I won’t bake things with ingredients I don’t like. It may seem silly – but I don’t see the point in wasting my time with bakes that, ultimately, I’m not going to be able to enjoy. Hence why you have never seen pistachios on the blog (or walnuts, hazelnuts or peanuts…). You won’t see mushrooms/lasagne/cheese soufflé. Great changes will happen before prawns or blue cheese make an appearance. I’m not a fussy eater and I like to try new things, of course, but I know what I do and don’t like.
On the other hand, as I have created this little piece of the blogosphere, I have come to realise my three favourite ingredients. When stuck with no inspiration, it is all too often a dish containing one of these favourites that I turn to. After several failures or disappointments, I turn to these ingredients to get my confidence back. I love them, and they will never be absent from my kitchen for long.
Together, bakes containing these three stars make 29 out of my 77 posts so far – quite a hefty proportion. All very different ingredients, but my favourites nonetheless. Whether the star ingredient, or sharing the spotlight, these ingredients always make me hungry. When my sister first started cooking ground almonds went into almost everything. It’s no different with me, and I have more almondy treats still coming up! But today, almond is indeed sharing the spotlight. Glorious pink apples take the stage (ahem, plate) to fill this pretty, juicy cake.
Inspiration can come from the randomest places, in this case a little Waitrose leaflet. This cake takes minutes to knock up but is absolutely scrumptious when cooked so it is perfect for those short-notice guests. The shortbread-style base is full of crisp and crunch, whilst the apples slowly soften down and release their delicate pink flavour. Then the flaky almond sweet crumble just tops it all off…I’m now craving some more and it’s all gone.
Apple Crumble Cake, from Waitrose NEW
Ingredients: 200g plain flour
80g caster sugar
3 chopped apples
1tbsp demerara sugar
75g flaked almonds.
- Preheat oven to 200’C, gas mark 6. Place flour, butter and sugar in a processor and blitz until it resembles breadcrumbs.
- Remove 1/3 of the mixture, continue blitzing the remainder until the mixture forms a dough. Press into a 20cm loose-bottom cake tin. Top with the three chopped apples.
- To the crumble, add the demerara sugar and almonds. Sprinkle this over the apples and bake for 40-45 minutes. Enjoy the crumbly goodness :)