Strawberry heaven cupcakes

An aptly-named treat that makes the most of the dwindling English strawberry season

It’s almost September, and while summer seems to be just clinging on—the sun’s still shining, the schools are out—over on Kent’s strawberry farms, the season has peaked. Now more than ever does the catch-all approach become paramount: one must make the most of the dwindling stocks.

Mix with meringue, slice on top of scones, add lashings of cream, sprinkle with almonds for a deliciously healthy breakfast—or head to Konditor and Cook, whose aptly-named strawberry heaven cupcake rewards the indecisive by ticking all these boxes, with its peerless combination of nutty almond sponge, marshmallowy meringue, and a scattering of strawberries pouting like Snow White’s lips atop a pale, trembling layer of whipped cream.

The almond sponge is wheat-free—good news for coeliacs, though the use of ground almonds in baking hardly needs justifying. The practice is ancient and with good reason, there being few things so delectable as the sweet, warm aroma of oven-fresh almond sponge.

Whipped until wibbling
The eggs are free range, of course, whipped until wibbling and gently baked until just the softest stroke of toasty gold shines through; the strawberries are Kent’s finest; the cream organic and served by the lashing, as all the best cream is.

“I had it for breakfast,” says Beatrice who, though she has only been a month at Konditor and Cook, is no stranger to the idea of having cake in the morning. On the contrary, she declares it makes for a great start: “I felt fine all day.” It is—genuinely—a light treat, the cream, meringue and fluffy sponge being air, mostly, with fruit on top. “It’s amazing” she concludes simply—which is the only reason you need at any time of day.