Monday, 30 July 2012

Sunset Layer Cake, So Long Foodbuzz and Awards

Sunset Layer Cake - layers of strawberry, orange and lemon sandwiched together with tart orange curd and strawberry conserve all enveloped in a white cloud of meringue frosting. It's dedicated to the team at Foodbuzz ; herding in worldwide foodbloggers for fun and feasting......... you did didn't you?
 But now no more, they are reforming as DailyBuzz Food.  

It will be just as good, maybe better but some of us have only just got the hang of the old site ><  Well, it's for the best and there's no digger of progress to lay down in front of, more a scramble to follow some of my fellow food buddies via twitter, rss feeds and fb instead. Thank you to those who have found me already! We weren't really that lazy, it's just Foodbuzz used to have all our posts laid out so neatly for everyone to find and comment on. Like your Ma laying your school clothes out ready in the morning but now we've got to be all grown up and do it ourselves.  Mini sulk. We got awards too and got to make friends and feel good. So long and thank you; Rufus, Beth, Eva, Ben and team Foodbuzz. 

So here's your cake which is light and fruity and tangy and sweet and you get to make 2. Yes 2, one for now and one for the freezer, friend or frosting challenge.  If you didn't like my frosting idea you can cover it in simple buttercream or even simpler just put cream on the top. Now for the important actual cake bit:

The secret in this cake is that each layer really has it's own enhanced individual flavour not simply a colour. The orange layer has been enhanced with orange oil as well as juice and zest. I didn't bother with the lemon oil but will use it next time in the lemon layer too, it was definitely outclassed by the orange layer. The strawberry layer was my favourite made with real fruit purée and two spoonfuls of caramel syrup. You can experiment with your own flavours; banana would also work on the yellow layer and mango on the orange. I have used a traditional pound/victoria cake as a base recipe as it freezes and keeps really well. Please use your favourite recipe if you feel inspired and let me know if you've tried lemon/orange oil or the bakery emulsions.

BUT before the recipe I must say  a belated THANKYOU for my blog awards from the following bloggers. 

Plus a quick confession about the first time I received one of these, a couple of years ago, I didn't know how to play and I may have said, in an Austin Power's voice; ' It's not my bag, Baby'. I don't remember what I did with them but now I what to do and so, 'It is my bag Baby, honestly, pick me, pick me......

And thank you Ashima for picking me for the above;

Was I afraid of the random 7 things about myself that I have to tell the world and will my identity be irrevocably stolen ?  No, apparently not, I do not have to spill the beans and tell you 7 random things that will shock and astound you  or something like that...Well I can't put people off their cake so for now, 7 random loves :

  1. I love to daydream far too much ; I dream of food, dance and travel.
  2. I have loved to cook since I was a child but at school I was forced to drop the subject in favour of...........Latin, ergo sum ><
  3. I love to dance traditional Argentine Tango. Do you know you can dream while your dancing tango in close embrace in someone’s arms? Mmmmmm!
  4. I love naughty jokes, I want to be cool and sophisticated but I was bought up on Carry On Films, Monty Python and worse.
  5. I love to dress up and still have a dressing up box ;-) Give me a themed party and I’ll be there!
  6. I love the history of food and have cooked Roman recipes and onwards. Although I really favour the history of sweets and candy as meat history is a bit grisly, literally!
  7. I love 'meeting' people from other countries on the internet so I can do more of no.1, know about your culture from your viewpoint and meet real people I never knew about before, like you ;-) Happy Blogging !
Now the rules say I have to nominate 15 other bloggers to receive the awards but I'm going to do this in a separate post because of I have cunning plan......meanwhile a cake;

Ingredients :

The following ingredients make two Sunset Cakes. Also due to the added fruit puree you will have left over batter if you weigh your cake batter to keep each cake even. These were made in 7 inch (18 cm) cake tins and I put any remaining batter in a few muffin cases.

Preheat oven 160c/140c Fan/325F/Gas Mark 3.

Strawberry Cake Base:

250g   Butter
250g   Caster sugar
4 Large eggs
260g   Self raising flour
200g  Fresh Strawberries Pureed
2 tbsp Caramel Syrup
(Red colouring if desired)

Orange Cake Base:

250g   Butter
250g   Caster sugar
4 Large eggs
2 tbsp milk
260g   Self raising flour
2 tbsp Orange juice
Zest of two Oranges
A few drops of Orange Oil
(Orange colouring if desired)

Lemon Cake Base:

250g   Butter
250g   Caster sugar
4 Large eggs
2 tbsp milk
260g   Self raising flour
2 tbsp Lemon juice
Zest of two Lemons
A few drops of  Lemon Oil
(Yellow colouring if desired)

Curds and Jelly/Conserve to sandwich layers together
2 tbsp for each cake layer x2
4 tbsp Orange Curd,
2 tbsp Seedless Strawberry Jam mixed with 2 tbsp Raspberry Jelly/conserve

Meringue Frosting:

2 Egg whites
15oz (425g) caster or granulated sugar
3 ½ fl oz (100ml) water
2 tsp lemon juice


Makes 2 cakes at a time.

Grease two tins and line bottom with baking paper. Do this for each cake flavour.
Cream the sugar and butter together.  Whisk in the eggs one at a time, add milk if recipe states. Fold in the flour.  Flavour and colour each cake according to type. Divide into two. You can weigh each one to make sure you have the same weight of mixture in both, for two even bakes.

Note: Strawberries vary with the amount of liquid they produce for a puree. If you feel your batter is too runny then put in an extra 10 to 20 g of flour or reduce the amount of puree in the mix. The fruit makes a slightly denser texture to the batter compared to the layers just made with flavouring but I didn’t feel that it detracted from the overall effect.

Place in the centre of the oven. Check after 20 minutes. Cook until risen and a skewer comes cleanly out. Allow to cool.

Layer the cakes with your choice of curds and jelly/conserves.

Cover and freeze one of your cakes at this point.

To decorate your first cake place it on your serving plate/ stand..

Place sugar and water in a heavy based saucepan and allow water to start to dissolve the sugar. In another bowl whisk both egg whites until stiff. Heat the sugar and water syrup until 240°, or to the soft-ball stage. Pour the syrup slowly into the egg whites whisking all the time. The mixture will start to thicken like a thick glossy meringue. If the mixture doesn’t thicken, continue to whisk over a bowl of boiling water. Whisk in the lemon juice and spread over the cake. Leave the icing to dry for a couple of hours, ideally overnight.

Your hidden layers would be ? What would you reveal?