Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Battenberg Cake -THE DARING BAKERS' JUNE 2012 CHALLENGE


I have belonged to this wonderful online baking group The Daring Bakers' for a little over 3 years. Each month a member hosts a baking challenge presenting us with a recipe and a little background to go with it. Over the years I have learnt so many amazing techniques that I possibly would only have had that opportunity at a patisserie school. Macarons, croissants, puff pastry, sourdough plus a wide variety of specialty cakes from all parts of the world just to name a few of the fabulous recipes shared within this group. For the month on June we visited England and celebrate Queen Elizabeth's Jubilee with a Battenberg Cake.

 Mandy of What The Fruitcake?! came to our rescue last minute to present us with the Battenberg Cake challenge! She highlighted Mary Berry’s techniques and recipes to allow us to create this unique little cake with ease.

This cake is as cute as a button! Traditionally four alternate squares of pink and yellow cake in an oblong shape. Ooooh, as a child I would have loved this cake to serve to my dolls instead of the leaves and mudcakes they usually got!

Edited 28-6-12:- I made the cake earlier but didn't get around to decorating it - so we ate it as it was and found it too dry. So second time around I added the milk. We preferred the second cake which was much more moist and delicate
Traditional Battenberg

Servings: +- 8
Ingredients
¾ cup (1½ sticks) 175gm / 6 oz Unsalted Butter, softened & cut in cubes
¾ cup / 175gm / 6 oz Caster Sugar
1¼ cups / 175gm / 6 oz Self-Raising Flour (***see below how to make your own)
3 Large Eggs, room temp
½ cup / 65gm/ 2 1/3 oz Ground Almonds (Can be substituted with ground rice)
3/4 tsp / 3½ gm Baking Powder
1/4 cup milk (optional - my addition)
½ tsp / 2½ ml Vanilla Extract
1/4 tsp (1¼ ml) Almond Extract
Red Food Colouring, paste, liquid or gel

To Finish
1/3 cup (80 ml) 100gm /3 ½ oz Apricot Jam
1 cup / 225gm / 8 oz Marzipan, natural or yellow ( I tinted my with yellow to add to the whimsy)

***How to make your own self raising flour:
1 cup Self Raising Flour = 1 cup / 115g All Purpose Flour + 1 ½ tsp Baking Powder + ¼ tsp Salt (omit salt if there is salt in the recipe) sifted together


Prepare a pan before you begin baking 
(if you don't have a 8 x 8 Battenberg tin)

Using a 8"x8" (20cmx20cm) Square Baking Tin
Make the pan divider with parchment paper and foil.
I folded over a sheet of foil several times to help reinforce the divide.
Fold the parchment in half and put the foil into the crease.
Butter the bottom of the cake pan, this will help "glue" the parchment to it.
Make sure the divide is in the middle of the pan and stick the excess parchment onto the bottom.


Directions:1. Preheat oven to moderate 350°F/180°C/160°C Fan Assisted/Gas Mark 4
2. Grease an 8”/20cm square baking tin with butter
3. Line the tin with parchment paper, creating a divide in the middle with the parchment (or foil)
4. OR  Prepare Battenberg tin by brushing the tin with melted butter and flouring
5. Whisk together the dry ingredients then combine with the wet ingredients in a large bowl and beat together just until the ingredients are combined and the batter is smooth
6. Spoon half the mixture into the one side of the prepared baking tin
7. Add a few drops of red food liquid/gel/paste to the remaining batter, stir until the colour is thoroughly distributed, add more colour if needed
8. Spoon the pink batter into the other half of the prepared baking tin
9. Smooth the surface of the batter with a spatula, making sure batter is in each corner
10. Bake for 25-30mins until the cake is well risen, springs back when lightly touched and a toothpick comes out clean (it should shrink away from the sides of the pan)
11. Leave to cool in the tin for a few minutes before turning out to cool thoroughly on a wire rack


12. Once completely cool, trim the edges of the cake with a long serrated knife
13. Cut each coloured sponge in half lengthways so that you are left with four long strips of sponge

14. Neaten the strips and trim as necessary so that your checkered pattern is as neat and even as possible
15. Gently heat the apricot jam and pass through a small sieve

16. Brush warmed jam onto the strips of cake to stick the cake together in a checkered pattern (one yellow next to one pink. On top of that, one pink next to one yellow)
17. Dust a large flat surface with icing sugar then roll the marzipan in an oblong shape that is wide enough to cover the length of the cake and long enough to completely wrap the cake
18. Brush the top of the cake with apricot jam
19. Place the cake on the marzipan, jam side down
- Tip: Either in the middle or to the one side of the marzipan
20. Brush the remaining three sides with jam. I found it was easier to brush the marzipan with jam
21. Press the marzipan around the cake, making sure the join is either neatly in the one corner, or will be underneath the cake once turned over
- Tip: If you put the sponge to the one side of the marzipan, it is easiest to "roll" the sponge over and over onto the marzipan instead of lifting the marzipan up onto the sponge


 22. Carefully flip the cake over so that the seam is under the cake and score the top of the cake with a knife, you can also crimp the top corners with your fingers to decorate
23. Neaten the ends of the cake and remove excess marzipan by trimming off a small bit of cake on both ends to reveal the pattern



Thanks Mandy for hosting. Another great traditional cake.

15 comments:

shelley c. said...

What a beautiful cake you made! And you are so right - this cake would be perfect for a tea party, even for a group of dolls. Maybe I'll make another for my daughter to do just that with... :) Wonderful job.

simple baking said...

Adding milk must've made the cake moist. I liked mine but would've preferred a bit moist battenberg. And brushing the marzipzn with jam is also brilliant. Great tips Marcellina!

Korena said...

Those little pink flowers are just too cute. Definitely a step up from leaves and mudcakes! LOL. Looks great, nice job!

chef_d said...

Love the color combination and the dainty flowers!

Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella said...

I bet the queen would love yours! It's so pretty! Love the traditional colour combination and the sugar flowers :D

Kristin said...

Lovely cake decoration. Well done!
I also added more milk to the batter and mashed raspberries. For the colour and flavour.

Cakelaw said...

Your Battenberg cake is adorable with its little pink flowers - almost too pretty to eat!

Mary said...

I thought of a little girl's tea party too when I saw this cake. Yours looks scrumptious!

mireia badia said...

Didn't make it this month... Yours looks beautiful!

Laura said...

If I ever try this cake again, I'll add the milk like you suggested. I found the cake somewhat dry, so I assume this was added to get some moisture in there. Beautiful cake! I love the pretty pink flowers on top.

Cookie Kelly said...

Looks perfect! Well done.

The Cookie Fairy said...

Your Battenberg cake version is so cute!
I also fell in love with the pink version
But the flowers decoration on top really "takes the cake"

thisisrocksalt.com said...

Your Battenberg is absolutely lovely, so well decorated and neat!

Lisa said...

Your Battenberg is so precious, Marcellina, and I couldn't help thinking what a lovely addition it would make to a baby shower for a girl. So feminine with the pink and yellow. Beautifully done!

Alida said...

You have made this perfectly!! I like it very much. I have never had it homemade before and it must be delicious.