I’m not cooking a turkey this year, but I am supposed to be making Christmas desserts. This is not going well. The Anzac Biscuits I have made are great but I can only bake six at a time in my little oven and Marty keeps eating them. I made shortbread and it was a disaster. It wasn’t the lovely light golden colour it should have been and it disintegrates with the slightest touch.
I then tried to make a fruit cake. When I started this there was no try, just do, as I have been making these for years. Instead of being all puffed up in the middle, showing off the almond decorations, it was sad and sunken. I was not happy but I could have rescued that with a meringue icing that is supposed to look like fluffy snow. But then I noticed that the edges of the cake were hard, so hard that I wasn’t sure I could cut it. I miss wheat flour and gluten. This was the first time I had tried to bake with self raising non-gluten flour and it did not go well. If I was staying at home I would turn it into some sort of Christmas trifle, but I have no easy way to transport that on a train. I had wanted something that would look pretty, but I have now cut the useable parts of the cake into fruit cake slices. They taste fine, but don’t look like the Christmas present I was hoping to make.
Since I have to take a cake to my friend’s house today I’m going to make a chocolate-chip cake with wheat flour. It’s not exactly traditional but I have the ingredients and I no longer care that I won’t be able to eat it. At least I’ll have something pretty to take with me. Marty is also baking. He’s attempting to make a chocolate roulade, which if nothing else smells beautiful. It has to cool for three hours and then we will get to see how it goes. If it fails to roll I think we’ll buy some strawberries, mix in the whiskey cream, and break the meringue up in pieces. We’ll call it Christmas mess, as that has to be better than Christmas fail.