Tottenham cake star of Bake Off

Tottenham cake was one of the stars of this week’s Great British Bake Off.

For anyone unaware of this local delicacy, it is type of tray-baked sponge cake topped with pink icing.

It was originally produced by a local baker, the Quaker Henry Chalkley and sold for one old penny per slice, with offcuts only a half penny. The pink colouring reportedly stems from the use of mulberries which grew in the garden of the Tottenham Friends Meeting House.

In 1901 free slices of the cake were distributed to local children in celebration of Spurs’ historic FA Cup victory. It is still baked by local Quakers and is also available in near-by bakers.

Alternatively if you fancy making some yourself, try this Tottenham cake recipe by local historian Peter Brown. His recipe quotes imperial weights, so for convenience here it is with metric measures:

Quantities as for a 7″ (18cm) round tin
Cooking margarine – 6 oz / 170g
Caster sugar – 6 oz / 170g
Eggs – 3
Self-raising Flour – 8 oz / 230g
Vanilla essence – a teaspoonful
Grated nutmeg (if desired) – a little

Mix margarine and sugar (as for Madeira cake)
Beat eggs and mix in
Fold the mix into the flour
Add vanilla, nutmeg and mix well
Add milk as required to form a ‘dropping’ consistency
Pre-heat oven and bake at 150°C for 50 minutes
To achieve a flat-top cake, cover with foil.

This is either lurid pink or shocking pink.
Icing sugar
Mulberry juice – from the Friend’s Mulberry Tree, (or Blackcurrant, or Cherry)
Add Lemon juice if desired

Coat the cake with a weak mix of icing sugar and warm water, and allow to soak in
Coat the cake with the lurid icing


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