Recipe: Make our sandcastle cakes with strawberry and cream buttercream

Make our sandcastle cakes Picture: Archant

Make our sandcastle cakes Picture: Archant - Credit: Archant

Our recipe combines chocolate, pink and vanilla cake mix with a hint of fruit.

This week I was asked to think up something that says 'Britain'. Now I could have made sausages, pies, fish and chips, maybe some kind of regional pudding, but what really springs to mind when I think of eating in the UK is the seaside.

If I close my eyes, I'm on the beach, ice cream dripping from one hand, sand between my toes, waiting for the fish and chip shop to open so I can perch myself on the nearest wall and inhale their addictive salt and vinegar perfume.

Something else that screams Britain to me is the Victoria sandwich - a near perfect confection,layering golden, vanilla-infused sponge with the best strawberry jam you can get your hands on.

And so I arrived at this fun, crazy little cake scene. There's a touch of the seaside with the edible sand. The sandcastle cakes are swirled with ice cream colours (pink, cream and chocolate) and the buttercream is blended with Wilkins and Sons Little Scarlet jam which turns it an adorable shade of pink and makes the whole thing taste like strawberries and cream on a summer's day.

I'm the first to confess fondant modelling isn't my strong point, but there's a little crab on there too and those failsafe goodies for anyone wanting to make an edible seascape-praline seashells.

The recipe makes six, but if you're having a party you can upscale the recipe to create a giant edible beach. Go on, you know you want to!

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Sandcastle cakes

(makes 6 mini cakes)

You will need mini silicone flower pot cake cases. I got mine from Lakeland.


For the cake:

175g each caster sugar, sunflower spread, self-raising flour

3 large eggs

1/2tsp baking powder

1tsp vanilla extract

2tbsps cocoa powder

Pink food colouring

For the buttercream:

100g butter

200g icing sugar

3tbsps strawberry jam

To finish:

1 packet digestive biscuits crushed to a fine crumb

Chocolate seashells

Any other decorations you like!


Cream together the caster sugar and spread until smooth. Add the eggs and beat to combine then sift in and fold in the flour. Add the baking powder and vanilla extract. Split the mix into three bowls. Colour one pink with the food colouring (gel or paste gives the best result) and put the cocoa powder in another and mix. You should have vanilla, pink and chocolate cake mix in three separate bowls. Heat the oven to 180C, grease your moulds and spoon a little of each colour mix into each mould, alternating. Fill them three quarters of the way, and pop on a tray. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes until risen and firm. Cool completely and remove from the moulds. Cut the top of each cake to make it level.

For the buttercream combine the icing sugar, jam and butter until creamy.

Coat each cake in buttercream and stick to a board with more of the buttercream. Sprinkle over the crushed biscuits to coat and decorate as you like.