Fairy cake FAIL

6 Mar

And now for another edition of Expectations vs. Reality, or, Another One of Renee’s Colossal Baking Catastrophes in Which She Blames Everything But Herself.

Despite my efforts to exercise and eat healthy lately, I can not kick my fairy cakes craving. You see, last year around Easter time Sainsbury’s had pre-packaged fairy cakes. They were tiny cupcakes with little duck and egg sprinkles that tasted like heaven in a paper wrapper. I wanted to eat them all day, every day. I dreamed about those sweets (or are they “puddings?” I can’t get the English dessert lingo down) and was sad when they took them off the shelves after Easter. I went in search of them this week, but to no avail. So I settled on a box mix. The box assured me all I needed was an egg and water to make 12 delicious 74-calorie fairy cakes. Tidy! (As they say in Wales.) A fool-proof recipe, right?

Let the blaming begin…

First, I don’t have a mixer, so I had to beat the mix by hand. I think it turned out alright, although I did discover a giant chunk of chocolate in the mix. No where on the box does it say chocolate fairy cakes. This should have troubled me, but I instinctively popped it into my mouth, even before I could photograph the rogue chunk. I’m hoping the fact that it tasted good rules out any suspicions of poison.

The amount of batter created seemed suspiciously small for 12 fairy cakes.

I managed to make 10. I popped them in the oven at 200 C. I believe this is where the major error happened. I’ve complained about my oven before — it’s very temperamental and has all these settings I don’t understand. I did find an instruction manual online, but it was of little help. I just cook everything on the grill setting, which has worked out pretty well for tempura shrimp and frozen chicken kebobs. Apparently it isn’t good for baking. The box said to bake for 12 minutes, but after 9 minutes I noticed the tops were browning. So I removed the tray.

Looks good, right? They filled up surprisingly well. I left the kitchen to allow them to cool. …and they turned into this:

I don’t know if you can tell from the photo, but they are about a centimeter thick. Turns out the grill function burns the top whilst the bottom remains uncooked. Remember my macarons? That explains it all — it’s my oven’s fault! (Or my fault for not understanding how my oven works… nah, let’s blame the oven.)

The good news is they taste good, even though there’s not much to them.

(On a side note, I was impressed with the box mix — it included everything: mix for the cake, the liners (which were high quality and fit exactly in my pan without popping up), frosting mix and sprinkles!)

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