- It’s really quick and easy to make
- The way the strawberries sink into the cake during post-bake cooling leaving crispy edged cake batter in their wake
- I have never seen a drizzle cake for anything other than a citrus fruit
This is not the cake for you if you want to produce something perfect-looking that will cut into clean patisserie-style slices. If that’s your requirement, step away from this one! I can say it because I made it: it looks a bit of a mess. The weight of the fruit means it sinks a little as it cools; the strawberries become sticky and jammy and mean that the sponge gets juicy pockets in it and breaks when you cut it. But if you can get past the looks...it delivers 10/10 on the deliciousness scale.
The sweet jam texture of the strawberries was an unexpected bonus – imagine the purest, most freshly made jam...and you’re getting there! It was one of the loveliest textures I’ve come across in a cake for a long time.
Needless to say, but when you are making a simple cake like this it relies on the quality of the strawberries. Tasteless strawberries will not become tasty just because they are baked. I always think you should buy strawberries that have travelled the least distance, for me this means strawberries that speak with a Home Counties accent; I will seek out Jubilee or Elsanta varieties if I can as these seem reliably sweet.
I pushed the boat out in serving this cake with homemade clotted cream ice cream. As sinfully delicious as it sounds – any ice cream that has the word ‘cream’ twice in its title has my full attention! The cake would be lovely on its own, or with cream, but with ice cream it is an impressive summer dessert. I dabble in ice cream but don’t post the recipes on my blog. For this one I have made an exception!
100g unsalted butter, at room temperature
200g golden caster sugar, plus 2 tablespoons extra for sprinkling
120ml milk – whole or semi skimmed
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
200g self raising flour
600g strawberries – washed, hulled and halved (take 6 and put them to one side for the icing)
6 strawberries – taken out of the 600g above
50g icing sugar, plus extra if needed
125g caster sugar
454g clotted cream
250ml whole milk