Isn’t Mary Berry lovely? She’s so nice offering her words of encouragement to the hopefuls on Great British Bake Off. She’d be the first person to turn to if you wanted help with a sinking souffle, a cracking roulade or a stodgy scone, her gentle demeanour and tips for perfection are amongst the most trustworthy you could find. What a woman! But wait – she’s not to be trusted after all, she’s a deceitful charlatan, she doesn’t give a monkey’s toot about quality and home baking and making things as good as they can be, if she did she would not have put her name to a cake mix in a box. Stupid Mary Berry.
As if charging £2.99 for a cake mix wasn’t enough she then asks me to provide 125ml vegetable oil, 2 eggs, 20g butter, 40g walnuts and 170g carrot. What the chuff is going on here? A carrot cake mix and I have to provide the carrot! Essentially I just paid £2.99 for some flour and some icing sugar – cheers Mary. However the box proudly proclaims “Includes free baking tray inside” well that’s fine then, if I get a piece of cardboard in the box, it must be a bargain.
I suppose it might taste nice so I get down to business, I grate the carrot, add the ‘Mary Berry’s Carrot Traybake Mix”, oil, walnuts and eggs and mix it up for a couple of mins, pour the mix into my free cardboard tray and bake for 20 mins at 160c. Meanwhile I mix the butter, some water (also not included in the box) and “Mary Berry’s Luxury Topping” ready to spread on top.
The cake comes out well risen and springy with a perfect colour, I leave it to cool and spread on the luxury topping before cutting a slice to go with my tea. The sponge is light and moist (that’ll be the oil I had to provide) with a nice crunch from the walnuts (the ones I had to provide) and a hint of cinnamon. However it does have a strange packety taste about it, like a factory made cake rather than something home made, which surely defeats the point. The luxury topping is the least luxurious thing I have ever eaten, it is a sugary gloop of icing sugar, butter and water and sets your teeth on edge, each mouthful ran the risk of setting off a hyperglycemic attack.
Mary you have let me down, you lowered your standards, made me buy the most expensive ingredients for your traybake and called it luxury when you meant sugary.
If I were you I’d bake your own perhaps even this one as I’m sure you can trust a Mary Berry recipe, just not her mix in a box.
Mary Berry’s Luxury Carrot Cake – £2.99