplyDelete
Snowy, I bought a bag of Caramac buttons as mentioned by Phil above and have to say I was disappointed. They tasted so sweet and sickly that after only two or three of them each we threw the bag away.Delete
I don't remember them being quite that sweet, unless my memory is wrong (or tastes changed). The French chocolate is much, much nicer.