Recipe for Rhubarb Crumble Cake

Thank you to Linds at Pixie Hall Cakes for this fabulously seasonal recipe for Rhubarb Crumble Cake…

 

I love this time of year as there are lots of tasty things coming into season. I try to bake with seasonal ingredients as it means that everything is super tasty if it’s at its peak and also, it means that recipes are special if they’re only available at a certain time of year. I have a customer who keeps asking me about a certain apple cake I made in the autumn and whether I have it with me. I don’t. It’ll be back next autumn. You’ve got to leave people wanting more!

So this month I have used one of my favourite ingredients and it’s now in season and available all over the place (in case it’s not growing in your garden). It’s rhubarb! I know it’s a bit old fashioned but it’s super tasty and really quite versatile. It’s delicious in a pie (my mum makes an amazing rhubarb meringue pie which might be a recipe for another post) and makes a perfect crumble. I use the crumble idea to make a crumble cake which I think is a perfect combination! The rhubarb is paired with almond and vanilla for a subtle sweetness and a crumble topping is added to the cake before baking. The top goes crisp and crunchy while the cake is tender, moist and studded with tart rhubarb. It really is delicious!

Rhubarb Crumble Cake

Ingredients:

For the topping:

1tbsp cold butter

2tbsp self raising flour

1tbsp Demerara sugar

2tbsp chopped almonds

 

For the cake:

100g butter

200g sugar

3 eggs

100g plain yogurt

1tsp vanilla extract

1/2tsp almond extract

200g self raising flour

225g rhubarb, trimmed and finely sliced

 

Method:

Preheat the oven to 180C then grease and line an 8 inch round pan.

To make the topping, put the butter and flour in a bowl and rub together with your fingertips until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Stir the sugar and almonds through the mixture and set aside.

To make the cake, cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time beating well after each addition.

Add the yogurt along with the vanilla and almond extracts into the bowl and continue beating until smooth.

Fold the flour carefully into the batter until it is combined, then gently stir though most of the rhubarb.

Pour the mixture into the prepared tin, scatter with remaining rhubarb and then sprinkle the crumble mixture evenly over the top.

Bake the cake for 50-60 minutes or until a skewer poked into the centre comes out clean and the top of the cake springs back when gently pressed.

Allow to cool in the tin before transferring to a serving plate. This is (unsurprisingly) delicious served with custard or vanilla ice cream.

 

Linds Bestwicke runs Pixie Hall Cakes in Fakenham and can be found selling her delicious baking at Fakenham Farmers’ Market on the 4th Saturday of each month.

Photographs by Keith Osborn Photography

 

Recipe for Apple and Date Slice

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If you are still sticking to your new year’s resolution of trying to eat healthier, then this recipe for a healthier treat from Pixie Hall Cakes is for you.

So here we are in 2015! I hope you have all recovered from the festive season and things are getting back to normal. I’m sure some of you will have resolved to get healthier this year and the last thing you want to think about is cake. Sorry. As someone who spends their time making all things chocolatey, sugary and sweet; I get a lot of hate at this time of year. People are convinced that I’m out to scupper their new healthy regimes and I promise, I’m not. I just believe that a healthy diet can still include cake. Just not a whole cake and not everyday. It’s all about moderation.

Now, that being said, I have a healthier recipe for you this month. Please note I say healthiER and not healthy. There is still sugar and butter in this cake and though it is in more modest quantities than a chocolate cake it is definitely there. I still wouldn’t recommend eating the whole thing in one sitting but you shouldn’t feel guilty about enjoying a slice or 2.

My mum used to make a version of these date and apple slices when we were kids. They’re perfect for tucking into lunch boxes or for enjoying with a cup of tea mid morning (as I am doing while I write this). The mixture comes together really quickly with the use of a food processor but if you don’t have one, it’s easy to make by hand.

The wholemeal flour adds a delicious, nutty texture and flavour that you just can’t get with a refined flour and is a welcome addition. There is no sugar added to the filling so the flavour of the apples shines through and the sticky dates add a lovely chewy texture and toffee sweetness. There’s a certain simple charm to the flavours here and there wasn’t much that I changed from the ones my mum made all those years ago.

