- Vegetable oil, for oiling
- 2 large eggs, at room temperature
- 1 cup (8 oz) superfine sugar
- 1-¼ cups (6¼ oz) Gluten-Free Flour Mix A
- Pinch of salt
- 1-½ teaspoons baking powder (check to be sure it is a gluten-free variety)
- 1 teaspoon xanthan gum
- 3 tablespoons cocoa powder, sifted
- ½ cup (4 fl oz) sunflower oil
- ½ cup (4 fl oz) 2% milk
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon glycerin, optional
For the filling
- ⅔ cup (3 oz) instant custard powder
- Scant cup (5½ oz) bittersweet chocolate
- Finely chopped scant cup (5½ oz) white chocolate
- 2-½ cups (20 fl oz) heavy cream
- 3 tablespoons confectioners' sugar
- 15 oz can cherries in syrup, drained well
1 Preheat the oven to 350˚F (180˚C). Oil two 8-inch (20 cm) layer cake pans.
2 Whisk the eggs and sugar together in a medium bowl for about 1 minute by hand. In a separate bowl, mix the flour, salt, baking powder, xanthan gum, and cocoa powder together really well. Whisk the oil, milk, vanilla, and glycerin together in a bowl. Add the dry ingredients to the beaten eggs and sugar, then mix in the wet ingredients.
3 Divide the mixture evenly between the oiled pans, and bake for 12–15 minutes, or until well risen and spongy when pressed lightly in the center. Leave to cool.
4 Divide the instant custard powder equally between two clean bowls, and then pour 2⁄3 cup (5 fl oz) boiling water into each bowl, whisking well. Add the white chocolate to one bowl and the bittersweet chocolate to the other, whisking well to melt the chocolate completely. Then set aside to cool until thickened.
5 Lightly whip the cream with the confectioners' sugar.
6 Carefully slice each cooled cake in half widthwise. Place one sponge layer on a serving plate. Spread some bittersweet chocolate custard onto it, then dot with some cherries and fill in the gaps with a little white chocolate custard and whipped cream. Continue layering the sponges and fillings in this way until you reach the top (make sure you save enough whipped cream for the topping).
7 Press the final sponge down lightly.
8 Spread whipped cream over the top of the cake and decorate with some canned or fresh cherries. Scatter with some chocolate sprinkles for that finishing touch.
To store: The decorated cakes will keep for 1 day in an airtight container.
To freeze: The plain sponges can be frozen. Wrap in foil, and freeze in an airtight container. Defrost for 1–2 hours.
Makes one tall 8-inch (20 cm) cake.
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Excerpted from Gluten-Free Baking by Phil Vickery Copyright © 2011 by Phil Vickery. Photography by Tara Fisher. Excerpted by permission of Firefly Books. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.