Wednesday, 7 October 2009

If you seek perfection in sugar confection well there's something new on the scene



I'm sure you weren't expecting to hear from me again so soon. But alongside the bread, I also made Promise cake this week.
Promise cake is a very important institution at both the Brownies and Guides I volunteer with. When a girl is ready to make her promise she does so in front of the rest of the unit, and we welcome her into the Sisterhood of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts. To celebrate this occaision, as well as going into uniform for the first time, and getting her promise badge, the girl also has a Promise cake which everyone shares. Reminding us that we're all part of a family that celebrates together.
To be honest - and this is just between you and me - the cake is nothing special. It's Nigella's recipe for a Victoria Sponge, it's in How to Eat and Domestic Goddess

225g unsalted butter, very soft
225g caster sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 large eggs
200g self raising flour
25g cornflour
3 - 4 tablespoons milk

2 x 21cm sandwich tins buttered (I only have one of these, and every time I'm somewhere where I can buy one, I look and get entirely confused about what size I already have!)

Nigella says that you can whack all of this in the food processor and add a teaspoon of baking powder and blitz it to a batter. I'm afraid I'm old school, so I do it the way I was taught in Home Ec, and cream teh butter and sugar, add the eggs, alternating with a spoonful of flour and then the vanilla. Sift and fold in the rest of the flour, cornflour and add the milk until the mixture is a dropping consistency.

Bake in a 180 degree oven for 25 minutes, then cool on a wire rack.

At Guides we've had it filled with raspberry jam, lime curd, and whipped cream and strawberry jam. All very popular, although apparently not "as good as Brown Owl's"! Not that I'm competitive or anything, but I shall spend the rest of my days honing this recipe until I at least achieve equity with Brown Owl! I normally let the girls top the cake and we try to replicate our Trefoil with silver balls, icing or icing sugar over a stencil. One day we'll get one that's successful. Alternatively I could learn to actually ice a cake!
To my mind, the important part of a promise ceremony, and the accompanying cake is that we share it, together, we celebrate together, and the girls remember that our unit is part of the wider Guiding family. As you can't see the girls' faces I've added a picture of a recent promise below.


Oh and thanks must go to Virna for today's title, as musical references to cake were beyond my reach today. So thank you Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, and Virna!

3 comments:

Catherine said...

That's such a nice idea! We did something similar for the start of the Centenary (I'm a unit-helper with Brownies but doing my leadership qual. at the moment.). We decided to bring a cake in to share as some girls weren't going to the Centenary celebrations and thought it'd be nice that they got to join in with the party. My cake went down a treat as well and the gasps of "Oohh thats so cool!" about my attempts at icing using a piping bag were much appreciated!

Laura @ Hungry and Frozen said...

Aw, that's a cool idea! No better way to welcome people than with cake. And you can't go wrong with that Victoria sponge :) Lime curd filling sounds good...

Karine said...

Your cake sounds delicious! Thanks for sharing :)

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