It was Jim’s birthday last Monday and, like every other year we have been together, I made him a cake to take to his office to share with his work colleagues. He has had huge boxes of cupcakes and Tardis to name a couple but this year, time is in short supply. I haven’t been able to take off a day (or two) to make a big fancy cake at my leisure. So this year, simple wins.
The original recipe is from here but I baked mine in three seven inch sandwich tins to create a stack. And this is how I did it.
Preheat your oven to 160o/c and line and grease three seven inch sandwich tins. And I mean line and grease by the way. I didn’t. Mistake…
Melt 175gr unsalted butter in a small saucepan.
When it’s melted, remove from the heat and add 1tsp of vanilla extract.
And 5 tablespoons of double cream (about 60ml)
In a large bowl, add 225gr plain flour, 100gr almonds, 1tsp of baking powder and a large pinch of ground sea salt.
Using a whisk, combine to keep it light and airy.
Set this aside for the moment.
Add 5 eggs and 200gr golden caster sugar…
…into the bowl of your stand mixer. (Rosie-Rose has a new bow. Isn’t she a doll!)
And using a whisk attachment, beat for 5 minutes or until the eggs and sugar are thick and creamy.
While that is beating, pull out your 400gr of strawberries and chop half of them into chunks…
…and the other half into slices.
By now, the eggs and sugar should be thick and creamy.
Beat in the butter-vanilla-essence-cream combo.
And fold in the flour in batches.
Fold the chopped strawberries in.
Pour equally into your three (lined and greased) sandwich tins.
Top with the sliced strawberries and 50gr of meringue. I made my own meringue but shop bought is fab for this.
Bake for 30 minutes or until they are golden brown, an inserted knife comes out clean and they are starting to pull away from the edges.
Turn out the cakes and leave to cool right through.
Take pictures of one of your cats whilst you’re waiting. (Optional)
When the cakes are cool, whip up a batch of butter cream icing by beating together 115gr soft unsalted butter with 265gr icing sugar and a little splash of vanilla extract.
Put the most damaged cake at the bottom, I should have greased and lined… And turn it round so that it is at the back of the cake. Out of sight…
Slap on some butter cream and some strawberry jam.
Add another cake and top that with more butter cream and strawberry jam.
Put the prettiest cake on the top.
Add any leftover strawberries/butter cream/meringue on top. If you fancy, or simply dust with icing sugar.
I made meringue letters for the birthday boy too.
It was gorgeous! Hooray!