The Queen's 90th birthday celebrations officially kick off street party season and in keeping with the spirit of community that a street party inspires why not make a communal Elizabeth Sponge Bunting Cake (from our Street Food feature in the June 2016 issue of Good Living magazine)? Simply gather together friends, neighbours or family and decide who’s making what; there’ll be 5 sponges to make, cream to whip and fruit to buy and prepare, so it's easy to find a job for everyone.
Tips for making the community cake work
For the jobs:
You could appoint someone to be in charge of layering up the cakes with the jam and cream and another team member could be responsible for decorating the cake with fruit and icing sugar. Finally you could employ a creative colleague to make the stamp bunting for the finishing touch! All in all that makes ten jobs to help everyone feel a sense of pride in making the show-stopping party centrepiece. You may even want to make someone ‘chief organiser’ to coordinate things.
Jobs could also be allocated according to strengths so that keen bakers choose to make the sponges and those with an artistic flair help with the decorating and bunting making…. You may even have a builder that might ensure level cake cutting!
You may want to gather at somebody’s home to bake and decorate as a team perhaps while enjoying a glass of something as you work!
For the ingredients:
To make one 15cm sponge cake, use the following quantities and make following the Good Living recipe (see below). Add the egg gradually, a little at a time: 50g softened butter, 50g caster sugar, 1 large egg (beaten), 50g self-raising flour.
To make one 23cm sponge cake, use the following quantities and make following the recipe: 125g softened butter, 125g caster sugar, 2 eggs (beaten), 125g self-raising flour.
Ready in: 2 hours, plus cooling
You will need:
3 x 23cm shallow round cake tins and 2 x 15cm shallow round cake tins
525g butter, softened
525g caster sugar
9 large eggs
600ml double cream
1tbsp icing sugar
1. Preheat the oven to 180C/160C Fan/Gas 4. Grease and line the bases of 3 x 23cm shallow round cake tins and 2 x 15cm shallow round cake tins.
2. Using an electric mixer, beat together 400g of the butter and 400g of the caster sugar until pale and fluffy, scraping the sides of the bowl with a spatula halfway through.
3. Set aside 400g of the flour. Beat in 7 of the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition and adding 1tbsp flour with each of the last 2 eggs. Gently fold in the rest of the set aside 400g flour with 2tbsp water.
4. Divide the mixture evenly between the 23cm tins and bake for 25 mins or until the cakes are risen and brown and the top in the middle springs back when lightly pressed. If you can’t fit three tins in the oven, cook two first and the third one afterwards with the 15cm cakes. Leave in the tins for 5 mins, then turn out onto wire racks, upside down, and leave to cool.
5. While the 23cm cakes are baking, make the mixture for the two 15cm sponges in the same way but using 125g butter, 125g caster sugar, 2 eggs and 125g flour. Divide between the tins and bake for 25 mins. Cool as before.
6. Whip the cream until it just holds its shape. Put one of the large sponges on a board and spread generously with some conserve. Spread some whipped cream over the jam. Top with another large cake.
7. Continue to layer the cakes with conserve and cream, using the large cakes at the bottom and the small ones on top. Finish with a layer of cream. Neaten the cream on the sides with a palette knife.
8. Before serving, transfer to a cake stand or plate. Decorate with the fruit and dust with icing sugar. Make bunting with used stamps or scraps of material attached to ribbon. Tie onto 2 bamboo skewers and add to the cake.
Watch the video below to see just how easy this cake is to make with kids!
Looking for more party ideas? Throw a party fit for a queen with this handy guide.