BeeBee's 365 Challenge

for the little things that make me happy

Day 111: In Times of Stress

on April 20, 2012

What do you do in times of stress?

I can go one of three ways. I’m either very pragmatic and practical, panic or finally keep busy and try to avoid the problem.

Today has been one of those days. I have had to keep busy, really busy. The Husband has fallen ill again, and for the third time in the 12 years we have been together he has an unknown illness. The first was some sort of viral infection that had him vomiting colours of the rainbow, the second was similar but without the coloured vomit and now we have facial nerve pain. The doctors are stumped, but he has been packed off with some exceedingly strong painkillers and the words if you get a rash, go straight to A&E. Worrying.

So how did I keep busy? I’ve done a couple of bits and pieces. I’ve started a new mug hug for a friend (I put a status out of Facebook asking if anyone wanted one), I’ve started making a syn-free lime pickle (which will take a month to be ready) and I’ve baked a Herman cake.

Have you heard of a Herman cake? I hadn’t until recently. I have had one starter before and I made the classic Amish Apple & Cinnamon cake with it. This time I’ve gone for a slightly different flavour and made Carrot Cake Herman.

German Friendship Cake ‘Herman’

So what you need to know, a Herman is a traditional sourdough cake recipe which has been popular to make for several decades. The mix passes through circles of friends and family so in essence it is a tasty chain letter made of cake.

  • Day 1 – You get Herman and take the lid off.
    Pour him into a large mixing bowl or container capable of holding at least 2 litres and cover loosely with a tea towel or cling film.
  • Day 2 – Stir well
  • Day 3 – Stir well
  • Day 4 Herman is hungry.
    Add the following ingredients, stir well and cover again:

    • 115g plain flour
    • 225g  granulated sugar
    • 200ml milk
  • Day 5 – Stir well
  • Day 6 – Stir well
  • Day 7 – Stir well
  • Day 8 – Stir well
  • Day 9 – Hungry again. Add the same ingredients as day 4. Divide into 4 equal portions and give 3 away to your friends along with these instructions or keep one if you want to start a new cake.
    Herman 4 stays with you and is ready to be baked the next day.
  • Day 10 – Bake your cake

Carrot and Cinnamon Cake


1 portion of Herman
225g Plain flour
225g caster sugar
1 heaped teaspoon of cinnamon powder
1 heaped teaspoon of mixed spice powder
2 heaped teaspoons of baking powder
175ml  Sunflower oil
2 eggs, lightly beaten
150g carrots, peeled and grated
55g nuts
150g raisins/sultanas, soak in boiling water for 30 minutes prior to making the cake to get them all soft and succulent, then sieve.
2 teaspoons of ginger syrup (or golden syrup with a pinch of ground ginger.


Sieve the flour into a bowl, add the sugar, spices, baking powder and oil then mix together.


Add the beaten eggs, Herman, carrot, raisins, pine nuts and ginger syrup. Mix thoroughly then pour into a large greased baking tin. I used a silicone ring to bake mine.


Bake for 45 minutes at 175°C. Check if it’s cooked by poking the cake with a skewer, if it comes out clean then the cake is done.

Leave to cool and then cut into slices.


If you are follower of Food Optimising this is one sinful cake.
But boy it’s good with a cup of tea.


Today’s Activities: Baking the cake, the smell of cinnamon always makes me smile.


BeeBee x


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