Our love of watching the bakers go head to head is back on TV and not before long. I’m not a baker but I do love watching the contestants’ accomplishments and not forgetting the many mishaps that occur.
The technical challenge however puts any baker’s knowledge to test. They are asked to make things I certainly have never heard of like Mokatines. I mean what are Mokatines? Why don’t they just bake simple things like a good old fashioned Victoria sponge? That aside, it’s amazing to see how the contestants’ own interpretations transpire.
However for the novice bakers amongst us, simplicity is key, so here’s a Victoria sponge cake recipe to get us started;
- 175g (6oz) margarine or softened butter
- 175g (6oz) caster sugar
- 3 large eggs
- 175g (6oz) self-raising flour, sifted
- 1tsp baking powder
- 1tsp vanilla extract
- pinch of salt
- Heat the oven to 180°C (gas mark 4). Lightly grease an 18cm (7in) round cake tin with a little extra butter or margarine and cut a piece of greaseproof paper to fit the base of the tin.
- Put all the ingredients into a large mixing bowl and beat with a wooden spoon or a hand-held mixer for 1 minute, or until just combined. It’s important not to beat the batter too much – just long enough to make it smooth.
- Pour or spoon the mixture into the tin, smooth the top and bake on the middle shelf of the oven for about 45-50 minutes. When the cake is cooked it should be golden in colour and the top should spring back when lightly touched with a fingertip. Another test is to insert a knife into the centre of the cake – it should come out dry.
- Let the cake sit in the tin for around 5 minutes, then gently run a knife around the edge and turn the cake out onto a wire rack to cool. Serve dusted with icing sugar or if you’re feeling adventurous you could add a spot of jam to the top.
So why not give it a go. Once you’ve baked your cake all that’s left is to put our feet up, grab a cuppa and a slice and join in with the judging. Happy baking!