i like to bake. cakes and pies and biscuits and bread. sometimes i make lemon curd and sticky jam and put it in pretty little jars. i sell it all at markets. and then i write about it here.

Sunday, 7 November 2010

roll up roll up

Every other Sunday is market day at Bristol bar Start the Bus. To give it it's official title, 'The Not-So-Supermarket' is a just-turn-up-and-sell-anything kind of market and a great way to spend a Sunday. So this morning myself and Jesse took along our wares (hers jewellery, mine cakes) and set up a stall. Granted, there is always a risk that I will spend more money than I make on account of being surrounded by leather bags, silk scarves, sequinned jackets and vintage jewels for sale. When preparing for a market, it goes without saying that I love the baking that it entails. But the part that I most enjoy is meeting other stall-holders and customers, hearing reactions to my cakes (favourite one today - "My friend told me your cupcakes are amazing". He then returned for two more) and the general market-atmosphere.  
My cakes sold steadily throughout the day. Carrot cake, as always, was a big hit. We munched on a bowl of homemade chips, drank numerous mugs of tea and were joined by several different groups of friends at various points. It was a good day. I left richer, having resisted the temptations on the other stalls and brought home a few unsold goods (it wasn't a good day for flapjacks), which kept my housemates happy.  

carrot cake
for the cake
300g soft light brown sugar
3 eggs
300ml sunflower oil
300g plain flour
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
300g grated carrots
100g chopped walnuts, plus extra for decorating
for the cream cheese
600g icing sugar
100g butter
250g cream cheese
1. Preheat the oven to 170C
2. Use an electric whisk to beat together the sugar, eggs and oil. Slowly add the flour, bicarbonate of soda, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger, salt and vanilla extract and continue to beat.
3. Stir in the grated carrots and walnuts.
4. Pour the mixture into three 20cm cake tins lined with greaseproof paper.
5. Bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes.
6. Leave the cakes to cool on a wire cooling rack.
7. Meanwhile, beat the icing sugar and butter together with an electric whisk. Add the cream cheese and beat until light and fluffy.
8. Cover each of the three cakes with icing and place on eon top of the other. Spread the remaining icing all over the top and sides of the cake.
9. Finally, decorate the cake with the walnuts and a sprinkling of cinnamon.