Spun sugar and crystallised rose petals add a real wow factor to this cake. Begin the petals a day ahead, but, the cake itself is best made and iced on the day of serving, and the spun sugar just before serving.
- 210 gm plain flour
- 16 eggwhites
- 1½ tsp cream of tartar
- 370 gm caster sugar (1 2/3 cups)
- ½ tsp rosewater
- To serve: whipped cream
Crystallised rose petals
- 1 organic red rose, petals only
- 1 eggwhite, lightly beaten
- 60 gm caster sugar
- 350 gm soft icing mixture
- 2 eggwhites
- 2 tsp lemon juice
- 150 gm caster sugar
- 10 gm liquid glucose
- 1For crystallised rose petals, brush each petal with eggwhite, then sprinkle with caster sugar, place on a baking paper-lined tray and set aside for 12 hours or overnight to dry.
- 2Preheat oven to 170C. Double sieve flour and ¾ tsp salt into a bowl and set aside. Using an electric mixer, whisk eggwhites and cream of tartar until soft peaks form. With motor running, gradually add sugar in a slow and steady stream until incorporated, then whisk for another 3-4 minutes or until smooth and glossy. Add rosewater and sift flour, in small batches, over, folding in between each addition to incorporate. Spoon into a 2-litre tiffin mould (see note), then, using a spatula, level top (if you have extra batter, discard) and bake on lower rung in oven for 50-60 minutes or until cake springs back when pressed gently with a fingertip and a skewer inserted withdraws clean. Stand on a wire rack for 20 minutes, then using a serrated knife, trim cake flush with pan, discarding excess. Using your hands, gently pull cake away from sides of pan, invert onto a plate (you may need to shake pan) and set aside to cool.
- 3For sugar icing, using an electric mixer whisk all ingredients for 2-3 minutes on high speed or until smooth and doubled in volume, then, using a palette knife, immediately ice cake and stand for 10 minutes or until icing firms.
- 4For spun sugar, combine sugar, glucose and ¼ cup water in a small saucepan, bring to the boil, stirring occasionally to dissolve sugar, then brush down edges of pan using a clean, wet pastry brush. Cook over medium heat for 10 minutes or until light caramel, then dip base of pan in cold water to stop caramel cooking. Stir occasionally, using a fork, for 1 minute or until slightly thick. Holding a long-handled wooden spoon horizontally in front of you, dip fork into caramel and flick backwards and forwards over spoon handle to create long, thin threads of toffee. Repeat with remaining caramel. (If caramel becomes too thick, reheat gently and stir with fork until melted.)
- 5Slide spun sugar from spoon handle and roll to form a cylinder big enough to fit over cake. Place over cake, scatter petals on top and serve immediately with whipped cream.
Note Tiffin moulds are available from speciality cake stores such as Iced Affair.