Sometimes, the best tasting cake will have the most simplest of the ingredients. My earliest memory of a cake will have to be the nicest aroma coming out of Amma's kitchen. She used to bake the simplest, yet the tastiest cake probably I have ever eaten, despite not having the electric mixer or high tech oven and such things. I remember patiently watching her beat and cream the butter and sugar, then adding eggs and then the flour to mix it together. And once the cake goes into the small oven we had, I was ready to lick the bowl, despite her no-nos..
Once I started baking, the first thing I made was my Amma's cake. And then ventured into all those fancy ones. But I still love and makes her cake the most. Lately, I started making my cakes in all -in -one method rather than the creaming and folding method. I stumbled upon this method, one day when I was really craving for a home made cake, but didn't have any energy left to bake one. When I saw the recipe for this one, it was the same as mom's, that is equal amount of all the ingredients, but only difference was that, in this method, we just mix it once for all, no creaming, no folding etc and just bake. And it seems(which I discovered lately) this is the basis of the most loved cakes of Britain, Victorian Sponge Cakes.
Having said that, the most important rule to remember here is
All ingredients must be at room temperature.
All-in-one Sponge Cake
1. Butter – 225 gm, plus for greasing the pan
2. All purpose flour – 225 gm, plus for dusting the pan
3. Baking powder – 1 tsp
4. Sugar – 225 gm
5. Eggs, medium – 4
6. Vanilla Essence – ½ tsp
1. Preheat the oven to 180C/350F
2. Grease and flour the baking pan. I used 8 inch square pan.
3. Sieve together flour, baking powder into a large mixing bowl.
4. Add eggs, sugar, butter , vanilla essence and beat everything together with an electric beater until its blended thoroughly and have smooth, well-combined mixture. This will take about one minute. If you don't have an electric whisk, you can use a wooden spoon with a little more effort.
5. Bake in the pre-heated oven for about 25 - 30 minutes or until well risen and a skewer/fork comes out clean.
6. Leave to cool in the pan for a few minutes then turn out, and finish cooling on a wire rack/plate
All-in-one Sponge Cake is ready to serve.
Notes to Remember
* Instead of greasing and dusting the pan,we can line the pan with parchment papers.
* For the quantity mentioned above, if we are using round pans, we require two 8 inch round pans. As a rule square pans holds more batter than round ones.
* Do not open the oven door for at least first 20 min.After 20 min, if the top of the cake is already brown(depends on ovens), can place a piece of aluminium foil on top of the pan to avoid excessive browning on the top.
In those early days with Aaron, with me running around in almost low energy mode, my instant perk me up was this cake, and it still is. Its simple, basic cake with no frills or fancies and yet the best tasting one, every single time.