Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Strawberry cake

Ingredients (serves 8)
* 2 1/2 cups (375g) self-raising flour
* 3 tsp baking powder
* 8 eggs (59g each), at room temperature, 2 separated
* 375g unsalted butter, chopped, softened
* 375g caster sugar, plus 1/3 cup extra
* Finely grated rind and juice of 2 mandarins
* 4 x 250g punnets strawberries, hulled, sliced widthways
* 1/4 cup (60ml) Cointreau or other orange-flavoured liqueur
* 1 1/2 cups (240g) icing sugar, sifted
* 300g mascarpone
* Sugar flowers or edible flowers, to decorate

1. Preheat oven to 170°C. Grease two 24cm cake tins and line bases with baking paper. Sift flour, baking powder and 1/2 tsp salt into a large bowl of an electric mixer. Add 6 eggs, butter, sugar, and mandarin rind and juice, and beat on low speed until ingredients are moistened. Scrape down sides of bowl and beat for 1 minute or until mixture is smooth and well combined. Divide mixture between tins. Smooth tops, then bake cakes for 30 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Stand cakes in tins for 8 minutes, then turn on to a wire rack to cool completely.
2. Combine strawberries, liqueur and 1/4 cup icing sugar in a bowl and set aside for 20 minutes. Using an electric mixer, whisk mascarpone, 2 tbs extra sugar and 2 egg yolks until very thick. In a clean bowl, whisk 2 eggwhites until soft peaks form. Gradually add remaining 2 tbs extra sugar and whisk until firm peaks form, then fold gently into mascarpone mixture.
3. Drain juices from strawberries and reserve. Place strawberries on one cake half and top with mascarpone mixture, spreading it 3cm from edge. Top with second cake. Add enough strawberry juices to remaining icing sugar to form a thick icing, then spread icing over top of cake, allowing it to drip down sides slightly. Stand until icing is set, then decorate with sugar or fresh flowers.

Notebook: page 140
Recipe by Sophia Young


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