Even when things are really busy, my monthly baking group helps to keep me inspired with new ideas! In keeping with the beautiful weather we’ve had in London, the theme for August was very suitably ‘picnic’. Now I’ve just come to the end of a long slog of both working and studying full-time, along with all of the usual complications that life throws at you! So after a few intense weeks of working what felt like every waking hour, I wasn’t feeling particularly inspired and wanted something quick and easy. And sometimes keeping things simple gives you the best results!
My criteria for this was as follows: fruity (in keeping with the summer feel), easy and something different. I didn’t want to cook just another sponge. Of course, BBC Good Food was there for me when I needed it – every British cook or baker will vouch for the godsend that is this website. I ended up with a beautiful blueberry and raspberry sponge with soured cream just giving it that fresh and light edge. I’ll admit my expectations were low, but I was pleasantly surprised. I will definitely be making this again and it’s perfect if you need to throw something together last minute for a cake sale, dessert or of course a picnic! The colours of the fruit look absolutely gorgeous when you slice the cake.
My fellow bakers did a wonderful job as well, and I was particularly impressed with Ginny who made little burgers out of cake. These were so realistic that it was actually quite a weird experience eating something that looked so much like burgers and tasted entirely like cake. Watch this space because I’m determined to try these myself one day when I’m ready for more complicated baking again!
But for now, enjoy this lovely easy win that will go down a treat any time of year!
- 175g unsalted butter, softened
- 175g caster sugar
- 3 eggs
- 225g self-raising flour
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 142ml tub soured cream
- 400g mix of blueberries and raspberries
- 200g tub cream cheese
- 100g icing sugar
How to make it…
- Preheat the oven to 160C/Gas 4. Butter and line a round spring-form baking tin (22cm is ideal to give it more depth but a slightly bigger size is fine).
- Beat the sugar and butter in a mixing bowl. Then add the eggs, flour and vanilla extract, beating them together until it is well mixed and has turned lighter in colour.
- Next, mix in 4 tbsp of soured cream (setting the rest to one side for later) and gently stir half the fruit through.
- Pour the mix into the baking tin, making sure to keep some of the fruit at the top. Bake in the oven for 50 minutes. When ready, it should have risen, turned golden in colour and still be springy when you gently press the top. Leave to cool.
- To make the icing, simply beat the cream cheese, icing sugar and remaining soured cream in a mixing bowl until smooth. Leave in the fridge until the cake has cooled.
- Finally, ice the cake and decorate with the remaining fruit, either by making a pattern (as in photos) or just by scattering these across for a generous and rustic look.