Pimm's cake

Prep: 1 hr Cook: 30 mins

More effort

Serves 18 - 20

Yes, you read right, Pimm's in cake form. Smooth strawberry and lemon buttercream coupled with cucumber essence make this the ultimate taste of summer

Nutrition and extra info

Nutrition: per serving (20)

  • kcal600
  • fat30g
  • saturates19g
  • carbs76g
  • sugars61g
  • fibre1g
  • protein4g
  • salt1g
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Ingredients

    For the cake

    • 1 cucumber
    • zest and juice 1 lemon
      Lemon

      Lemon

      le-mon

      Oval in shape, with a pronouced bulge on one end, lemons are one of the most versatile fruits…

    • 300g butter, softened, plus extra for greasing
      Butter

      Butter

      butt-err

      Butter is made when lactic-acid producing bacteria are added to cream and churned to make an…

    • 300g golden caster sugar
    • 4 eggs
      Eggs

      Egg

      egg

      The ultimate convenience food, eggs are powerhouses of nutrition, packed with protein and a…

    • 1 tsp vanilla extract
    • 400g self raising flour
    • 1 ½ tsp baking powder
      Baking powder

      Baking powder

      bay-king pow-dah

      Baking powder is a raising agent that is commonly used in cake-making. It is made from an alkali…

    For the strawberry buttercream

    • 200g butter, softened
      Butter

      Butter

      butt-err

      Butter is made when lactic-acid producing bacteria are added to cream and churned to make an…

    • 500g icing sugar
    • 80g strawberries, hulled
      Strawberries

      Strawberry

      straw-bare-ee

      Once available in Britain for just a brief period during the summer, strawberries are now a year…

    For the lemon buttercream

    • 200g butter, softened
      Butter

      Butter

      butt-err

      Butter is made when lactic-acid producing bacteria are added to cream and churned to make an…

    • 400g icing sugar
    • juice & zest 1 lemon
      Lemon

      Lemon

      le-mon

      Oval in shape, with a pronouced bulge on one end, lemons are one of the most versatile fruits…

    For the strawberry filling & decoration

    • 100g strawberries, hulled and sliced plus 3 strawberries, halved, (stalks on)
      Strawberries

      Strawberry

      straw-bare-ee

      Once available in Britain for just a brief period during the summer, strawberries are now a year…

    • 3 tbsp Pimm's
    • ¼ cucumber, sliced

    Method

    1. Put the sliced and halved strawberries for the filling and decoration into a small bowl and pour over the Pimm's. Leave to soak in for at least one hour or overnight. Heat oven to 190C /170C fan/gas 5. Line 3 x 20cm sandwich tins with baking parchment and grease with butter.

    2. Cut the whole cucumber in half lengthways and using a teaspoon scrape out and discard the seeds. Roughly chop the rest of the cucumber and puree in a blender with the lemon juice.

    3. In a large bowl and using electric beaters whisk up the softened butter with the sugar until pale and light. Continue whisking as you add the eggs, one at a time, whisking in between additions. Once all the eggs have been added pour in the cucumber purée, lemon zest and vanilla extract. Don’t worry if the mixture splits - it will come back together when you add the flour.

    4. Fold in the flour and baking powder and whisk once again briefly until there are no lumps of flour remaining then divide the mixture between the three tins. Bake in the oven for 30-35mins or until a skewer pushed into the middle of the cakes comes out clean. Take the cakes out of the oven and leave to cool in their tins for five minutes then turn out onto wire racks to cool completely.

    5. While the cakes are cooking and cooling make the buttercreams. To make the strawberry buttercream, mash the strawberries in a small bowl with a fork until mushy. In a larger bowl whisk up the butter and half the icing sugar until smooth, then whisk in the mashed strawberries followed by the remaining icing sugar. Whisk until smooth and pale pink and place in the fridge until needed. Repeat the process with the lemon buttercream.

    6. Once the cakes are completely cold, put one of the cakes onto a cake turntable and add about one third of the lemon buttercream, spread over the surface evenly then top with half of the soaked strawberry slices. Next, spread one third of the strawberry buttercream onto another of the cakes and top with the remaining strawberry slices. Carefully stack the two filled layers with the final cake on top.

