I think the title of this recipe sounds as dull as anything! (There’s nothing like starting a blog post on a positive note…) BUT it is, in fact, damn tasty! It is, compared to other recipes, pretty simple, but it’s effective.
I saw a pretty picture of this cake, alongside the recipe for it, in a copy of a women’s magazine that had been left in the holiday apartment that my sister and I were staying in on the island of Crete a few years ago. Having never really baked much but wanting to try my hand at it, I ripped out this recipe and added it to my recipe folder. AKA the ‘One day, before I die, I will make these recipes’ folder.
Well, it’s taken me nearly four years, but I have finally made this recipe. That was the inspiration for taking on this A to Z of Baking challenge – to try out those recipes that I’ve had fluttering about and never got round to, so at least I can say I’ve ticked this one off the list now, and it hasn’t disappointed. This is a lovely cake and perfect for enjoying in the garden on a spring day, with a cup of tea. That’s the romantic vision I have for this cake, anyway. I have mostly enjoyed it in my pyjamas with a hangover on a weekend, but hey, it still tastes just as good 😉
As I mentioned, this cake is simple but effective. The vanilla really shines through in the flavour of this recipe, and the combination of soft sponge and sweet cream cheese icing really works well together.
The original recipe called for slicing the cake into three layers, but that didn’t really seem possible so I just opted for two layers.
- 200g caster sugar
- 200g softened unsalted butter
- 4 medium eggs
- 1 tablespoon vanilla essence
- 200g self-raising flour
- 3 tablespoons raspberry jam
- 300g icing sugar
- 50g softened unsalted butter
- 125g full fat cream cheese
- 1 medium egg
- 50g caster sugar
- ½ punnet blueberries
- Separate the egg white, put the caster sugar into a bowl and lay out a sheet of greaseproof paper.
- Dip the blueberries into the egg white, then into the sugar. Lay on the paper to dry for one hour.
- Preheat the oven to 180C / 160C fan / gas mark 4.
- Beat the sugar and butter together to get a fluffy and pale consistency. Beat the eggs separately, then add in little by little while mixing. Add the vanilla and spoon in the flour.
- Line an 8-inch (20cm) cake tin with greaseproof paper and half-fill with the mixture. Bake in the centre of the oven for 50 minutes. Test before removing to ensure the cake is cooked all the way through. A knife should come out clean and the top should bounce back when pressed.
- Allow to sit in the tin for five minutes, then remove the lining and place on a cooling rack. Allow to cool completely, then remove the top and slice into two even layers with a large serrated bread knife.
- Mix together the icing sugar, butter and cream cheese until very light and fluffy.
- Spread a layer of sponge with jam and cream cheese icing on one half of the cake, then stack the other layer on top. Coat the cake liberally with cream cheese all over the sides and top, then use a palette knife to make large strokes to add texture to your cake.
- Top with the crystallised blueberries.