NaBloPoMo 4: Spinning Day

Spinning was with S today. Cake was with me.

I rose nice and early, switched the oven on, and pondered what to make.  Conversation at last week’s spinning group had pointed up the fact that I never make Victoria Sandwich cakes. Mr L does love them, but I am not very fond of them – and I tend to make what I fancy eating. It seemed like an opportunity to please him, and to find out whether I still had the touch.

Cake for eight-ish
Cake for eight-ish

The jury is out on whether or not I have lost my touch; I thought the cake was both slightly heavy and a little dry, but the eaters appreciated it (or said that they did, and S’s hubby had two pieces, so he wasn’t fibbing…) It was a large cake – a 4 egg mix – but we sometimes have as many as 10 spinners in one session and I didn’t want anybody to go hungry. I added a little vanilla essence to the mix, and sandwiched the cake with (Lidl’s best!) strawberry jam, and a buttercream to which I added the zest of a lemon. A dusting of icing sugar to finish it off and it began to look fit to grace any table…

Victoria Sandwich and Impromptu Cocomut Cocktail cake
Victoria Sandwich and Impromptu Coconut Cocktail cake

… but I was left with a lemon and do hate waste. There wasn’t sufficient to make a drizzle cake, and anyway – I was down to one egg.

What to do? One egg in this house usually means a one-egg rubbed-in cake mix. My normal variation is to add a couple of tablespoons of marmalade. Today I thought a change was in order. I remembered the shaved coconut that I had bought on my last Kirkwall foray.

A rubbed-in cake mix is quite dry and crumbly. With hindsight, I should have soaked the coconut in some milk before adding to the cake. I wasn’t that sensible at that hour of the morning. I was however up to a little extemporisation. I added some fresh ginger to the mix. I planned to add some prepared lemon grass too, but it looked as though that had seen better days and I tossed it in the bin.

Some kind of coconut confection
Some kind of coconut confection

The cake was topped with a glac̩ icing, mixed from the lemon juice Рto which I added a drop of lime oil. A few more shavings of coconut dressed it off nicely.

Surprisingly, the cake was quite yummy. All the same, a little custard would not have gone amiss. It would have glued all those crumbs together…

I’m going to work on this cake idea. When I have it right, I shall post the recipe – it has been a while since we had a proper Spinning Cake post.

There were just three of us for spinning today, with S’s husband enthusiastically joining us for the coffee and cake. It’s unofficial, as we shall need to speak with the others, but we formulated an idea today that the week’s hostess should be cake-exempt. There’s enough to do with vacuuming and furniture rearrangement without making cakes. As for cake-making, it goes so much better without the cleaning worries… The added benefit of a separate cake rota would be that those spinners who are unable to host could stop worrying about never contributing, and simply supply a cake from time to time. I think it’s a genius idea. Why did we not think of it sooner?

We admired my new purple shoes, and S resolved to have some of her own. We also admired S’s new Dualit toaster – especially interesting to me as there are current plans afoot on the Windswept Acre to acquire one of those beauties for ourselves.

As for the spinning – it transpired that today was not a spinning day for me. I put the wheel to one side after a while and then I knitted (and crocheted!) on my new project – more of which soon.