When my nieces graduated from high school here in Salt Lake City, I asked each of them where in the world they would like to go. Taci Lou, Class of 1997 announced she would like to visit England, while Doots, Class of 2000 opted for Maui. Lucky me – I could only afford two nieces, and I got to go, too.
Tacie and I drove around England for a couple of crazy weeks, and often stopped to get a stash of food for the car. One of my niece’s favorites was a simple little cake called a “Fairy Cake.” Kind of like a cupcake, but not as fancy with no big globs of frosting and a little more dry and dense. My Avenues neighbor Wendy and her sister have fond memories of them as well. Great with a cup of tea.
- 1 stick of butter, softened
- ½-cup sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1-teaspoon vanilla
- 1 cup self rising flour
- ¼-teaspoon salt
Heat the oven to 325 degrees. Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing between each addition. Mix in the vanilla. Gently mix in the flour and salt – do not over beat. Evenly divide the batter between lined cup cake pans or grease the pans. The easiest way to do this is to use a pastry bag or zipper bag with the corner cut off. This is a very thick batter, and you will get a better result. I like to make small fairy cakes, and this makes around 20 little ones. Bake for 20 minutes or until the cake springs back to the touch and is a light golden brown. Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes if you are making larger cakes.
The cakes we had in England weren’t frosted, but Wendy likes to add a glaze and a quarter of a maraschino cherry. Make the glaze by adding a little water to powdered sugar. I also add a dash of vanilla and a pinch of salt. This isn’t a frosting so make it as thin as you like. Start with a tiny bit of water in a couple of tablespoons of sugar. Personally, I skip the cherry. Eating food that looks like it could glow in the dark makes me nervous.
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Adapted from a recipe at ALLBRITISHFOOD.COM