I hope you’ve all had a lovely Easter! It’s been a bit of a busy April so far, but the long Easter weekend gave me a bit of time to kick back and relax for a bit. I’ve mostly been spending my time eating hot cross buns and baking Simnel cake. For anyone not familiar with Simnel cake, it’s a traditional Easter cake, and is basically a spiced light fruit cake with a layer of marzipan baked into the centre of it, topped with more marzipan and then toasted. And it’s delicious.
The layer of marzipan baked in the middle makes for a lovely moist cake. I’ve been making my own marzipan for a few years now, and I’d definitely encourage you to try it. It tastes sooo much better than shop bought and it’s a cinch to make. Equal quantities (I usually go for 250g grams) of ground almonds and sugar (either castor or icing), almond essence and an egg. Mix together. Done. If it’s too dry add a touch more water, if too wet add more sugar.
I forgot to buy more eggs before the shops shut down for Easter, so after a brief panic and a flap around the kitchen I substituted some water mixed with egg white powder, but if you’re squeamish about eating raw egg or are pregnant, or if you’re just like me and forgot to buy enough eggs to make cake and marzipan, there’s a vegan marzipan recipe here which I’m now dying to try.
I spent Easter Monday playing about with some embroidery and making a stitch sampler of sorts. I had so much fun with it, and my mind is now percolating with ideas.
I managed to do a bit of free form doodle stitching with my new love, the split stitch, and ended up with a little Harry Potter lighting bolt and a “slip slip knit” abbreviation. The free form lettering was trickier than I imagined, but not too shabby for a first effort! I can see an obsession in my future…