I recently came to the conclusion that any cake looks super exciting when it has cream and layers. Take this elderflower cake, for example. By itself it’s sweet and delicious and pretty much your standard little cake. But you layer that baby up, fill it with cream and fresh berries, and BAM! Look at this fancy lady! Damn gurl! You lookin’ fiiiine!
It might seem a little ‘wedding cake’-esque, but my new favourite layering technique involves two tiers on my cakes. A medium sized base with smaller layers on top. Because this cake is ‘naked’ except for the cream frosting layers, it is super forgiving in the decorating department. The tiered layers of fluffy cream and crisp berries make it so easy dress your cake to impress!
The elderflower flavour in this cake is sweet yet subtle, which is how I like it. If I’m feeling like it needs a bit more flavour I add it into the cream frosting as well.
Elderflower cordial is something I’ve been trying to track down for ages. (If by ‘trying to track down’ means, ‘I looked in my local supermarket, couldn’t find it and kind of stopped looking’…) I assumed I would have to get it from a speciality food store, but low and behold; on a trip to rival supermarket what should I find, on special no less!? You got it, elderflower cordial! Now I’m obsessed!
- 250g of butter
- 1 cup of caster sugar
- 3 eggs
- 2⅓ cups of self-raising flour
- 3-5 tbsp of elderflower cordial
- Zest from ½ lemon
- 250 g mascarpone cheese
- ¼ cup of powdered sugar
- ¾ cup of heavy cream
- 1 tbsp of lemon zest
- 1 tsp of elderflower cordial (optional)
- Fresh strawberries, blackberries, for filling
- Preheat your oven to 170°C
- Grease one 25cm and one 15cm cake pan and set aside.
- Place the butter (softened) and caster sugar in a bowl and beat using an electric mixer until pale and creamy.
- One at a time, add the eggs, beating well after each addition. Add the 3 tablespoons of elderflower cordial and beat until smooth.
- Gradually add the flour to the mixture, beating on medium speed. Add the lemon zest and stir to combine. If you mixture is a little too dry, add 1 or 2 more tablespoons of cordial to the mixture and mix until smooth.
- Pour the batter into both prepared cake pans and transfer to the oven. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. The smaller cake will take less time to bake, (around 25 minutes) Allow to cool completely on a wire rack.
- Once cooled, trim away any excess cake and separate each cake into two layers. Set aside.
- For the frosting: Beat the mascarpone cheese and powdered sugar in an electric mixer, until smooth.
- Add the lemon zest and cream to the mascarpone, and beat on high speed until the mixture thickens and stiff peaks start to form.
- Stir in the elderflower cordial (if desired)
- To assemble: Place the first layer on a plate and top with a thick layer of frosting.
- Layer with blackberries and sliced strawberries and top with the next layer of cake.
- Spread another thick layer of frosting and place the first smaller cake piece on top.
- Repeat the above steps with the smaller layers: frosting, berries, cake and frosting on top.
- Top with whole berries and line the top of the larger tier with berries as well. Dust with icing sugar.