Hi Virtually Readers! My friend recently read the Scorpio Races (I reviewed it here; btw it’s definitely my favourite Maggie Stiefvater book by a long, long way) . Anyway, I’ve wanted to make November Cakes ever since I read this book over a year ago, and I finally did. So here’s a recipe (Which I found in the back of the book… I don’t think? this is violating copyright because it’s not the actual book, and I adapted the recipe a bit anyway.)
First, life advice for reading a recipe that I
never rarely follow: read the entire recipe first because then you’ll know how long it will take. Don’t just skim the ingredients because then you will start at like 9 pm and not be done until late or something.
Also, I took photos, but just fyi, they’re not going to be beautiful. Hover over them for captions. Now, let us begin.
This recipe has four parts: the dough, the filling, the glaze, and the icing. And again, disclaimer: I got this recipe from the book.
- 1 cup milk
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 2 eggs
- 3 and 1/2 cup flour
- 1 and 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 3 teaspoons yeast
Method: Microwave milk, water, oil and butter for two minutes. ( I actually ended up putting it in a pan because I couldn’t work out how to turn the microwave on. After I did this, I realised the switch was off. Don’t be like me). When it comes out, make sure it’s not too hot to touch (because hot things kill yeast), then add eggs.
Add one and a half cups of flour, the salt, the sugar, and the yeast. Use a spoon to kind of stir through the dry ingredients (which are floating on top of the liquid) before mixing with the liquid. Then add the other two cups of flour one by one and knead for a while. (The recipe suggested using a mixer but we don’t have one so I kneaded.) Then leave the dough to rise in a warm place (I put the bowl over a pot of just boiled water)
One note: I only could find 1 teaspoon of yeast, then I found the rest later which I added halfway through rising. Don’t be like me.
When the dough is close to being risen, make the filling by melting three tablespoons of butter and adding 1/4 teaspoon orange extract. There wasn’t any in my kitchen, so I used lemon juice instead.
Then, roll out the dough on a flat, floured surface. The width of the dough determines the number of cake you can make (the recipe said 12, but I made 15 and they were all quite big), and the length determines how wide they’ll be. Spread the butter/orange mixture on top, then roll it into a log shape and cut slices off. Put these rolls in pre-greased muffin pans and leave them to rise again for about half an hour.
When the rolls look like they’ve risen enough, put them in the oven (mine was at 175 degrees C or so) and cook them until they’re brown on top. (Mine got a bit too cooked because I went to help my mother reconfigure an iPod with my tech-savvy genius).
Meanwhile make the icing.
- about half a cup icing sugar
- 1 tablespoon melted butter
- 1 tablespoon water
Basically, mix these things together until you get a thin liquidy icing that you’ll be able to drizzle over the cakes. I didn’t take any photos, sorry.
When the buns are done, leave them to cool and make the best part: the glaze.
- 1/2 cup honey
- 7 tablespoons butter (the recipe said 8. we did six because butter is unhealthy, 7 is probably okay. Besides, you don’t want to get heart disease from too much butter)
- 3/4 cup brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons cream
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
Melt the butter and honey in a pan, stir in the sugar and wait until it boils. Keep it boiling for about two minutes. Stir the whole time otherwise it will burn. Mix in the cream and vanilla, keep stirring for another minute or so, then take off the heat and spoon onto the rolls. (are these cakes, buns, or rolls? I don’t know)
Give the glaze a few minutes to cool, then drizzle the icing over the buns.
Then, eat the buns while they’re still warm, think about Thisby, Puck and Sean, and enjoy the deliciousness of your creation.
Is this delicious or what? Have you read The Scorpio Races? What’s other bookish food you’d like to try? Do you think you’ll ever make November Cakes?