Peggy Porschen Lemon, Raspberry Cake

This is a lovely flavour combination that works really well for a summer occasion such as a garden tea party. For a contemporary look, you can colour-blocked the top of the cake with a layer of rose petal fragments. If you prefer a more traditional design, you could re-create as seen in the image.

Peggy Porschen Lemon Raspberry and Rose Cake

Makes one 15cm (6in) round cake, serving 8–12 slices

For the lemon sponge
For the lemon sponge
200g salted butter
200g caster sugar
zest of 2 unwaxed lemons
4 medium eggs, at room temperature
200g self-raising flour, sifted
For the lemon syrup
150ml lemon juice
150g caster sugar

For the raspberry meringue buttercream
270g caster sugar
67ml water
135g egg whites
330g butter
160g raspberry purée
raspberry extract (to taste)

For the decoration
about 3 tablespoons rose petal fragments, glazed
icing sugar and fresh raspberries (for cover design only)
Makes one 15cm cake, serving 8 generous slices.

Equipment you will need
Three 15cm (6in) round sandwich tins
Cake leveller or large serrated knife
Non-slip turntable
Flat disc to place on top of the turntable
(I use the loose base of a 30cm (12in) springform cake tin)
15cm (6in) round cake card
Metal side scraper
Two plastic piping bags
Medium star piping nozzle
Plain round 4mm (¼in) piping nozzle


Make the sponge one day ahead.

Method for the sponge

Make the sponge one day ahead.

Preheat the oven to 175°C/gas mark 4. Line three 15cm sandwich tins with oil spray and greaseproof paper.

Place the butter, caster sugar and lemon zest in an electric mixer and, using the paddle, beat at medium-high speed until pale and fluffy.

Lightly beat the eggs in a separate bowl or jug and, with the mixer set at medium speed, slowly pour into the mixture. If it starts to curdle, add a tablespoon of flour to bring it back together. Once the butter, sugar and eggs are combined, add the flour with the mixer set at low speed, until just incorporated.

Using the rubber spatula, fold through the batter to make sure everything is well combined.
Transfer the batter to the lined tins and gently spread towards the edges with a step palette knife. The mixture should be higher around the edges of the tins
then in the centre, to ensure an even bake and level cake height.

Bake for 20–25 minutes.
The sponges are cooked when they spring back to the touch and the sides are coming away from the edges of the tin. You could also insert a clean knife into the middle of each sponge; if they are cooked, the knife will come out clean.

While the sponges are in the oven, make a lemon sugar syrup following the instructions on page 13, but replacing the water with lemon juice.

Once the sponges are baked, remove from the oven and allow them to rest for about 10 minutes.
Brush the tops of the sponges with lemon syrup (reserving some for the assembling stage and storing it in the fridge overnight).

Once just warm, run a knife all the way around the sides of the tins, remove the sponges and leave to cool completely on a wire rack.

Wrap the cooled sponges in cling film and leave to rest overnight at room temperature. This will ensure that all the moisture is sealed and the sponges firm up
to the ideal texture for trimming and layering.

Method for the raspberry meringue buttercream

Put the raspberry purée in a small saucepan, bring to the boil and simmer until reduced to half. Chill until cool.

Make the meringue buttercream following the instructions on page 10.

Add a little meringue buttercream to the raspberry purée and mix until well combined.

Gently fold into the remaining meringue buttercream and add the raspberry extract to taste. If the mixture splits, whip it with an electric mixer until smooth.

To assemble the cake
Trim the three sponge layers, soak with more lemon syrup and sandwich together using some of the raspberry meringue buttercream. If you wish to recreate the cake shown on the front of the book, sprinkle the rose petal fragments between the layers.

Use meringue buttercream to mask the top and sides of the cake.

To decorate
Generously sprinkle the rose petal fragments over the top of the cake.

If you are recreating the design shown on the cover, decorate the top of the cake using the stencil and a good dusting of icing sugar, then pipe small rosettes of raspberry meringue buttercream around the edge and finish with fresh raspberries.

The Meringue Buttercream
Meringue buttercream is very light and smooth with a relatively pale colour. It is more delicate than English buttercream and suits lighter sponges, such as chiffon cake.

It can split easily if overworked or mixed with acidic ingredients or those with high-fat content, such as ganache. Always add other flavours very carefully, folding them through gently.

Should thebuttercream split, you can bring it back by whipping it at high speed (unless it is mixed with a filling containing a high-fat content). Cakes filled with meringue buttercream should always be stored in the fridge because of the egg content.

Makes enough meringue buttercream to layer one 15cm cake

270g caster sugar
67ml water
135g egg whites, fresh or pasteurised
330g butter, softened

Place the sugar and water in a small saucepan over a medium-high heat and bring to a rapid boil.

Place the egg whites in the bowl of an electric mixer and whip at low speed, using the whisk attachment, until frothy.

When the sugar syrup reaches 121°C, with the mixer running, pour it directly over the meringue in a thin, steady stream. Take care not to pour any of the syrup
onto the whisk or the sides of the bowl. Whip the meringue until cool to the touch; this could take several minutes. With the mixer running, add the butter a couple of tablespoons at a time. Keep beating until the buttercream is completely smooth and spreadable, then fold in any additional flavourings. Meringue buttercream will keep for up to 1 week in the fridge.

The Sugar Syrup
If you bake regularly at home, it’s a good idea to keep a supply of simple sugar syrup in the fridge. I swear by it, as I use it to add moisture and flavour to most of my cakes. Brushing the top of a sponge with syrup just after baking prevents it from forming a dry, hard crust that can spoil the cake.

Doing this while the sponge is still warm allows the syrup to absorb more quickly than if the sponge has cooled. For flavoured syrup, infuse the syrup with the flavouring as early as possible before use, to allow the flavours to develop fully.

Makes about 200ml sugar syrup
150ml water
150g sugar

Place the water and sugar in a saucepan, stir well and
bring to the boil.

Allow it to cool down.

When lukewarm, add the flavourings.

Store the sugar syrup in the fridge if not using immediately.

It will keep for up to 1 month.

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Peggy Porschen Lemon, Raspberry and Rose Cake
Peggy Porschen Lemon, Raspberry and Rose Cake
Peggy Porschen Lemon, Raspberry and Rose Cake