Neapolitan Cake

Neapolitan Cake

After 8 weeks of crazy term-time mania we’ve finally hit the vac once more. As our tutors never cease to remind us we’re on vacation, not holiday, and therefore we;re merely vacating our rooms and are expected to continue working just as much back home, but even so there’s going to be a lot more time for baking now!

Some of my friends are hanging around in college a little longer as they have exams, so yesterday we did some group procrastination and got back into the kitchen. Of course we could have made something simple like pasta or cupcakes, but alas no. After such a long time out of the kitchen I wanted to make a dramatic entrance back into the world of baking, so I drew up a recipe for this Neapolitan cake: 3 layers of chocolate and vanilla marble cake, sandwiched with a strawberry cream-cheese frosting and wafers on top!

It might be a little preemptive to make an ice-cream inspired cake in early March, but hey. Summer is well and truly on the way so what’s the harm in looking forwards a bit? It may be wet, windy and dark outside, but we’ve got enough Neapolitan cake to go around so everything’s OK!

Recipe

Serves 12

Time: Around 2 hours

Ingredients

For the chocolate cake

  • 175g Unsalted butter
  • 175g Caster sugar
  • 3 Large eggs
  • 50g Cocoa powder
  • 100g Self raising flour

For the vanilla cake

  • 100g Butter
  • 100g Caster sugar
  • 2 Eggs
  • 100g Self raising flour
  • 1 tsp Vanilla bean paste

For the strawberry icing

  • 400g Cream cheese
  • 4 tbsp Strawberry jam
  • Zest of 1 Lemon

To decorate

  • A handful of fresh strawberries
  • A few Ice cream wafers
  • Chocolate sprinkles

Method

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 180˚C. Then grease and line 3x 20cm loose bottomed round cake tins with butter and baking paper.
  2. Now start make the chocolate cake mixture. Put the butter and sugar into a large bowl and beat together until pale and creamy. Add the eggs and whisk in until the mixture is smooth. Next add the flour and cocoa powder and whisk again to make a smooth batter.
  3. Using a tablespoon dollop the mixture equally between the 3 tins, leaving gaps to be filled in with vanilla mixture later.
  4. Now make the vanilla cake. Put the butter and sugar into another large bowl and beat with a wooden spoon until pale and creamy. Add the eggs and whisk until smooth. Then add the flour and vanilla and whisk again to make a smooth batter.
  5. Again dollop the mixture between the 3 tins. Then gently smooth the mixture over so it evenly fills the cake tins, but try not to mix the two cake batters too much.
  6. Bake the cakes in the oven for 25-30 minutes until risen and golden brown. A skewer inserted into the middle should come out clean. Turn out onto a wire rack and leave to cool completely.
  7. Meanwhile make the icing. Put the cream cheese into a large bowl and beat with a wooden spoon to soften it a little.
  8. Add strawberry jam and lemon zest to this and then mix again to make a smooth icing. Spoon the icing into a piping bag with a round or star shaped nozzle.
  9. Take your strawberries and take off the green tops. Then cut them into 1/8s and put them to one side until needed.
  10. Once cooled place one of the cakes onto a plate. Arrange some strawberry pieces around the edge of the cake, making sure they’re all facing the same direction. Then spread 1/3 of the icing over the middle of cake. (The strawberry barrier will help keep the icing neat if it’s a little runny!)
  11. Place the 2nd cake on top and repeat with the strawberries, icing, and final layer of cake. Pipe the rest of the icing in rings of blobs over the top of the cake.
  12. Pile the remaining strawberries in the centre of the cake. Halve and then place wafers evenly around the edge and then finish with a sprinkle of chocolate sprinkles!

Thanks for reading!

Emma x

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