- For the cake sponge:
- 250ml vegetable oil (I used Olivio)
- 175g caster sugar
- 50g light brown sugar
- 4 eggs
- 1 teaspoon almond essence
- 125g self-raising flour
- 100g ground almonds
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- A pinch of salt
- For the cream cheese frosting:
- 100g cream cheese (I used FF Philadaphia)
- 33g soft butter (I used Lurpak spreadable)
- 45g icing sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon almond essence
- The juice of 1/4 lemon
- For the filling and decoration:
- A few mini-Amaretti Biscuits (Ratafias)
- Fresh Strawberries
- Strawberry Jam
- A handful of flaked almonds
Preparation Time: 20 minutes
Cooking Time: 30 minutes (almost exactly)
- Heat the oven to 180°c. (I had my difficult oven at 170 and that worked fine)
- Place the sugars, eggs, oil and almond essence into a bowl. Whisk them together so there are no lumps of sugar and it turns creamy.
- Sieve the flour, ground almonds, salt, baking powder and spices into another bowl and using a dry whisk, mix them together.
- Pour the egg, oil and sugar mixture into the dry ingredients and then mix them together so there are no lumps.
- Grease and line two 20cm sandwich cake tins with greaseproof paper. Pour the cake batter evenly into both the tins.
- Put the tins into the middle part of the oven and bake them for 30 minutes so they feel firm when touched on top and do not wobble in the middle. (I had to swap my two cakes around halfway through as the top one was cooking faster than the bottom one)
- Remove the cakes from the tins and cool them on a wire rack until they have reached room temperature.
- Sieve the icing sugar into a bowl and add all the other icing ingredients.
- Using a hand whisk or spoon beat the mixture until it is thick, light and creamy with no lumps remaining.
- On your serving platter or cake stand or plate, place the first layer of cake. Spread with the strawberry jam.
- Slice up some strawberries and spread over the top of the jam
- Put the second layer of cake on top and spread the icing over the top.
- Dot the Amaretti biscuits around the perimeter
- Sprinkle flaked almonds over the centre of the cake
- Finish off with halved strawberries
- If made in advance, refrigerate in a covered cake bin until ready to serve, then remove at least a couple of hours before serving at room temperature.
For a really luxurious finish, make three times the amount of fondant icing and substitute the strawberry jam with a third of the icing, using the remainder to coat the sides. Decorate the sides with further almond flakes (optional).
A variation on the theme is my Wimbledon Special Iced Bakewell Cake – filled with strawberries and fondant cream, and covered with glace icing, flaked almonds and strawberry halves. I tried to make it green and purple marbled effect inside, but the purple looks more like pink – perhaps I should have used twice as much food colouring!
Overall marks out of 10 = 9.5