Nigella’s Lemon Meringue Cake

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Time flies when you’re having fun. Somehow it is 14 years since I finished my maths and music degree at university. I was lucky at university to end up living with, being on the same course as and joining the same choir as some lovely people and I am even luckier that we are still in touch and try to meet up as often as life will allow us. In the last year our group has expanded considerably with the addition of four babies so it was high time we had a gathering to introduce the new additions and catch up on everyone’s news. I had planned on making a raspberry meringue cake but when we got to Aldi yesterday rapsberries were £2.79 and lemons were 49p so the decision was made that lemon meringue cake would be the cheaper option!
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Banoffee pavlova

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This is my second banana based post in a row – a sign that we always seem to have some bananas that need using up in the Little Birdie household! A couple of weeks ago we were off to dinner at our friends house so I rustled this up as a dessert. If you like banoffee pie you’ll definitely like this pavlova. I had originally bought the caramel I used for this pavlova for the banana and caramel bundt I made – luckily a can was enough to make both. It’s a recipe from the Tesco food website that you can find here. You can of course use any meringue recipe to make the base – I did consider trying a brown sugar meringue to add to the caramel flavour but then decided that might be caramel overkill.
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A cake fit for a Queen – Eton Mess Sponge Cake

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Thursday 21st April was a special occasion in British history. The 90th birthday of our longest reigning monarch, the Queen, Elizabeth II. We celebrated at the primary school I work at by having a tea party for the children and their parents. Obviously I knew I wanted to bake something and also wanted it to be something ‘British’. I did consider a classic Victoria sandwich but felt something a bit more extravagant would be more fitting for the occasion. After thinking a bit more I had the brainwave that Eton Mess is a typically British dessert so I could combine both a cake and dessert in one! After having a quick search on Pinterest I found a couple of recipes and opted for this one by Daisy and the Fox.
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Lemon meringue pie

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My Dad has been staying with us over the last few days to help me with something at school (thank goodness he has technological know-how as I have absolutely none!) I wanted to make something for dessert on Sunday and as Aldi had lemons for 59p it had to be something lemon based. Mr Birdie is partial to lemon meringue pie so I decided to give it a go. I was informed by Mr Birdie that it would not be as good as his Mum’s (I have a lot to live up to!) and indeed he did declare that this was the case (he has however polished off three slices so I don’t think it can be that bad). I’m not overly experienced in making pastry so it was a good opportunity to give it another go.
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Red berry meringue roulade

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Happy Father’s Day to all the Dad’s out there! My Dad came to stay with us this weekend and I was determined to redeem myself after last year’s disastrous rhubarb cheesecake. After the lovely weather this week I decided something summery was needed. I did consider making a pavlova but then decided on a roulade. This was a brave choice as my Dad is a big fan of my mother-in-law, Dot’s roulades that she makes and I was wasn’t sure I could compete. Luckily today was a success and hopefully any memories of last years disaster have been banished (it’s just a shame the weather didn’t match the summery-ness of the roulade!)
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Double baked chocolate meringue brownie

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I saw this recipe on Twitter ages ago and immediately knew I wanted to make it. Brownie and meringue as a cake – what a combination! A little while ago I went through a faze of being obsessed with finding meringue cake recipes. I only got round to making one (this chocolate brownie meringue cake) but I am still keen to investigate some more. Today I needed a dessert as we had some friends round for a barbecue and thought this would make a good option.
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Chocolate brownie meringue cake

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Today was a special day. You might have seen ‘The Big Reunion’ on the TV (lots of pop bands from the late nineties and early noughties reuniting) – well today was the proper big reunion. It is ten years this summer since I and my very special friends graduated from university. In honour of this special occasion we had a get together to reminisce, laugh over photos (what were we wearing?!?) and partake in a game of petanque. I of course offered to make dessert. I’d had my eye on this recipe for a while and recently had a similar cake at ‘The Tenth Hole Tea Rooms’ in Southsea (they are legendary in Hampshire for their amazing cakes!) so decided now was the time. I am now a little bit obsessed with the idea of making meringue cakes and have my eye on a Nigella Lawson lemon meringue cake, a BBC Good Food blackberry and almond meringue cake and a mocha meringue cake I have found on a blog. Oh the possibilities!

As you will see from the photos I have yet again failed in my attempts to make a meringue that does not crack! I am obviously just doomed. However despite appearances the cake went down well. It is a Miranda Gore-Brown recipe from the Great British Bake Off. You can find it on lots of different websites but I used the version from the BBC website that you can find here. It is very tricky to slice and serve and does not look pretty but makes up for it in taste. The combination of meringue and brownie works well and the raspberry cream adds some freshness. There was a debate over the hazelnuts in the meringue but the end decision was that they add texture. The recipe is meant to use two 23cm sandwich tins which I don’t possess so I used springform tins instead which still works.
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