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    Blackberry and bramley layer cake

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    Blackberry and bramley layer cake

    • Preparation time: 1 hour 10 minutes, plus cooling
    • Cooking time: 30 minutes
    • Total time: 1 hour 40 minutes, plus cooling

    Serves: 18-20


    340g unsalted butter, softened, plus extra for greasing
    340g caster sugar
    8 British Blacktail Free Range Eggs, at room temperature
    300g self-raising flour
    1½ tsp baking powder
    150g ground almonds
    1 tsp ground cinnamon
    1 tsp vanilla paste
    ¼ tsp fine sea salt
    6 tbsp milk, plus extra if needed

    225g Waitrose & Partners Blackberries
    4 tbsp caster sugar
    4 tsp lemon juice
    200g peeled bramley apples (about 2 small)

    3 British Blacktail Free Range Egg whites
    200g icing sugar, sifted
    225g unsalted butter, softened
    pinch ground cinnamon

    handful Waitrose & Partners Blackberries
    ½ lemon, zest strands 


    1. Preheat the oven to 180˚C, gas mark 4. Grease and line the bases of 3 x 20cm round sandwich tins. Put all the sponge ingredients into a large bowl and use electric beaters to mix until smooth. Add more milk if needed to reach a soft dropping consistency. Spoon into the tins, spread evenly then bake for 28-30 minutes, until risen and golden. Cool in the tins for 10 minutes, then turn out, top-sides down, to cool completely on a wire rack (this will help keep the cakes flat).

    2. Meanwhile, make the filling. Put the blackberries into a medium pan with 2 tbsp sugar and 2 tsp lemon juice. Bring to a simmer; cover and cook over a low-medium heat for about 5 minutes, until the fruit has collapsed into its juices. Mash well, then set aside.

    3. Chop the apple and put in another pan with the remaining 2 tbsp sugar and 2 tsp lemon juice, plus 1 tbsp water. Cover and cook over a medium heat for 5-7 minutes until soft. Mash into a purée, then stir in the blackberry coulis; set aside to cool.

    4. For the frosting, put the egg whites, icing sugar and a pinch of salt in a large bowl over a pan of simmering water, ensuring the water does not touch the base. Use electric beaters to whisk until thick and stiff (5-7 minutes). Spoon into a cold bowl and continue to whisk until the mixture is cool (about 5 minutes). Whisk in the butter, 1 tbsp at a time, until all incorporated and silky. Beat in the cinnamon, then chill for 30 minutes.

    5. Put 1 sponge onto a serving plate or cake stand and spread with ¹/ ³ of the buttercream, then spread over ½ the apple and blackberry mixture; repeat. Top with the final sponge and spread ¾ of the remaining buttercream on top. Use the final ¼ of buttercream to thinly coat the sides, allowing the berry filling to catch in it, creating a ripple effect. Top with the remaining blackberries and the lemon zest strands. 

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    This recipe first appeared in Waitrose & Partners Food Baking supplement, September 2019 issue. Download the Waitrose & Partners Food app for the full issue


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