I seem to have had a lot of enquires recently for a recipe for a 14″ Madeira cake. I don’t actually have a tin this big (the one above is a 12″) but one of my readers measured the volume of her tin and I calculated the ingredients she would need. She said it as a huge success.
To keep it moist I bake all my Madeira cakes with some baking paper wrapped around the outside of the tin. I also place an ovenproof bowl of water at the bottom of the oven which locks more moisture in. My last trick is to add the flour and water in three separate stages – so alternating the flour then water then flour and water and so on). This makes a huge difference compared with adding all the flour then all the water.
14″ Square Madeira cake recipe.
310g butter- at room temperature
310g Margarine- at room temperature
830g caster sugar
4 ½ tea spoon vanilla essence
13 eggs-at room temperature
930g plain flour
6 ½ teasp of baking powder
12 ½ tbsp hot water
Line a cake tin with baking paper and wrap the outside of the cake tin with paper (see how I do it here)
Blend the butters and sugar together until light and fluffy – this will take 2-3 minutes.
Add the eggs one at a time and whisk in thoroughly. Don’t miss this step and chuck them all in – in one go. Your mixture will curdle. I have also found that a hand held whisk gets better results than a stand mixer
Add vanilla essence and blend.
In a separate bowl sieve the flour and baking powder. Mix 1/3 of the flour into the cake mix and whisk. Add 1/3 of the water and combine. Repeat until everything is well incorporated.
Place the mixture in the cake tin smoothing with the back of a metal spoon.
Bake at 180ºC (160º Fan) for 120-140 minutes but check it regularly as sometimes it needs a little longer.
To prevent your cake from doming place a piece of baking paper with a hole in the centre over the top of the tin. Remove the paper after 90 minutes so the top can brown up nicely.
Leave to cool on a wire tray.
I hope this has been helpful. If you are looking for ingredients of other sizes of Madeira cakes have a look at this post.
Yes I do, but boy do people seem to be having problems with it! It got to the point where I was starting to think there was something wrong with it. Readers were having cakes with soggy middles and deep dark crusts on the outside. There were massive domes and sunken middles. I was perplexed! So, I decided to double check the recipe. It came out perfectly. So here’s a post dedicated to exactly what I do to make my 10″ Madeira cake a success – literally step by step.
Double check the size of your tin.
The first thing I did was measure the volume of water my 10″ cake could take. Previously I found it could hold 4000ml but I decided to try it with a little less – 3700ml. The reason for this is that when I make a larger cake the more mix in the tin the heavier the cake is. When I use a little less mix the cake seems to rise more. This was the case with this cake. Just removing 300ml of cake ingredients to this cake made all the difference.
Line and wrap your cake tin and chill it out!
I have always lined my cake tins using silicon paper and vegetable oil – to make it stick to the sides. Oil gives the cake a much softer finish. I know some people like a crust and if that’s the case keep using butter to grease your tins.
Once lined I wrap the cake tin with a strip of silicon paper tied with natural string. You can read more about this here. As you can see from the top photo, I use the same paper over and over and it still works well.
A new trick I recently read about was to chill the cake tin once it is lined. This further stops the outside of the cake from baking too quickly. I left mine in the fridge for 30 minutes before I filled it with cake mix and baked it.
The 10″ Madeira cake recipe
235g butter at room temperature
235g margarine at room temperature
620g caster sugar
3 tsp vanilla essence
9 eggs large eggs at room temperature
700g plain flour sieved
5 tsp baking powder
150ml hot water
100g caster sugar
1 tsp vanilla essence
How to make the 10″ Madeira cake.
