I am pleased to announce, that I am the very proud recipient of the Marion Wilton Cookery Cup! This is awarded for the most total points in the cookery classes of the Spring, Summer and Autumn Muswell Hill and District Horticultural Society Shows.  Behold the splendour! 


It is a beauty!  So in the Autumn show I got 2 firsts, 4 seconds, 2 thirds and a highly commended.  For one of those firsts I have Christopher Trotter to thank.  His brilliant Sweet and Sour Pickled Courgettes are absolutely superb.  The recipe is from his lovely cookbook, simply entitled Courgette.


I used another friend’s recipe, Joan Ransley’s lovely Blueberry and Hazlenut Yoghurt Cake with Lemon and Poppy Seeds which scored me a Highly Commended.  It was absolutely delicious.


My other entries were a raspberry jam and strawberry jam (recipes from Preserves by Pam Corbin) – my raspberry was awarded second prize (I’ll never beat Jenny Kruss and her Gooseberry Jam!), Winter Ale Chutney (made with Hammerton beer of course, first prize), Sweet Corn Chutney – third prize, some curried pickled vegetables made to an Ottolenghi recipe (second prize) and 6 cakes.  A David Lebowitz Sweet Potato and Apricot Cake with Vermouth won me a second (that was REALLY GOOD!).  My Chocolate, Stout and Black Cherry cake got a third (thanks to Hammerton beer again).  I was proudest though of my Yul Brynner Apple Walnut Cake which got a second prize.  This was absolutely perfect, and tasted great for days after.  It was so massive that it took about 17 people to eat it all.  Genius!  Recipe follows.


Battenburg Belle swept the board on the cakes front of course, scoring firsts in all cake categories.  So it was my pickles that pipped her to the post on the cup.  Bet she’ll win it next year though!


Yul Brynner’s Apple Walnut Cake

3 cups peeled chopped apples

1 cup butter

2 cups sugar

3 eggs

1/4 cup sour cream

3 cups flour

1 and 1/2 teaspoons baking soda (bicarbonate of soda)

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

1/4 teaspoon allspice

3 teaspoons vanilla

1 cup chopped walnuts

Confectioner’s sugar (icing sugar)

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F, 160 degrees C, gas mark 3.  Butter and flour a tube pan, set aside.  Peel and remove core from several large cooking apples.  Chop the apples, preferably in food processor or blender, and set aside.  (Pieces should be approximately the size of one-half a plump raisin – certainly no larger.)  Cream the butter and sugar together in a large bowl.  Add eggs and mix well.  Add sour cream, blend and set aside.  Sift together flour, baking soda, and spices.  Gradually add flour mixture to sour cream mixture.  Add vanilla, blend well.  Stir apples and walnuts into batter, which will be very thick.  Pour batter into tube pan, and bake as directed above [I think this just means at the temperature at the beginning] for about one hour.  Test cake after 55 minutes by inserting a toothpick into the centre of the cake.  If toothpick comes out clean, cake is done.  Remove cake from oven when done, cool 15 minutes, and remove from pan.  When cake is thoroughly cooled, sprinkle lightly with confectioner’s sugar.


DELICIMO!  Thanks Yul!


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