Without further ado, over to Rob for his recipe for Honey and Date Cake with Spiced Icing - with its Middle Eastern twist, it's exactly our kind of thing...
"This cake has a complex, Arabic taste courtesy of the mix of spices, with almonds providing a crunch to the icing. It's a trusted recipe which recently won me a bake-off, and while there's quite a few ingredients, the method is fairly simple and uncomplicated. It goes well with a cup of chai tea, and should keep for about a week in a cake tin.
- 225g self-raising flour
- 175g softened butter
- 100g light muscovado sugar
- 100g stoned and finely diced dates
- 50g flaked almonds
- 2 tbsp clear honey
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 2 ripe bananas, mashed
- ½ tsp ground cinnamon
- Small amount of chopped fresh ginger
- Preheat oven to 160C (Gas 3/ fan 140C)
- Lightly butter the base and sides of a 900g (2lb) tin and line with greaseproof paper
- Tip flour, butter, sugar, honey, cinnamon, eggs, dates and bananas into a large mixing bowl
- Crush half of the almonds in a pestle or mortar or floor processor. Add to mixing bowl
- Beat the mixture for 2-3 minutes with a wooden spoon or hand-held mixer, until well blended
- Spoon the mixture into the tin and level the top
- Bake for 1 hour. If the top of the cake if firm, it's done – if not, bake for another ten minutes
- 150g icing sugar, sifted
- 150g softened butter
- Liberal sprinkle of ground mixed spice
- Beat the butter until smooth
- Add half of the icing sugar and mix together
- Add the rest of the icing sugar and mixed spice, and mix thoroughly
- Once cake has cooled, apply icing with a flat knife or spatula
- Scatter flaked almonds across the icing"
Rob is based in south London, left-handed and perhaps unhealthily obsessed with cinnamon (which is probably why it's in the recipe above?). He is co-editor of The Frame Loop, a website and podcast dedicated to cultural discussion, interviews and collaboration. Go and check it out - it's great!
*Yes, we know full names are unusual on this blog, but we've decided to waive the anonymity in Rob's case...