Herman – Two Ways!
Herman seems to have become part of the family, we briefly sent him to my mum when we were away at Easter but now he’s back, sitting at one end of our dining table. He’s spoken to and given some TLC every day as per his instructions.
I made another Herman using cooking apples, cranberries, raisins and sultanas. This is such a tasty cake that is brimming with fruit and I’ve now made this twice. A definite favourite with everyone.
Just remember that if you do get a Herman, look after him well and remember you were given it by a friend!
Apple, Cranberry, Raisin and Sultana Herman
1 cup sugar (I usually use vanilla sugar made from golden caster sugar)
½ tsp of salt
2 cups plain flour
2/3 cup cooking oil
2 cooking apples (in chunks)
2 tsp vanilla essence
2 heaped tsp cinnamon
2 heaped tsp baking powder
1 cup mix of raisins, cranberries and sultanas
1 portion of Herman
Mix everything together and put into a large greased roasting tin. Sprinkle with ¼ cup of brown sugar and ¼ cup melted butter.
Bake for 45 minutes @170-180C (Check after 35 mins) Mine usually takes 55 minutes in a greased 24cm springform round tin.
When cold cut into fingers. Cake freezes well and is delicious served warm with cream or ice cream.
A new Herman on the Block…
But I really fancied making a different Herman, something which was totally different. I’d tried a date and walnut one a few weeks ago but it was too dry and just didn’t hit the mark. Then a couple of weeks ago I found a recipe on someone’s blog via Twitter for a Toffee and Pecan Herman. Now that sounded perfect, so I kept in touch with her and said I’d be trying out her recipe (Catherine you’re a star, thank you! Blog/Twitter info below).
A lovely change to the usual recipe, this cake uses dates and pecan nuts to give a toffee style taste and colouring.
Toffee and Pecan Herman
(I’ve just made a few little changes to the original recipe)
150g pecan halves
50g walnut halves
150g dates, stoned and chopped
200g light muscovado sugar
225g plain flour
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1/2 tsp mixed spice
2 tsp baking powder
175ml cooking oil (I used sunflower oil)
1 tsp vanilla essence
One portion of Herman
I put the dates in a pan, sprinkled over 1 tsp of bicarbonate of soda and covered with boiling water before bringing to the boil for just under 5 minutes. I set this mixture aside to cool.
I finely blended 50g of the pecans with the walnuts and chopped the remainder of the pecans into pieces, not too small.
I pre-heated the oven to 180C/Gas 4 and greased a 24 cm round springform tin.
My portion of Herman was in a large bowl and to this I added the flour, mixed spice and baking powder at the same time then added the oil, vanilla essence and eggs. In a separate bowl I added my sugar, blended nuts and pecan pieces to my cooled date mixture along with the muscovado sugar. I mixed this together well and then added to the bowl containing Herman and the other ingredients. Finally pour the mixture into your baking tin.
Bake for 45 mins, if after 30 mins the top is looking very brown cover with tin foil, test with a skewer and if it comes out clean the cake is cooked. My cake baked for 55 minutes in total.
This cake tastes divine on its own or Catherine suggests trying it warm with Maple syrup drizzled over the top and ice cream on the side. Or even a toffee sauce to really bring out the sticky toffee taste!
All I can say is enjoy and try this version of Herman soon!
The Toffee and Pecan Herman recipe was borrowed from Catherine Jennings after reading her blog via Twitter, her sign on is @bella_and_will and her blog can be found at http://www.bellaandwill.wordpress.com. Thank you for sharing this lovely recipe Catherine!