Best Genoise Sponge Recipe

Posted By on Nov 19, 2010 | 83 comments


Do you want to bake an easy sponge cake?

Do you want a fool proof sponge recipe? 

You can't go past a genoise or genoese sponge cake recipe, I reckon it's the best. 

I use this sponge cake recipe for almost all of my tortes- especially those which use heavier fillings such as butter creams made with a custard base, mousse fillings and heavy flavoured creams that have fruits or liqueurs mixed through them. 

I usually brush liqueur syrups onto the layers of cake, my favourites being coffee liqueur,  sweet sherry (fortified wine), kirsch, cointreau and limoncello.  Or sometimes I make a heavy syrup from heated fruit jam that has been strained to remove all seeds or skin, and spread that on the layers- usually under a strawberry or raspberry cream.strawberry torte with genoese sponge

This is one of my strawberry cream sponge cakes, using the genoese sponge.  I made a strawberry syrup with 1/2 cup heated and then strained strawberry jam mixed with 4 tablespoons of sweet sherry.  This syrup was liberally brushed on each cake layer, before strawberries and sweetened whipped cream were sandwiched between the layers.  The outside of the cake is covered in sweetened whipped cream, and edged with toasted flaked almonds.

 

This genoise sponge recipe will make enough for four to five layers of cake, depending on how thinly you cut them.

Ingredients

7 eggs

250g caster or vanillin sugar

225g sifted plain flour

90g melted unsalted butter (cooled)

1 generous teaspoon vanilla

Method:

1)Line and grease two 24cm round cake tins (spring form preferably).  Dust with plain flour and tap out excess flour. 

2) Preheat oven to 180C.

3) In an electric mixer, beat the eggs and sugar and vanilla (make sure you crack each egg into a cup, one at a time, to ensure freshness) until it is very thick and frothy, which will take around 12 minutes.  The volume of batter will double at this stage.

4) Sift again the flour onto the egg mixture and fold though with a large slotted metal spoon- I find this helps keep the batter light.

5) Trickle a steady stream of cooled melted butter down the side of the mixing bowl, not in the centre, and fold through with a light hand, until well mixed.

6) Pour 1/2 of genoise sponge batter into one tin, and the remainder in the other tin.  Bake in oven for 20 mins or until the top feels springy to touch or a skewer comes out clean.  HINT- don't open the oven door before 15 minutes of baking time has lapsed or your cake will sink!

7) When baked, remove sponge cakes from oven and allow to coll in the tin for a few minutes, release the spring hinge and remove from the base onto a cooling rack and leave until completely cold.  I like to cover the cakes in a light muslin towel so they don't dry out.

8) Cut the cakes into layers, and fill.

Do you have any other methods or ingredients that your use which are different to this genoese sponge batter?  I'd love to hear them!  Happy baking, oh, my final tip is don't let kids or others run around in your kitchen when sponge cakes are baking, or they can sink.  Please share your experience.

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83 Comments

    • Thanks for your comments Adrianne. There are so many different types of sponge cakes, and I still have three favourites, as they are each so different, and suit different fillings. This is by far the easiest and most successful sponge I bake regularly, and I hope you’ll give it a go. It’s the same batter I used for my Chocolate orange gateaux. I’ll gladly contribute to your site- how can I not…a Cake Appreciation Society is certainly a place I’ll be frequenting :)

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      • I’m a chef of 20 yrs and liked your genois sponge recepe fine. Apart from not semi cooking out the eggs and sugar over a bain Marie. Does it really fluff up the same? If so then I’ve been wasting a lot of time and effort all these yrs ! Cheers – graham.

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        • Hi Graham, I find that this sponge is high enough, it’s not as high as angel food cake sponges, but I use this sponge for every type of sponge cake. I hope the recipe works for you, let me know :) Ingrid

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  1. I was sooo scared to make a Sponge cake. Ingrid said this was easy and she was right! It is foolproof and so light and so yum! I made the sponge with Ingrid’s mousse filling (she helped me mix it up a bit) and the mocha cream and it was absolutely yum! Thanks for ALL your help Ingrid xxx

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    • Hi Kellie…I’m glad it worked out, it was a pleasure to help you through facebook messages! :) Now you have a foolproof recipe…you can use this one for soft yummy cupcakes too…they freeze well! Really happy you were successful!! xx Ingrid

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  2. This recipe sounds great – will it be ok to use as a bottom 8″ cake covered in fondant with a 6″ fondant covered cake ontop? Is it light enough – ie like sponge light? Hope that makes sense….