Recipe for Date and Apple Slice

Recipe for Apple and Date Slice

Ingredients

For the shortcake:

200g wholemeal flour

100g plain flour

Pinch of salt

150g butter, cubed

100g caster sugar

1 egg, beaten

2tbsp milk

 

For the filling:

2 large eating apples

1 tbsp lemon juice

100g dried dates

 

Method:

Preheat the oven to 180C and line a 23cm square tin with baking parchment.

If you’re making these by hand:

Place the flours and salt into a large bowl and stir together, add the butter and rub in with your fingertips until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs.

Stir in the sugar, egg and milk until it forms a dough.

If you’re using a food processor:

Put the flours, salt, sugar and butter into the mixer and pulse until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Add the egg and milk and pulse again until a dough is formed.

Knead the dough briefly on a lightly floured surface and cut in half. Press half the mixture into the base of the tin using you fingers and make sure it is even.

Peel, core and thinly slice the apples and place them into a bowl with the lemon juice. Chop the dates (I find it easiest to use scissors) into the bowl and mix together until well coated with the juice.

Spread the apples and dates over the shortcake base in an even layer. Crumble the rest of the shortcake dough over the top of the apples and gently press down. It doesn’t matter if there is some filling showing through the gaps but try and press the dough together so it holds when you slice it up later.

Bake the slices or 35-40 minutes until golden brown. Allow to cool in the tin. Slice into 9 or 12 and enjoy!

 

Linds Bestwicke runs Pixie Hall Cakes in Fakenham and can be found selling her delicious baking at Fakenham Farmers’ Market on the 4th Saturday of each month.

Photographs by Keith Osborn Photography

Easter Cake Recipe

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This week’s guest blog is a recipe for a show stopping Easter Cake from Pixie Hall Cakes

Easter Cake

 

As promised, I’ve got a great Easter recipe for you. It’s very chocolatey, really tasty and also pretty darn cute.

As I’m sure you can imagine, Easter is really busy for me. Between making chocolate eggs and baking tasty things, there’s not much time to think of anything else. I’ve worked the last few Easter Sundays (and this one won’t be any different!) and so I thought that I’d bring a bit of festive fun a bit early this year.

This cake is a real show stopper. I wandered from Tesco car park, cake in hand, on my way to get it photographed and I couldn’t help but notice people smiling as they saw it and even heard one girl say “wow, that cake!” It’s a great feeling. You will get loads of praise from your loved ones (and complete strangers if you parade it ‘round the town) if you bring this to your Easter get together.

As usual, the recipe itself is straightforward. The fun starts when you begin to decorate the cake. Feel free to use whatever sweets you like to decorate. I went with chocolate finger biscuits, chocolate eggs and chocolate bunnies. You could use chicks, jelly beans or any other sweet you like to make this look festive and taste great.

First you need to make the ganache to use as icing for your cake. This is a mixture of chocolate and cream that you melt together to make a rich chocolate frosting. You can use milk or dark chocolate here. I chose dark as the biscuits, eggs and bunnies are already quite sweet but you use whichever you prefer. You’ll then bake the cake while the ganache cools and once everything is cooled you can start decorating!

 

Ingredients:

For the ganache:

300g chocolate, chopped

175ml double cream

 

For the cake:

125g cocoa

250g plain flour

300g caster sugar

1½ tsp baking soda

¾ tsp baking powder

⅛ tsp salt

1 tbsp lemon juice

150ml milk

150ml water

75ml oil

2 eggs

1 tsp vanilla extract

 

For the decorations:

100g cherry jam (or jam of your choice)

3x135g packs of chocolate fingers (there’ll be a few left over)

30g desiccated coconut

A few drops of green food colouring

Easter sweeties – eggs, bunnies, chicks, jelly beans! Whatever you like!

 

Method:

Make the ganache by putting the cream and chocolate into a heatproof bowl and melting them together. You can do this in the microwave in 30 second bursts, stirring thoroughly after each one or, over a pan of barely simmering water on the hob. Once melted, cover and place in the fridge to cool completely and firm up.

