When you’re travelling abroad the strangest things pop into your mind. A fragrance or flavour sends you right back home on a one way ticket to nostalgia-ville without a moment’s warning.
I’m a big fan of taking home grown treats with me as travel presents; and biscuits from my childhood weigh heavily in my suitcase.
Enter the Iced VoVo. Tooth-achingly sweet pink-fluffy-delight that still stands proud amongst the increasing competition of the biscuit aisle. What better treat to combine into cake!?
Coconut and Raspberry Jam (Iced VoVo) Cake.
The greatest thing about a French butter cake is its diversity and ability to hold its own against any flavouring you’d care to throw at it. Dense, yellow and buttery it’s a favourite staple for me and always goes down a treat at a picnic.
This version combines punchy raspberry jam, coconut, malted milk and pink in a homage to the much loved but rarely admitted to Iced VoVo – a total stand-out Aussie classic.
225 grams of unsalted butter
350 grams of golden caster sugar
350 grams of plain flour, sifted
1 tablespoon of baking powder
225 ml of milk
2 tablespoons of malted milk powder
4 large eggs
Pinch of salt
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
1/2 a cup of raspberry jam
Preheat oven to 180c.
Grease and line three 20 cm tins. (Definitely take the extra time to line the tins for this one)
Combine the butter and sugar in a mixing bowl and beat until very pale and light. Reduce the speed of the beater and add the eggs one at a time, mixing well between each. If the mixture looks like it is splitting add a little flour to help bind it back together. Sift together the salt, flour and baking powder and add to the batter alternately with the milk. Once combined add the vanilla and mix well.
Spilt the batter between you cake tins and smooth the tops. Bake for 20-25 minutes. You may need to adjust the time if you are using on y two cake tins. The cakes are ready when risen and golden and slightly shrinking away from the edges of the tin.
Allow the cakes to cool for 15 minutes in their tins before removing. In the meantime prepare the icing.
500 grams of icing mixture (mixture, not pure sugar for this one – trust me)
250 grams of unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
Two teaspoons of salt flakes (not a typo – it’s the salt that really brings this together)
2-3 drops of pink food colouring
Place the butter and salt into a mixing bowl and beat on a slow speed until smooth. Gradually add the sifted icing mixture, a quarter at a time until combined. Increase the speed and beat on medium high for 5-7 minutes until very pale and fluffy. Add the food colouring one drop at a time until you have the desired colour. I use food grade gel colours. The result is intense and they won’t water down the mixture too much like liquid food colour can.
Once ready place the first cake layer on to a cake stand, securing with a dab of icing beneath to stop it from slipping. Spread a generous layer of the jam on top of the first cake. Place the next layer on top and repeat. To avoid huge chunks of cake and crumbs coming loose when you ice it, spread a thin layer of icing on the cake and place in the fridge for half an hour to set. This creates a base coat to better take the icing.
Once set slather with the rest of the pink fluffy icing, smoothing the top and sides. Once complete gently coat with the coconut and return to the fridge for half an hour to set.
When you’re ready to take that trip down memory lane and dive in to the nostalgia of an Iced VoVo, take out of the fridge and serve at room temperature. And try to resist more than one slice.