Apricot, pistachio and vanilla jubilee cake
A majestic cake for a royal celebration – beautiful buttercream, juicy apricot jam, soft cloudlike sponge, crowned with pistachio jewels. This heavenly cake is perfect with a quintessential cup of British tea or a fine glass of English sparkling and is a fabulous fit for a jubilee street party.
Start by preheating the oven to 160C/180C fan. With butter, grease the base of 3 x 20cm round sandwich tins and line with greaseproof paper. In a small bowl, mix 1 tablespoon of sugar with 2 tablespoons of ground pistachios.
With a spoon, sprinkle the sweetened nuts around the edges of the greased tins and gently tap the tin, so that all the edges are fully coated in the mixture – this will add a delightful crunch to the edge of your cake.
Using a free-standing mixer or electric hand whisk, cream 350g of the butter, sugar and vanilla bean paste together until very pale and creamy. Beat in the eggs, one by one, scraping down the sides between each egg. Sift in the flour, baking powder, ground almonds and ground pistachios, then gently fold until combined. Add a splash of milk to the batter, so it is a spoonable consistency.
Divide the batter evenly between the tins and bake in a preheated oven for 20 minutes. Do the skewer test to check it’s baked – if it does not come out clean, bake for a further 5 minutes. Once cooked, cool the cakes for 10 minutes in their tins, then carefully
transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
Meanwhile, to make the buttercream, beat the remaining 200g butter in a mixer, on a high speed for 2 minutes, until soft and creamy. Sieve in half the icing sugar and beat well for another 4 minutes on a slow speed, then turn to high.
Repeat with the remaining icing sugar until the buttercream is smooth, pale and fluffy. Pour in 2 tablespoons of milk and beat for 1-2 minutes, until the buttercream is velvety, then spoon into a piping bag fitted with a star shaped nozzle.
Place one sponge onto a cake stand or board and spread a third of the apricot jam over the top. Pipe a third of the buttercream over the jam and spread out with a palette knife. Dot a handful of sliced apricots over the buttercream and top with another sponge.
Repeat with another third of the jam, buttercream and sliced apricots. Top with the final sponge and finish off with the remaining jam and buttercream. Get creative with some pretty piping swirls for the buttercream topping and decorate with extra chopped pistachios, sliced apricots, edible flowers and a final dusting of icing sugar.
Serve and enjoy at your jubilee gathering and raise a toast to Her Majesty!
550g unsalted butter, softened at room temperature, plus extra for greasing
300g golden caster sugar, plus 1 tablespoon for sprinkling
50g shelled pistachios, finely ground, plus 2 tablespoons for sprinkling and extra for decoration
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
4 Braddock White duck eggs or 6 Burford Brown eggs
250g self-raising flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
50g ground almonds
3-4 tablespoons whole milk
300g apricot compote or jam
400g icing sugar, plus extra for dusting
6 ripe apricots, thinly sliced