Introduction: Giant Layered Lamington Cake
I was brainstorming ideas for my partners birthday cake when I came up with this - he absolutely loves lamingtons and I originally thought of making a regular batch of lamingtons and towering them up high, but I wanted to be a little more creative. Then I thought why not try making it on a large scale! It turned out great! I baked two batches of my regular leamington mixture, cut both in half and layered them on top of each other with jam and cream. Delicious!
It may look complicated but my simple 1 bowl sponge mix makes it super easy!
Step 1: Gather the Ingredients
(!!***you will need to double this amount as you need to make two batches, the following ingredients is just for one batch***!!)
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup caster sugar/white sugar
- 125g melted butter
- 1 1/2 cup self raising flour
- 3/4 cup milk
- 3 cups icing sugar
- 1/4 cup cocoa
- 4-6 tbls milk (approximately)
- approx. 1 1/4 cup coconut
- 300ml cream
- 1/2 jar strawberry jam
Step 2: Preheat Oven and Prepare Pan
Now I’ll make note of this now to avoid confusion - I only own one square baking pan so I prepare and bake one batch at a time and then when the first is done, I prepare and bake the other. Life would be so much easier if I had a second pan but I have been lazy in purchasing one… So if you have two pans the same size feel free to make both at once.
- Prepare a 20cm square baking pan by covering it with baking paper or greasing it with butter (I personally prefer using baking paper instead of greasing to avoid so much washing, but feel free to grease, it will turn out just as great!).
- Preheat oven to 180C (fan forced).
Step 3: Prepare the Mixture
- Place all cake ingredients in the bowl. The flour does not need to be sifted and the eggs do not have to be beaten - as I said, super easy!
- Use the electric beaters to mix in the flour slightly (while not turned on). It doesn’t have to be mixed thoroughly, it is simply to avoid the potential of ending up with a cloud of flour when you turn on the beaters! Beat the mixture on medium for approximately 1 minute or until mixture has thickened slightly and leaves marks when the beaters are moved. If there is a build up of flour on the sides of the bowl, scrape down and give another quick beat to combine.
Step 4: Baking Time!
- Pour mixture in to the prepared pan and bake for 35mins. The cake is cooked when a knife or skewer inserted comes out clean.
- Let cool slightly in the pan, then put onto a baking tray to cool completely.
- While the first cake is cooling, prepare the second. Follow step 3 exactly the same.
NOTE: Remember, I only made one cake at a time, but if you have two pans, prepare and bake both to save time.
Step 5: Prepare the Icing
- Combine icing sugar, cocoa and 4 tablespoons of milk in a bowl. You want to get a very thick icing, so only add enough milk to combine everything. I added extra milk 1/2 tablespoon at a time so I didn't make it too runny.
Step 6: Prepare for Layering
- Once both cakes are cooled completely, remove the baking paper and place base side down on separate chopping boards or a clean work surface.
- Slice off all sides of both cakes (I forgot to do this step here, so I haven't attached photos in this section. In Step 7: Jam and cream, you will see what the result should be)
- Slice off the top of both cakes to make a flat top. Do this by holding the top of the cake with one hand, grab a large knife and run horizontally across the cake. Start in one corner and work your way across. This is to make sure the end cake turns out nice and square. (It may seem like you are cutting off a lot but these extra bits freeze well to be used for sneaky snacks in the future!)
- Slice both cakes in half, horizontally. Again, start in the corner but rather than going straight through the cake go around the outside. The centre of the cake is much more crumbly then the top so going straight through may result in cracking or breaking of the sponge.
For the purpose of assembly, we’ll call the base pieces of the cakes piece 1 and 2, and the top pieces piece 3 and 4.
Step 7: Jam and Cream
- Place cream in to a bowl and beat until whipped.
- Spread a third of jam on piece 1, 3 and 4, leaving a gap of 1cm from all edges. Don't put any on piece 2 as this is the top piece. (In the photos it doesn't look like I have left a 1cm gap because this is where I realised I hadn't yet cut the sides of each cake)
- Spread a third of cream on each jammed piece, again leaving a gap of 1cm from all edges, while still leaving piece 2 plain.
Step 8: Now the Fun Begins! Assembly
Before starting this step, decide what you want the cake to be placed on, whether it's in a container, on a cake stand or on a plate, because once the cake is assembled it is virtually impossible to move without breaking. My first time making it I planned to put it in a container for transporting purposes, so I placed a piece of baking paper on the lid of the container and this was my assembly surface. This time making it I had planned to cut it up straight away so I left it on the chopping board.
This step can also be fiddly, but just ensure you give each pieces of cake good support when moving them by using a large knife/cake server, or something to the same effect.
- Using a large knife and one hand, gently pick up Piece 1 and place on your assembly surface.
- Using the same technique, pick up Piece 3 and place on top of Piece 1, then place Piece 4 on Piece 3.
- Before placing piece 2 on top, flip it over so the base of the cake is facing up. This will provide a cleaner surface to ice the cake.
Step 9: Icing and the Finishing Touches
For this step have a cup of boiling water and a spreading knife at the ready - you will need to continuously use this throughout the icing to allow for an easy spread.
A few things to note:
- The icing layer does not have to be very thick, it just needs to cover all parts of the cake.
- If the jam or cream starts to squeeze out of the sides don't fret, you will be covering it with coconut anyway so you won't be able to see it.
- Once you have iced one side and moved on to another, you will notice the icing on the completed side has started to slide off, there is no avoiding this, just spread the icing back upwards to make it as even as possible, then once you start putting the coconut on it will thicken and hold in place.
- Place a line of icing on the top side of the cake. Using your hot knife push the icing over the side and spread downwards. Continue doing this until all sides and top are covered.
Have the coconut ready in a bowl for easy access.
- Pick up a pinch of coconut in one hand and hold the other hand to the side of the cake. Leaving a little space between your hand and cake, sprinkle the coconut between the gap. Move your hand up and down, and along the sides of the cake until all sides are covered. As I commented above, the icing may begin sliding down so you may need to alternate between coconut-ing and using the spreading knife to re-spread the icing.
- Sprinkle coconut on top of the cake to completely cover.
- Use both hands to press on each side of the cake to straighten and compact. This will adhere all of the coconut to the icing and allow you to find any patches you may have missed.
Step 10: Voila!
And there you have it! One giant lamington!
Next steps: display, admire and enjoy!
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