Happy St Patrick’s Day you lovely lot!
I’m fiercely proud of my nationality and even though I grew up in Northern Ireland and am legally British I will always call myself Irish. It’s what my passport says and I love that I am from such an amazing country. Don’t get me wrong, England is pretty amazing – my Mr T is English as are most of my friends but Ireland holds a special place in my heart.
Each year on St Patrick’s Day I like to make a Guinness cake. I use Nigella’s recipe but with a few tweaks. Oddly I never had this cake before I moved away but Guinness reminds me of home. Dad likes to drink it and it really is one of our national symbols.
Often when I talk to anyone English they associate St Patrick’s Day with getting drunk and this always angers me. Yes, the Irish like a drink but there is more to us as a nation than that. Most people get the day off work, schools close and there are parades and festivities throughout the country. It’s a day for family and friends to get together to celebrate our heritage although it has been often joked that the rest of the world make an even bigger deal out of it that we do!
I love St Patrick’s Day I just wish St George’s Day was celebrated here in England. It’s a pretty amazing country and its people should be proud to celebrate that.
Initially I planned to bring this cake into work today but I made it on Sunday and decided it would make a nice Monday morning treat to cheer everyone up. I really do love baking for other people and the smile it puts on their faces.
400g soft dark brown sugar
150ml sour cream
1 tablespoon vanilla paste
275g plain flour
2.5 tsp bicarbonate of soda
200g softened unsalted butter
500g icing sugar
A few tbsp of milk
A few tbsp of caramel
- Preheat the oven to 160c (fan)
- Grease and line two 20cm cake tins.
- Melt the butter in a pan with the Guinness.
- Whisk in the cocoa, sugar, sour cream, eggs and vanilla paste.
- Fold in the flour and bicarbonate of soda.
- Divide between 2 tins and bake in the oven for 30mins or until a skewer inserted comes out clean.
- Leave on a wire rack to cool.
- Beat the butter, icing sugar and milk on a high speed until pale and fluffy.
- Transfer into a piping bag.
- Place on layer of sponge on a plate then pipe blobs of buttercream all over the top.
- Put the caramel in a piping bag and drizzle across the buttercream
- Place the second layer of sponge on top, repeat the buttercream piping and scatter over the green sprinkles.
Have a lovely St Patrick’s Day wherever you are and whatever you do.