Wine and Dine
Sponge Cake with Marinated Strawberries
50-60 minutes total preparation and cooking time
For a variation on this cake, add the zest of 1 large lemon and 2 tbsp of lemon juice (reduce the soya milk by 2 tbsp accordingly.) Fill with a lemony ‘butter’ cream mix instead.
125g/4½ oz margarine
75g/2½ oz caster sugar
250g/9oz self-raising flour
3 tsp baking powder
275ml/9fl oz soya yoghurt
¼ tsp vanilla extract
450g/1lb strawberries, sliced
Orange flower water or orange liqueur (e.g Cointreau), to taste
1. Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/Gas Mark 4 (NB. Reduce this if using a fan-assisted oven).
2. In a saucepan, melt the margarine and sugar until both have melted. Leave to cool.
3. Grease a 20cm/8 inch loose bottomed cake tin and line the base with greaseproof paper.
4. Sieve the flour and baking powder into a bowl and add salt.
5. Pour the margarine/sugar mixture, yoghurt and vanilla extract to the flour mix.
6. Mix well until you get a soft dropping consistency.
7. Add a little soya milk if necessary.
8. Spoon cake mix into the tin and bake for 20-25 minutes until risen and golden.
9. Put sliced strawberries in a bowl and add orange flavouring and sugar. Leave to marinate.
10. When the cooking time is up, the centre of the cake should feel springy. Leave it to cool.
11. When cake is completely cool, carefully remove the greaseproof paper from the bottom.
12. Cut the cake in half widthways, so you have 2 thin cakes. Use a fish slice and pallet knife to ensure it doesn’t break up.
13. Spread jam on the two inside halves of the cake.
14. Leave some strawberries aside to decorate the top of the cake.
15. Place the remaining fruit evenly on the bottom layer of the cake, then place the other half on top.
16. Decorate the cake with strawberries.
17. Either dust with a little icing sugar or decorate with sprigs of mint.