Preheat the oven to 180C. grease and line a 20cm/8 inch deep round cake tin and set aside.

In a large bowl, mix the cocoa, flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder and salt.

Put the lemon juice, milk, water, oil, eggs and vanilla into a jug and mix together to break the eggs up. Pour this into the dry ingredients and whisk together until smooth. It’s not too difficult to do this by hand but feel free to use a mixer if it’s easier.

Pour the mixture into the prepared tin and bake for 50-60 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean.

Allow the cake to cool for 5-10 minutes in the tin before turning out onto a wire rack to cool completely.

When the cake is cold use a serrated knife to level the top and then slice the cake to create two layers. Pop the bottom half of the cake onto a serving plate and spread with the jam, place the other half of the cake on top.

Next, using an electric whisk or stand mixer, whip your chocolate ganache until light and spreadable. Then, using a butter knife, palette knife or offset spatula spread the ganache evenly over the top and sides of your cake.

Next, take your finger biscuits and stick them to the ganache on the sides of the cake. Try to keep them upright and butted up closely to each other. You can probably fit more around the cake than you think and I ended up adding in an extra 2 when I noticed some weren’t as straight as I thought!

Next, press your chocolate eggs (or whatever you have chosen) into the ganache around the edge of the top of your cake. Again, make sure they are pressed close together to get a good border. Place your bunnies onto the ganache wherever you think they look best.

In a small bowl, mix the coconut with a little bit of green colouring and mix until the colour is evenly spread. You can go as dark as you like but bear in mind that it will make the coconut moist if you add too much.  Sprinkle the coconut grass all over the top of your cake paying special attention to the areas around the bunnies and eggs. You’ll want to cover all of the visible ganache on top of the cake (you may have more coconut than you need but you can use it to make Easter cupcakes if you have the energy!).

If you like, you can attach a piece of ribbon to the cake. I did this by sticking a clean pin through the join in the ribbon, between 2 biscuits and into the cakes.

Take your cake to the table and wow your friends and family!
Linds runs Pixie Hall Cakes in Fakenham and can be found selling her delicious baking at Fakenham Farmers’ Market on the 4th Saturday of each month.

Twitter: @PixieHallCakes

Photographs by Keith Osborn Photography

 

 

Recipe for Red Velvet Cake

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This week’s guest blog is a recipe for Red Velvet Cake from Pixie Hall Cakes to help you share the love this Valentine’s Day.

Red Velvet Cake

Excuse me, has anyone seen January? I’m sure it was around here somewhere but suddenly, all I can see is February.  I’m really not sure how this has happened but I’m sure there’s nothing I can do about it so I’ll just enjoy the fact that it’s getting closer to spring and the days are getting longer.

I was quite lucky with the scheduling of this post actually as it meant I could make something special for Valentine’s day. I’m sure lots of you will be going out for a fancy dinner with your partners or have something else special planned. For those of you that are cooking a meal to share at home, I have the perfect dessert for you to make.

This red velvet cake is quick and easy to put together and looks fantastic. It also happens to be delicious! Red velvet is a traditional American cake and is a vanilla cake with a hint of cocoa and a fair bit of red colouring. Classically, the chemical reaction from vinegar and buttermilk mixing with the cocoa has helped to enhance the red colour of the cake and keep it fluffy and moist.  The cake is filled and covered in a delicious cream cheese frosting which complements the sweetness of the cake with its natural tangy flavour.

I have experimented with red colouring in my quest for a beautiful red velvet and I have found that supermarket food colouring labeled as “natural” will not make your cake the show stopping red that you want. Your cake will be a reddish brown and, while still tasting delicious, will lack the wow factor of a brighter hued treat. You should look for concentrated paste colours or the traditional liquid colours for best results.

You can buy buttermilk in supermarkets but I don’t tend to bother. You can substitute the buttermilk with plain yogurt or mix 1tbsp lemon juice into 235ml milk and set aside to curdle before adding to the cake.

