How to make a cake
The secrets of baking a light sponge cake.
Points to remember
- Preheat oven to 180C/fan 160C; grease and line two sandwich tins with baking parchment.
- Cream butter and sugar together in a large bowl until pale and fluffy.
- Beat in the eggs in a few additions until the mixture is thick and voluminous.
- Gently fold in the flour using large metal spoon, working in a gentle figure of 8 motion to preserve all the air you've whisked in.
- Keep going until no dry lumps of flour remain.
- Divide between the two tins and bake for 25-30 mins (for an 8" sponge) until the sponges are risen, golden and feel springy to the touch. Leave to cool in the tins for a few mins, then release by running a knife around the edge.
- Place on a wire rack to cool completely. Peel off the baking parchment and then sandwich with your cream, buttercream or your favourite jam.
- Have all ingredients at room temperature. Butter should be really soft (but not melting) so it blends well with the sugar.
- If the mixture begins to curdle as you're beating in the eggs, beat in a tablespoon of flour and continue. The unfilled sponges will keep for 2-3 days wrapped tightly and stored in an airtight tin.