Have you ever thought yourself completely awake? I don’t mean just as you are about to drop off to sleep at night, when that little voice goes “Oooh did you put the bin out?”
I’m talking about waking up earlier than usual (but not silly o’clock early) like BOOM with a clear thought in your head? Well that happened to me this morning… 6am and I’m woken up with the thought BLOG! Not quite the epiphany you may have thought I was going to say, but once I’d thought it through, I realised it was actually quite profound.
You see, I love writing. I’m even a pencil and paper over a computer kinda gal as I love the process of writing itself. I love that it can be such a cathartic and creative process… but I’ve neglected it. I forgot that I enjoyed it and I turned writing blogs into just another ‘should do’ activity for the business, rather than remember it is something that I actually enjoy doing!
Have you ever done the same? It can easily happen in the busy’ness of life, to lose touch with the activities we love, but I believe if we don’t factor in time to do the things that bring us joy and make us happy, we gradually lose a part of ourselves in the process.
Another thing I love is baking, well duh I hear you say… but I used to love just pootling in the kitchen playing with recipes kinda baking. Now that baking makes up a big part of my job I’ve lost some of that ‘baking for fun’ feeling. Yes I bake a lot, but as far as recipes go, there isn’t a lot of variation now in what I bake, and I don’t often get the time to just have fun with it like I used to.
So like the writing, from now on I am MAKING time to rediscover old favourite recipes, and develop some new ones, starting this weekend! So today you are reading this blog and on Sunday I am going to bake an old favourite, a recipe I developed a few years ago for a lemon & almond cake, and I thought I’d share the recipe just in case you wanted to join me!
Lemon & Almond Cake
For the cake:
125g soft butter
150g caster sugar
25g soft brown sugar
Zest of 1 lemon
½ tsp almond essence
125g self-raising flour
50g ground almonds
4 tbsp milk
For the topping:
2 tbsp lemon juice
30g caster sugar
Handful toasted flaked almonds
Grease and line a 6” cake tin and preheat the oven to 180C/160C fan/GM 4.
Using a free-standing mixer (or the old fashioned whisk and bowl method for an extra work out) cream together the butter, sugars and lemon zest, then add eggs one at a time.
Sift the flour and add to the wet mixture with the ground almonds, then add the milk gradually until it all comes together.
Bake in the oven for 20 minutes or until a cake tester comes out clean.
For the topping – whilst the cake is in the oven, heat the sugar and lemon juice in a small pan until the sugar has melted, then pour over the top of the cake once it has come out of the oven, then sprinkle with the toasted flaked almonds.
Enjoy with a cup of tea and a sit down whilst you make YOUR list of activities to rediscover!