- 250 g soft butter
- 250 g caster sugar
- 1 tsp instant coffee, dissolved in 2 tbsp boiling water
- 4 large eggs
- 250 g self-raising flour
- 2 tbsp milk
1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius (fan) and prepare two 20cm round cake tins by greasing them well and lining the base of each with a circle of baking paper.
2. Before you cream the butter and sugar together, the butter needs to be really soft. You should be able to easily push a knife right through the block of butter with little to no resistance. Dice the butter and put it into a microwave-proof bowl and heat for 30 seconds in the microwave on half power if its not soft enough but don’t let it melt.
3. Place the butter in a large bowl and add the caster sugar. Using an electric hand whisk begin to cream them together. Keep going until the mixture has gone very pale: it should almost double in volume and you should no longer feel the texture of the sugar within the butter. This will take you 56 minutes. Its worth the effort the air you incorporate now will result in a lovely fluffy sponge.
4. Add the coffee mixture to the creamed butter and sugar and stir together. Crack the eggs into a jug and beat them with a fork so that they are less likely to curdle when added to the creamed butter and sugar.
5. Add a small amount of the beaten eggs, just a little drop, and whisk them in fully. Add another drop and beat again. Keep working this way until all of the egg is incorporated and you have a light and fluffy mixture still packed with the air bubbles you’ve been working in.
6. Set aside the electric mixer and add the flour to the butter, sugar and egg mixture in the bowl. Using a thin edged spatula or a metal spoon fold in the flour, cutting through the mixture, lifting and turning it until all of the flour is incorporated. Add the milk and stir through.
7. Divide the mixture evenly between the two tins and roughly level with the back of spoon. Try to avoid getting mixture up the sides of the tins if you can as this can give the finished cakes a little raised lip.
8. Bake in the oven for 25 to 30 minutes until they are golden brown and when pressed lightly on the top, the cakes should spring back up. Leave the cakes to cool before sandwiching them together with vanilla frosting.