Sunday, 14 June 2009

Summer fruit vanilla cake

This is a recipe that gives you options: you can leave the fruit out and have a lovely plain vanilla cake; you can vary the fruit depending on what’s in season; you can replace the fruit with something else – chocolate and nuts, perhaps? You can dress it up with whipped cream or buttercream; you can leave it whole or cut it through to make into a layer cake.

What I’m trying to communicate is that this is one of those staple recipes that every good baker should have in their armoury. I see it as the equivalent of that perfect pair of black trousers you can dress up or down depending on the occasion and they’ll always look good.

After seeing some beautiful blueberries and raspberries I decided to use them in my version of this cake. I love the colour combination of the purply-blue and red plus both fruits pack a punch which adds depth of flavour to the sponge.

The cake uses yoghurt which gives a denser –but not heavy - texture to the sponge. The vanilla syrup, drizzled over the cooling cake ensures that each bite of this cake will be succulent and fragrant with vanilla.

For the cake:
250g unsalted butter, at room temperature
250g golden caster sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
5 eggs
85g plain flour
100g full fat yoghurt
250g self raising flour
3 tablespoons milk
200g raspberries
150g blueberries

For the syrup:
50g golden caster sugar
50ml water
Seeds from half a vanilla pod

How to make:

- Preheat the oven to 160°C/fan oven 140°C/315°F/Gas mark 3.
- Line the base and sides of a 20cm round springform tin with baking paper.
- Beat the butter, sugar and vanilla until smooth and fluffy.
- Beat in the eggs, one at a time, adding a little of the plain flour if the mixture starts to curdle.
- Beat in the yoghurt.
- Combine the two flours then very gently beat into the mixture. Stop as soon as the flour is combined.
- Gently stir the fruit into the batter and ensure that it is distributed nicely throughout the batter.
- Spoon into the prepared cake tin and bake for approximately 1 hour 20 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean. Mine took 1 hour 40 minutes.
- Now make the syrup: heat all the ingredients in a saucepan and stir until the sugar has dissolved. Leave to cool.
- Once the cake is out of the oven leave it to cool for 30 minutes before making holes right the way down (use a skewer) and pouring the syrup over. It’s best to do this a little at a time and wait for it to be absorbed rather than swamp the cake all at once.
- Leave to cool completely then store in an airtight tin.
- Serve with cream and fruit or however you wish.
- Bask in glory at the wonderful thing you have made.
- Eat.


C said...

Wow, that looks lovely. I love baking with summer fruits, and blueberries and raspberries are special favourites, as I love the taste of both of them!

Love the idea of a vanilla syrup to add moisture. Yum!

trashalou said...

uhoh! I think tomorrow is going to be a baking day instead of an ironing one.

Margaret said...

A beautiful summer cake. Any cake made with yogurt and berries will always be a winner.

Cakelaw said...

This looks absolutely delicious Crusader. I definitely would go for the berry version over the plain for the colour and additional moistness.

Lisa said...

This is one of those "I have to have a piece of this now!" cakes. Which gives me a marvelous excuse to make this for my weekly tea sweet, as I can't be without something to get me through the afternoon. :)

Question: What exactly is mixed spice? We have something called pumpkin pie spice, which usually includes cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, lovely for autumnal baking. Is mixed spice the same? Can you recommend something I could possibly create myself?


The Caked Crusader said...

Hi Lisa

I think mixed spice might be called "apple pie spice" in the US. Not sure if pumpkin pie spice is the same.

Mixed spice typically contains:


It may also contain, or commonly have added to it:

coriander (seed)
Cayenne pepper

Hope this helps!

pigpigscorner said...

Wow, this looks extremely moist!

Katie said...

This looks delicious. I love the texture yoghurt gives to a cake - so soft and tender. SO pretty with the berries dotted within. Yum

♥Rosie♥ said...

What a stunner of a cake C.C. and it is so versatile add fruit or keep it plian. Whatever i know I’d like it both ways :0)

Lisa said...

Thanks for the spice info. :)

I keep coming back to this cake. Wishful thinking as I'm not getting any berries until Saturday. But I'm dreaming a fruity cake dream, that's for sure.

Anonymous said...

Sounds delish. To stop the fruit sinking to the bottom you can coat the fruit in flour before adding to the mix.

Wonk said...

I really love the colours of the fruit in this - it makes it look so pretty.

I just found your blog a week or so ago - I can't tell you how many delish things you've made that I want to make too! I spent ages going through all your wonderful back posts :)

Rumela said...

Thanks for the fruit vanilla cake recipe. My husband loves fruit cakes. I am going to bake it this weekend. I know it is tricky. Let's see how things turn out. thank you for shearing your post.