I have tended to stay away from vanilla/butter cakes, I have found them to be dense and after a day they are dry and not very nice.
This cake though is not like that.
Moist and spongy
I have been in my kitchen all week baking this cake, over and over, just to be sure it was good enough to share.
And it is!
I wanted a cake that isn’t dry, keeps well and doesn’t use epic amounts of eggs and butter.
So with some research, I have found a way to turn your dull Vanilla cake into something you can make on the fly, dress up or down and is light, fluffy and moist.
If you follow me on Instagram, you might have seen a tip I shared, which I only found after some digging on the interwebs.
Warm your mixing bowl, before whipping the sugar and eggs.
You can easily warm your bowl by running hot water over it, with the bowl upside down in the sink then thoroughly dry it before using.
For this recipe, you want to whip your eggs and sugar for at least 7 minutes, 8 if it’s cold. Set the timer for this step, don’t guesstimate!
I could get into the science but, the sugar and eggs, form a sort of elastic, and when mixed thoroughly, it stops water from evaporating when baking.
The egg and sugar mixture you have created, filled with air bubbles, holds up your cake during baking without drying out, making it light and moist.
Make it days ahead.
So far I have made this cake, around two and half days in advance, just to see how it would fare being stored away and it was still enjoyable.
I stored it wrapped in plastic in an airtight container and it was still soft and the crumb not too dry. When covered in my ermine frosting, it’s dangerously moreish.
temper your eggs.
once you have mixed your eggs for seven minutes, you can then add in your heated butter and milk mixture.
You don’t have to cool it, just very slowly pour it into your egg and sugar mix, as it’s mixing on low until combined.
Sift your flour and baking powder.
Add into the egg mix one spoonful at a time, and mix until just combined on medium speed. Do not over mix! you don’t want to beat out the air from your eggs.
Bang your baking dish.
When you have filled your baking pan/pans, be sure to not gently bang them three times on the bench, you will see air bubbles rise and pop at the surface, three times is enough to get the air out of your batter, which will stop air bubbles forming and help with an even rise as it bakes.
Bake at 160, fan-forced oven. (170 Conventional)
NOTE: these cakes, being light and airy are affected by the placement in the oven, a top-shelf cake will cook quicker than a bottom shelf by 5 to 10 minutes. If you cook a tiered cake and have multiple shelves, then aim to check the cake on the top a good ten minutes earlier, just to be on the safe side.
A slab cake tin, a 5cm deep, rectangle dish 30cm long 20cm wide will cook in 45 minutes, in the middle of the oven.
Two 20cm round tins, 34 to 39 minutes.
- 4 eggs
- 1 1/2 cups of raw sugar
- 2/3 cup of milk
- 125 grams of butter
- 1 1/2 cups of flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp vanilla paste
preheat oven to 160 fan forced or 170 conventional.
prepare your dish/es with baking paper on the bottom and grease the sides. see note for pan sizes.
place your mixing bowl under hot water upside down to warm, dry thoroughly.
Add the eggs and sugar.
mix on medium speed for 7 minutes with the whisk attachment. time this! (If you are using a hand mixer, mix for 9 minutes.)
meanwhile, melt your butter in the milk over the stove on low heat, don't scald (boil) your milk.
when the eggs have been mixed for 7 minutes and are shiny, airy and silky slowly pour in the hot milk and butter mixture while mixing at low speed.
turn off the mixer.
Sift flour and baking powder together at least twice.
Add sifted flour into egg mix one spoonful at a time until incorporated, whilst mixing on low. DO NOT OVER MIX!
Add vanilla and mix gently until combined.
Pour into prepared tin/tins and bang on your benchtop three times to release the air bubbles.
for a large slab bake(30x20cm), 45 minutes.
For two round tins, (20cm) cook for 34, 39 minutes. check at 34, and add minutes as need be.
The cake may still be soft on top, but when one finger is pressed into the middle it should spring back, but still leave a slight indent. If it doesn't spring back at all, then continue baking.
for one cake use a cake tin at least 7 cm deep, rectangle or square dish (20x20) or rectangle - 30cm long 20cm wide will cook in 45 minutes, in the middle of the oven.
Two 20cm round tins 3-4 cm deep cooks in 34 to 39 minutes, check after 34.
Ermine icing is an icing made with flour and sugar to form a paste and add whipped butter and vanilla.
It sounds a little weird, but it is, hands down, my absolute favourite icing and its pairs with this cake wonderfully.
I hope you love this cake as much as we do!
happy baking Darlings!