I had another post planned, but then I made this cake and it took priority. This recipe comes from Rachel Allen’s Bake which is a fantastic cookbook and one that I highly recommend. In fact, I’ve made this cake twice – I enjoyed it so much the first time that it made a quick reappearance when I wanted to bake a birthday cake during the last week. This is a gorgeously tender and light cake which is studded with pieces of walnut. It pairs beautifully with a cuppa tea or coffee for an indulgent morning or afternoon tea.
The original recipe calls for a Vanilla Buttercream to sandwich the cake and an American Frosting to cover the sides and top of the cake. However, I don’t think the American Frosting is necessary and so I’ve omitted it here. I’m more than happy to just have the Vanilla Buttercream filling (where I’ve upped the quantity of vanilla extract) with a dusting of icing sugar on top. However if you are more pro-frosting inclined, then the buttercream could be doubled and used both to sandwich the cake and on top of the cake.
Serves 8 – 10
100g butter, softened
225g caster sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 eggs, separated
100g walnuts, chopped
200g plain flour
Pinch of salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
Two 20cm sandwich tins
- Prepare the two tins by greasing them and lining the base with parchment paper. Preheat the oven to 180*C.
- Cream the butter in a large bowl until soft. Add the caster sugar and vanilla extract and beat it until it is light and fluffy.
- Beat in the egg yolks one at a time. Fold in the chopped walnuts.
- Sift the flour, baking powder, and salt into a small bowl. Fold in a quarter of the flour mixture into the batter, then fold in a quarter of the milk into the batter. Continue to fold in the flour and the milk a quarter at a time, alternating between the two, until the flour mixture and milk is fully incorporated into the batter.
- In a separate bowl, whisk the egg whites until they are firm. Stir a quarter of the egg whites into the cake batter. Then gently fold in the remaining egg whites.
- Divide the batter between the two tins, making a slight hollow in the centre of each so that the cake rises evenly. Bake for 16-20 minutes, until they are baked.
- Remove the cakes from the oven and let them cool in the tin for 5 minutes. Turn the cakes out onto wire racks to cool completely.
- Once the cakes have cooled completely, placed one of the cakes onto the serving plate. Cover the top of this cake with Vanilla Buttercream (recipe below). Top this with the second cake, then dust with icing sugar.
75g butter, softened
125g icing sugar
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
- Cream the butter until very soft, then beat in the icing sugar and vanilla extract.