Peter’s keen to bake up sweet success at Show

A DODGY oven did not stop Padstow optometrist Peter Freeman from completing his Sydney Royal Easter Show mission this year – baking seven non-perishable cakes and four regular cakes and submitting them for judging on Friday.

Fit for a king or queen, the first group of cakes comprised Rich Fruit Cake, Sultana Cake, Panaforte Italian Christmas Cake, Simnel Cake (with 11 marzipan balls representing the apostles), American Fruit Cake and Plum Pudding.
The second group included a Victoria Sponge, Almond Bread, Orange Cake and Shortbread, with Peter hoping to add to his 31 ribbons which he has won at the Show since 2015.
Anxiously waiting the results, he said all cakes involved a lot of detailed preparation before any mixing commences.
“For example, all fruit is washed, sultanas cut in half and raisins are cut in threes,” he said.
“Weighing ingredients accurately is important; sifting flour several times to make cakes lighter in texture is also vital.
“Then there is the waiting game of determining when the cake is properly baked, you can’t use a skewer as the judges will mark you harsher.
“It’s very stressful baking seven cakes in five days before delivering to the Royal Ester Show but it’s also very rewarding and amazing to get a ribbon.”
As the most successful contributor in the non perishable competition in 2015, he was awarded the Heather Gibson Perpetual Trophy and is the only male so far to have won this honour.
Padstow’s optometrist since 1987, Peter said he grew up watching his mother and grandmother baking and loves entering the Show each year.
“I apply the same attention to detail in cake-making, to my patient’s eye examinations; everything takes careful precision, passion and time,” he said.