strawberry cake

I have to be honest. The strawberries this year have been very disappointing. As they don't have much flavour, I wondered if baking them into a cake would improve the flavour. I made a strawberry cake using a Martha Stewart recipe I last made many years ago. It's a simple butter cake topped with strawberries but of course I tweaked the recipe a little. I've attached a link below to the original recipe.

I'm in Brisbane this week with my Dad so I had to use what was in the cupboard. I made the cake in Dad's old 9 and 3/4 inch cast iron skillet as I couldn't locate our old pyrex pie plate. 

It seemed a fine idea at the time. Unfortunately the skillet retained it's heat a little too well and the cake batter was cooked long before the strawberries were. 

Here's the recipe for you which makes a 9 inch strawberry cake. For all my recipes I use a 250 ml cup, a 20 ml tablespoon, unsalted butter and 60g eggs. My oven is a conventional gas oven so if your oven is fan forced you may need to reduce the oven temperature by 20°C.

Strawberry cake - adapted from Martha Stewart Living 
1½ cups plain flour
1½ tsp baking powder
pinch salt
100g unsalted butter, softened, plus more for greasing the pan
⅔ cup caster sugar
½ tsp grated lemon rind
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 eggs 
½ cup milk

375g strawberries, hulled and halved
1 tbs sugar

Preheat the oven to 180°C and butter a 9-inch deep dish pie pan or grease and line the base of a 9-inch springform cake pan.

Sift the flour, baking powder and salt into a medium bowl. Set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the butter, the ⅔ cup caster sugar, the lemon rind and the vanilla until pale and fluffy. Add the eggs and beat on low speed until well combined. Gradually add the flour mixture, alternating with the milk, and beat on low speed until smooth. (Note: the batter will be thick.)

Transfer the batter to the prepared pan and smooth with a spatula. Arrange the strawberries on top, cut side down, so that they completely cover the batter. Sprinkle the remaining sugar over the strawberries.

Bake until the cake is lightly golden and a tester comes out clean, about an hour. Let the cake cool in the pan on a rack. Serve with sweetened whipped cream or vanilla ice cream, if desired. The cake can be stored at room temperature for several days, loosely covered.

It's always a little disappointing when your baking doesn't quite go to plan. The cake tasted fine but as the base was over-cooked, the cake was a little dry. No-one likes a dry cake so next time I make a strawberry cake I'll be using a different recipe and I'll make sure I bake it in a ceramic pie plate or a springform pan.

See you all again next week with some more baking from my kitchen.

By for now,


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