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Vanilla, honey and buttermilk sponge

Irresistibly soft and creamy, it’ll be a challenge keeping their hands off this one. 

Serves 8-10
Prep time 15 minutes
Cook time 40 minutes


  • 2 cups plain flour 
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 100 g butter
  • ½ cup caster sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla essence or extract
  • 2 tablespoons runny (or melted) honey 
  • 3 free-range eggs (at room temperature)  
  • ¾ cup buttermilk, at room temperature 

To assemble

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  • 3 heaped tablespoons berry jam
  • 1 cup cream 
  • fresh raspberries or strawberries (or combination of both)


Preheat oven to 170°C regular bake, with oven rack set in the middle. Line a 20 cm cake tin with baking paper. 

Sift flour and baking powder. Mix, then set aside.

Cube the butter into 1 cm squares and microwave until only just softened (10-15 seconds) – do not allow to melt. 

Using an electric beater or cake mixer, beat butter and sugar on a high speed until pale and fluffy and increased about twice in volume. You’ll need to scrape down the sides a few times. Add the vanilla and honey and mix again. Then add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Use a rubber scraper part way through to scrape down the sides and ensure that there are no clumps in the bottom of the cake mixer. Some curdling will occur, but this is expected.

Add half of the buttermilk and stir very lightly with a rubber scraper or large wooden spoon, then add half of the sifted dry ingredients. Repeat, alternating the remaining buttermilk and flour, folding very lightly between each addition until combined.

Pour mixture into the prepared tin and spread to the edges. Bake for about 40 minutes or until a skewer comes out cleanly when pierced in the middle.

Allow the cake to cool in its tin for about 20 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. When the cake is completely cool, whip the cream into soft peaks. Use a serrated knife to cut the cake horizontally into two layers. Spread the bottom layer with jam and dollop over half the cream. Carefully place the other layer of cake on top. Spoon over the rest of the cream and decorate with the fresh berries.

Recipes and images extracted from YUM! by Nadia Lim, Annabel Inglis and dieticians Jenny Douglas and Lisa Daniels. Published by Nude Food Inc, RRP: $55.00. Photography by Matt Quérée and Isabella Harrex.

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