    Post a Reply
    • Hi Trudy, thanks for visitng my site :) This sponge is a really light sponge cake, so I think it should be fine. It covers well with fondant. :) Happy Baking

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  3. How do I convert the recipe to U.S. measurements. That is, cups, tablespoons, teaspoons?

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  4. Hi Ingrid
    Once again I do not see any baking powder in your recipe

    Will it rise high enough!

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    • Hi Yvonne…this is a genoise sponge cake, the rising comes from the airation of the eggs. This type of sponge doesn’t use baking soda or powder- it is egg power!!! THanks for you comments

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      • I know that a genoise normally does not get the baking powder but I notice you use thisr recipe for your cup cakes as well would that rise enough I want to bake choc cup cakes for a boys birthday using this recipe!

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        • Yvonne, this will be perfect! I use this recipe all the time for cupcakes, it is light and quicker to make than regular cupcake batter. I fill the batter to a little way under the lip of the patty pan, but do not expect to have high over flowing cupcakes- you need room for all that yummy frosting!!!! Which frosting will you use? I’ve been loving the marshmallow buttercream at the moment! the chocolate frosting on my site is really delicious and easy to make too. Happy baking, and happy birthday for you son! :)

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  5. Hi i tried the cake and it has turned out ok, bit more practice will help.
    Please can you tell me the qty of ingredients you would require for a 12″ square cake, and also can you sugar paste on top of this cake.

    Post a Reply
    • Hi! Thanks for trying my recipe…did you need any help to imporve it? You can put sugar paste on this cake. How many layers of cake do you want to bake?

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  6. Well it was all going well looked fine, untill it cooled and i think i took the air out when i folded in the flour, i done something wrong, i am going to need to try again. Do you have some extra tipes

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    • Hi Demelza, I hope these tips help you :)

      1) Make sure you don’t open the oven before the first 12-15 minutes of the cake being in the oven.
      2) I use a large slotted spoon to fold through the flour and butter.
      3) Don’t tap the cake tin once you’ve added the batter to it, or you can knock out the air.
      4) Did you beat the eggs and sugar long enough, so that it was thick and doubled in volume?

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  7. Hi Ingrid

    This looks fantastic. I’ve been looking everywhere for a foolproof Genoise sponge recipe and this looks like it could be the one! Two questions:
    1. All other Genoise sponge recipes I’ve seen require mixing the eggs and sugar over hot/simmering water. Does your recipe not need this?
    2. How much of everything would you use for a 10 inch square cake tin?

    Thanks!

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    • Hi Cakeexpectations, thanks for visiting….Nope you do not need to mix the edds over a double boiler-easy! To make a 10″ square tin, one amount of this batter will be fine as it is quantitiy I use to make two 8″ round cakes from. Happy baking!

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  8. I’ve researched for many recipes for the genoise and it seems that it requires the electric mixer very much. So I was just wondering if it would be possible to NOT use the mixer but just by hand with the whisk? I can’t afford the mixer but I really wish to be able to make the cake. Please help!

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    • Hi Jeann, thanks for visiting my site :) You can use a hand whisk, it will take a longer time, and requires consistency of movement to maintain the airation. You could also use hand beaters as an alternative to the larger electri mixers. When I was a teenager I mixed all my cakes by hand, including creaming butter and sugar, whisking cream, beating yeast batter…It is definitely possible to do :) Happy Baking

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  9. Hi Ingrid,

    i would like to make two layer cake. can u tell me the quantity for the same.
    thanks

    Post a Reply
    • Hi Anita, half of the amount will make enough for one cake cut in half. Happy Baking :)

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  10. Hi Ingrid

    I finally made this yesterday and I have to tell you, it was perfect!!! It was so easy to make (I was terrified I’d knock the air out of it but the metal slotted spoon was a wonderful tip), it rose perfectly, it was firm enough to cut one square cake into three layers, and most importantly, everyone loved it! I brushed my laters with vanilla sugar syrup, then filled them with fresh whipped cream and raspberries, before covering with cream and toasted flaked amonds as you’ve done. This recipe is a winner and I will be using again for my VERY fussy family! Thank you!!!

