Rosie Makes: Gooseberry, Elderflower and Almond Sponge

Gooseberry, elderflower and almond sponge

Elderflower season is one of my favourite times of year – the many elderflower recipes I’ve shared on Everything Looks Rosie attest to that. Elderflower and gooseberry are a match made in heaven and their seasons just about cross over here in Scotland; this gooseberry, elderflower and almond sponge is just the right balance of sharp and sweet flavours to celebrate early Summer. If you’re not a fan of floral flavours then this golden gooseberry cake or gooseberry fool eclairs will maybe fit the bill. This cake looks impressive but is relatively simple to whip up, particularly as you can make the cake with shop bought cordial and even frozen gooseberries if you need a boost of sunshine flavour at other times of year. To make it, you will need:

200g unsalted butter, softened, plus extra for greasing
100g caster sugar
100g light muscovado
250g light spelt flour
2 tsp baking powder
100g ground almonds
150ml milk
3 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
Zest of one unwaxed lemon.

Gooseberry, Elderflower and Almond Sponge

For the compote:
300g gooseberries, topped and tailed
2 tbsp elderflower cordial
50g caster sugar
For the whipped yoghurt icing:
200g Greek yoghurt
50g icing sugar
Edible flowers, to decorate.

Gooseberry, Elderflower and Almond Sponge

Preheat the oven to 150C/ 130C Fan/ Gas 2. Grease a deep 20cm springform tin or two shallower 20cm tins, and line with baking paper. In the bowl of the electric mixer, cream the butter and sugars together until light and fluffy.

Gooseberry, Elderflower and Almond Sponge

In a separate bowl, whisk the flour, ground almonds and baking powder together to get rid of any lumps. Add half this mixture to the creamed mixture and fold well. Add the milk, eggs, vanilla and lemon zest, then mix in the remaining dry ingredients, being sure to scrape the bottom of the bowl.

Gooseberry, Elderflower and Almond Sponge

Pour the batter into the tin, using a spatula to level the top. Bake for an hour, until the top of the cake springs back (or a little less time if baking in two tins). Cool for 15 minutes then remove from the tin and cool completely on a wire rack.

Gooseberry, Elderflower and Almond Sponge

While the cake is baking, make the compote and icing. Place the gooseberries in a saucepan with the cordial and sugar over a medium heat. Bring the mixture to a simmer then turn the heat down to low and cook gently for 20 – 30 minutes until the gooseberries are soft, have burst to release their juices and have started to turn jammy. Leave to cool completely.

Gooseberry, Elderflower and Almond Sponge

To make the icing, beat the yoghurt and icing sugar until you have a spoonable icing and store in the fridge until needed. Once the cake has cooled completely, use a long serrated knife to slice it horizontally through the middle (if you’ve cooked the two halves separately then you don’t need to do this of course). Lift the cake onto a serving plate, spread the bottom with the yoghurt mixture then compote.

Gooseberry, Elderflower and Almond Sponge

Cover with the top cake and decorate with icing sugar and edible flowers to finish.

Gooseberry, Elderflower and Almond Sponge

Gooseberry, Elderflower and Almond Sponge

Gooseberry, Elderflower and Almond Sponge

What are you baking this weekend?

Gooseberry, Elderflower and Almond Sponge

Gooseberry, Elderflower and Almond Sponge

Gooseberry, Elderflower and Almond Sponge

Recipe via Anna Jones.

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