Thursday 3 February 2011

Foolproof Madeira Cake

Not much time for baking at the moment but my foolproof madeira cake recipe is so quick and easy to make and never fails and the baking tin was looking a little bit empty......and 'A' loves cake..

To make a Foolproof Madeira Cake you will need:
  • Eight ounces of plain flour (this cake works with Doves Farm gluten free flour)
  • Five ounces of golden caster sugar
  • Five ounces of softened butter or substitute
  • One teaspoon of baking powder you can buy aluminium free online here
  • Two large eggs
  • Five tablespoons of milk or soya/rice substitute
  • A little almond or vanilla extract
  • The zest of one lemon (optional)
  1. Preheat the oven to 180c/350f or Gas Mark 4
  2. Prepare a six inch cake tin by coating with oil and a dustin of flour to stop the cake from sticking. I actually don't usually do this. I just put a big square piece of baking parchment into the tin and pour the mixture into it. I love the rustic homely look this gives the finished cake.....and it makes the washing up much easier! If I was making a more formal looking cake I would cut a circle and line the bottom of with it after putting a strip of paper in the pan long enough to come up the sides and easily lift out the cake...or use a loose bottom pan.
  3. In a large bowl cream together the margarine, sugar and lemon zest if using until the mixture is light and fluffy.
  4. Beat the eggs in one at a time.
  5. Fold in the flour
  6. Add the milk until you have achieved a good dropping consistency
  7. Place the mixture in the tin and cook. The recipe suggests one hour before checking but my oven gets really hot and so I always check before...after about 35 minutes or so.
  8. When the cake is a pale golden brown and looks cooked test by inserting a skewer into the centre. If it comes out clean the cake is cooked.
  9. Leave in the tin for five minutes before turning out onto a wire rack.
I've been dying to use the little slivers of blanched almonds and pistachios that A's sister sent in a food parcel from Iran.....I wanted to make Nigella Lawson's Turkish Delight Syllabub just so I could use them...Oh and also because the name conjures up exotic images of tales of Arabian nights.....I'm sure it's delicious...but it is full of cream and we're a bit creamed-out after Christmas. But they made a lovely crunchy topping to the Madeira cake...they kind of pop between your teeth with a little explosion of subtle flavour...mmm.....time for a cup of tea.....and cake......

..maybe I could make the syllabub next week......


  1. I can't make decent madeira cake to save myself - definitely keeping this recipe!

  2. This one definitely is fool-proof (although I'm sure you don't need a foolproof recipe Lucy)

    It works with chocolate too if you just substitute a little of the flour with good cocoa powder....

  3. Madeira cake is my absolute favourite but I've never found a recipe I really like. Next time I'll be using this one - thanks!

  4. This is Ahmad's favourite cake recipe and I have tried a few.....

    ....although he's also keen on Sophie Dahl' spolenta and ground almond cake with orange juice and zest which is scrummy too....but like Madeira has a clean simple taste and not too many ingredients......

  5. I haven't made a Madeira Cake in ages ... even though it's one of my favourites. I shall give your 'never fail' version a go! :)

  6. It's only Sunday and I've just had to make another one Tracey.....this one was wolfed down.....mind-you the mechanic was here on Thursday servicing my car and he's a bit partial to home made cake.......

  7. Just had to look up your Madeira Cake - and I wasn't disappointed. Thanks it looks great.