    7. Transfer the remaining buttercreams to disposable piping bags and snip off the ends. Pipe the strawberry buttercream in rings around the outside of the cake, starting at the base. Once you reach three quarters of the way up, switch to the lemon buttercream and continue piping onto the top of the cake. Smooth over the top using a palette knife then smooth the sides with either a large palette knife or, better still a pastry scraper. Use long sweeping movements and gently turn the cake turntable so that you get a smooth finish but a subtle gradient effect where the two colours meet. Scrape any excess icing into a bowl.

    8. To finish, top with the remaining soaked strawberry halves and the slices of cucumber.

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    Comments, questions and tips

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    Comments (6)

    Emmamay84's picture
    5

    This is just fab! I followed the recipe except for the amount of strawberries, I used more for the filling and less buttercream which made it slightly less sweet. I baked this for a charity cake sale at work today and it was a real talking point. So pleased with the result. I have to say, the mixture was much thicker than I was expecting when I divided it into the tins - I re-read the recipe thinking I'd forgotten a wet ingredient! It turned out great.

    little_lady's picture
    5

    I actually used this recipe to make Pimms cupcakes. I followed it exactly (which makes a lot of cupcakes!) and then added the buttercream to the top with a slice of strawberry and a slice of cucumber. If only we could add photos to reviews as they worked really well - good if you shy away from making large cakes like me.

    suehorspole's picture
    5

    Made this for a Charity Bake Off event. It worked really well! Looked and tasted amazing!
    I decided not to make a buttercream for the filling, so instead used 500 grams of mascarpone, which only needed a couple of tablespoons of icing sugar to slightly sweeten it. Everyone who shared the cake seemed to enjoy it!!

    acjacobs's picture
    3.75

    Well, I gave this a bash and was really pleased with the outcome. When they say it serves 18 to 20, they're not wrong. One small slice and you'll feel like you never want to eat again!

    I've not been cooking long so there's things that I'd do differently next time. The sponges weren't perfectly level and I thought I could level it off by making the filling a bit thicker on one side. This resulted in a serious landslide on one side after about an hour.

    Make no mistake, this is sweet. I'd reduce the amount if icing used and hold back on the filling a bit.

    I'd also use far more strawberries for the filling. I reckon it would take double.

    Also, there's a bit of a mistake in the recipe. If you follow it step by step like I did then you'll run out of the soaked strawberries. It says use half for the first layer and the the remaining for the second layer. Then at the end it says to use the remaining strawberries for the top. If you use 2 halves then there won't be any left by the time you get to the top.

    Lastly, if like me you think that cucumber in a cake is a bit weird, don't worry. The taste of cucumber takes the edge off the sweetness of the sponge a bit - not a bad thing with all that icing - and the taste comes through very subtly.

    acjacobs's picture
    3.75

    Going to give this a go today but just seen the nutritional info. 12,000 (yes, 12 THOUSAND) calories in the whole cake. If you make it in a 20cm tin then you're looking at each slice being about 3cm and that works out as:

    - 4 slices of bread worth of carbs
    - 12 teaspoons of sugar
    - One quarter to one third of your daily intake of calories depending on your gender

    PER SLICE!!!

    On the plus side, I guess with the lemon, strawberries and cucumber, you're getting 3 of your 5 a day ;)

    beccapainter's picture

    Lovely summer cake

    Questions (2)

    nomio19's picture

    I have just made this cake and it didnt look like the picture!
    do you cut the cakes if they arent even? if not do you place them on top of each other flat bit up or down?Also, i couldnt get the icing as smooth as the picture, should the icing be fresh or from the fridge...lastly, i used more strawberries, however it wasnt as pink as it should be..

    goodfoodteam's picture

    Hi Nomio, we're sorry to hear your cake didn't turn out as pictured. Yes, you can trim the cakes if they are too domed or uneven. If you place the top cake upside-down that will also provide you with a flatter surface. The buttercream can be at room temperature but if it's too warm to hold its shape, then do pop it in the fridge until it's spreadable but no longer soft. As for the strawberries, we found ours made the icing sufficiently pink but if you wanted to add the smallest drop of pink or red food colouring you could do so to create a lovely contrast.

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