Did someone say Cakes?Â We love cakes and all things sweet so absolutely nearly fell over ourselves when Saved By Cake by Marian Keyes landed on our desk recently.Â Saved by Cake is a charming book filled with over 80 ways to bake yourself happy. The famed Chick-Lit author has written this book in a similar style to her novels â€“ chatty, girlie and fun. The book is full of amazing pictures of cakes and baked goods and funny, descriptive recipes and methods.
Keyes\’ inspiration for Saved By Cake came at a very difficult period in her life. Crippled by depression, Keyes found solace in the precision and concentration required for baking, along with the prettiness of the icing and decorations which brought her joy. The book proper is light and fun, but the Introduction gives you a real insight into the depths of her depression and just how she was saved by baking.
With chapters on cupcakes, cheesecakes, meringues and macaroons, chocolate cakes, fruit cakes and favourite classics, Marian’s recipes are aimed firmly at beginner bakers, offering hints and tips to help along the way. Flipping through the book it’s hard not to start drooling over the gorgeous and delicious looking creations Keyes has made. Our favourite has to be the Tiramisu Macaroons and the Coconut Milk Cake. Yum!Â And we were lucky enough to get the recipe from the book to share with you, bring on homemade Tiramisu Macaroons:
Makes 15 pairs
- 2 egg whites
- 150g golden caster sugar
- 120g ground almonds
- 120g icing sugar
- 1 tablespoon instant coffee, dissolved in a tablespoon of boiling water, then fully cooled cocoa powder, for dusting
For the filling
- 100g mascarpone cheese
- 1 tablespoon Marsala wine (optional)*
- 1 tablespoon instant coffee, dissolved in a tablespoon of boiling water, then cooled
*The alcohol will not be cooked off, so don\’t give this to children or people who need to avoid alcohol.
Line two baking trays with baking paper.Â Whisk the egg whites until stiff, gradually add the caster sugar, then the almonds and icing sugar, the usual blah. Where you want to pay attention is when you add the coffee. When I say â€˜dissolved inaÂ tablespoon of boiling water\’, I mean that literally. Just a tablespoon.
On my first few attempts to make these, I used too much liquid and the uncooked macaroons just flowed all over the baking tray and ran into each other into one big, flat disaster. Also, the coffee must be fully cooled, because if it\’s not, the heat will affect the consistency of the meringue, again making it madly runny. So, add your 1 tablespoon of cooled, dissolved coffee and stir carefully.
Using either two teaspoons or a piping bag, create your macaroons on your baking paper. Leave to stand for about half an hour, then heat the oven to 140ÂºC/275ÂºF/gas 1. Bake for 30 minutes, then cool on wire racks.
Use a palette knife to lift the macaroons off the baking paper and when they\’re fully cooled, make the filling by beating the mascarpone until smooth, then mixing together gradually with the Marsala and dissolved coffee. If it goes very runny â€“ by that I mean so runny that it will just run off the sides of the macaroons â€“ put it into the fridge for a while.When it has re-firmed to your satisfaction, use it to sandwich the macaroons into pairs. Finally, sprinkle over a light dusting of cocoa powder through a sieve.
There you have it, this is the perfect gift for yourself and anyone who has a sweet tooth and loves baking!
Available now: Penguin RRP$29.95
Please note, this recipe cannot be replicated anywhere else due to copyright restrictions.
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