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    • Hi cakeexpectations! Glad you had success with this recipe! I also have flavoured this sponge cake with strawberry essence to make a strawberry sponge…this is my perfect recipe I always use, because whether it’s humid or not, it works! So glad your cake worked out, fresh cream and raspberries are divine!!!! Thanks again :))

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  11. Hey Ingrid

    I have baked this before for myself without any incidents and was very pleased with the results. Now, I am baking a lemon sponge for someoneelse,and I am having problems! I end up with a lot of flour lumps that have not cooked out after it is baked, even though I seive and fold in the flour. Please tell me what to do!! I am on the verge on falling back on the boring ole basic sponge!

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    • Hi! Thanks for your question…this has happened to me also before, now I use a large slotted spoon to fold through the flour, then add the stream of butter. If you fold it with this type of spoon, I find it collects those lumps, and make sure you get to the bottom of the bowl, they like to hide there too :) Hope this helps

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  12. Hi there, sorry to be a pain and apologies if you have already answered this question, but How long will this cake stay fresh if covered with a layer of butter cream and Marshmallow Fondant (first time making it, i normally use sugar paste)

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    • Hi Luke, thanks for visiting my site, never think that a question is a hassle!!! This cake will stay fresh for around 3 days.

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  13. Wow, just wanted to say a huge thank you! I used this recipe over the weekend to make a friends kids birthday cake, a Musical fireman sam cake! complete with homemade Marshmallow fondant (rather than shop brought sugarpaste) I have to say i love this recipe, its light, moist, yet firm but a great flavor , its perect

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    • Hi Luke, so glad that it all worked out for you! Wonderful to hear, and thanks so much for taking the time to give some feedback, I really appreciate it! I love the marshmallow frosting…I’ve experimented with different flavoured marshmallows too, like caramel, rapsberry, and I use the white ones and add orange essence to it too….Happy baking!!

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  14. hi Ingrid,

    just to try i would like to make half of the give quantity. pls let me know how many eggs should i use.
    thanks.

    Post a Reply
    • Hi Anita

      I would use 5 small eggs if possible (55 gram eggs) or 4 eggs at (60-70g). I often make the whole quantity, fill two pans and freeze one of the sponge cakes.

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  15. Hi Ingrid,

    I’m really looking forward to trying this recipe out! I’ve got to make a coffee wedding cake for a friend and have experimented with several recipes which just don’t seem to have a strong enough taste. Is this a recipe that could be flavoured with coffee and if so, what would your advice be? Dissolved coffee or camp coffee essence? When and how much would you add it?!

    Also, I’ve only got one 8″ tin – is it ok to put half in and cook and then bake the other half or would it lose some of its air while it’s waiting?

    Thanks!

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  16. Hi Ingrid,

    This sounds fantastic for small Charlotte Russes I will be making this weekend. Do you use/recommend all purpose flour or cake flour for this recipe?

    Thanks,
    Lynne

    Post a Reply
    • Hi Lynne, I love charlotte russe- I made them a while ago, I should post the recipe! But yes, this sponge recipe is easy and tastes good too. An all purpose flour is fine, this is what I use for all my cakes, except for yeast cakes- for those I use bakers or bread flour.

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  17. Thank you, thank you, thank you! That coffee cake recipe is perfect and absolutely delicious! (I made myself a sneaky little cupcake version of it so that I could taste it before serving it to others!) Thank you so much for your advice :)

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    • I’m so glad you enjoyed this recipe..I’ve done cupcakes for desserts with this recipe too! Thanks for sharing your feedback Laura :)

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  18. Hi Ingrid
    I came across your website while looking for a Genoise recipe and ways to improve it, I’m a big fan of any type of sponges especially Chiffon and i’ve baked a Genoise before but I’ve noticed that your method of beating the mixture is not over a double boiler as I’ve seen on other recipes? Sorry I don’t mean to question your method, just confused? Your cake looks delish btw..yummy!

