Saturday, 13 September 2014

Cake report 2

So, following on from a previous adventure, I have picked up a pile of cake from Bel et Bien and will now eat them for your reading pleasure - although, admittedly, mostly for my eating pleasure.

Milk Tea Scone

This has a definite scent and taste, of tea. Assam, I would guess? The little flecks appear to be actual tea leaves used in the baking. It's a bit peculiar, but not at all unpleasant. On the other hand, the sense of oddness is pronounced enough that I think it would take a few goes to stop focusing on how unfamiliar it is and just appreciate it as a cake, which is a bit of a downside. Definitely worth trying if you like both scones and tea, though. I sense that this will require further study to acquire the taste, and am prepared to valiantly do my bit.

Chocolate chip muffin

Exactly what it says on the tin. This is a very traditional bit of vanilla sponge cake with chocolate chips. No unexpected fillings to drip on your shirt as so many muffins lamentably do; it's fairly light and not particularly rich, so didn't make me feel stuffed after eating it. It's honestly more like a general chocolate chip bun than what's usually sold as a "muffin" in the UK. Very acceptable, would eat again.

Green thing

Yeah, I don't remember what this was called.

It has a soft spongy texture; neither rubbery not squidgy, and very slightly sweet. There's a faint flavour and aftertaste that might be maccha, a kind of strong powdered green tea - a lot of things are maccha flavoured here. It's entirely inoffensive, but equally isn't especially interesting. If you like pretty plain cakes, this is probably a decent bet. If you prefer something studded with chocolate, sprinkled with sugar and filled with cream, less so. I'd recommend eating it alongside something with a bit of flavour of its own, like a milky tea - coffee seems a poor choice because the strong taste would completely mask the flavour of the cake.

Bean bun

This is somewhere between a hot cross bun and a date-and-walnut loaf in terms of texture. It's studded with what appear to be adzuki beans (the ones used in the ever-popular red bean paste) which do in fact taste a bit like dates. Another mild cake, it's a little odd for my taste - having all the beans embedded in the crust means it's unbalanced. Biting into the cake gets you a mouthful with an awful lot of bean, which has a slightly sweet claylike texture, while the cakey middle part is very bland. I suspect I'd have preferred it more evenly distributed so the beans would be a counterbalance to the sponge. Not a big fan, but equally I wouldn't turn down a homemade version or a gift, it's not revolting or anything.

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