Red Velvet Cake

Ingredients:

340g plain flour

400g sugar

1 tbsp cocoa powder

½ tsp salt

1 tsp baking soda

2 eggs

350ml oil (sunflower or other flavourless oil)

235ml buttermilk

1 tbsp vinegar  (white vinegar or cider vinegar)

1 tsp vanilla

Red colouring (the amount you use depends on the brand and how red you want the cake)

For the frosting:

200g softened butter

60g caster sugar

400g cream cheese

1 tsp vanilla

Method:

Preheat the oven to 180C and grease and line a 23cm round tin.

In a large bowl, mix the flour, sugar, cocoa, salt and baking soda with a whisk to ensure it is combined well.

In another bowl, whisk the eggs, oil, buttermilk, vinegar, vanilla and colouring together until smooth.

Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and whisk until smooth and uniformly coloured.

Pour the mixture into the tin and bake for 45-55 minutes or until well risen and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.

Allow to cool.

To make the frosting, cream the butter and sugar together in a large bowl until light and fluffy.

Add the cream cheese and beat until smooth. Add the vanilla and beat again.

When the cake is cool, slice it in half and spread some of the frosting evenly on one half, place the other half on top and then smooth the rest of the frosting over the top and sides of the cake.

To make the decoration I cut a heart shape out of a piece of paper and used it as a stencil, pouring red sugar sprinkles onto the frosting. They should keep the shape of the heart well and remain in place as you remove the paper.

Slice and enjoy with your loved ones.

Linds Hall runs Pixie Hall Cakes in Fakenham and can be found selling her delicious baking at Fakenham Farmers’ Market on the 4th Saturday of each month.

Photographs by Keith Osborn Photography

Christmas Cake Recipe – Part 2

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This week’s guest blog is part 2 of a recipe for a Christmas Cake from Pixie Hall Cakes
– how to decorate it!…

So, the lights are twinkling, the supermarket aisles are full to the brim with gifts and treats and the air is cold and crisp. Christmas is just around the corner and honestly? I cannot wait. I love this time of year. I am a big kid.

Last month I showed you how to make a delicious Christmas cake and as promised, I have some decorating ideas for you today. Your cake should smell pretty amazing by now. Packed with fruit and soaked with rum (or whatever you chose to anoint your glorious creation with) it should be ready for its final festive flourish.

Where to start? I’ve decided to go for some quite traditional ideas as they are simple to do and look lovely. There is plenty of room to tweak these ideas to your personal tastes and that’s the beauty of making your own cake, you get to make it how you like it.

Covering the cake

I’ll start off by showing you how to cover your cake in marzipan. It’s really simple. Before doing any of these, you’ll need to pop your cake on a cake board (or make your own by cutting some cardboard to the same size as your cake and covering it in foil. Make sure it’s nice and flat.

You will need:

Marzipan (I use shop bought)

Ready to roll icing (white or ivory colours work really well)

Smooth apricot jam

Start with your block of marzipan (I chose golden but you can go for the white version if you prefer) and knead it slightly to make it pliable. Dust your surface with some cornflour (top tip: icing sugar may have been your go to choice but it can make things a bit sticky. Cornflour will work perfectly), place the marzipan down and dust that too. Take your rolling pin and roll the marzipan out to around 3mm thick. You can check that the marzipan is big enough for your cake by holding the cake over the marzipan sheet – there needs to be enough to cover the top and sides of your cake in once piece.

Marzipan for Christmas CakeMarzipan for Christmas Cake

Pop your jam in a microwave safe pot and cook for around 10-14 seconds until it boils. Using a pastry brush, brush the jam all over the top and sides of the cake (this helps the marzipan stick to the cake).

Carefully lift the marzipan sheet up and over the cake and position it centrally. Gently smooth down the sides of the marzipan with flat hands and ease out any creases.

Coating Christmas Cake in Jam Marzipan for Christmas CakeMarzipan for Christmas Cake

Trim the edges of the marzipan so there is still a bit extra and continue to smooth over the cake. Trim the rest off to form a neat edge.

