|FOR THE CAKE||FOR THE DECORATION|
|240g unsalted butter, softened, plus extra for greasing||250g butter|
|260g caster sugar||500g icing sugar, plus extra for dusting|
|1 1/2 tsp of vanilla bean paste||500g ready to roll|
|5 large eggs, beaten||40 4x4cm sheets of edible gold leaf|
|325g plain flour||15-20g fresh edible flowers such as pansies and violets|
|2 tsp baking powder, level|
|Fine zest and juice of 2 small lemons|
|2 tbsp elderdlower cordial|
STEP 1: Grease and line one 6 inch/15cm tin and one 4inch/10cm tin, making sure to line the sides of the tin as well as the base. Preheat your oven to 180°c/350°F/Gas Mark 4.
STEP 2: In a big mixing bowl, cream together the butter and sugar and vanilla until light and fluffy. This should take 3-5 minutes
STEP 3: Then, add the eggs gradually. If the mixture begins to curdle, add a spoonful of flour with each bit of egg.
STEP 4: Once the eggs are combined, sift in the flour, baking powder and salt. Then add the cordial and lemon juice and zest and fold everything together gently until its fully combined.
STEP 5: Scoop the mixture into your prepared tins. And bake the smaller one for 35 mins and the larger for 1 hour. Ensure you check the cakes are done by inserting a skewer into the centre and making sure it comes out clean. If it’s still sticky, leave it in and check again in 3-5 minutes intervals.
STEP 6: Once the cakes are both cooked, leave them in the tin for 20 minutes, then on a cooling rack until they’re completely cool.
STEP 7: Whilst the cakes are cooling, beat together the butter and icing sugar until combined. If the icing is too stiff to spread, add a splash of milk.
STEP 8: When the cakes have cooled, use a cake leveller or bread knife to flatten the top of the cakes and to slice them in half. Spread your buttercream into the middle of each cake, about a centimetre in thickness. Then coat the outsides fully with a thin layer just to make it smooth. Now put them in the fridge for 30 mins to chill the icing.
STEP 9: After the icing is chilled, sprinkle icing sugar onto a clean surface and roll the fondant out into a circle. Fold the fondant onto your rolling pin and gently roll it onto the top of the bigger cake.
STEP 10: Gently smooth the top and sides of the icing over the cake and trim around the bottom edges. Ball up and roll out the trimmings into another circle, repeating the last steps for the smaller cake.
STEP 11: It’s now time to apply the gold leaf around the rims of the cakes. Be patient, it is fiddly work. Wet the icing slightly with a clean cotton bud or paintbrush and lay a sheet of gold leaf over. If you want to rough the edges for a vintage look, use a dry cotton bud to crumble the edges of the gold leaf off. Repeat this until the whole rim is covered and overlaps slightly on the top of each cake.
STEP 12: Place your 6-inch cake onto a plate and gently lower the 4-inch cake on top of it, making sure to place in centrally. You can now decorate the top and sides with edible flowers, as seen in the photos.