Food for a Sunny Spring Day

We’ve had some lovely warm weather this weekend, so it was time to bring out the Pimms and make lots of yummy bits and pieces for lunch.

We made a boiled then glazed ham, a leek & mushroom quiche, potato salad, homemade bread rolls and a couple of mixed salads.

And for afters, well, it had to be this beautiful Wimbledon Cake or Strawberries & Cream Cake as it’s known in our house!

As this cake contains fresh cream it’s best to eat it on the day it’s made but it will keep for another day or two in the fridge, although the sponge might start to dry out a little. Here’s the recipe, it serves 10-12.

Strawberries & Cream Cake

220g unsalted butter – softened

220g caster sugar

4 large eggs

2 teaspoons vanilla essence

4 tablespoons milk

220g self-raising flour – sifted

2 teaspoons baking powder

Filling/Topping

320ml double cream

1 teaspoon vanilla essence

large punnet of strawberries – stalks removed and halved

1. Pre-heat the oven to 190°C/170°C fan/gas 5, and grease and line 2 x 20cm round cake tins.

2. Sift the flour and baking powder into a medium mixing bowl and set aside.

3. In another large bowl, cream the butter and sugar together until smooth, pale and fluffy, using an electric hand whisk or mixer. Add the eggs, one at a time, stirring well after each addition. Stir in the vanilla extract and the milk.

4. Pour a third of the flour into the mixture and beat well. Repeat this process until all the flour has been incorporated and you have a smooth and even cake batter.

5. Divide the batter between the prepared tins, smooth the tops with a palette knife and place in the oven and bake for approximately 20–30 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the cakes comes out clean.

6. Once cooked, leave the cakes in their tins for about 10 minutes to cool down before turning them out on to a wire rack.

7. When the cakes are completely cooled you can make the filling and topping. Place the double cream and the vanilla essence in a large bowl and whip until it thickens and forms soft peaks – you want it to hold its shape but not be solid. Spread about three-quarters of the cream over one of the sponges and on top place a layer of strawberries – save a few to decorate the top of the cake. Sandwich both sponges together.

8. Spread the rest of the cream on top of the cake and top with the remaining strawberries.

9. Finally, grab a cake slice and get stuck in!

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