Our Undercover Baker’s been busy with all things cake and had a truly sugar filled September. Read on to discover her thoughts on The Watergate Deli and a baking blog that’s really to her taste…
Alright Amblers? So, this month I’ve been working on a rainbow unicorn cake (you know the one) the details of which I will be sharing with you a little later. It’s been a rollercoaster of emotion! From, “at least I have enough buttercream this time” to “red and blue makes… oh god why is it brown?!”, but I got there in the end and it all seemed to come together nicely. One thing to take away from this is, no matter how good you think the colour is before you bake the sponge, always add more or your pretty pastel rainbow cakes will come out varying shades of brown and grey. Although it may not have gone entirely to plan, the cake was absolutely demolished, horn and all.
I’ve also been sampling some of the cake on offer at the Watergate Deli (it’s a hard life). I ordered the honeycomb hot chocolate, coffee and walnut brownie and the almond slice. The bill – £9.
The brownie was wonderful; with a perfect creamy, fudgey texture, crunchy walnut pieces and a subtle coffee flavour. It was a good sized portion and a refreshingly different twist to a traditional brownie. The hot chocolates were rich, but not sickly sweet with subtle, lingering honeycomb. The friendly atmosphere and cute, kitschy tearoom décor are winners too in my book.
In my opinion, there’s a little room for improvement with the almond slice. Although it had a strong almond flavour and a pleasant marzipan texture, the jam layer was a bit tasteless and the shortbread base over floury. The serving was generous, but I think they could improve it with a sharp raspberry compote, instead of jam, to cut through the almond. A little decoration, such as a sprinkling of icing sugar, would be a nice touch too.
I’ve recently been chatting with my friends about the prospect of creating something wonderful centred around brioche and Nutella, so keep your eyes peeled for that! I’m thinking maybe a cheesecake…
I’ve also recently discovered The Flower Cup café on Watergate Row. It’s beautifully decorated to make you feel like you’re in a greenhouse and I love the concept of the florist and the café together. Unfortunately, I only had time for a quick coffee (which was excellent), but I do intend to stop in again to try some of their delicious looking cakes.
For a while now, one of my favourite food blogs has been Half Baked Harvest by Tieghan Gerard. I’m always reminded of it around this time each year, as there’s something very autumnal about her style of cooking and baking. I once tried out her recipe for a Salted Caramel Apple Snickers cake and, although nowhere near as show-stoppingly gorgeous as hers, it was hands down the best cake I’ve ever made! I’ve only tried a few recipes, but they always seem to fare well and she makes food that’s not only hearty and delicious, but looks absolutely beautiful too. With her first cookbook being released this month (I’ve pre-ordered mine!) and the dark and blustery nights fast approaching, now is definitely a good time to get acquainted with some wholesome new recipes.
That’s all for now, but keep an eye out for my tips on decorating a unicorn cake. Happy Ambling!