Anchor Stacie Stewart Masterclass
What do you get if you cross a Lemon Meringue Pie with a Victoria Sponge Cake? The answer is Stacie Stewart's Lemon Meringue Pie Cake which is officially one of the greatest cakes on earth. My baking-mad buddy Ruth and I had the pleasure of making it when we were invited to the Anchor Baking Masterclass led by the lovely Stacie herself.
Lemon Meringue Cake consists of a layers of sponge and puff pastry glued together with lemon curd and completely smothered with Swiss buttercream, which is a meringue type icing. It's completely divine. I'm not allowed to share the recipe, but it's in her book, Stacie Bakes. Oh, and incase you were wondering, her beehive is real.
As well demonstrating how to making the cake, Stacie was kind enough to give us lots of baking tips throughout the day. Here are a few of my favourites:
- When baking, have all your ingredients at room temperature. Not only are they easier to mix but you'll get better results.
- When making a sponge, first whip your butter to add air which gives a lighter cake. Gradually incorporate the sugar to avoid knocking out the air.
- When adding flour to a sponge mix, add it last and add it gradually. Fold it in and don't over mix as this 'works' the gluten which gives a tougher cake.
- Always use natural vanilla extract, not chemically made vanilla essence. Alternatively, pop 5 vanilla pods in a 75cl bottle of bourbon and leave for three months to make vanilla bourbon. It's great in cakes and much more cost effective than buying small bottles of vanilla extract.
- If your cake domes too much it means your oven temperature is too high. If your cake sinks then it means the temperature is too low or you have opened the oven during baking.
- Never throw away leftover puff pastry. Cut it into strips, sprinkle with grated cheese and dried herbs and bake in the oven to make homemade cheese straws.
Thank you Anchor for inviting Ruth and I to the event and for our goodie bags.