Sponge Flan: When things go wrong

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I am a big fan of the Great British Bake Off and often see that the experienced bakers on the show have a day when things go wrong, which makes me feel a little better when I have one too. This happened last weekend, hence nothing to post about. I had planned to make a sponge flan filled with fruit and because there was some rhubarb in the fridge, I wanted to do a rhubarb crumble. Both had to be made early in the day because we were in a pattern of humid days and thunderstorms in the afternoon which sometimes led to power issues. At least this way I was covered for a few dinners.

Fresh Peaches in sponge flan


The first issue was the sponge flan which I wanted to make a little drier than a normal sponge so that the filling would not seep into the sponge. Usually adding a little cornstarch to the flour tends to do that. I suspected something was wrong when the sponge rose above the top of the pan and although it was firm enough not to fall over the side it came close. This give a thicker sponge base and curved edges which are not as neat at straight ones. The sponge also had more of a traditional shortbread texture and taste. This image shows the uneven and base that was dry and too thick. So – edible but not quite what I had aimed for.

The crumble was ok but there was too much topping which didn’t crisp as well as it should. The rhubarb, which was a bowl full of semi cooked rhubarb, had cooked down to just ½ inch at the base with about 2 inches of topping. Again, the dish was edible when served with custard, but ideally the fruit should be equal in depth to the topping and the topping should be lightly browned.

Rhubarb crumble

Both these recipes need work and will be posted when I get them in better shape! Until then, it is a comfort to know that I am not the only baker who sometimes has a bad day.


Meet Kate Copsey

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