Marzipan on Christmas Cake

If you are not a fan of the traditional white icing, you can use dried fruit and/or nuts on the top or your marzipan layer. Just arrange them in a pattern and then glaze with a bit of the apricot jam. The jam is easier to spread if it’s hot, so pop it back in microwave as necessary.

Christmas Cake decorated with fruit Christmas Cake decorated with fruit

If your cake is for your family, it might be easier to store in the lid of a storage tin so that you can easily cut slices off throughout the festive period. Just pop the main part of the tin over the top to keep it fresh.

Christmas Cake decorated with fruit

If you wish to apply white icing to the cake, follow the same steps as above and smooth carefully. You’ll need to apply a thin layer of jam to the top of the marzipan to help the icing stick. When trimming and finishing, gently fold the icing where it meets your work surface to create a neat edge around the bottom.

Icing a Christmas Cake Icing a Christmas Cake

If you wish to ice only the top of your cake, use a cake board the same size as your cake as a template for marzipan and icing. Then, just brush the top of the cake with jam and place the marzipan on top, brush the marzipan with jam and place your icing circle on top. Finish the cake with a festive ribbon.

Icing a Christmas Cake Icing a Christmas Cake

Finishing touches

I like to use Lustre Dust to add gentle shimmer to decorations. I cut some stars from the icing and, using a dry, clean paintbrush, applied a little gold lustre before arranging them on the cake and securing in place with a dab of vanilla extract. Lustre Dust is available in lots of colours so you can experiment as much as you like.

Icing a Christmas Cake Icing a Christmas Cake Icing a Christmas Cake

With the fully iced cake I chose a festive ribbon and a plastic holly decoration to keep things classically simple.

Christmas Cake

I also made some Christmas cake cupcakes. I used the same mixture as with the large cake but cooked them for a shorter time (around 40 minutes), fed them with rum and decorated them really simply with marzipan cut with a round cutter and icing cut in the same way with a star cut from the centre. It gives a lovely two-tone effect.

Christmas Cupcakes

So, there you have it; a quick tutorial to inspire you to decorate your Christmas cakes at home. If you made a cake this year, why not send me a photo and I’ll upload it to my Facebook Page

I hope you have a fantastic Christmas whatever you are doing and I’ll be back in the new year with lots more recipes for you to try!

Linds Hall runs Pixie Hall Cakes in Fakenham and can be found selling her delicious baking at Fakenham Farmers’ Market on the 4th Saturday of each month.

Photographs by Keith Osborn Photography

Christmas Cake Recipe – Part 1

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This week’s guest blog is part 1 of a recipe for a Christmas Cake from Pixie Hall Cakes
– part 2, how to decorate it, next month!…

Psst! There are only a few more weeks until Christmas.

I’m sorry to be the bearer of this news but as we all know, Christmas is sneaking up on us! Actually, I don’t think it’s sneaking so much as sprinting, full force, into view. Shops have had advent calendars, tins of chocolates and beribboned treats on the shelves for a couple of months and I’m afraid there is no avoiding it. The man in red will soon be delivering presents and scoffing mince pies.

With that in mind, I’m here to offer a helping hand. Stir Up Sunday falls on the 24th November. It’s on this day that we traditionally get in the kitchen, fire up the oven and make our Christmas cakes, puddings and mincemeat. Well, apparently some people do. I don’t think I know many of them.

It’s so easy to pop to the supermarket and pick up a good Christmas cake, a small pudding (because inevitably only 3 people in your party of 12 even like it, but they insist on having it) and a 12 pack of mince pies. I will not judge you if that is the route you are going to take. I will, however, tell you that making a Christmas cake isn’t that hard. It’s actually kind of fun. It’s a great thing to do on a rainy Sunday afternoon with the kids. The house smells amazing as the cake cooks thanks to the fruit, booze and spices and, you’ll feel really proud of yourself when you’ve finished.

