We knew that our Czech Republic week was to fall around Easter and so we had to go themed, it’s the golden rule of cooking blogs.
Originally I thought we’d do an Easter bread as the Eastern Europeans are all about the dough when it comes to religious festivals (I have already made a Bulgarian Easter bread complete with golden eggs for TheTasteTrail). Then scrolling through images of Czech Easter dishes I came across the beranek. It’s not bread it’s a cake, but it’s in the shape of a lamb. I couldn’t pass it up. A LAMB!
Go to google images and type beranek, take a deep breath to prepare for the visual party that awaits then press search. Now there are some excellent versions out there but the majority look like bad taxidermy. Those who know me will recognise that in my eyes this is a good thing, a very good thing.
Supposedly the much coveted old-style cast iron lamb moulds are passed down through generations of Czech families. Alas my family obviously weren’t thinking about their future food blogger progeny when selecting their pots and pans so I went to my stepmum, Mrs Amazon.co.uk.
Word of warning regarding the use of cake moulds such as these, oil them very very very liberally and then grease them some more. Even the bits where the cake batter won’t touch. Oh and do leave it to cool completely before removing the moulds. I very generously in the name of culinary research didn’t do either of these things on my first attempt …just to demonstrate how not to do it mind you, not because I’m a baking moron or anything.
Decorate as you will. The most traditional method appears to be a dusting of icing sugar and a pretty bow, but you can of course go all out with frosting, chocolate or wherever your creative juices lead you.
- 340g butter at room temperature
- 290g caster sugar
- 6 eggs, separated
- 360g plain flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 0.5 tsp salt
- 170ml milk
- Icing/Confectioners sugar
- Red food colouring
- A ribbon/beads
NUTRITIONAL CONTENT PER PORTION
- Calories | 531
- Fat | 30.9g
Serves | 10
Prep Time | 10 minutes
Cooking Time | 45-50 minutes
- Preheat the oven to 175°c and liberally grease your cake tin
- Cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy then stir in the egg yolks
- Sprinkle the salt and baking powder over the flour and add to the butter/sugar mix a tablespoon at a time, alternating with tablespoons of the milk until all of your flour and ilk is incorporated.
- In a separate bowl whisk the egg whites until you have stiff peaks then gently fold into the cake mix until just incorporated.
- Pour into your cake tin and bake for 45-50 minutes.
- Leave to cook completely before removing from the tin.
- I decorated mine by dusting it liberally with icing sugar, and making up a simple pink icing with icing/confectioners sugar, a drop of food colouring and a little bit of water to draw the mouth and nose.