Tuesday, 4 September 2012

RECIPE: simple glazed nectarine or peach cake

layers of fruit in the cake
I have discovered something over my week and a half spent working as an au pair for an Austrian family with two teenage boys: they like cake. A lot. I have never known cake to disappear so quickly. And naturally I love this as it means I can get my bake on, and potentially then they won't hate me!? I really need to find another way to get people to like me... I was known as "cookie girl" for a brief period at the beginning of freshers' week. Still, there are worse nicknames. Anyhoo, that's by the by. 

So yesterday, both the housekeeper and the mum of the household bought a load of nectarines each, so I decided to use some of them up in a cake. Peaches would work just as well though. However, the baking cupboard here isn't as well stocked as ours at home in good old Engy, so I had to devise a recipe using pretty basic ingredients, resulting in an extremely delicious yet simple cake. Don't take my word for it - ask the boys! Well, obviously you can't, but you get my drift. Something they do have an abundance of here in Austria, however, is Marillenmarmelade (apricot jam) which adds a really nice sticky glaze on top. It's a lovely cake for summer afternoon tea, but I imagine it would be equally delish warmed up with a scoop of vanilla ice cream on the side for a dinner party pudding. I doubt there'll be any left by this evening in this household though!

As always, take your eggs and butter out in advance!


4 nectarines or peaches, sliced into segments
225g butter, softened
280g golden caster sugar
4 eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
350g self-raising flour
2 tsp baking powder
2 tbsp apricot jam


1. Heat oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4. Butter and line a 23cm diameter round cake tin with baking paper.

2. Place the butter, caster sugar, eggs, vanilla, flour and baking powder into a large bowl and mix well with an electric hand mixer until smooth. 

3. Spread half the mixture into the prepared tin. Arrange half the sliced nectarines over the top of the mixture, then repeat with a layer or cake mix and then the rest of the fruit. 

The nectarines should stick out before baking but the cake will rise up around them!
4. Bake for 50-60 mins until golden and springy to the touch (when the middle of the cake is tested with a skewer it should come out clean). 

5. While still hot from the oven and in the tin, spread the apricot jam on the top. Leave to cool for 10 mins, then turn out of tin and remove paper. Enjoy!


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