Christmas cakes are pretty adaptable. You can use any mix of dried fruit that you like. Traditionally currants, raisins and sultanas are mixed but you can add cranberries, apricots, sour cherries or anything else that you like the sound of.  Here, I’ve used pre-mixed dried fruit and added cranberries and morello glace cherries to the mix. Dark spiced rum is my spirit of choice in all my Christmas baking. I like the deep flavour it has without being too harsh and the spices work fantastically with the festive flavours. As with the fruit, you can use any spirit you like. Whisky works well, brandy is traditional and, if you don’t want to use alcohol, fresh orange juice or tea impart lovely flavour to the cake.

In short; have fun with this cake and tailor it to suit your favourite flavours. As long as the weight of fruit is equal to that in the recipe, you can change the ratios to suit and mix it up however you like.

So, here’s my take on the classic Christmas cake. This one makes an 20cm/8” round or a 18cm/7” square cake.

Ingredients:

800g dried mixed fruit

100g dried cranberries

75g glace cherries

5 tbsp spiced rum

225g softened butter

225g light brown sugar

4 eggs

225g plain flour

½ tsp mixed spice

¼ tsp grated nutmeg

pinch of salt

Zest of 1 clementine and 1 lemon

1 tbsp black treacle

50g slivered almonds, roughly chopped

Method

The day before you bake the cake you need to plump up the fruit in the rum. Weigh all the fruit into a large bowl and pour over the rum. Stir the mixture to make sure the fruit is coated, cover with cling film and set aside.

Fruit for Christmas Cake

Preheat the oven to 140C, line your tin with baking paper on the bottom and around the sides.

In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter and sugar together until light and pale. Add the eggs to the mixture one at a time and whisk thoroughly between each one.

Creamed Butter and Sugar

Creamed Butter and Sugar Picture 5

Sift the flour, spices and salt into the bowl and gently fold in.

Picture 6 Sifting FlourFolding In

Add the soaked fruit, zest of the lemon and clementine, treacle and almonds and gently stir through until combined.

Mixing in Fruit

Spoon the mixture into the tin and spread flat with the back of a spoon or spatula.

Christmas Cake Mixture Picture 13

Now, to protect the cake during the long, slow cooking process, you need to tie brown paper around the tin. Just use some string and tie a double layer securely around the outside of your tin. Place a piece of baking parchment with a hole cut in the middle over the top of the cake and place in the oven.

Christmas Cake Ready for Oven

Cook for around 3-4 hours depending on your oven. Start with 3 hours and then check the cake. Leave it longer as necessary. The cake is ready when a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. The cake should spring back when lightly pressed in the centre.  Cooking time will vary depending on the kind of tin you use and your own oven so just keep an eye on it.

Christmas Cake

Leave your cake to cool in the tin for around 30 minutes, transfer it to a wire rack to finish cooling.

It’s done! All you have to do now is wrap it securely in baking paper and foil, pop it into an airtight tin and open it up a few times between now and Christmas to feed it with more lovely rum. Using a skewer, poke holes all over your cake and carefully spoon over a tablespoon or so of booze and allow it to soak in. You can do this as often as you like (or remember!) but do wrap the cake up tightly in between.

Next month, I’ll show you some different techniques to decorate your cake so it looks perfect for your Christmas spread.

Linds Hall runs Pixie Hall Cakes in Fakenham and can be found selling her delicious baking at Fakenham Farmers’ Market on the 4th Saturday of each month.

Photographs by Keith Osborn Photography

Strawberry Mousse Cake Recipe

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This week’s guest blog is a lovely, summer recipe for Strawberry Mousse Cake from Pixie Hall Cakes.

Stawberry Mousse Cake Recipe from Pixie Hall Cakes

Strawberry Mousse Cake

When I was asked to write a baking blog for this website, I will admit that I got a bit obsessed with picking recipes to share with you. I was thinking summer berries, autumnal apples, warming winter spices and bright spring flavours. It was exciting!  I love to bake with seasonal ingredients as I think you get the best flavour that way.

