Happy Birthday to everyone celebrating a birthday today!
As you may have gathered from our Facebook page, today marks the 5th birthday of Houseoffraser.co.uk. So, in honour of the occasion we present to you our original recipe for a deliciously moist and milky sweet birthday sponge cake.
Frost the cake with a thick slathering of vanilla buttercream, or if you prefer simply layer with a generous scoop of whipped cream and a tumble of juicy strawberries to finish this delightful summertime birthday treat. Don’t forget a bottle of bubbly champagne for the celebration!
Happy Birthday House of Fraser!
Vanilla Birthday Cake with Strawberries & Cream
For the Vanilla Birthday Cake:
225g plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp bicarbonate soda
Scant pinch of salt (¼ tsp)
225g caster sugar
50g unsalted butter
2 ½ tsp vanilla extract or seeds of 1 whole vanilla pod
75g Organic Bio yoghurt (use fat free if you prefer)
100ml semi-skimmed milk (by all means use full fat milk)
For the Vanilla Buttercream:
500g icing sugar
200g unsalted butter, at room temperature
45ml semi-skimmed milk (3 tbsp)
2 tsp vanilla extract
For the Strawberry Filling & Topping:
4 tbsp sugar-free strawberry jam (I use St. Dalfour)
1 punnet of strawberries (roughly 225g)
Preheat the oven to 170° C and lightly grease two 18 inch sandwich tins with very soft butter, line with baking paper and lightly grease the paper.
In a jug, combine the milk, yoghurt and vanilla extract. Crack the eggs in a separate bowl removing any unwanted bits, whisk together and add to the yoghurt and milk mixture. Stir to combine and set aside.
Measure and sift the flour, salt, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda. Set to one side.
Cream the butter, Flora and sugar together till light and fluffy and add a quarter of the egg and yoghurt milk. Stir till smooth and add a quarter of the dry ingredients. Continue to add each remaining quarter of the wet ingredients and the dry ingredients alternately.
Stir till the mixture is a smooth and thick batter, but be careful not to over mix as this will make for a tough cake. Divide the mixture between the sandwich tins and bake for thirty to forty minutes, checking on the cake after thirty minutes. The cakes are ready when an inserted skewer comes out clean.
Allow the cakes to cool slightly in the sandwich tins for roughly five minutes. Run a palette knife around the sides of the cake and carefully turn the cakes out on to a cooling rack. Slowly peel back the baking paper and allow the cakes to cool completely.
Combine the vanilla extract and the milk in a small bowl. Cream the butter and icing sugar together in a mixing bowl. Add the vanilla and milk and continue to whip the mixture till it is silky and smooth.
Wash, dry, de-stalk and slice the strawberries and set aside.
Spread quarter of the buttercream onto one sponge, spread the other sponge with the strawberry jam and a quarter of the sliced strawberries and sandwich the two together.
Use a piping bag to pipe the icing onto the top of the cake or smooth on to the top with a spatula.
Decorate the top of the cake with strawberries.
Alternatively, you could use raspberries (in which case use raspberry jam) or a mixture of both, which is equally delicious. The strawberries can be lovely for a child’s birthday party, whereas raspberries make for a slightly more elegant and decadent dinner-party dessert.
For the Whipped Cream Topping (if preferable to Vanilla Buttercream):
If so desired, half the quantities for the buttercream and use this only to sandwich the sponges together, along with the strawberry jam.
Then whip 400ml double cream with 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract and 50g icing sugar to sweeten it slightly. Finally adorn with the sliced strawberries.