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Vanilla Sponge with Thyme and Granadilla Buttercream

BY Sarah Dall

Looks can be deceiving when it comes to this delectable sponge cake

  • Makes : 10-12 |
  • Difficulty:

  • Prep Time : 30 mins |
  • Cook Time : 35 mins
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Vanilla Sponge
360 g butter
360 g castor sugar
1 Tbsp (15 ml) vanilla essence
5 large eggs
360 g cake flour
2 tsp (10 ml) baking powder
pinch of salt
¼ cup (60 ml) water

Thyme and Granadilla Buttercream
150 g butter
500 g icing sugar
1 tsp (5 ml) fresh thyme, picked
pulp of fresh 2 granadillas, sieved to remove pips

To serve
½ cup (125 ml) lemon curd
10 fresh thyme sprigs
4 granadillas, halved

Vanilla Sponge
Preheat the oven to 160 °C.
Grease and line the base of 2 x 20 cm round cake tins. Tip: with a naked cake style of icing you want as few imperfections as possible as the layer of icing will be thin. Be sure to grease tins well and do not let the cakes over bake as crusty edges will be hard to work with.
Cream the butter until light and fluffy. Gradually add the sugar and continue to cream. Add the vanilla essence and beat to incorporate.
Whisk the eggs together and gradually beat into the butter mixture. Sift together the dry ingredients and fold into the creamed mixture, adding the water as you fold. Pour into the prepared tins.
Bake for 45 minutes or until cooked through when tested with a skewer. Turn out on a cooling rack; remove the paper and leave to cool.

Thyme and Granadilla Buttercream
Cream together the butter and the icing sugar. Beat well. Add the thyme leaves and granadilla pulp and mix to combine.

To Assemble
Spread the lemon curd in between the layers of cake and sandwich together. Spread the icing over the cake, use a palette knife or an icing scraper to apply a thin layer all the way, not worrying if there are gaps – as this is intentional in the look.
The colour of the cake should peek through the layer of icing to give the cake the ‘whitewashed’ look. Decorate with thyme sprigs and granadilla halves.