This is a proper tea party cake. You know; tea, coffee, scones and a slice of this brown butter whipped cheesecake topping cake. As much as that name is a mouthful, this cake is also a mouthful. A mouthful of buttery, cakey, creamy deliciousness. Sigh. Okay let’s talk about the brown butter situation. Browning the butter gives it a deep, nutty, caramel aroma that permeates the sponge and turns an ordinary butter cake into something quite special. It longs the process out somewhat but it’s totally worth it as you can really taste the difference. The whipped cheesecake topping is e v e r y t h i n g (omg). It’s super light and airy because you literally mix cream cheese with icing sugar and fold it in to a whole load of stiffly whipped cream. Ugh. Love.
Seriously though, the topping to cake ratio though. Let’s appreciate.
For the cake:
150g salted butter (browned, see below)
175g golden caster sugar
2 large eggs
175g plain flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tbsp vanilla extract
For the whipped cheesecake topping:
200ml double cream
250g cream cheese (I used Philadelphia)
250g icing sugar (sifted)
1 tbsp vanilla extract
1. Firstly, you’ll need to set aside about an hour (maybe longer) to brown the butter, and let it cool to solid again. It needs to be fairly soft still, so it will cream with the sugar easily.
2. In a pan (lighter colour based pans are better as you can see the colour change), over low heat you’ll need to melt the butter, slowly stirring until it goes foamy and eventually the butter solids start to brown and the kitchen is filled with a faint nutty aroma. Remove the pan from the heat and pour the butter in to a bowl to let it cool. Once cooler, pop it in the fridge or the freezer to speed up the solidification.
3. Heat the oven to 160FAN and grease and line an 8″ cake tin with baking parchment. Cream the browned, cooled and softened (!) butter in a mixer, with the sugar for about 5 minutes until lighter in colour. It’ll be slacker than the usual butter and sugar creaming.
4. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing after each. In a bowl, sieve the flour and baking powder together and put it to one side. Measure the milk into a jug and add the vanilla.
5. Alternately add the flour and milk, starting and ending with the flour until all the ingredients are incorporated and you have a smooth homogenous texture.
6. Pour into the tin and bake for about 35-40 minutes. It’ll go golden brown and spring back lightly when touched.
7. Leave the cake to cool on a wire rack.
8. For the whipped cheesecake topping, whip the cream until it reaches medium peak stage (before it turns to butter). Then mix the cream cheese with the icing sugar until smooth. Fold the cream cheese mixture into the whipped cream and you should end up with a light creamy mixture that holds its shape.
9. Pile it all on to the cake and spread it out. Top with anything you like – I made the most of the last crop of summer berries!
Store the cake in the fridge and eat within two days.
Testimonials from tea party guests:
“This is the best cake I’ve ever eaten” – A.W.