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Caramel Genoise with Salted Caramel Frosting

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Caramel Genoise with Salted Caramel Frosting

Week four on the Great British Bake Off brought us caramel in abundance, and this cake is no exception; a light Genoise sponge topped with rich and decedant caramel frosting is set to win brownie points with any sweet-tooth!


Serves 8 - 10

For the caramel genoise
50g unsalted butter, plus extra to grease
150g caster sugar, plus extra to dust
110g plain flour, plus extra to dust
75ml water
4 eggs, at room temperature

For the salted caramel frosting
115g granulated sugar
45ml water
115ml double cream
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Large pinch flaked sea salt, to taste
265g salted butter, softened
340g icing sugar


  1. Heat the oven to 180°C. Put the butter in a small saucepan over a low heat until just melted, then remove from the heat and leave to cool.
  2. Lightly grease a 20–22cm round cake tin cake tin and line the base with a disc of greaseproof paper. Grease again and dust with sugar, then flour.
  3. To make the caramel, dissolve half the sugar in the water in a small saucepan over a gentle heat. Once all the sugar has dissolved, increase the heat, bring the syrup to the boil, without stirring, and boil until it caramelises to a deep golden colour. (The caramel needs to be ready by the time the egg and remaining sugar mousse is at a 5–6 second ribbon, see footnote.)
  4. Meanwhile, put the eggs and remaining sugar in a medium heatproof bowl and, using a hand-held electric whisk, start to whisk until combined. Place the bowl over a pan of just-boiled water, making sure the base is not touching the water. Continue whisking on a slow speed to create a stable mousse. Once the mousse is at a 5–6 second ribbon, remove the bowl from the pan and pour in the caramel slowly, continuing to whisk until the caramel is fully incorporated.
  5. Fold in the cooled melted butter, then sift the flour over the surface and fold it in carefully. Pour the mixture into the prepared tin and bake in the middle of the oven for 25–30 minutes until golden and slightly shrinking from the sides of the tin. When pressed lightly, no indentation should remain.
  6. Remove from the oven and stand on a wire rack to cool before carefully removing the cake from the tin and peeling away the lining paper.
  7. For the salted caramel frosting, put the sugar and water in a pan and make a caramel. Once the caramel is a deep golden colour, add the cream and vanilla; the mixture will sputter and spit, so take care. Stir to ensure the caramel is fully dissolved, then remove from the heat and leave to cool. Add the sea salt to taste.
  8. Beat the butter and icing sugar together with an electric whisk until light and fluffy, then add the caramel sauce 1 tbsp at a time, beating well after each addition, until smooth and aerated. Taste and add more salt if necessary.
  9. Cut the cooled cake in half horizontally through the middle. Use half of the icing to sandwich the cake halves together, and the remainder to ice the top of the cake.

A note on 'ribbons'

The ribbon stage: Meaning that, when you lift the whisk over the mixture, the batter should fall slowly forming a ribbon that will hold its shape for a few seconds/minutes.

Love this recipe? Come to Leiths and sweeten your baking skills with How to Cook - Cakes Part 1How to Cook - Cakes Part 2 or Let's Cook! Teen Baker.

Sophie Hibbert

Author: Sophie Hibbert

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