Delia talks about them a lot.
Nigella talks about them more.
Both talk about having half-baked cookies, or meringue nests or something up your sleeve. Or, perhaps, more accurately, in your freezer.
WHO DOES THIS?
The type of ‘unexpected’ guests I get are the ones who appear after nights out, usually so drunk all they want is toast and Big Macs. Together. As one. Or else I get the type of unexpected guests who I just feed wine and pringles too, thus turning them in aforementioned drunken monsters. Or else I just drink the wine myself, and ignore pleas for meringues and cakes and chicken pot pie, and instead make toast.
OK, not really, but basically what I’m saying is a freezer full of rosewater macaroons isn’t quite gonna work.
Now, while I don’t seem to suffer rosewater macaroon devouring unexpected guests, what I do tend to do, quite regularly, is invite people round, promise baked goods, and then go out for the day. Or paint my toenails instead. Or rearrange my wardrobe. Or drink tea. Or anything but bake.
This is when this little recipe comes to the fore. It can be rustled up in a few minutes, less if you don’t do the crumble topping. Any flavour of yoghurt can be used, and it really is a lovely type of cake. Perfect if you are bit disorganised like myself, or even if you live in one of those mystical worlds full of ‘unexpected’ guests.
First up, the cake ingredients: a pot of yoghurt, self-raising flour, caster sugar and oil.
This time, I used a toffee yoghurt, but any flavour works. Northern Irish types, please support your local and buy this amazing Clandeboye Lodge yoghurt, it is lush and produced right here. DO IT! If you don’t live in Northern Ireland, I heartily recommend M&S’ pear and butterscotch yoghurt. Its not just a yoghurt, ya know…
Dump the tub of yoghurt in a bowl. Do not throw out the tub. All will become clear soon.
If you are a domestic goddess, one what is doing this for unexpected guests, wash and dry the pot using your finest Cath Kidston teatowel. If you are a normal person, who is speed making buns, don’t worry. I promise the world will not end.
Fill the tub with caster sugar and add to the bowl…
And do the same three times over with self-raising flour.
Add a tub’s worth of oil at this point. Any flavourless oil is fine. I use sunflower.
Marvel at the uglyness of the concoction.
If using a toffee yoghurt, or any other type that is nice with cinnamon, add a teaspoon of the glorious spice. Mmm… Cinnamon…
Mix it all up really well, otherwise the same thing will happen to you as me, where you get slightly greasy bun cases. Still tasty buns, but not very pretty.
Forget to take a picture of the mix, and divide it equally between bun cases. The amount will vary depending on the size of your tub of yoghurt, but a standard lunchbox yoghurt makes around twelve buns.
Now, you can just go right ahead and bake ‘em as they are, but this crunchy, crumbly topping pushes them into the next dimension of yum. And, the people who are currently in your living room as you manically throw flour and yoghurt about the place deserve that dimension of yum. Honestly.
For the topping you need: butter, oats, wholemeal flour, sugar and cinnamon. Soft brown sugar would be nicer, I think, but this recipe is hopefully all about the simplicity.
Weigh out the butter. The fact the scales were exact first time I tried to weigh pleased me greatly, so I thought I would share.
Melt the butter, before stirring in some sugar and cinnamon.
Add the oats…
And some wholemeal flour.
Mix well, and use to top the cases of bun mix.
Bake for twenty minutes.
Serve, marvelling at quite what a domestic goddess you are all the while.
Makes about 12, if using a standard tub. Cooking time 25 minutes.
1 tub yoghurt
Using the same tub:
1 tub sunflower oil
1 tub sugar
3 tubs self-raising flour
1 tsp cinnamon (optional)
For the topping:
2 tablespoons porridge oats
2 tbsps wholemeal flour
2 tbsps caster sugar
2 tsp cinnamon
1. Preheat an oven to 180 degrees.
2. Put the yoghurt in a bowl.
3. Use the tub to measure out the oil, sugar and flour, and add to the yoghurt.
4. Add the cinnamon, if using, and mix well.
5. Divide between bun cases.
6. If making the topping, melt the butter.
7. Add the oats, flour, sugar and cinnamon.
8. Place a teaspoonful on top of each cake.
9. Bake in the hot oven for 15 – 20 minutes.