The blackbirds have been eyeing up my strawberries over the last few weeks so I have put up a net to curb their thieving. I don’t want them filling up on my precious gems of fructose when they should be feasting on slugs*- also keen to get their slimy tentacles on my bounty. I cannot, for the life of me, fathom out why God invented slugs- but I’ll leave that rant for another day…..
Thanks to the netting I now have a daily supply of strawberries that should continue for a few weeks. My mother in law, Magda, bakes the most delicious cakes. Yesterday she kindly made us a very tasty strawberry cake. For me it just epitomises summer. It’s so very easy to make that I couldn’t help but share Magda’s recipe. Thanks so much Magda for the delicious treat and the instructions to make it.
The cake has a dough base which Magda ingeniously covers with melted chocolate to prevent strawberry juice leakage. This means you can enjoy your cake in slices rather than unmanageable piles of mush. Always a good thing.
For the base you will need:
1tsp baking powder
75g butter/dairy free equivalent
1 egg beaten
Other ingredients include:
A handful of flaked almonds
75g good quality chocolate
Punnet of strawberries rinsed
5 tbsp of apricot jam (other flavours will do just as well)
Mix your base ingredients together to form a dough and knead it for a few minutes. Roll it out to fit a 9 inch / 10 inch diameter cake tin. Using your tin as a form, cut out your dough. First sprinkle a handful of flaked almonds into the base of the greased tin and then place in the dough. Bake in the oven at 195 degrees Celsius for about 25 minutes. Remove from the tin and place on a rack to cool.
Meanwhile melt the chocolate in a heat proof bowl placed over a saucepan of boiling water. Pour the melted chocolate over the top of your dough base. Leave to cool.
Remove the stalks from your strawberries and halve them. Sprinkle the fruit with sugar and give them a little shake. Press the strawberries onto the base, packing them on closely. Then melt 5 tbsp of apricot jam in a saucepan adding enough water for a pouring consistency. Pour the liquid over the strawberries and leave it all to set. Delicious served with a dollop of whipped cream…
* There is some debate as to whether or not blackbirds do eat slugs. We know they eat snails but slugs…who knows? If you have any hard evidence to back up my claim (or not) I’d love to hear from you!