Wow. I surely didn't think my absence would stretch on quite so long. Likewise, I didn't think my essays would either.
The most troubling thing about my neglect of this blog is that it has been mirrored, for the most part, in the kitchen. I now firmly believe that it was easier to cook and eat well when I had full-time work than it is when I'm in school and spending most of my days at home. How that works is beyond me, but my diet of burritos and coffee will serve as proof.
The maple-soaked loaf cake, nutty with oats, speckled with pink strawberries - I added a few finely chopped bits of rosemary to round it out. It's topped with a buttery, sugary, oat streusel, which cools to a delicate, lace-like crunch. Throw in a cup of coffee and my afternoons will be significantly improved.
I based the cake recipe loosely on Heidi Swanson's, here at 101 Cookbooks.
1 cup pastry flour
3 Tbsp. rolled oats
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. bicarb
1/2 tsp. fine grain sea salt
1/4 tsp. fresh rosemary, chopped
4 Tbsp. unsalted butter, room temperature
1/3 cup maple syrup
1 large egg
1 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/4 cup buttermilk
a handful strawberries, quartered
1. Sift together your dry ingredients and set aside. 2. In a mixer, cream your butter until light and fluffy, then pour in your maple syrup, egg, vanilla, and buttermilk bit by bit. Mix until fairly, though not entirely smooth - about two minutes. 3. Spoon in your flour mix a few spoonfuls at a time while mixing, until the entire mix is smooth. 4. Stir in your strawberries by hand, then spoon the batter into a lined loaf tin. 5. Bake for 40 minutes at 350 F (180 C). Remove from oven once just set in order to top with streusel topping.
For the streusel you need:
3 Tbsp. butter, softened
1/3 cup white sugar
1/3 cup flour
a handful of porridge oats
1. Mix the ingredients together until smooth. 2. Spread over the top of your cake and then return the whole thing to the oven for a further 10-15 minutes, or until the edges of the streusel are just golden brown. Let cool a bit before turning out of the pan.