a rather tall birthday cake

Birthday cake. It’s funny how as I’ve gotten older my taste buds have changed. No more would dry old chocolate cake with chocolate icing do for my birthday. As a kid though, you couldn’t hold me back. There would be months of mental planning of what type of cake to ask mum to make for me. Much flicking through the always dependable Womens Weekly cookbooks. There were so many things to be considered, it was the one day of the year where you could pick what ever you wanted to eat, followed by what ever cake you desired. For a couple of years running I quite liked a chocolate cake with lemon icing. Nothing flash, just slapped on and a couple of candles. Yes please…

Now though. I’m a little over chocolate cake. I still have to make them for Mr Chocolate (obviously) and the The Monkeys are rather keen too. However for my own, I wanted to play with something different. I still ponder for far too long on what cake to make, (but that’s half the fun isn’t it? The pondering and the wondering?) I had the image in my head, and I think I had the right sort of taste on my tongue. Now I just had to get it to work…

A rather tall birthday cake


Three layers of meringue

9 egg whites

500 gms sugar

In a mixer beat egg whites until they are stiff and then slowly add sugar in small amounts. Mixture should become stiff, sugar disolved, with lovely peaks. On some parchment paper lay 3 disks of meringue. Large, medium and small. The smaller one with peaks and the other two, flattened. Now bake at 120C for approx 1hour 45 minutes. Allow to cool.

Creamy mixture in between…

250gms mascarpone

300mls cream

1 tps rose water

scraping of 1 vanilla pod

1 tps vanilla extract (you might not need it, depends on your vanilla pod.)

1/2 cup sugar

In bowl add mascarpone, scrapped vanilla pod, rose water, sugar and whip. In a seperate bowl whip the cream up and then carefully fold through the mascarpone mixture.

Blueberries and Strawberries…

Time to get those layers happening. Meringue, mascarpone, berries, and then again. With the peaked meringue at the top.

Verdict?…Actually pretty good. I still love the combination of mascarpone and vanilla, I’ve used it a few times now and I think there just may be a few more times to come. The meringue, I hadn’t made before, but it was actually pretty fun to make. I really like the fact that it is so light, and the berries were just a good addition. A contrasting fresh flavour with the sweetness of the other two.

An easy cake that speaks of summer.

So will I be making it again? Yes, I think I just might.

Strawberry Vanilla Birthday Cake

Birthday time and I wanted a simple cake, with not a crazy amount of sugar, no colours, kid friendly, easy to make, to be enjoyed by everyone and truly delicious…(small drum roll), please step up Strawberry Vanilla Cake.

Strawberry Vanilla Cake

cake part

150 gms butter softened

3/4 cup caster sugar

2 tps vanilla

1 1/2 cups s/r flour

3 eggs

Cream butter and sugar together. Add vanilla and eggs one at a time. Fold in flour. Bake cake at 180C for approx 1 hour (on 2nd shelf). Once out and cooled, cut carefully in half.


300gms mascarpone

1/2 cup icing sugar

1 scraped vanilla pod

whip it all up in a mixer or with a hand held whisk and then layer half of the mixture between the cake with a layering of freshly sliced strawberries. Top layer of cake on and mascarpone mixture smoothed over and decorate with strawberries.


A really simple cake, that was thoroughly enjoyed, keeps well in the fridge for a few days and doesn’t lose any of its charm over time. (We ate this one on Little Monkeys’s birthday, now officially two.) I did catch Monkey Boy trying to get the “hair” out of his cake- he was trying to get the vanilla pod seeds out.