Apple and Blackberry, Lemon and Thyme Sponge

During the week I tried out a new recipe for a blackberry and apple cake. I wasn’t too impressed with the results, but decided today I would try again with a adaptions. It’s a basic sponge mix and fairly easy to do. Here is what you need

8″ Baking Tins lined and floured
200g self raising flour
450g butter
300g caster sugar
3 eggs
Fresh Thyme Leaves
Juice and rind of 1 lemon
2 Apples
150g blackberries
200g icing sugar

Grease, line and flour your tins, I tried doing this in my silicone pans, it didn’t work so now back to my original old fashioned sandwich tins. There is something soothing and comforting about traditionally prepping tins, it reminds me of my nan. Preheat the oven to gas 5.

I prepare the fillings first for this cake, so place your blackberries in a saucepan, add 50g of the sugar and a splash of water, put on a low low low heat until the fruit mushes and thickens, a little like making jam, but thinner than a jam mix.

You don’t want to boil the fruit, just let it break down. Core and slice your apples into rounds, put 50g butter into a frying pan and melt, dip your apple slices into 50g of your sugar, place in the frying pan and slowly cook them in the butter. The sugar will caramalise, the apples will soften then crisp up slightly. I like to cook them till there is some colour on them. Place on a plate, leave them to cool.

Your fruit sauce should now be done, remove from heat, strain through a metal sieve, leave to cool.

That really is the hard part done, oh apart from removing the thyme leaves from the stalks, I always find this mind numbing. I try to do it with love and patience, but for some reason it still frustrates me. Don’t use too many leaves, about 20 should do it.

Now, put your flour, 200g of the butter, eggs, remaining sugar and lemon juice into a bowl, and mix well until all the cake batter is combined. Then stir in the lemon rind.

Scatter your thyme leaves over the bottom of your two tins, then divide the cake batter between the two tins. Level off and place in the oven for about 25 minutes, or until the cake is golden on top and springs back when touched lightly.

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Leave to cool in the tins, transfer to a wire rack, leave to cool completely.

Now, place your remaining butter in a bowel and mix until smooth and soft. Add half of your icing sugar, mix again until combined, then add about 3 teaspoons of your blackberry mixture, the remaining icing sugar and mix until light pink.

On the bottom layer you need to spread about half the icing over the cake, then lay the apple slices over the icing, leave three slices for the top decoration.

On the underside of the top layer, spread your fruit mixture. It will be runny and will soak into the sponge. Place this layer on your cake.

I decorated the top using a disposable icing bad with a large star tipped nozzle until the top of the cake is covered. Then lay the remaining apple slices on top.

The lemon, thyme and blackberries really give a late summer, army autumnal taste to the cake. If you don’t like too much icing on your cake, just fill the middle then lay apple slices on top and give a good dusting of icing sugar. Through trial and error, I heartily recommend leaving your apple and fruit mixture until totally cooled before using.

If you make this cake, please feel free to add the pictures to the Facebook page, I really would love to see them.