Very important - all ingredients have to be at room temperature before starting, including eggs, butter and even the caramel sauce
225gm of all-purpose flour sifted with 1tspn baking powder and 1tspn baking soda
225gm unsalted butter very soft
150gm caster sugar
50gm brown sugar
30gm of sugar made into caramelised sauce (Take a pan, add the sugar, leave it covered on a low flame, for a few minutes. As it begins to darken and turn nutty, start swirling it around. You have to work fast. Add about 2tblspns of cooking cream in a thin stream while stirring continuously. Take off the flame. Stir. You will have a thick sauce.)
4 big eggs (50+ gms)
2 tspn of vanilla essence
3 tblspn of milk or 2 tblspn cream
1 nutmeg ground
5 cloves ground
1/2tspn cinnamon ground
1/4tspn ginger powder
Optional - 1 cup of black currants, golden raisins and Sultanas - all dry and dusted with some flour prior to adding.
Oven pre-heated to 180°C
Not too dense, but with enough body to make it satisfying. I am not one for icing. I prefer fresh cream and toffee sauce as topping. The result is this cake.
Beat butter and sugar till light and airy. Separate the egg yolk and white. Put the egg whites in a cool glass bowl. Whip into stiff peaks. Keep aside
Add egg yolks one by one. Beat. Add vanilla essence. Beat.
Add flour sifted with baking powder and soda. Bit by bit. Add the spice powders.
Add milk/cream alternately. Finally add the caramel sauce.
Gently fold in the cup of fruit mix, if you’ve opted for it. And the egg whites, too. The movement is a gentle circle and pull down from the centre with a spatula.
Pour the batter into a well-buttered 9-inch round baking tin.
Bake at 180° for 50+ minutes or more depending on your oven.
Check for done by inserting a wooden skewer in the center. If it comes out clean or with a few crumbs attached, it is done. Then take it out. Cool, slice and serve.
Serving suggestion: With a dollop of whipped unsweetened double cream or homemade custard.