Light and fluffy vanilla sponge cake, filled with lashings of the most delicious vanilla fudge buttercream, and topped with chunks of fudge. This vanilla fudge cake is a perfect spring bake!
Saturday morning, while I was driving home from a shopping trip, I fell completely in love with the British countryside. All along the roadside the trees had exploded in that beautiful fresh green colour we only get for a few weeks every year. Little freshly unfurled leaves, bursting from the buds. Such a gorgeous shade its almost luminous. The verges were littered with bright white daisies and vivid yellow dandelion blooms. The sky was the most stunning blue, and everything was bathed in a beautiful, hopeful spring light.
Having lived abroad, sometimes its easy to forget what a beautiful place Britain is. Coming home mostly during the Christmas holidays, to a grey and cold place, I went years without experiencing the stunning greens and bright new greenness. Its not something that happens all over the world. The feeling that everything is alive and awake is a special one. One that makes me realise just why I love being home.
Yesterday I took myself outside, and sat with tea and cake in the garden. The magnolia is in full bloom, delicate white and pink flowers bringing a rather exotic elegance to the lawn. The fruit trees are starting to flower, clouds of tiny white picture perfect blossom covering every branch in popcorn clusters. I sat with my pot of tea and slice of vanilla fudge cake, enjoying the spring and the feeling of the warm sun on my face for the first time in far too many months.
Joules kindly sent me this beautiful crockery, and its just the perfect thing for tea and cake in the garden. A brand that celebrates everything that is great about the British countryside, it seemed only right to enjoy it outdoors in the spring sun.
The bright colours and cheeky animal designs make my heart happy. They’re so fun, just right for lazy Sundays spent outside. The mugs are just the right size to nestle in your hands for mug after mug of tea. Its hard to choose, but I think this little foxy fellow is my favourite, although I do have rather a soft spot for his curious badger friend too.
This Vanilla Fudge Cake is a fun recipe, and a perfect Spring bake. Just the thing to eat off these cheerful plates!
The vanilla fudge flavour is so very British. Its a sunny day by the seaside, sand in your sandwiches, bunting blowing in the breeze kind of flavour. A nostalgic, country fair, donkey rides and tombola taste. This is the kind of cake that wouldn’t be amiss sat pride of place at the village fete cake stall. Coveted by children clutching slowly melting ice cream cones, cooed over by pastel cardigan wearing grannies, finally taken home by a family and devoured in one sitting.
The cake is a light, fluffy vanilla sponge; a Victoria sponge reimagined. Baked into the cake are chunks of fudge. As the cake bakes the fudge caramelises just a little, becomes a little bit chewier, a little more golden. It creates a fudgey layer at the bottom of each cake layer, chewy on the outside, soft and gooey on the inside.
The cakes are sandwiched together with the most delicious butter icing. I was having to stop myself eating it straight out of the bowl as I decorated the cake! The secret to its charm is vanilla fudge. The buttercream itself is made with a good handful of fudge. Its whizzed up in the food processor, until the fudge runs through the buttercream in little chunks. Every mouthful brings a delicious bite.
To decorate I’ve just added more fudge. I’ve heaped on a mountain of chocolate and vanilla fudge. I like the contrast of the chocolate taste and the darker colour. You could top if with whatever type of fudge takes your fancy though. Coffee fudge would work beautifully, or how about a little bit of rum and raisin? If you think all that sweetness is too much for you, try adding some salted fudge to the cake instead. It may not be quite as well known as salted caramel, but its just as good!
– I’ve added fudge into the cake itself. You can leave this out if you prefer.
– The best way to make the buttercream is in the food processor. If you don’t have one. I’d suggest beating the butter, icing sugar and vanilla extract together until smooth, chopping the fudge as finely as you can, then stirring it through buttercream. This will give you close to the same effect. The fudge is quite firm and would be too much for electric beaters to handle.
– I used this fudge from Mr Simms Olde Sweet Shoppe, but any fudge you have to hand would be fine. A perfect way to use any left over fudge brought back from holidays by the sea!
– Joules kindly sent me the crockery featured in this post. All opinions are my own.
- ----- for the cake
- 175g stork (or unsalted butter, softened to room temperature)
- 175g white caster sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 175g self raising flour
- 3 large eggs
- pinch salt
- 60g vanilla fudge, roughly chopped
- ----- for the buttercream
- 250g butter, softened to room temperature
- 90g vanilla fudge
- 400g icing sugar, sifted
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- pinch salt
- 60g roughly chopped fudge, to decorate
- Preheat the oven to 180C / 160C fan / 350F.
- Grease and line 2 x 20cm sandwich cake tins.
- In a large bowl, cream together the butter, sugar and vanilla extract until light and pale.
- Add the flour, eggs and salt. Mix together until all the ingredients are combined, and you have a thick smooth batter.
- Fold through the chopped fudge.
- Divide the mixture evenly between the two prepared tins, and carefully spread out the batter to an even layer.
- Bake in the centre of the oven for approximately 22 minutes, until the tops of the cakes are risen and golden, and an inserted skewer comes out clean.
- Cool for a few minutes in the tins, then carefully turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
- To make the buttercream, put the butter, fudge, icing sugar, vanilla extract and salt into a food processor. Blend on a high speed until the icing comes together into a smooth mixture, but there are still flakes of fudge through the mixture.
- Turn one of your cakes upside down onto a serving plate. Cover it with half the buttercream and spread it out evenly. Top with the second cake, and cover with the remaining buttercream.
- Roughly chop the remaining fudge and place onto the top of the cake.
- Slice and serve.