This stunning cake is perfect for a party - and Lyndey's decorating tips make it easy.
- 375 g unsalted butter, softened
- 1½ cups (330 g) caster sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla bean paste
- 6 eggs, lightly beaten
- 3 cups (450 g) self-raising flour
- 375 g unsalted butter
- 4½ cups (720 g) icing sugar mixture
- 1-2 tbsp milk, if needed
- Icing sugar mixture, sifted
- Fresh flowers and leaves
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.
1. Preheat oven to moderate / 180°C (160°C fan-forced). Lightly grease three 20cm round tins.
2, Using an electric mixer beat butter, sugar and vanilla in a large bowl until pale and creamy. Add the eggs one at a time and beat until well combined. Sift the flour, and fold into the creamed butter mixture in two lots.
3. Spoon the mixture evenly into the cake tins and smooth the surface. Try to distribute the batter evenly. For a naked cake it’s a good idea to weigh the mixture in the tins (as a guide, ours had around 450g in each cake tin).
4. Bake for 25 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean when inserted in centre of cake. Leave to cool in tin for 10 minutes, and then carefully remove to finish cooling, cut side down, on a wire rack.
5. To make butter cream: Use an electric mixer to beat the butter in medium bowl until pale, smooth and creamy. Add icing sugar, in small batches, until well combined. Start out adding it a spoonful at a time. Only add a little milk if the butter cream is too stiff.
6. To decorate: Place one cake top side down on a flat based cake stand. Spread with butter cream and then pipe a little wall or “dam” around the circumference to help ensure the layering will be even. Repeat with the next cake, again putting it top side down. Put last cake on top and use a flat bladed flexible spatula (see Note) to spread the butter cream on top and thinly around the side. Throw icing sugar on the top and at the side. An icing sugar shaker is good for this. Pile fresh flowers on top.
• Dip your spatula in a glass of hot water and then wipe with a paper towel before spreading icing for a smooth even finish.