Wondercat 2: Back in the habit

Sista Mary Wondercat!

So after a few weeks of not being able to look at a cake, bat an eyelid at a biscuit or glance at a gateaux we are back in the baking habit…oh happy day!!

We’ve been trying to rev ourselves up for a while but after two weeks channelling Takeru Kobayashi in China and thus returning looking like a giant cha siu baothe Violet Beauregarde of the Far East if you will, we have steered clear of the kitchen.

But we’re back! Christmas has cracked us!  After our traditional “Grand Opening to Christmas”-a trip to Fortnum and Mason for high tea in St James’s and a rampage through their decadent decorations (seriously, rampage…last year I managed to totally decimate a display of baubles…why didn’t I learn from classic cartoon slapstick and not take a bauble from the bottom of the pile!?); a freshly filled decanter of Pedro Ximenez and finally the erecting of the festive foliage…we could hold back no longer…

anyone for tree and cake?

Chadong Panettone and Mykie’s Mincemeat

I’m not adding recipes as the panettone is a work in progress and the mincemeat is just a revamp of Nigella’s Cranberry Studded Mincemeat with a few tweaks.

So, panettone…bit of a disaster for a few reasons…

  1. I didn’t have a recipe I liked
  2. I decided to freestyle and make my own
  3. I used a tin that was too big
  4. I baked it totally wrong

all cake slices should be based on the right angle at Christmas

Apart from that it was fucking marvellous!

The thing about panettone is that it is basically a delicious interbreeding of a yeast bread dough and a rich fruity sponge batter…you make both then have sexytimes in the Kitchenaid.  We didn’t have enough yeast in the house but hey-ho it’ll all be fine…it wasn’t fine.  As we were winging the recipe we had to take a stab in the dark with the baking…we went for “bake like a cake” (low and longer) rather than “bake like bread” (hot and quick)…I think I chose wrong.  The balls up in the baking and choosing a tin far, far to large (I had far too much confidence in the dough being a grower not a shower) we ended up with a dense low-slung cake thing.  Taste-wise it was total Christmas-sexy-good but texturally it was edible brewers droop…back to the drawing board!

dumpy yet delightful

The mincemeat as we admitted, is basically Nigella’s, but we prefer a few sharper notes running through so use a nice Amontillado sherry instead of ruby port, add some mixed peel, and use a zippy Calvados in place of brandy…oh, and we use a heap more dried cranberries!!!!!!

trust the label...

So Christmas is here! Fragrance adverts are taking over the TV and there is tinsel everywhere (except our house, let’s be real people, we are not tinsel people)…(for some reason we’ve started calling it tinzel…well, tiiiinnnnzzzzzzeeelllll…it’s hilariously homo…try it, you won’t go back)

Fudge-packer: a fragrance for men: from Wondercat Bakery

the word "reindeer" totally left my brain; we wanted to say "raisin/raisindeer" but knew it was not the right word...oh the joys of old age.

Three cheers for the return of the holiday season and the return of baked goods from The Wondercat Bakery!

Happy Holidays!

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Posted on December 4, 2011, in Breads, Cake, Disasters, Experimental and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. Whoo! Glad to see that you broke through your baker’s block~!

    Panettone is something I’m going to attempt next Christmas — I wonder where you can even get those ridiculously small and tall round tins anyways!? I think your bread looks like less of a disaster than you think it does! When it comes to bread, it ain’t always pretty anyways — it’s what’s on the inside that counts. 🙂

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