in praise of cake


This is so delicious, the marmalade just detectible only because it provides a perfect balance of sweetness. I have always made it and served it on the same day and it has never seen the fridge.  I think this is one of the reasons my many cakes seem to get, what I consider, undeserved accolades. But, the truth is my Great Grandmother Esther would never have served yesterday’s cake to anyone without reinvention.

for the combination jam
300g non-commercial [1] marmalade [lime or lemon, grapefruit & pineapple]
500g p/w very ripe sweet pineapple, chopped finely

Weigh the jam into a saucepan and bring to the boil. Add the pineapple, stir through and bring to the boil. Turn the heat down and cook gently for 5 minutes….allow to cool completely.

1 x 6 egg Pho’s Sponge

250g Neufchatel cheese – room temperature
50g fine caster sugar or pure icing sugar
60g very soft unsalted butter
140g the combination jam

Cream the cheese, sugar and butter, then mix in the jam.

180g combination jam – puréed[2]
2 passionfruit, pulp removed
1 x 250g punnet of very ripe strawberries, washed, dried and hulled
20g puréed non-commercial apricot jam
edible flowers

[1] Commercial jams are frequently set with chemicals and once heated basically turn to liquid. Save time and angst and use a marmalade with old-style provenance.

[2] If you have a Nutri-bullet, George Foreman equivalent or similar stuck in the back of your cupboard, get it out because they are brilliant for small blender jobs like the jam, like turning caster into pure icing sugar and so much more.


you don't need to be a professional pastry chef

to make this
fabulous cake

Place one layer of the sponge on your favourite display cake plate. Spread the cheese mix evenly over the layer and place the second layer on top.

Mix together the puréed jam and passionfruit pulp and spread over the top. Cut the strawberries in a way that is appropriate to their size and roll them through the apricot jam. Decorate the top with the strawberries and flowers.