 

As we’re having fairly decent summer weather at the moment, I immediately thought about the fantastic strawberries on sale just about everywhere. Strawberries are the quintessential berry for the British summertime, and we’re lucky to have some excellent local growers nearby in Norfolk. I also thought about summer being barbecue season. Us Brits will fire up the barbie as soon as the sun shines and invite friends and family for an al fresco supper.

 

When we’re entertaining, I’m usually put in charge of dessert. I’m all about the sweet cakes and sticky puddings whereas my partner is in charge of the barbecue.  I’m a bit of a show off when it comes to this sort of thing, I like to bring something exciting to the table to round off the meal as I think that dessert needs to be something to remember!

 

The recipe I have chosen to share with you is one my mum has been making since before I was born. She’s an occasional baker, but she has several favourite recipes that she goes back to time and time again. When I asked her to send me this one, I opened up my emails to find an image of a handwritten, slightly smudged recipe that she copied down from a magazine sometime in the 1970s.

 

It’s a well loved recipe for a Strawberry Mousse Cake. It’s a beautiful looking dessert and is a bit of a show stopper. Perfect strawberry halves secured in a light strawberry mousse, a soft sponge cake keeping it all together and a topping of whipped cream (a strawberry’s best friend). Perfect for a barbecue, a supper or a light summer lunch. Keep it in the fridge until you serve it so that it doesn’t collapse in the heat.

This recipe uses gelatine so it’s not suitable for vegetarians. It also contains raw eggs so shouldn’t be given to the pregnant women, the elderly or to young children. It’s best to make the cake the day before you want to serve it, leave it to set overnight and then decorate the top just before serving.

 

Strawberry Mousse Cake

Serves 10-12

Strawberry Mousse Cake Recipe from Pixie Hall Cakes

Strawberry Mousse Cake

 

Ingredients:

For the sponge:

2 eggs

100g self raising flour

100g butter, softened

100g caster sugar

 

For the mousse:

1tbsp powdered gelatine or 6 leaves

4tbsp water

3 egg yolks

75g caster sugar

250ml pureed strawberries

1tsp lemon juice

150ml double cream

2 egg whites

 

For decoration:

350g strawberries

150ml double cream

 

Method:

1. Preheat your oven to 190C. Grease a 23cm round springform tin and place a circle of parchment paper in the bottom.

2. In the bowl of a stand mixer (or using a handheld mixer) place all of the sponge ingredients and beat, at medium speed, until combined and smooth (about 2 minutes).

3. Pour the cake mixture into the prepared tin and spread evenly.  Place in the oven and bake for 20-25 minutes or until a skewer poked into the centre comes out clean. Allow to cool for a few minutes before turning the cake out onto a wire rack to cool completely.

4. Wash and thoroughly dry the tin and then line it completely with cling film.  It may be a bit tricky to get the film to stick so you can always grease the pan a little to help the film stay in place.

5. Put the gelatine and water into a cup, put the cup in a bowl of hot water and stir until it dissolves. Take out and allow to cool.

6. Put the egg yolks and sugar into a bowl and whisk until pale and thick. The whisk should leave a trail in the mixture when lifted. Stir in the strawberry puree, lemon juice and gelatine mixture. Whip the cream until lightly stiff and fold into the mixture.

7. Whip your egg whites in a clean bowl with a clean whisk (really important!) until quite stiff. Gently fold the egg whites into the strawberry mixture being careful to not lose any air.

8. To assemble the cake: Slice your sponge cake in half to create two discs. Put one half in the base of the prepared tin. Slice about 250g of the larger strawberries in half from top to bottom and arrange, cut side out, around the edge of the tin. Pour in the strawberry mousse mixture and top this with the other half of the sponge. Chill overnight until set.

9. Carefully remove the cake from the tin and place onto a serving plate. Whip the cream until stiff and pipe or spread on the top of the cake. Arrange the rest of your strawberries on top and present to your hungry guests!

Stawberry Mousse Cake Recipe from Pixie Hall Cakes

Strawberry Mousse Cake

Linds Hall runs Pixie Hall Cakes in Fakenham and can be found selling her delicious baking at Fakenham Farmers’ Market on the 4th Saturday of each month.

Photographs by Keith Osborn Photography