15 Minute Summer Berry Cake

Over here lately the weather has been hot. Really hot some days, simply quite hot on others. The kind of weather that makes you want to sit in the garden and chill in shade. Definitely not the kind of weather for spending indoors baking cake. The trouble is though, I quite like a nice cake with my cuppa when I am sitting in my garden in the shade.

A couple of weeks ago a special offer in the supermarket gave me a brainwave. I had popped into the supermarket partly to buy fruit and partly to kill time while one of the boys was at a class. There, in a basket beside the berries and cans of spray whipped cream, were pre-baked, pre-cut sponge cakes on special offer. Fruit, cream, sponge. Summer berry cake. Yum, yum, yum.

As a general rule, I bake and cook from scratch. There are certain circumstances in which I make exceptions and the weather being 28°C plus is one of those. I picked up a sponge and several punnets of berries and headed for the till. Back home I put together a cake in 15 minutes and it went down a treat with us and friends who called in that afternoon.

I can’t really call what follows a recipe since it was really more of an assembly process. The Ikea version of a cake, if you like. But anyway, here’s how I did it.

Sponge cake (approx. 24cm diameter) sliced into three layers

2 tbsps lemon curd

250g mascarpone

1 tin sweetened condensed milk

350g mixed fresh berries

Whip together the mascarpone with half a tin of sweetened condensed milk till smooth.

Open a jar of lemon curd.  Spread the bottom layer of sponge generously with lemon curd.

Place the next sponge layer on top and spread with half of the mascarpone mixture. Sprinkle with half the berries.

Top with the final piece of sponge and spread that with the remaining mascarpone mixture. Dot berries around the top and add a few decorative little dollops of lemon curd. Serve directly or chill for half an hour before serving.

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