Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Strawberry Cake

One of the things I've found about living on the opposite side of the hemisphere to the large part of the world's population (food blogging population, that is) is that the seasonal produce is always reversed.  So, when most people are making berry tarts and churning out fresh fruity sorbets I'm in the land of apple pie and pumpkin cake.  For someone who really prefers summer heat over the winter chills, it gets incredibly irritating.

It also means this time of the year is absolutely fantastic.

Sydney's strawberries have been off the charts cheap recently, which means the house has turned into strawberry palooza.  There has been an abundance of chocolate dipped strawberries, fresh fruit salads studded with chunks of pineapple and bright ruby strawberries, and this lovely strawberry summer cake.

I'm pretty sure I've seen this cake on several blogs by now.  The recipe originally comes from one of my all time favorite blogs, Smitten Kitchen.  And this cake is wonderful because of its whopping 450g of strawberries, all crammed into a 9 inch cake tin.  It's not so much a cake with strawberries but a plateful of strawberries with tiny pockets of fluffy vanilla goodness.  The strawberries sink to the bottom of the cake to make little jammy puddles - how can you not love that?

Nothing screams summer is coming like strawberries.  So make this and wave the last memories of winter bye-bye.

...Unless, of course, you're living in a country where fall is just around the corner.  I really do love this time of the year.

Strawberry Summer Cake
Adapted from Smitten Kitchen
Makes 1 9-inch cake

85g unsalted butter at room temperature
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup + 2 tbsp caster sugar
1 large egg
1/2 cup milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
450g strawberries, hulled and halved

Preheat oven to 180C.  Butter a 10 inch pie plate or 9 inch cake tin.  

Whisk flour, baking powder and salt together.  In a separate bowl, beat butter and 1 cup of sugar until pale and fluffy.  Beat in egg, milk and vanilla until just combined.  Gradually stir in the dry ingredients until just mixed - don't over mix it!

Pour  the mixture into your prepared tin.  Press the strawberries cut-side down into the cake batter, squashing it to get it into one layer.  Sprinkle 2 tbsp of sugar over the cake.

Bake for 10 minutes then reduce oven temperature to 160C and bake for a further 50-60 minutes or until tester comes out free of batter (mine took the full hour).  Let cool in pan on a wire rack, slice and serve with whipped cream.

I'm still on my new blog high, which is why I'm updating so much.  This'll probably fade in a week or so.  In the meantime leave some comments!  It'll make my day, and I would love to get to know more food bloggers.

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