• Vanilla poppy-seed cake with caramel praline

    Serves: 10


    • 1 hour 15 mins
    • 100g butter, at room temperature
    • 100g castor sugar
    • 3 large eggs, beaten
    • 100g cake flour
    • 5ml (1 tsp) baking powder
    • 60ml (¼ cup) poppy seeds
    • ICING
    • 80g butter, softened
    • 130g (1 cup) icing sugar, sifted
    • 5ml (1 tsp) vanilla extract
    • 200g (1 cup) sugar
    • 30ml (2 tbsp) water



    Preheat the oven to 170ºC.Grease the sides of a 20cm springform cake tin and line the base with baking paper.


    Cream the butter in a large bowl until soft. Add the sugar and beat until the mixture is light and fluffy. Gradually add the eggs, beating well between each addition.


    Sift in the flour and baking powder, add the poppy seeds and stir until well combined.


    Spoon the mixture into the prepared cake tin, making a slight hollow in the centre with the back of a spoon. Bake until an inserted skewer comes out clean, about 30 minutes.


    Remove from the oven and leave to stand for 5 minutes before carefully removing the cake from the tin and transferring it to a wire rack to cool.


    To make the icing, beat the butter with an electric whisk until pale and soft. Beat in the icing sugar and vanilla until well combined.


    When the cake is cool, spread the icing over the top and sides with a palette or table knife.


    To make the praline, heat the sugar and water in a heavy-bottomed pan over low heat without stirring. Once the sugar has melted and is golden brown, pour onto a baking sheet lined with wax paper. Allow to cool and harden, then break into large pieces.


    Decorate the iced cake with the caramel praline shards, layered and sticking out at different angles.