Step 1: make a sponge cake the day before.
I decided to go with Stephanie Alexander’s Genoese sponge, because it looked straightforward and it’s the one she recommends for making lamingtons with. (Dear autocorrect: I really do mean lamington. NOT lamination, nor leamington.)
Problem 1: the recipe just said ‘electric mixer’ for the egg and sugar, so I just used the K blade… wondering the whole time whether it should be the whisk. After 10 minutes, yes it should be the whisk.
OK, done. Add the flour…
Problem 2: I think I stirred it too much. But I kept finding these flour swirls! So I had to get rid of them, right?
Into the oven. Check after 15 minutes. Not quite done. Couple more minutes – out it comes. Turn it out a few minutes later, onto a towel, so it doesn’t stick to the rack (as suggested).
Problem 3: an hour or so later, I turned the cake back over to cover it properly for the night. And discovered that the top of the cake was left on the towel because the cake was not cooked properly. Like, still soggy in the middle. How was that even possible? The poker came out clean!
Back into the oven. For maybe another 20 minutes? perhaps a bit less. This is weird.
Step 2: the next day, cut up the cake and cover it with chocolate and coconut. Happily, this bit didn’t go too badly. Made a lovely mess. But the cake is nowhere near as sponge-a-riffic as I would have hoped.
Possible problems: 1. I used the wrong sized cake tin (20cm not 24cm; is that going to prevent it from rising?); 2. Too much stirring; 3. Too much cooking; 4. I am not a sponge-maker.
Still they taste all right. And I shall not give up.
I SHALL attempt sponge again.