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Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Welcoming Spring With A Strawberry Cake!


I did it. Finally.

I baked. A heart shaped cake. Layered with delectable pink strawberry filling and decorated with glazed strawberries. A perfect Valentine's Day cake. But baked in March, more to usher in spring. Not that the  recent weather has given any indication of spring being anywhere near the British Isles! It has been grey, dull and rainy. But  the tress have started coming back to life and I take heart.

So a sumptuous cake. Cake times are happy times, aren't they? :-)

Any excuse to dig into a rich, moist cake is always welcome and if it is enjoyed with friends and family all the more better. After the excesses of the weekend, I still have a little leftover in the fridge. Lets say it will be the chief weapon to fight beginning of the work week blues.


The recipe is my mother's standard sponge cake recipe. Growing up I have helped my mother make this cake innumerable times. Over the trials I have added my touches, here and there.


Lets get started  with the cake.

Ingredients:
2 cups self rising flour
1 and half cups of granulated sugar
3/4th cup vegetable oil
1 tea spoon of baking soda and baking powder each
1 pinch of salt
1 tea spoon of vanilla extract
1/2 cup buttermilk at room temperature
3 eggs (at room temperature or even slightly warm, you could keep it on the window sill if the sun is out)

Method:
Switch on your oven at 150 degree Celsius and in your mixer (if you have a cake mixer how I envy you!) start blending the oil and sugar for about 5 to 7 mins. You can see the colour and consistency changing. A little patience is needed at this stage, but believe me you, it is absolutely worth it. Then add the eggs one at the time, with the first egg add a table spoon of the flour. The flour stops the egg from curdling. Give it a blitz and move onto the next egg. Once all the eggs are added mix for 3 to 5 mins more. Add the vanilla extract and the buttermilk. Give it one more blitz. For now let the mixture be, once you stop the mixer, you will see air bubbles forming in the sugar mix. These bubble are the secret to a good, fluffy cake.

In a mixing bowl, sieve in the flour, the baking powder and soda and a pinch of salt. Slowly add the liquid mixture and fold in gently, moving in one direction.

Grease your cake tin, get your magic cake strips ready, if using any and pour the batter onto the pan. These cake strips stop the cake from doming in the middle and a flat top is a great help while spreading the icing. The cake takes usually 40 to 45 mins to bake. But each oven varies, so please keep checking. After 20 mins or so I place a big piece of foil over the cake tin. This stops the top from burning.

Once your cake has passed the toothpick test, bring it out of the oven and leave it to cool completely. Ideally the cake should be left more than a couple of hours before attempting to cut it in layers. If you cut into a warm cake it crumbles and that we do not want under any circumstances. This video has a good tutorial on how to how to cut a cake into layers.


The Strawberry Filling/Icing:

250 gm of mascarpone cheese
250 gm minus two table spoons of strawberry jam [I usually use Weight Watcher's Reduced Sugar Strawberry Jam, so I need to add  a couple of tea spoons of sugar]
1 tea spoon of vanilla extract

Mix this really well, it will become light pink in colour and gooey in texture. Taste it, you will be tempted to taste another spoonful, but hold on.

Once your cake has completely cooled down, cut it into two. Spread the filling, starting from the centre and leaving a little space on the edges, once you put the top layer back, the filling under pressure would automatically be pushed to the edge.

Spread the remaining filling on the top by using a spatula.



The Glazed Strawberry Decoration:

Wash 4/5 medium sized strawberries and pat dry. Cut them into halves, keeping the leaves on. Taste the strawberries, if they are really sour, you may need to add a little sugar to reduce their tartness.

Take 2 table spoons of strawberry jam, add a little water, microwave for 20 secs or so. Mix it together and dip the strawberries skin side down in the jam mixture and let them dry. Your glazed strawberries are ready.

Lightly place them on top of the cake. Keep it in the fridge for a couple of hours for the filling/icing to set. [Frankly I do not ever have the patience to do this.]

The strawberry cake is ready to dig into.


This is going to Rasi's I'm The Star Event.

58 comments:

  1. Strawberyy looks so colorful and yummy.

    Cuisine Delights
    My First Event - "COLOURFUL HOLI".

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  2. Aweshadharon... ekta plan koro na kichu soumitro ke o bolo, we will take a week off and come down.... jeeb e jol..

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  3. This is amazing. It looks like something out of one of the best bakeries. Great presentation too!

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  4. Delicious cake..buttermilk dile cake besh moist hoye..love spring season kinto ekhon to sakal'e besh thanda chilo..hugs and smiles

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  5. YUMMY :D gonna kill you :(
    i wanna eat it

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  6. cake looking yum tasty dear......book marked...awesoem pics....perfectly done.....

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  7. Awesome.... and too yumm with nice presentation

    visit @my blog for my first event in ur free time :-)
    Preeti
    Ongoing Event--Color n Sweet-HOLI FEST
    Preeti's Kitchen Life

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  8. cake looks perfect..very beautifully presented..loved it!!

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  9. Wow, awesome, got to try the frosting with mascarpone, there is always an excuse to eat something this good..

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  10. Oh yummy and delectable cake... am totally in love with it

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  11. My dear Suchi,
    Thanks so much for inquiring, my dear:) I'm really sorry for having left you in the lurch about my whereabouts - but I actually had a very bad experience post the laptop virus issue:( The attack was so bad that I lost all my collection of blog photos that I would have blogged about in the coming days - the result being that I have to build back my collection again before I restart. Not just the blog part, but I lost a good number of important documents as well.Anyway, I am still a bit jittery about things but I hope to hop back soon - in the meantime carry on your great work and you'll find me there dropping by,now and then:) Take care!

