Tuesday, 6 April 2010

Cherry Cake & Ginger Beer


This book is pure love and nostalgia threaded with long-lost treats, baking recipes and childhood literature. Jane Brocket has had the envious task of re-reading kid-lit classics such as ‘The Famous Five‘, ‘What Katy Did’, ‘The Borrowers’, ‘The Secret Garden‘, and ‘Anne of Green Gables’ - scouring them for the culinary treats they hold in their pages. Treats like the kind mother would lovingly prepare, wrapped in a handkerchief, to be enjoyed on a cliff-top after discovering buried treasure. Treats like Paddington Bears Marmalade Rolls and Milly-Molly-Mandy‘s Little Patty-Pan Sultana Cakes. The book is spotted with delightful illustrations straight from the pages of your childhood. Books and food are the perfect combination, add some nostalgic charm and a longing for the simplicity of youth and you have this ‘golden treasury of classic treats’.

Recipe For Hunger


Beach/ hills/ garden/ park/ field/ woods/ secret island
Outdoor shoes and clothes
Swimming costume and towel
Roller skates, skipping rope, balls
Trees for climbing
Map and compass
Flower/ tree/ bird reference books


1. In large space, mix adults and children with fresh air

2. Add outdoor equipment as required and according to season

3. Allow the ingredients to blend for several hours

4. When blended, remove from outdoors and bring inside

5. Bake or make a treat or two

6. Feed well, and leave to read good books

I will definitely be re-creating ‘A Funny and Delightful Supper’ inspired by ‘The Railway Children’ and this sugar-coma inducing chocolate fest.

Brue Bogtrotter’s Heroic Chocolate Cake (from Roald Dahl’s ‘Matilda’)


350g soft brown sugar
350g soft butter
6 eggs
270g self-raising flour
80g good quality cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking powder
2-3 tablespoons milk
Chocolate buttons to decorate


350g icing sugar
115g cocoa powder
150g soft butter
3-4 tablespoons milk

26cm round cake tin, greased and lined

1. Pre-heat oven to 180

2. In a large bowl cream sugar and butter until light and fluffy

3. Add the eggs into the mixture one at a time, beating well after each addition

4. Measure out flour, cocoa and baking powder into a bowl, then sift into large bowl. Fold in gently with a metal spoon, adding enough milk to make the mixture smooth but not runny

5. Spoon into the tin and level the surface

6. Bake for 50-55 minutes until a metal skewer comes out clean. Check the cake after 30 minutes and if necessary place a sheet of foil on the top to prevent burning

7. Leave the cake in its tin on a wire rack to cool completely, then turn out

8. To make the filling and topping, sift the icing sugar and cocoa powder into a large bowl and add butter and two tablespoons of the milk. Mix well with a round-ended knife or electric whisk, adding more milk if necessary to make the icing soft and easy to spread. Taste, and adjust the flavour with more icing sugar or cocoa if necessary

9. Carefully cut the cake into two layers. Spread a good quantity of butter icing on the bottom layer, replace the top layer and cover the whole cake with the remaining icing. Arrange chocolate buttons on the topping.

* recipes via “Cherry Cake and Ginger Beer” - Jane Brocket

p.s. read author, Jane Brocket's blog here

1 comment:

  1. mmm yummy. One of my favorite recipes. Thanks for sharing this.