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    • Thanks Engel for your comments…no, this recipe does not require a double boiler…you whip the eggs and sugar until they double in size and become pale and thick, and it should take around 7-9 minutes. I only use this recipe for sponge cakes, and it is consistently awesome :) Let me know how you go with this one. I like it because it is soft, light and airy..good for lamingtons, sponge cakes with mousse fillings and cream fillings….Happy Baking

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  19. hey what is the average weigh of the egg you use i know sponges can be tempermental so don’t want to use a 70gm egg when you use a 50g there would be too much moisture would there not and the recipie i have used before recomend a softer flour then plain so a flour cornflour blend why do you just use plain?

    Post a Reply
    • Hi Morgan, thanks for your questions. I have baked cornflour sponge cakes, but they are a different recipe. This genoise sponge only uses plain flour, and is a recipe which for me works everytime, and I prefer it over the cornflour ones I used to bake. For the eggs, I usually bake with 60g eggs. Happy Baking

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  20. Hi
    I have been looking for a good genoise sponge for ages. Just tried it today and did not really rise although tastes nice. Can I ask what speed am I best to whisk eggs at on my kitchen aid.
    Also I made one large square 9 inch cake with mix. Do you think this could have been a problem.
    Thanks

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  21. I use a slightly different recipe — 6 eggs and 250 flour. The butter amount is not critical. This works well for me ( been using it for years) but here in Guadalajara I am at 1500 mts. (5300 ft) and the altitude may be a factor.
    The results are outstanding.

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  22. Hi Ingrid,

    Would this recipe be enough to use in a 12″ square tin 3″ high?

    Thanks

    Post a Reply
    • Hi Lucy, I’d use 1.5 or double mixture to be sure. If you find that the mixture goes more then half way up the tin, then fill another tin and freeze that cake once it’s baked for another time- you might have enough for a loaf tin for example.

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  23. Hi Ingrid,

    Also forgot to ask how long should it be baked for the the 12″ tin and should i also use baking paper to line the tin?
    thanks again

    Post a Reply
    • Hi Lucy, I’d bake for the same time, just don’t open the oven door to check it until after 15 minutes. Yes use baking paper to line the tin. Happy Baking, thanks for your questions.

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  24. Hi, I tried your recipe yesterday and got mixed results. I equally split the mixture over 5 x 8″ tins. I baked them for 10 mins then pulled them out as the tops were a lovely golden colour and sprung back when touched. Each cake was about 1cm high. The top half of the cake was gorgeous and fluffy but the bottom of the cake was really dense. Do you think I just didn’t cook it for long enough? What would you recommend? many thanks.

    Post a Reply
    • Hi Jane, no you didn’t bake them for long enough. Don’t open the oven for the first 12-15 minutes. Also, they should have risen higher than 1cm…how long did you whip the eggs for? Was your butter cooled?

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      • Thanks for replying. I had whipped the eggs for 10 minutes and yep the butter was cooled. Will give it another go :)

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  25. Hi I love this recipe best sponge I have ever baked I finished mine with baileys buttercream and chocolate shavings. Going to make cupcakes in the morning too. Many thanks

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    • Hi Kerry, glad it worked well for you….that buttercream sounds divine!!! Happy Baking, and thanks for your comments! Ingrid

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  26. Hi,

    I like this recipe and I want to make it to my son first birthday. What i want to know is i am using 11″ or 30 cm cake tin can you please tell me the amout of Ingredients i need .

    Thank you so much

    Post a Reply
    • Hi Simon, if you are baking in one large tine, I would bake one and a half times the recipe batter. I usually bake the batter I have provided in this recipe in 2 x 23cm round cake tins, which will give me 4 layers of cake. Hope that helps…happy baking 😉

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      • Hi Ingrid

        Thank you, I’ll never buy birthday cake again.

        You are star.

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        • Thanks a lot Simon…glad you have enjoyed this recipe…and NO, NEVER buy store bought cake again!!! 😉

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  27. I can’t wait to try this recipe and I will let you know how it came out. I specialize in Caribbean fruit cakes which as you know is dense. I have always had a problem to get my cakes fluffy. I hope I will get better results from this recipe.

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  28. Hi Ingrid
    Please give some ideas of the fillings. Kids are fed up with ordinary whipping cream.

