It’s been a year now since I started blogging. Time sure does run fast. When I started blogging in Jan 2015, I knew that it would be a little hectic for me because 2015 and 2016 is another stepping stone in my life with my 12th board exam down the line. But I think, I’m doing justice to the blog and my studies.
Balancing both and not compromising on the other. Although I knew the pros and cons, I started the blog and I am happy that I took a step closer to my passion by doing so. All this would not be possible without the encouragement and support I got from my family and friends 🙂
If you’ve been a regular reader of my blog, you’ll clearly know that I love Baking. It’s been my passion for a long time. Baking relieves me from my stress and it gives me immense pleasure to see someone enjoy my baked goods. So there is no doubt that the 1 year anniversary post is also going to be a cake. Strawberry and cream is an everlasting classic. This combination is truly unbeatable. I usually bake with eggs. But off-lately, I enjoy baking egg-less treats equally. After a lot of research and trial and error, this vanilla sponge was created. It is egg-free and butter-free.
I’ve tried using baking powder and soda with flour and sifting it in. I have also tried foaming method in which baking soda is added to vinegar or lime juice and mixed. But when I came across this method where the baking soda and powder is added to a yogurt-sugar mix, I was intrigued to try it out. And it works brilliantly. It results in a soft and moist cake! I made this cake a few days back for my cousin sister’s birthday and it was enjoyed by all. 😀
Ingredients: (Serves 18-20)
For Vanilla Cake–
- Plain thick yogurt- 2 1/2 cup or 600 ml
- Granulated white sugar- 1 3/4 cup or 350 grams
- Baking powder- 2 1/2 teaspoon
- Baking soda- 1 teaspoon
- Vanilla extract- 3 teaspoon
- Plain flour (maida/ All purpose flour)- 3 and 1/2 cup or 437 grams
- Cornflour- 3 teaspoon
- Sunflower oil- 1 cup or 240 ml
- Milk- 1/2 cup or 120 ml
For Macerated Strawberries–
- Strawberries- 400 grams
- Granulated sugar- 1 1/2 tablespoons
For Chantilly Cream–
- Heavy cream or whipping cream- 140 ml
- Vanilla extract- 1/2 teaspoon
- Powdered sugar- 2 tablespoons
For Chantilly Cream–
Make sure your cream and bowl is cold. Add cream to the bowl along with sugar and beat it till you get stiff peaks. Using a hand held beater would be advisable. You can if you wish beat it by hand but it will take a long time. Add the vanilla extract and fold it in gently. Cover with cling film and store in the fridge until use.
For Vanilla Sponge–
Preheat the oven to 180° C. Grease two 22 cm cake tins with a little sunflower oil and line the base of the tins with a discs of parchment/ butter paper. Slightly grease the paper as well. Add the yogurt to a large clean bowl and beat it well. Add the granulated sugar to a dry food processor or mixer. Process until smooth and powdery. Add the powdered sugar to the yogurt and whisk for 2 minutes until the sugar has dissolved and you get a smooth mixture.
To the yogurt sugar mixture, add the baking soda and baking powder. Whisk it lightly and let this mixture sit for 2-3 minutes undisturbed. After about 3 minutes, you will end up with a frothy mixture. This process ensures that the cake is soft and spongy.
Add the vanilla and milk to the frothed mixture and mix gently. Sift the flour and cornflour into a clean dry bowl. Sift it again 3 more times. This will make the cake light and fluffy. Do not skip this step. Add the oil to the batter and fold the mixture very gently making cutting movements to prevent deflating of the batter. Make sure you do not over mix. Add the sifted flour to the batter in 3-4 batches and fold it gently. The batter will look like it has deflated after adding the flour but do not worry. Because the other half of the reaction of the rising agents take place in the oven when it is baking and it will result in a soft cake. But also make sure it is lump free. If you find any lumps, break it gently.
Divide the batter equally among the two tins and bake in the oven for 30 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. My cake took exactly 30 minutes but it may vary slightly due to altitude and humidity and also from oven to oven. Once it has baked, remove the tins from the oven and allow the cakes to cool in the tins for 5 minutes. Flip the cakes onto a wire rack and allow it to cool completely. Make sure you peel off the parchment paper. Meanwhile, make the macerated strawberries.
For Macerated Strawberries–
Wash and pat dry the strawberries. Remove the leaves and topmost white part of the strawberries. Slice it vertically. Add the granulated sugar and toss it gently. Allow this mixture to sit for 5-10 minutes. The sugar will melt and form a syrup with the juices released by the strawberries. The strawberries will be nice and glossy.
Place one layer of the cake topside down on your cake stand. Drizzle the the juices released from the macerated strawberries over it. Place half of the cream in the centre of the cake. Spread it evenly but make sure you do not spread it near the edges. Try to keep it in the centre because when you place the next layer, it will automatically go to the edges. In the picture, I spread it towards the edge only for the sake of photography. Place 3/4 of the strawberries over the cream, reserving some for topping over the cake. Drizzle the remaining juice of the strawberries over the bottom of the other layer. Top the cake with the remaining cream and and decorate with the remaining strawberry slices. Smooth out the centre filling with a spatula to make it flat and not bulging.