I’ve been making this cake since I was a teenager, and that’s a long time ago now! Talking About Cakes by Margaret Bates was first published in 1964, and my copy dates from 1978. I’ve made quite a lot of the cakes and biscuits in this book. Reading through its yellowed pages, which are falling out, takes me on a journey back in time. I can remember making a meringue layer cake – layers of meringue, sponge and coffee cream – for my grandad’s birthday when I was probably about 15. Very “Bake Off”! And my first excursions into Danish pastry were from recipes in this book. This cherry cake was a particular favourite of my uncle Jack, and I made it for him a few times. It is based on a pound cake really, with added ground almonds. It’s moist, with a lovely lemony flavour. Even when it’s getting a bit stale (I made it over a week ago, and we are just finishing the last slice!) it still stays quite moist because of the juicy cherries.
Now it’s January and the whole of media land is awash with salads and vegetable shakes. I will carry on baking. Someone has to!