I gotta be honest; it's hard to feel manly when you didn't have time to do any knitting because you were too busy baking a cake. Sigh. Anyway, it's a recipe called "Autumn apple cake" from "The easy cook cookbook" by BBC books. Here's a shot of the ingredients:
The recipe states "Ready in 15 minutes, plus 50 minutes in the oven". By this point I had already been working for maybe 20 minutes or more chopping and cutting. Of course the ingredients ask for chopped apples and dates and hazelnuts, so apparently it's not counting the time spent preparing the ingredients prior to actually mixing them. Anyway, I ended up with enough for two cake tins, so here's the finished articles:
They turned out OK, though I think the centre of the larger one was undercooked. I can see now why it's called an "autumn" apple cake.
Just a head's up: I don't recommend this book if you're new to cooking (like I am) as it tries to make recipes look easy by not describing the process in sufficient detail and combining multiple actions into a single "step", so for inexperienced cooks (like me) it's not so easy to follow in a step-by-step manner.
For example, here's a step from a different recipe:
"1. Put the biscuits in a plastic food bag and crush to crumbs with a rolling pin or the base of a pan. Melt the butter in a large pan, add the biscuit crumbs. Mix well. Tip into a 20cm-deep, loose-bottomed cake tin and press down firmly and evenly with the back of a spoon to make a thin layer. Chill while you make the filling."
Come on! That's at least 3 steps! Here's how I'd write it:
1. Put the biscuits in a plastic food bag and crush to crumbs with a rolling pin or the base of a pan.
2. Melt the butter in a large pan.
3. Add the biscuit crumbs to the butter and mix well.
4. Tip into a 20-cm deep, loose-bottomed cake tin and press down firmly with the back of a spoon to make a thin layer.
5. Place in the fridge to chill while you make the filling.
In fact, I might split step 4 into two steps, just to keep each step to a single action / sentence.