Sunday, 24 May 2009


Whenever I look through a new cook book, I tab the pages containing recipes that I wish to make. I recently bought a copy of Aaron Maree’s “Cakes, Tortes and Gateaux of the World” and tabbed virtually every page! It’s a stunning book and I cannot fathom why it’s out of print. Luckily Amazon seems to have nice condition second hand copies for sale.

The CCM (Caked Crusader’s Ma) also had a browse through the book and, in her subtle way, suggested that I may wish to make the buttercake recipe. Definition of subtle in this context: repeatedly saying how lovely the cake looked, how it’s just the sort of cake she loves to eat, wouldn’t it be nice to have this cake, hadn’t it photographed well etc

Aaron Maree notes that this cake keeps exceptionally well (I believe him, but mine didn’t hang around long enough to find out!) and is therefore a good choice for celebration cakes as an alternative to fruitcake. He also suggests having it plain for breakfast, dressed up with cream or fruit for afternoon tea or toasted and drizzled with maple syrup for dessert. I think I’d like Aaron Maree if I met him - he sounds a very sensible man!

This cake is lovely with such a rich, buttery taste. I added some vanilla to the mix because I’m a vanillaholic, but I think it would be equally delicious without it.

The large amount of milk in the mix means that the texture is close and firm – like Madeira cake but more refined. Imagine a Madeira cake that had been to Finishing School and you’ll get the idea!

180g unsalted butter, at room temperature
200g caster sugar
3 eggs
280g plain flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
250ml milk (whole or semi skimmed)
Vanilla extract, to taste

How to make:

- Preheat the oven to 180°C/fan oven 160°C/350°F/Gas mark 4.
- Grease or line a 20cm round springform tin.
- Beat the butter and sugar together until they are smooth, fluffy and pale. This will take several minutes even with soft butter. Don’t skimp on this stage.
- Add the eggs one at a time, beating thoroughly. If the mix curdles add a little of the flour, but I found I didn’t need to.
- Mix together the flour and baking powder and beat into the butter a little at a time, alternating with the milk.
- Add the vanilla.
- Pour (it will be runny) the batter into the cake tin and level the surface.
- Bake for 1-1 ½ hours until a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake comes out cleanly. Mine took 1 hour 10 minutes.
- Cool in the pan for 10 minutes then turn out onto a wire rack and leave to cool completely.
- When cold, dust with sifted icing sugar.
- Bask in glory at the wonderful thing you have made.
- Eat.


trashalou said...

Oh I have a feeling that CK may wish to proposition Mr. Maree should they ever meet. Not only does he have a fabulous recipe for CK's bestest cake but then he suggests eating it for breakfast?!?!? This could be a marriage made in heaven ;-)

J.Danger said...

looks delicious!

pigpigscorner said...

It looks really dense and moist! Gorgeous!

Kirk said...

'A madeira cake that has been to finishing school.'
I like the sound of this cake based purely on those words alone!

Sam said...

I'm with the CCM, this is just the kind of cake I love to eat!

Cakelaw said...

What a lovely looking cake. It looks like simple perfection sitting there with the dollop of cream.

Katie said...

Mmmm cake for breakfast, sounds wonderful. Am I invited?

♥Rosie♥ said...

C.C. this cake looks delicious! Sometimes the simple taste of a buttercake can't be beaten with a dollop of cream mmmmmmmm.

Rosie x

glamah16 said...

That book sounds almost Bilical to you! ;-). Lovely simple cake. Perfection.

laserjet printer said...

me loves butter cake so much!