Winter wonderland cake
Serves 12 Prep 1 hr, plus cooling Cook 35 mins Q Q Q un-iced sponges and icing bagged separately 175g unsalted butter, softened, plus extra for the tin 250g golden caster sugar 3 large eggs 225g plain flour 2 tsp baking powder 50g crème fraîche 100g dark chocolate,
melted and cooled 3 tbsp strawberry jam 8-10 candy canes mini white meringues and
jelly sweets, to decorate FOR THE FROSTING 500g white caster sugar 1 tsp vanilla extract 1 tbsp liquid glucose 2 egg whites 30g icing sugar, sifted
1 Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4. Butter and line three 18cm round cake tins. Beat the butter and sugar together until light. Add the eggs one at a time. Fold in the flour, baking powder and crème fraîche, chocolate and 100ml boiling water.
2 Divide between the tins and level the tops. Bake for 25-30 mins or until a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean. Leave to cool for 10 mins in the tin, then tip onto a cooling rack and peel off the parchment. Cool completely.
3 For the frosting, put the sugar, vanilla and glucose in a pan with 125ml water. Bring to the boil and cook until the syrup turns clear and the mixture hits 130C on a sugar thermometer. Take off the heat. Beat the egg whites until stiff. While still beating, pour in the syrup in a steady stream. Keep beating until thick enough to spread. Beat in the icing sugar.
4 Spread two sponges with jam and some of the icing, then sandwich the cakes together with the plain one on top. Use a little of the frosting to ice the whole cake. Use the remaining icing to ice the cake again, smoothing the side, and swirling it on top. Crush 4 candy canes and sprinkle over the cake, then add the remaining whole candy canes, meringues and sweets. PER SERVING 596 kcals, fat 19g, saturates 11g, carbs 100g, sugars 84g fibre 2g, protein 6g, salt 0.3g