We’ll not dwell on how folk entertain themselves when, in late autumn and winter, the nights are long and the curtains are drawn. Let’s instead focus on the high percentage of summer birthdays in our family. And a good a place as any to start is Vicki’s.
In the mid-seventies, very heavily pregnant with our second baby, I had an unusual spurt of energy on a very hot July day. In that decade our windows were hung heavily with voile. (Advice from Mum was to opt for maximum fullness and in matters of housekeeping and childrearing, I always took her advice.) What better way to rid myself of this energy excess than a spot of window cleaning and curtain laundry. I didn’t think anything of it. There were still six weeks to ‘B’ day. A few hours later however, baby girl number two decided to make an unexpected and rapid entry to the world.
On one hand that event seems like a lifetime ago and on the other, it might have been yesterday. I could ramble on nostalgically but that would be too tedious. Instead I’ll tell you about the delicious cake I rustled up in celebration of Vicki’s birthday eve. I had bookmarked the recipe some time ago and serendipitously unearthed it just a couple of days ago when I decided some serious housekeeping was required in the Safari bookmarks department.
Eton Mess cake is an exceedingly good cake (and in my opinion much better than anything Mr K is responsible for).
I followed the recipe to the letter but I’ve no doubt that a creamed or all-in-one version of the vanilla sponge would also work. I would however advocate the addition of ground almonds as this allows the cake mix to support the fruit and gives good distribution. Chantilly cream made a fitting accompaniment.
Her younger sister asked whether Vicki was blowing out the candles on a pizza and from a distance it does rather resemble a rectangular pizza. Perhaps it’s not the most attractive cake in the world but what it lacks in beauty it makes up for in taste.
With five family birthdays under our belt and several more to go, I doubt this will be the last birthday cake to emerge rom our kitchen this summer.