• Fairy bread cake... (Bake Australia Great by Katherine Sabbath)Source: Bake Australia Great by Katherine Sabbath

You’ll be delighted with this fluffier and rather less floppy version of my childhood favourite!






Skill level

Average: 3.3 (202 votes)

When I was growing up, no kid’s birthday could be celebrated without a plate of sugar-studded,
floppy white fairy bread (and hold the butter please, we’re in margarine territory). I’m pretty sure I learned on the first day of primary school that ‘one simply does not party without sprinkle-covered bread’. Cake cheekily masquerading as non-cake is among my favourite things in life, right up there with miniature fruit and vegetables, and dogs wearing T-shirts.


Vanilla cake 

  • 1 cup (250 g) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 ½ cups (330 g) caster sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 4 eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 large pinch salt
  • 3 cups (480 g) self-raising flour
  • 1 cup (250 ml) milk, at room temperature

Cream cheese frosting 

  • 250 g (9 oz) cream cheese, softened
  • 2 ½ tbsp single (pure) cream
  • ½ tsp lemon juice (optional)


  • ¾ cup (135 g) assorted sprinkles

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


Cooling time: 30 minutes

1. To make the cake, preheat the oven to 160°C (320°F) fan forced. Grease a 25.5 cm (10 inch) square cake tin and line the tin with baking paper.

2. Using an electric mixer, cream the butter, sugar and vanilla until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating until combined. Add the salt. 

3. Alternately fold in the flour and the milk, in one-third increments. Fold until just combined. 

4. Pour the batter into the tin. Bake for about 40 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean. Cool in the tin for 30 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.

5. For the frosting, using an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese, cream and lemon juice (if using) until thick and creamy.

6. To decorate, use a long, thin knife to level the top of the cake.

7. Spread the cream cheese frosting over the cake and cover with sprinkles.

8. Cut the cake into large triangles or serve as one giant slice.

Recipe and image from Bake Australia Great by Katherine Sabbath (Murdoch Book, $39.99)