Orange sponge cake

For an 12 inch cake: You will need: 6 oz (175 g) self-raising flour, 1 rounded teaspoon baking powder, 3 large eggs at room temperature, the zest of 3 oranges, 6 oz (175 g) very soft butter, 6 oz (175 g) golden caster sugar,  and ½ teaspoon vanilla extract

For the filling: You will need: 300g cream cheese, 1 level dessertspoon of icing sugar and 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract

 Pre-heat the oven to gas mark 3, 325°F (170°C)

Take a large mixing bowl, put the flour and baking powder in a sieve and sift it into the bowl. Next all you do is add all the other cake ingredients (except the icing sugar) to the bowl and, provided the butter is really soft, just use either an electric hand whisk or a wooden spoon and whisk everything together until you have a smooth, well-combined mixture. You should end up with is a mixture that drops off a spoon when you give it a tap on the side of the bowl. If it seems a little too stiff, add a little water and mix again.

Now pour the mixture in to a 12 inch round baking tin, level it out and place the tin on the centre shelf of the oven. The cakes will take 30-35 minutes to cook, but try not to open the oven door until 30 minutes have elapsed. To test whether the cake is cooked or not,  use a cocktail stick and prick the centre of the cake: if it is clean, it is ready.

Next, remove sponge cake from the oven, then wait about 5 minutes before turning it out on to a wire cooling rack. Now leave the sponge to get completely cold, then add the filling.

To make this, combine the cream cheese, icing sugar and vanilla extract, using a dessertspoon, which is the quickest way to blend them all together. After that, spread the mixture over the sponge and then arrange some orange pieces in a design of your choice. Enjoy…


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