I keep on experimenting with new cakes or changing old recipes I keep in an old ring A5 binder with a picture of Bonnie Bonnets going to school with white pinafore and school bag on the cover. The recipes are all handwritten and fading away so I thought it was time to type them out properly maybe in a booklet for the use of the whole family. For this reason I started with the recipes I had already tested and posted in this blog (and the previous one I had on Lancashire Life website) in the past seven years and created a book for me and my children. I collected more than 150 recipes from the blog (some of them have little mistakes I overlooked but I decided to leave it as it is) and organized them in starters, primi piatti (first course, that is soup and pasta), secondi piatti (second course, mainly fish and meat), pizza, side dishes, cakes and desserts, and biscuits.
I dedicated the book to my children and my daughter in law and also added some quotations and a foreword. On the cover there is the picture of one of my paintings I thought was appropriate to the topic. It was great fun, rewarding and useful as now I have all the recipes at hand.
Most of the recipes come from what my grandmothers and my mother taught me. Some of them are adapted from magazines and newspapers, and all have the ‘Italian touch’; a way of cooking characterized by simple, healthy and tasty food.
Some of the cakes are my exclusive creation, a thing I am very proud of as making cakes is almost an art, the final ornament to a delicious meal.
Here is a new cake I have just experimented which can be useful during Easter time:
Easter cake with dried coconut and apricots
You need: 250 g of plain flour, 150 g of dried sweetened coconut, 50 g of melted butter, 3 eggs, 150g of white caster sugar, some dried apricots, 1 tsp and a half of baking powder, 1 tsp of bicarbonate of soda, the grated rind and the juice of a lemon.
Grind the lemon rind and the sugar in a blender. Beat the eggs in a bowl and add the sugar and lemon mixture. Add the melted butter, lemon juice and dried coconut. Finally mix in the rest of the ingredients except for the apricots. Pour the mixture in a round cake tin you greased previously, and arrange some dried apricots on top; finally sprinkle the top with two tbsp of golden caster sugar. Bake at 180° C for 30-45 minutes and enjoy it!