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  12. What a delicious and awesome looking cake. Wonderful pics.

    Deepa
    Hamaree Rasoi

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  13. This cake looks delicious! I love strawberries plus it looks so moist. Thank you for sharing.

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  14. delicious and awesome cake u perfectly done..clicks are awesome

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  15. I really do like the texture that oil gives to a cake, much lighter than the ones made with butter. The cake part looks amazing by itself, but the addition of the strawberry marscapone icing makes it all the better. Stunning and delicious-I am sure it did not last long!

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  16. That is one delicious cake. Strawberry cream....I can eat just like that!!

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  17. yes yes..i need a piece of cake :D....looks fabulous n yummy :)

    Join the Just "4" Fun event :)

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  18. What a stunning cake, Suchi!!!! So moist and beautiful!

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  19. OH my. This is absolutely breath taking. the glossy strawberries, the layers, the shape! I love it.

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  20. delicious cake dear...looks wonderful :-)loved the clicks !

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  21. Perfect way to welcome spring ,lovely frosting!!
    Please contribute your entries (old or new )EP Series-Cilantro /Cumin Event

    Erivum Puliyum

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  22. Wow,,looks beautiful and Yummy,I love strawberry on everything!!
    Ridwan

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  23. I know I can't bake a cake to that much perfection. This one is mouth watering...:)

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  24. That cake is a stunner. As I look at the five feet of snow outside, it doesn't seem much like spring, but I would eat this cake anytime!

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  25. Absolutely scrumptious looking cake!

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  26. These look so delicious suchi.. i love the glazing..Looks so professional :).. Ya i was under the assumption that spring's here & there it snows again :D.. Thanks sweetheart for linking it to my event..its soo perfect :)

    Ongoing Event: I'm a STAR

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  27. Thank you for visiting my blog. I was surprized that such an easy recipe turned out so well. This cake sound delicious...especially the combination of Marscapone and strawberry jam in the frosting! Yum. Patsy

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  28. This looks so beautiful! I would love a slice of cake thank you :)

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  29. Your photos & over-all blog lay-out is always stunning!

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  30. That looks like a perfect party cake. I 've never even had the patience to do a frosting but strawberry jam?! i like the idea of that. And those glazed strawberries are absolute perfection

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  31. oh wow, like u said a PERFECT val-day cake but what the heck, i could dig in anytime! love the glazed strawberries (totally copying that idea for the next time i decorate a cake! hehe) they look so so pretty

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  32. that is one good looking cake..i love how moist it looks

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  33. The heart shaped cake looks so beautiful. I am into everything heart shaped :-) Makes me fill up with love and cheer.
    Good to have crossed paths.

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  34. This looks heavenly! I love the strawberry and mascarpone layers. Yum.

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  35. Your heat shape cake is more than awesome and those glazed strawberries....dear I am falling in love!
    Kal dol..... tomar aar tomar sob priyo joner jonno onek rong arr suvecha pathalam kolkata theke! Bosontor moto sundor hok tomader jibon!
    Bhalo theko!

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  36. Wow that looks awesome! I am already drooling:) I will try this post Holi and let you know how it came out :)

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  37. Uff !! gorgeous ... pls put it in a courier right away .. i am happy to send you my address and contact no .. Brilliant !!

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  38. Hi ,
    Liked ur cake..I have been thinking of baking a strawberry flavoured cake since a long time...Tell me about the weather, wonder when the spring will come in full glory.BTW from where did u get buy buttermilk ?? Is it available in supermarkets ?? I have never seen it the Tesco extra in my place.

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    Replies
    1. Hi Vineetha, yes you can get buttermilk in Tesco. It is usually kept with the milk bottles and various creams in the refrigerated section...it comes in a pale yellow plastic tub of sorts...

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  39. Divine! If I were you, I'd face-plant in it to celebrate spring. Seriously :D

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  40. Gorgeous Cake Suchi!Love everything about it :)Droolworthy!!!

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  41. So yummy!!!I could eat it from my computer...just so lovely...Bookmarking ur blog.its tooooooooo good

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  42. Hi Suchi, I love your heart shape strawberry cake, so delectable. Beautiful and simple decoration with lovely presentation. Have a nice day.

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  43. this looks beautiful, as does your blog! So glad I found your blog, anne from anniebakes

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  44. YES, YES! Cake please! Send me some? :) This looks SO good, and strawberries are a total fav.

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  45. :) Sounds yumm...
    And looks delicious!

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  46. Yummy yummm! Awesome clicks and presentation! You have a nice blog :)


    Do vote for your favourite recipes in the Gimme GREEN entries!

    Chef Al dente On going event: Gimme GREEN!

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  47. yummy....glad to follow u
    http://lavanyasrecipes.blogspot.com/

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  48. absolutely perfect! I must wait for srtawberries seson here

    Life and travelling
    Cooking

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  49. Lovely strawberry cake, with totally mouthwatering and yummy strawberry filling. Our strawberry season here in South Florida is in full bloom, I must get some and try out your recipe. Lovely photos, as well:DDD

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  50. Suchi , I want a slice or two of this deliciousness , pretty please ?! hahaha

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  51. If somebody is going to bake this for spring I just love to stay in spring for years n years ;) such a delicious cakeee

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  52. Cake is awesome and the presentation is superb..:))

    Really superb..:))

    Glad to follow you..:)
    Reva

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Au revoir friend!

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