I have always loved British baked goods, British candy, British chocolates! I grew up with my extended family in the UK, and my first trip to the UK was when I was 10 years old. I went with another family(my parents’ friends), to London, and I came back alone, with the air hostess’ taking care of me the entire journey. It was my first experience traveling alone , outside of the country and one of the best experiences that I still remember it! It was summer vacation in India, and my parents decided to send me to live with my grandma, aunts and uncles for a month. I was more than happy to go and live with them, cause I adore them so much! My aunt and uncle took me on a trip all over England right to the tip of Isle of Wright. We saw castles, amusement parks, spoke to a lot of strangers, stayed in B&Bs, had the best English breakfasts and the best English Scones, along with homemade jam and clotted cream, and ate a lot of other good foods, along the way that I don’t remember 🙂
My memories are of spending quality time with my family, seeing practically all of the kid worthy museums in London, seeing all the tourist sights in London, going to the country side and having picnics, playing with sheep at a farm, and many many such beautiful memories. It was the first time I rode my uncle’s(boy) bike, and rolled down the hill WITHOUT any control and banged against a wall, broke my uncle’s bike, and broke my first toe, and wait…… saw birds around by head LOL – just like in the movies! I had beautiful memories built from this trip and my love for England had just begun. Several trips to England and the scene never gets old, the joy still remains, and I am still excited with the sights and sounds of this country.
So ofcourse when Bake from Scratch came out with their British Issue of the Bake from Scratch magazine, I was ecstatic and so happy to see the issue! The issue is simply beautiful with fun bakeries to visit in London, the recipes are wonderful, and one of my favorite things is the difference in the baking terminology between British English and American English! And then they announced that they were doing the #BakelikeaBrit Tour with Edd Kimber, who is the first season winner of the popular show The Great British Baking Show! That was the icing on the cake! In February, a bunch of food bloggers were invited to this event in SF Cooking School and were given the opportunity to bake English scones with Edd @theboywhobakes. I got to meet the ever so charming Brian and the lovely Brooke from the magazine, who have done such an amazing job with the magazine, and their @thebakefeed account on Instagram! I also got to meet some of my favorite food bloggers/instagrammers at the event , one of them being Laura from @tutti_dolci whom I had never met! It was fun baking along side Laura and Joan from @mixandmeasure whom I met for the first time as well! This was a fun experience and one to remember!
I have always wanted to bake a Battenberg Cake and try the checkered pattern! The recipe is in the Feb/March issue of Bake from Scratch and it is really easy to follow. I put a spring twist on the recipe, and used hibiscus-blueberry flavors in one cake, and rose-raspberry flavors in the second cake. I had to put a tiny bit of food coloring to give it that pretty hue! The recipe should be followed in order, and do not miss any steps. Read the recipe 2-3 times before you start to get a hang of it. It is not hard, you just need to be diligent to follow each of the steps! I found it a lot of fun to make, and the cake was absolutely delicious! I enjoyed the cake with some very warming, soothing spiced rose tea as an afternoon treat!
You should totally give this recipe a try! It is so pretty to serve at any event as well!
- Battenberg Cake:
- 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 3 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon almond extract
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon whole milk
- 2 tablespoons freeze dried blueberries
- 2 tablespoons dried hibiscus
- purple food coloring
- 2 tablespons freeze dried raspberries
- 2 tablespoons dried rose
- pink food coloring
- Marzipan recipe:
- 3 1/2 cups confectioner's sugar
- 1 1/2 cups almond flour
- 1 large egg white
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 teaspoons almond extract
- For the cake assembly:
- 1/4 cup apricot jam
- 1 recipe of the marzipan
- Marzipan recipe:
- In the work bowl of a food processor, place confectioner's sugar and flour. Pulse until combined. Add egg white, vanilla extract and almond extract, and process until mixture holds together and is the consistency of softened butter. Wrap tightly in plastic wrap, and refrigerate upto a month.
- Battenberg Recipe:
- Process the freeze dried blueberries and hibiscus in a coffee grinder, fine until powdery. Strain it twice, to remove all the seeds and have a smooth powder.
- Repeat the same for the dried rose, and freeze dried raspberries, to get a smooth powder.
- Prehat oven to 350 degrees C. Butter and flour an 8 inch square baking pan; line pan with parchment paper. Fold a sheet of foil over 3 to 4 times to create a sturdy 8-inch-long, 1-inch-tall strip. Place in center of prepared pan to form a divider.
- In a bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat butter and sugar at medium speed until creamy, 3 to 4 minutes, stopping to scrap sides of bowl. Add eggs, one at a time, beating until just combined after each addition. Beat in the extracts.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt. With mixer on low speed, gradually add flour mixture to butter mixture, beating until just combined. Pour half of batter into medium bowl.
- Add the blueberry-hibiscus powder into one mixture, along with purple food coloring. Start with 2-3 drops, and see how you want the color to develop. I wanted a lavender hue, so I added a little bit to the mixture. Mix with a rubber spatula until well blended.
- Repeat the same with the rose-raspberry powder into the other mixture, adding the pink food coloring.
- Pour each batter into one side of the prepared pan. Bake until a wooden pick inserted in center of each cake comes out clean, 25 to 30 minutes. Let cool in pan for 10 minutes. Remove from pan, and let cool completely on wire rack. Using a serrated knife, trim off dark outer edges of cake.Cut each cake into 2(8 x 11/2 x 1 - inch) rectangles.
- On a work surface, lightly dusted with confectioner's sugar, roll Marzipan to 1/8 inch thickness. Brush a 11/2 inch side of one piece of the purple cake with warm apricot jam, and place on Marzipan, jam side down. Brush a 1-inch side of purple cake and a 11/2-inch side of one piece of pink cake with jam. Place pink cake next to the purple cake, 11/2-inch side down, using jam as a glue. Brush top of purple cake and a 1-inch side of second piece of pink cake with jam. Place pink cake directly on top of the purple piece.
- Brush a 11/2-inch side of second piece of purple cake with jam, and place it directly on top of the first pink piece. Gently press all cake pieces together. Brush outside of all cake pieces with jam. Carefully wrap Marzipan around cake, gently pressing to smooth out air pockets and seal. Cut off any excess Marzipan. Cut a 1/2-inch piece off each end of the cake. Serve immediately or refrigerate for 2 days.