This recipe rose to prominence as challenge on the 2011 season of Masterchef Australia. It seemed that the challenge was in it’s simplicity. I was enchanted by the name of the cake. I loved Merle. As her cake was in the oven, she sat down with a cup of tea and started knitting.
However, this cake, is a basic butter cake. While it was light and fluffy, it was a simple cake, and I couldn’t help feel it didn’t live up to its whimsical name. Don’t let this deter you, a simple cake has it’s place in the kitchen and it’s a good recipe to keep on file. You can also find the recipe in Merle’s Cookbook Merle’s Kitchen.
- 190g Butter
- 1 1/4 Cups of Sugar
- 3/4 Cup Milk
- Vanilla Paste to Taste
- 1 1/2 Cup Plain Flour
- 3/4 Cup Cornflour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- pinch of salt
- 6 Egg whites beaten to stiff peaks
- Rose/Pink Food Colouring
1. Preheat Oven to 150C. Grease and Flour a 20cm round cake pan.
2. Cream the sugar and the butter until the mixture is pale and fluffy. Merle says that adding half the milk at this time can help the sugar dissolve.
3. Sift the flours, salt and baking powder 3 times. I believe this is an attempt to increase the air in the ingredients. Add to the butter mixture, taking care to fold to combine.
4.Fold in a 1/4 of the beaten egg whites until combined. Gently fold in remaining egg whites and the remaining milk until smooth.
5. In a separate bowl add 1/4 of the cake batter and colour with 2-3 droplets of food colouring. I kept it at 2 drops but found after the cake baked it was far too pale to notice any colour difference.
6. Place spoonfuls of the yellow cake batter over the base of the greased pan. Spoon over 3/4 of the rose batter 2cm from the edge in a circular manner.
7. Cover with 1/2 the remaining yellow batter. Fill the centre with remaining pink mixture and cover with the last of the yellow mixture.
8. Bake for 60 to 70 minutes. Allow to cool on a flat tea towel lined with baking paper.
9. While the cake is cooling make the icing by combining 1 1/2 cups of sifted icing sugar, 2 tablespoons of boiling water and 10 g of melted butter.
10. When the cake is cooled, decorate with icing.