So recently I found out that my tummy can’t really take dairy, my tummy told me this. Without going into too much detail, butter, milk, cream, cheese and custard make my tummy hurt. Which is really unfortunate as that is pretty much a list of my favourite foods, not to mention the main ingredients in most cakes and desserts. All is not lost though for Cakey Kate! There are dairy free alternatives to pretty much everything I need to bake….. cue “Pure” sunflower spread. Completely dairy free and a really good replacement for butter in baking; the finished cake tastes just as good as a buttery one, you’d never know it wasn’t the real deal. An added bonus is it’s perfect for an “all-in-one” sponge cake like this one. The method consists of “put ingredients in mixer, turn on.” Simples.
For some reason I really fancied lemon curd (which normally contains quite a lot of butter) so I made a dairy free version and slapped it in the middle along with some sliced strawberries. A summer take on a Victoria Sponge. Here’s what I did:Cake Ingredients, serves 8-10 255g caster sugar 255g self raising flour 255g “Pure” sunflower spread or other dairy free spread 5 eggs 1 ½ tsp baking powder Dairy Free Lemon Curd Ingredients, makes enough for the cake and 3 extra jars (LOADS) 6 lemons 12 egg yolks 150g Pure sunflower spread 510g caster sugar A handful of strawberries
Preheat the oven to 180°C, or about 160°C for a fan oven. Grease the sides and line the bottoms of two loose bottomed 18cm sandwich tins with baking paper. I find it stays in place easiest if you grease the base as well before you put the baking paper on.
I wasn’t joking with the method, put all the ingredients in a free standing electric mixer with a K beater attached (you’ll know which one is a K beater, the shape inside makes a perfect K). Start off slowly so the flour doesn’t fly everywhere and then turn the mixer up and beat until the mixture is smooth and thick.
Divide the mixture into the two tins, use a spatula to spread it to the edges and bake in the oven for 30 – 35 mins. They will rise a lot, don’t worry that they have massive domes they will fall. Once the cake starts to just come away from the sides of the tin they’re done. To be extra sure insert a skewer into the centre of the cake and if it comes at clean they’re perfect. Leave in the tins for a couple of minutes before turning onto a wire rack to cool completely.
Now for the lemon curd. This is alarmingly simple, just takes a little while to do all the prep….
Grate the zest of the lemons and juice them. Separate the eggs and lightly beat the yolks. Put all the ingredients into a medium sized non-stick pan on a low-medium heat. Don’t worry if the pure spread looks disgusting, as it melts and incorporates it will look much better! Stir continually with a balloon whisk or wooden spoon. Once all the pure spread has melted, turn the heat up to medium (4/6) and continue to stir until the mixture thickens. You’re aiming for smooth and holding it’s shape, not too runny but it will set as it cools. Take off the heat and continue to stir for a couple of minutes.
Sterilise the jam jars by half filling them with water and putting them in the microwave for a few minutes. Pour lemon curd into two of these jars straight away and put the lids on. Leave to cool completely.
Once the cakes and curd have cooled, chop the strawberries into slices, spread the top of one of the cakes with lemon curd, arrange the strawberries on top and place the other cake on top of that. If your cakes are a bit wonky you might need to level them off with a bread knife before you assemble them.
Dust with icing sugar and eat with tea and Bradley Wiggins winning Le Tour de France! What a perfect way to start a summer of sport and success!