I am obsessed with fruit cakes as y’all know. Apple & rhubarb have had much play on LLG, but this summer’s special is shaping up to be peach & almond, with a little blackberry riff. Last weekend I knocked up a peach & almond cake at 730am for my cake sale for The Ms Trust at my mother’s garage sale, and at the last minute tipped in some blackberries that were lurking in the fridge. I loved the final sweet and slightly sour result.
So when I arrived in the Vienne this week, and discovered that’s H’s peach trees were in full peach-y bloom, it seemed that another peach cake was in order. I( should add that on day one H requested that I bake a cake each day). So I kicked off with peach, and then went apple & blackberry last night. I have never before cooked cakes where I have picked the peaches off the tree, the windfall apples from the orchard floor and the blackberries off the brambles in the kitchen garden.
The kitchen here isn’t necessarily set up for cake baking, but I improvised with a wide shallow nonstick pan about 5cm high, well buttered. Because the pan was so wide, I thought it might collapse if I attempted to turn it out, so I decided to serve all the cakes I baked warm as pudding cakes straight out the pan, and served with ice cold creme fraiche. This cake fed 12 people happily in thin-ish slices – as below for pudding.
It’s quite difficult to balls this one up as the almonds make it all squidge-ly dense and it’s quite difficult to overcook it. (Many sponge cakes get very dry if you leave them in the oven too long.) The main thing to watch for is that the top doesn’t brown too quickly.
This is for quite a large cake tin. (I’m going to go measure mine in a second)
Take 250gm butter & 250gm caster sugar and whizz together in a food processor. Add two eggs, 150gm self-raising flour, whizz, add two more eggs and 100gm ground almonds and whizz.
Tip into a bowl and gently fold in 3 peaches, stoned (but not peeled) and chopped.
Pour into a well-butter cake tin. If serving cold, I would use a higher, loose bottomed tin so it’s easier to turn out. If serving warm as a pudding cake, then a shallower tin is better and a loose bottom doesn’t matter as you can serve straight from the tin.
Cook at 180C for about 45mins-1hr. If the top starts to brown before it is ready, put a piece of greaseproof paper over the top of the tin.
If you choose a high sided tin, it will take longer to cook as it will be denser in the middle. The cake is cooked when a knife or skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean. Do make sure you haven’t gone through a piece of fruit, as this will make the knife come out clean whether or not the cake is cooked.
250gm caster sugar a
150gm self-raising flour
100gm ground almonds
3 peaches, stoned (but not peeled) and chopped.
handful of blackberries – optional