    Tnanks

    Post a Reply
  29. Hi Ingrid, I’ve made your genoise sponge a few times now and it works really well! I use a beurre noisette rather than just melted butter, because I love the flavor.
    Just wanted to let you know though, that if you divide the batter over two 24cm springform pans as the recipe states, it’s difficult to cut four layers. I usually use two 23cm pans which leaves you with quite delicate layers. Smaller tins (8-9 inches or 20-23 cm) may work better for people trying the recipe for the first time.

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  30. Hiya I was wondering if this is the sponge I should use for a fresh cream & fruit cake? How much sugar do you add to the cream to make a perfect balanced sweetened cream? I can never whip a really light cream it normally ends up very dence and heavy any tips? And advice would be much appricated xx

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      • Thank you so much for replying :) will try it out soon and let you no how it goes :) I want to make a fresh cream gateaux I love the ones I but from shops but I’m spending a fortune on buying them!! Do you reckon using whipping cream would be better than using double cream?

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  31. Well after u whisk it on or with a machine.. Ure meant to put it on a bain marie untill light or until u can write a figure 8 nd it stays den u put it back on d machine till it cools down nd den add ur sieved flour fold it wit a metal spoon nd add ur cooled melted butter dats hw I was thought in college..m but ur way works too cz I done it b4

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    • Hi, yes you can do this bain marie method, but my method is less complicated, and gets great results! Thanks for your feedback and visiting the blog :)

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  32. please could you tell me if the vanilla is essence as a teaspoonful seems very strong to me????

    Post a Reply
    • Hi David, yes I use a teaspoon of pure vanilla extract- but if you don’t like this much, simply use less :)

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  33. A wonderful recipe, this will be my go to recipe from now on. Thank you! Light, fluffy yet moist cakes and I turned them into a four layer cake filled with buttercream and jam!

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  34. Hi,
    Thanks for recipe. Cake turned out ok but taste of egg. Can you please advise.

    Post a Reply
    • Hi Dalila, it can depend on the freshness and size eggs you have used…are they size 55 or 60 or 70g eggs?

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  35. Hello great cake! Gotta 3 tier birthday cake 2 do I know this cake can withstand a 2 tier will it be strong enough 2 hold a third? And how do I reduce the measurements 4 8 and 6 inch round this? Thanx

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  36. Help….I’ve been asked to make a birthday cake for my neighbour’s dad, she wants a pan di spagna cake which I believe is the italian version of a genoise (they are Italian). Your receip has such great reviews that I want to use it, I need to make it in a 30cm round tin, and I would like to be ableto cut it into 3 layers and fill with it with creme patissiere, how much should I increase the recipe buy for this size tin and to get a deep enough cake to cut into layers.

    Thank you.

    Post a Reply
    • Hi Michelle, having baked a large Baptism cake with my sponge recipe, I found it easier to do 2 cakes in that tin, rather than one thick one. Use the 30cm cake tin, but I would add double the batter into the tin, but bake 2 cakes- just to be sure! This way you don’t have to stress about cutting too thinly- and I would put the thicker slice on the bottom to ensure the cake holds well with the pastry creme. Hope this helps, Ingrid

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  37. Hi there! I have been using your brilliant genoise for all my round sponges with great success! I need to make two square sponges for a two tier stacked cake – 9 x 9 inch and 7 x 7 inch. Do you have any suggestions of how to increase/decrease the recipe for each? Thank you so much for such a great recipe Ingrid!

    Post a Reply
    • Hi Sarah, I’m so happy you love this recipe! I would double the quantities I have provided, assuming you are using 2 different sized tins. So long as you fill the tins to half way with the batter. In my experience of trying to bake larger cakes with this batter- I did it for my daughter’s Baptism cake to feed 50 people, I filled the large rectangular tin to almost 2/3 the way…but it took longer to bake. I prefer to bake twice, than have the cake dry out, if that makes sense- especially for sponge. In my understanding you are wanting high cakes, remember your filling will add to the height as will the outer layers. Bake them filled half way, you will have left over batter, it will bake quickly, and then repeat again with the remainder. This way you can cut what you need too. That’s just how I would do it.

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Trackbacks/Pingbacks

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