Celebration make it your own...

Make it your own...
Fruity topping
Stacked with layers of autumn fruits, this cake has the “wow” factor.
Make the most of juicy pears with the suggestions over the page.
The main event
Serves 12
Make it your own... autumn
6 eggs
340g (12oz) caster
175g (6oz) butter,
/2 tsp vanilla extract
400g (14oz) self-raising
1 tsp ground cinnamon
2 tbsp milk
1 large lime, half zest
pared, half zest
450ml (15fl oz) double
250g (9oz) quark or
creamy white soft
4 tbsp icing sugar
4 small, ripe pears,
peeled and cored
500g (1lb 2oz) plump,
ripe blackberries,
hulled, if necessary
5 small ripe plums cut
into 6 pieces
50g (13/4oz)
pomegranate seeds
4 tbsp crème de cassis
6 tbsp apple juice
1 tsp arrowroot
Pear and blackberry cake
1 Light cinnamon sponge Preheat the oven to 160ºC (325ºF/Gas
3). Grease two, 20cm (8in) round cake tins and line the bases with
baking parchment. Put the eggs in a bowl with the sugar. Place the
bowl over a pan of gently simmering water and beat with a handheld electric whisk until thick and pale. Remove the bowl from the
saucepan and add the melted butter and vanilla extract, whisking.
Zesty cream
2 Sift the flour and cinnamon over the surface and gently fold in
with a metal spoon, adding the milk to slacken slightly. Divide the
mixture between the two prepared tins and level the surfaces.
Bake in the oven for 40–45 minutes or until risen, golden and firm
to the touch. Remove from the oven and leave to cool for 5
minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack and leave to cool.
3 Zesty filling Squeeze the lime juice. Whip the cream, cheese,
icing sugar, and the grated lime zest until peaking. Set aside a
quarter of the cream mixture for the top. Chop three of the pears
and toss in 1 tsp lime juice. Fold through the remaining cream
4 Fruity topping Cut the remaining pear into neat slices, toss in a
further tsp of lime juice, and set aside for the topping with a third
of the blackberries, plums, and pomegranate seeds.
5 Cassis drizzle Blend the cassis with the apple juice and
arrowroot in a small saucepan. Bring to the boil, stirring until
thickened and clear. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool.
6 Split each cake in half. Top one piece with a third of the pear and
cream mixture, then a third of the fruit not reserved for decoration.
Repeat the layers then top with the last cake half. Top with the
reserved cream mixture and fruit. Drizzle the cassis syrup over the
fruit. Sprinkle with pared lime rind. Chill until ready to serve.
John’s Celebration Cake Variation
Turn the luxury up a notch by leaving out the lime zest and soft
white cheese and mixing the topping ingredients with 250g
(9oz) melted dark chocolate and 2 tbsp crème de cassis.
Cassis drizzle
Light cinnamon