Monday, 21 January 2013

Passion Fruit Sponge Cake

One of the things I remember my Nan baking a lot when I was growing up was passion fruit sponge cake. I can barely remember a family gathering or special occasion where it didn't make an appearance on the dessert table.
Although I was never phased if it was made or not. With its slimy texture full of black seeds it seemed more like eating something from the movie Alien than a fruit. Now it is something that I regret not learning from her. Sponge cake is a notoriously difficult thing to make and a little guidance probably wouldn't have gone astray on this one. I should note that this recipe isn't my Nans but I will endeavor to obtain that one soon.

On a recent trip to visit my Grandparents in South Australia, we went to a tiny local store that is run by the ladies of the town. They sold all kinds of homemade treats and gifts I picked up a jar of homemade passion fruit butter thinking I could surely add it to cupcakes.

When I went to use it the other day the thought struck me that I should use it to make my Nans passion fruit sponge. Well that didn't go exactly to plan.
Firstly, my eggs didn't beat up right so I had to take two at that (10 eggs later! eeek). Then due to being over cautious with my mix, I had failed to incorporate all my flour. Thirdly, because of the flour issue the cakes didn't rise as well as I had hoped.

Thankfully not all was lost. While it didn't turn out like a sponge cake, it did end up being a pretty good cake.

5 eggs
Pinch of salt
1 cup caster sugar
3/4 cup plain flour
1/2 cup cornflour
1 jar passion fruit butter (or you can use ganache, whipped cream and jam or lemon butter)

125gm butter - softened
2 cups icing sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbl spoons milk
2 tbl spoons passion fruit butter

1. Pre heat the oven to 180°C/160°C fan-forced. Lightly grease two 22cm cake tins with some melted butter. Line the bases with baking paper.

2. Using an electric mixer, beat the eggs at high speed with a pinch of salt. Slowly add the sugar over a few minutes. Continue beating for 10 minutes until mixture is pale, fluffy and has increased in volume. Triple sift the flour and the cornflour, then gently incorporate into the egg mixture with a large metal spoon until just combined. Be careful not to over mix or the mixture will lose air.

3. Pour into prepared tins and place both tins on the center rack of the oven. Bake for 22-25 minutes until cakes have risen, turned golden in color and will bounce back when lightly pressed. Run a butter knife around the edge of each cake and turn out onto a wire rack lined with baking paper (this stops lines from indenting your cake). Cool completely.

4. Meanwhile, make the frosting by beating the butter and vanilla until smooth and creamy. Gradually add the icing sugar until well combined. Add the milk. Stir in the passion fruit butter.

5. Take one cake and place on your cake stand. Spread the top generously with passion fruit butter or what ever you chose to make your filling. Place the other cake on top, and spread with frosting. Decorate with extra passion fruit butter or fresh fruit.

I know that almost everyone at some point has had a kitchen fail. Remember the very first BKM blog post? The failed Coq Au Vin. And while this cake ended up tasting good, it was a fail of a sponge cake.

I want to know, what has been your biggest kitchen fail? All you need to do is leave a comment on this post telling me your kitchen fail and you could win an awesome cupcake kit! A pack full of almost everything you need to create delicious cupcakes. How exciting is that?!

Plus if you happen to have a picture of your fail and are game enough, send it over to me and I'll post it on the BKM facebook page.

Competition ends at  6pm AEST Sunday 27 January 2013, winner will be announced at 7pm AEST same day.


  1. January 2013 at 00:45

    Nearly put me off baking for life.... first time i was allowed to make a cake with out parental assistance. Recipe called for 2/3 cup of water, for some reason i thought it meant two or three cups, so thinking more is better added 3 cups of water to the mix, it all did seem a little runny when i put it in the tin and the outside was quite singed compared to the gooey center once the allotted cooking time had passed, even serving with custard couldn't save it.....40 or so years have passed since that cooking experience and i still blush at the thought when ever the topic of baking is raised.

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    The Busy Bee's

    Have a great day!!