Muv’s Birthday Lunch: Ottolenghi Cauliflower Fritters & Raspberry Cream Cake

by Sasha Wilkins on August 19, 2013 · 23 comments

raspberry cream angel cake

My mother makes the most epic cake. Actually to be honest everything she makes is pretty epic. She’s the best cook I know, hands down, and she single handedly ruined eating other people’s food for my sister and me. She understands ingredients, is always abreast of food trends and ideas and feeds everyone with generosity and love. So when she cooks, she really cooks. Which is what she did for her birthday lunch last week.


Blue whippet

After cavorting at Wilderness, I drove straight to my mother’s cottage on last Monday morning to help celebrate her birthday: wholly serendipitously Cornbury Park where the festival was held is only twenty-five miles away from where I grew up so there was no excuse for missing her birthday. Billy, as you can see, was on top form. He’s resting after the very exuberant effort of greeting me, under the David Austin Eglantyne rose that I bought for my mother.

I felt bad because she cooked all morning for her birthday lunch. Not so bad however that I didn’t eat everything in sight.

Twice.

gratin dauphinois

I arrived to a typical Muv statement: ‘I’ve made some Ottolenghi recipes, but I thought I might just make a Daupinoise just in case‘, as she opened the oven to show a ginormous dish of potatoes and cream. (I should point out that it’s looking particularly crispy because I like it almost burnt around the edges.) There was a delicious Ottolenghi salad of green beans, chilli, nigella seeds, and rocket, and his cauliflower fritters. (We liked the fritters well enough, but typically all three of us spent about thirty minutes discussing how we would improve them.)

ottolenghi cauliflower fritters

There was also an audience.

dachshund

And then there was cake. One of my mother’s specialities is what the English call a whisked sponge, but the Americans know as Angel cake. Basically a fatless sponge, made light with beaten egg whites and baking powder. I’m terrible at them: I always end up with rubbery discs, but my mother’s are technically perfect and bloody delicious.

raspberry cream angel cake

Our family tradition is to eat it sandwiched with whipped cream and strawberries, but this time we had creme fraiche and raspberries.

raspberry cream angel cake

Les chiens do not differentiate between available snax. Cake is just as good as the gratin I hand fed to Billy when my mother wasn’t looking.

blue whippet

mmmmm cake…

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{ 22 comments… read them below or add one }

s August 19, 2013 at 01:31

Give her my love and best wishes. Cake with berries and creme fraiche, my fave. No, wait – that would be fried food – the fritters. Actually, no, that would be the thinly sliced spuds with creme. I love it all x

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LLG August 19, 2013 at 13:11

@s: I passed on your love (and she said thank you and goodness I really *MUST start blogging again!) LLGxx

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nancyblackett August 19, 2013 at 01:40

Yum, I am on a fast day so all I want to do is read about fritters and cake:) Jesting aside, it’s a lovely tribute to your mother to describe her cooking for the purpose of “generosity and love”.

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LLG August 19, 2013 at 13:11

@nancyblackett: I think all food cooked for family and friends should be that way. Unfort often it tastes like punishment! LLGxx

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Chloe B August 19, 2013 at 08:30

This undid me first thing on a Monday. CAKE!!!!!! Mom’s CAKE!!!!!! *mental burp

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LLG August 19, 2013 at 13:10

@Chloe B: Sorry C! I’ll make you cake soon! LLGxx

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Beautiful Things August 19, 2013 at 08:57

Oh that delicious looking cake! I’m meant to be dieting but I’ll be thinking of it all day now, lol! Creme fraiche and raspberries is such a good idea.

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LLG August 19, 2013 at 13:10

@Beautiful Things: I wasn’t sure if tangy raspberries AND tangy cream would work, but it’s reeeally good LLGxx

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Stuff of Life August 19, 2013 at 11:14

That’s just sent me hunting for my car keys – cake for lunch it is!

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LLG August 19, 2013 at 13:09

@Stuff of Life: What a splendid idea! LLGxx

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Blonde August 19, 2013 at 12:30

Aw, Billy is so handsome. And that cake looks incredible.

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LLG August 19, 2013 at 12:56

@Blonde: My mother will love you for that comment. She’s always complaining that Billy doesn’t get enough oxygen on here! LLGxx

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Caity @ Moi Contre La Vie August 19, 2013 at 15:58

That cake looks amazing – I would LOVE to try making that! <3

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LLG August 21, 2013 at 15:25

@Caity @ Moi Contre La Vie: It is simple, I just don;t seem to have the knack. I will get the recipe together tho for readers. LLGxx

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Cal August 19, 2013 at 16:04

I love that Ottolenghi green bean recipe. I made it once for a party and all my friends haven’t stopped raving about my cooking ability since. All thanks to the fabulous Ottolenghi.

Happy birthday to your mother.

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LLG August 21, 2013 at 15:26

@Cal: It’s such a clever use of unexpected flavours, isn;t it? LLGxx

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K-Line August 19, 2013 at 19:07

Lord, that cake looks spectacular. You can practically taste the photo!

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LLG August 21, 2013 at 15:25

@K-Line: God it was good. We ate 2/3rds of it between three of us! LLGxx

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Janie August 20, 2013 at 09:14

Lovely light looking sponge!

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LLG August 21, 2013 at 15:26

@Janie: That’s my mother for you! LLGxx

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