Tuesday, 2 October 2012

Glittery, girlie, strawberry traybake - A Thank You

Last week my daughter, affectionately known as Pea, turned 6 months old. To many parents this day will pass without notice, but to us, this was a big day. A day we weren't always certain we'd get to see. Our daughter was born 12 weeks early, with a lot of respiratory issues, significantly more than most babies of her gestation. She had to have surgery to remove half a lung before she was even 4lbs. We will never be able to do enough to express our thanks to the doctors and nurses who saved her life so many times over, but we can start with cake.

While she was in the hospital I made it my mission to bake for the staff at least once a week, I couldn't care for those babies like they can, but I can keep the people who care for her so hopped up on sugar the night shift seems half as long.

I believe in the therapeutic properties of cake (in fact I'm considering starting a new cake based philosophy of life), when Pea's doctor told us she needed to be transferred to another hospital and would probably need surgery, he did it while scoffing a huge chunk of my gingerbread. It is hard to panic and think the worst when your consultant is more focused on his sweet tooth and getting crumbs on the floor than the surgical complications.

Cake might be bad for the belly, but it's good for the soul, and sometimes we need a bit of that.

Pea's Strawberry Traybake


100g butter, at room temperature
175g self-raising flour
50g ground almonds
2 tsp baking powder
4 large eggs
225g caster sugar
125ml full-fat Greek yogurt
zest 2 lemons
200g strawberries
200g icing sugar

Total cost: £4.72, cuts into 15-18 squares

Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4.

Butter and line a 30 x 20cm traybake tin with baking parchment.

Measure all the sponge ingredients into a mixing bowl and mix together using an electric hand whisk until smooth. Spoon into the tin and level the surface.

Chop strawberries into small pieces and scatter over the surface of the cake. Press mostly into the batter with the back of a spoon to prevent burning.

Bake for 25-30 mins until lightly golden and a knife inserted into the middle comes out clean. Carefully lift the sponge out of the tin, then transfer to a wire rack to cool. Remove the baking parchment.

Mix the icing sugar with the juice of half a lemon, and enough water to form a loose drizzle. Pour or flick all over the surface of the cake, leaving some parts exposed. Sprinkle over edible glitter, if you're feeling in a frivolous kind of mood.

1 comment:

  1. Aww this brought a lump to my throat - happy six months to 'Pea'! I believe in the therapeautic properties of cake too!!