First, you might want to read this to understand what the heck all the baking is about. One book is all it took to decide what I really want to do with the sassyfoodie.com domain that I registered a week or so ago. The domain was intended for a blog about my kids’ packed school lunches and their kitchen adventures but I’m going a step farther. It will also be a documentation of our attempt to learn to bake.
Second, I have to tell you that the cake you see in the photos is the result of the joint labor of my two daughters and I. Alex helped me bake the cake; and that’s Sam’s hand that you see piping the rosettes made from whipped cream. It really does look like we’re going to have a lot of fun over the Christmas vacation.
To make the sponge cake, you will need:
1 c. of all-purpose flour
1 tsp. of baking powder
4 eggs, separated
2/3 c. + 1 tbsp. of white sugar
3/4 c. of strawberry jam
1/2 c. of chilled (NOT frozen) cream
Preheat the oven to 180oC.
Line the bottom and sides of an 8-inch round cake pan.
Sift the flour with the baking powder three times.
Beat the egg whites (I used an electric mixer at the highest speed) until stiff. “Stiff” means that when you lift the beaters, the tips of the peaks that form on the surface do not bend downward. Gradually add 2/3 c. of sugar until the mixture is shiny.
Add in the egg yolks and continue beating for another 20 seconds.
Fold in the flour with a spoon using fast strokes. Do NOT mix because mixing will destroy the air bubbles in the egg whites.
Bake for 20 minutes. The cake is done if it springs back when you touch the top.
Cook the cake in the pan for about 10 minutes then invert onto a wire rack. Cool completely.
When the cake has cooled, spread the strawberry jam on top.
Whip the chilled cream until double in volume. The best way to do this is to place the bowl of cream in a bigger bowl half-filled with small pieces of ice. Cream doubles fast if the cold temperature is retained.
Place the whipped cream in a piping bag. Use whatever tip you fancy.
Pipe the cream on the cake.
Recipe modified from Classic Sponge in Classic Essential Cakes, Periplus Editions (HK) Ltd., 1995