Mothers Day story

 

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Styling and photography on IPhone, Chariswhite.com

As an interior stylist, you are informed about all sorts of new products, from the latest wallpaper or fabric from one of the companies at Chelsea Harbour Design Centre to super cool squashy sofas from Notting Hill emporium or shop openings in Shoreditch and Glasgow.

When I spotted the new Kenwood Chef ‘Sense’ (Type KVC50) food mixer Colour Collection (in four retro pastel colours: pink, yellow, pale blue and green), I had a bit of an emotional response!

The Kenwood mixer, the Rolls Royce of kitchen gadgets, sat in pride of place in our kitchen when I was a child. My big sister Fiona surprised us with beautiful little butterfly cakes using it, lemon chiffon cakes were conjured up, millionaire shortbread and all manner of wondrous confections came tumbling out of this piece of machinery.

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Styling and photography on IPhone, Chariswhite.com

Some of the recipes came from a (now precious) handwritten recipe book that my mother kept. It was stuffed with ideas for meals, other people’s recipes, even a promotional leaflet on how to ‘deal’ with an Avocado pear. Some of the recipes were in my father’s scrawling prescription-style handwriting – recipes he had obviously got from some of his patients – to inspire his young wife to cook! It is a treasured family document that reminds me of meals and occasions like nothing else can do.

So for Mother’s Day, I am going to take up the opportunity from Kenwood to borrow and ‘road test’ this latest version of The Kenwood Mixer and bake a cake. In my adult life, I’ve relied on an electric handheld beater for cake making. Many a wet afternoon was spent with a bored toddler getting stuck into all sorts of baking. Cake mix all around our ‘chops’ – actually, that was mainly me – and then enjoying the happy smells emanating from the oven afterwards. Bliss.

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Styling and photography on Iphone, Chariswhite.com

I took advice from Emma Marsden, freelance Cookery Writer/ex Cookery Editor of Good Housekeeping magazine. Emma’s experience of using a food mixer is that “they are particularly good for meringue and making bread as the beater is stronger than you can ever be”.  However, Emma warned me that “the machine is only as good as the person who puts the ingredients in”.

Emma’s words were ringing in my ears as I realised I had got over-excited with the whole experience and shoved all the eggs in at once instead of the ‘bit by bit’ approach.  The cake mixture curdled so badly, not even a bit of flour would put it right. So if you think that the machine will right all wrongs, it doesn’t!

I started again, put myself in ‘Zen cake baking mode’!and concentrated on exactly putting in the right amounts at the right time. This time the mixture seemed smoother than I could have made it, and it reminded me that it is quite hard work to mix by hand. The machine also acts as a base for several additional attachments which you can buy separately from food mincers to juicers, dicers and blenders.

The styling of this model hasn’t changed a great deal from the one we had but it now has a rather pleasing clear glass bowl and the on/off dial lights up!  The other new feature is the clear plastic cover which sits on top of the bowl which also has a small lid so that you can pour ingredients neatly into the bowl and prevents them from flying everywhere if you accidentally turn the speed up too high (kept thinking that Will Young could have done with this cover when I saw him throwing a tea towel over his mixer on Celebrity Great British Bakeoff for Sport Relief!).

Did it save time? I am not really sure, but it was less hard work than making a cake by hand and it was fun. Even now, the machine is reassuringly sturdy in its construction and I love the fact that it is still made in Great Britain. The all-important ‘judges’ at home gave the cake a very decent ‘four 9s’ for lightness – which I reckon is pretty close to top marks.

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Styling and photography on IPhone, Chariswhite.com
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Styling and Photography on Iphone, Chariswhite.com

Mother’s Day cake recipe

I doubled Delia Smith’s recommended ingredients for her Victoria Sponge recipe:

Raspberry jam for the centre of the cake and lemon butter icing for the top blended from:

  • 140g/5 oz butter
  • 280g/10 oz icing sugar
  • zest of half a lemon

Finally, finish off with blueberries, mint leaves, edible fresh Viola flower heads and add some green gingham ribbon for presentation.

Charis White, interior stylistIf you have enjoyed this post and would like to receive email alerts for future posts then please press the large blue ‘Follow’ button at the beginning or end of this post.  Thank you so much for reading!

Charis x

 

 

Mothers Day directory

Kenwood Chef Sense Colour Collection RRP £449.99, available from John Lewis and Kenwood website.

 

6 thoughts on “Mothers Day story

  1. Morning Charis,

    I can’t seem to get my iPhone to allow me to comment on your actual blog page, but I absolutely loved reading this blog! I could almost smell that unmistakable smell of the hot mixer rods if my youth whirring around as I read.

    I especially loved the pictures, so beautifully arranged and the coloured you used.

    Happy Mothers Day!

    Fi xxx

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

    Like

  2. I love this Charis! The beautiful pictures, the reference to making cakes when you were a child, and then with your own, all delighted me! Thank you for a lovely start to a sunny Mothering Sunday.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Gorgeous…..memories of childhood kitchen baking all brought back to life ‘thank you’ Ken or no Ken you make the best Victoria Sandwich. Happy Mothers Day X

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Brought back memories of my mum’s Melltng Moments biscuit recipe (my fav) – torn off the back of a porridge carton and which I still have!
    Happy Mothers Dsy ….xx

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I could have done with a Kenwood on Friday! Holding electric beaters (the base stopped working a few years ago – not a Kenwood!) is nearly as tiring as beating with a wooden spoon. You can’t rootle around in the cupboards looking for other ingredients whilst the butter and sugar are being whirled into creamed perfection! It’s made me remember my own mother’s Kenwood and baking with her and then with the boys! Super photographs.

    Liked by 1 person

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