I made this cake for my mum's birthday yesterday and it was extremely delicious and looked amazing! I have never made meringues before, but it was fantastic and looked beautiful with all the layers and different colours. I would strongly recommend making this cake in the future, although with all the meringues it is difficult to find a place to insert the candles!!
- 3 medium egg whites, at room temperature
- 120g caster sugar
- 3 different types of food colouring
- 4 medium eggs, separated
- 175g caster sugar
- 225g ground almonds
- 1 tsp baking powder, sifted
- 200g black cherry jam (or another dark jam), stirred until smooth
- 300ml thickened cream, whipped
To make the meringues, preheat the oven to 120'C fan forced. Separate the 3 egg whites into three bowls. Whisk each egg white with electric beaters until stiff peaks form. Whilst still beating, divide the sugar portion between each bowl. Continue whisking until the egg whites are stiff. Add 1-2 drops of different food colouring into each bowl and whisk again until the colour is mixed in completely.
Line three baking trays with baking paper. Drop teaspoons of the meringue mixture onto the trays, leaving plenty of space between each meringue. Put the meringues in the oven and turn it down to 100'C fan forced. Cook for 1 hour, rotating the trays every 20 minutes. The meringues are done when they are crisp on the outside and, if you tap the base, it should sound hollow within. Remove and leave them to cool.
To make the cake, turn the oven up to 180'C fan forced. Prepare a cake tin by spraying canola oil and flouring the tin thoroughly. Whisk, with electric beaters, the egg yolks and sugar together, without allowing the mixture to become too pale and thick. In another bowl, stiffly whisk the egg whites. Then gently fold them into the mixture. Fold in the ground almonds and the baking powder.
Pour the cake mixture into the tin and give it a couple of taps on the worktop to bring up any air bubbles. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until the top feels springy to the touch, the sides are shrinking away from the tin and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Turn the cake onto a wired rack to cool.
Place the cake on a serving plate and spread the surface with the jam, right to the edge. Smooth the whipped cream on top, then the meringues. Serve as soon as possible, though the cake will keep well in a cool place for a couple of hours.