Pre-heat your oven to 180ºC (Fan oven160ºC) It’s really important to get the oven to the right temperature. The rising domes are usually caused by the oven being too hot. Sunken cakes are from when the oven temperature is too low – or the oven door is opened too early. My oven fluctuates (especially with cakes that are in the oven for a long time like this one!) so I tend to let it drop a little to 175ºC to allow for the differences during the bake. I still get a dome but I don’t mind. It means I can see how well the cake is baked and get to eat a bit too. Who doesn’t love off cuts? The biggest problems with baking this cake seem to come from using a fan oven. It just doesn’t bake as well. I tested the recipe out using my fan and the cake tasted completely different and was really heavy. My mum who has a gas oven always has the lightest, fluffiest Madeira cake known to man – I am very jealous! So if oyu can use a non fan oven do. If you can use gas – even better. One last word on temperatures is to invest in an Oven Thermometer . I trust mine way more than I trust the dial on my oven – which has lied to me from day one!
Start teh cake mix by creaming the butter and margarine together. Make sure they are seamlessly blended before adding the sugar. Beat till it’s pale and fluffy. This will take at least 3-4 minutes. The whiter it looks the fluffier it is which makes a lighter cake.
Very slowly add the eggs – a spoonful at a time. The slower you add the eggs the less chance there is of the mixture curdling. I have found that I have a much better mix if I use my very fast hand held whisk rather than my beloved Kitchenaid stand mixer. The hand held is much faster and whips it all up into a frenzy catching every last bit of cake mix whereas the stand mixer gets most of it most of the time. There’s no comparison. If the mixture does start curdling (separating and looking a bit yuck) add a spoonful of flour during mixing to stop it.
Add the vanilla essence and mix again till it’s well incorporated.
When it comes to adding the dry ingredients I tend to sieve the flour and baking powder into a separate bowl and have the hot water ready. Add the flour and water in three goes. This produces the fluffiest and most moist cake rather than adding all the flour then all the water. Fold them in gently and slowly. Fold until the flour is just incorporated. The less mixing and folding the more air bubbles you’ll have to make a light and fluffy cake.
Pour the mixture into the cake tin. Using the back of a spoon spread the mix throughout the tin pushing it up the sides of the tin slightly leaving a well in the middle. I leave quite a deep well and still get a dome so be brave.
I have been loosely covering my cakes as soon as they go into the oven with a piece of silicon paper with a hole in the middle. If I think the paper is going to touch the cake as it rises I grease it first. The hole is to allow the steam to escape. The paper keeps the cake more flat on top. I tend to remove the paper for the last 30 minutes so it can brown up.
Bake for two hours in the centre of your oven. If you have the choice place your cake on a wire rack in the oven rather than a tray. A tray will stop the heat from circulating. I remove all the unused racks from the oven when I bake. Don’t be tempted to open the oven door for the first 30 minutes. It will make the cake sink.
To test if your cake is fully baked insert a skewer into the centre of the cake – always the centre as this is the last area to bake. If it comes out clean without any cake mix residue it’s ready. If there is some moist mix on the end you need to pop it back in for a few minutes more. You can also press lightly on the top of the cake with a finger. If the cake bounces back instantly you know it’s done. If it takes more than 2-3 seconds then you know it needs more.
When a cake bakes the outer edge bakes first (as it’s against the hot metal cake tin.) For this reason when the middle of your cake is baked the sides will shrink away from the cake tin. This is another good indicator that the cake is baked.
The sugar syrup
To make the sugar syrup heat the water and sugar until the sugar is completely dissolved. Let it simmer for 2-3 minutes then add the flavour and leave to cool. I make my sugar syrup as soon as the cake goes into the oven then I leave it .
Once your cake is removed from the oven let it sit for 5-10 minutes then use a pastry brush to brush the sugar syrup over the entire cake. You only need to cover each area of the cake once and avoid soaking the cake or you will end up with a big soggy mess not a nice moist cake. Make sure you get the edges of the cake covered as they tend to dry out the most. Some people worry that the cake will be overly sweet by adding the sugar syrup but it actually seals the cake and stops it from baking once it’s out of the oven. Don’t feel you need to use the whole amount. You will have some left over.
Leave the cake to cool for a further 10-20 minutes before turning your cake out onto a rack to cool completely.
I made this cake and decided not to cover it or cut it in half and fill with butter cream. One of my favorite ways to enjoy Madeira cake is by the slice with a lovely dollop of raspberry jam. I cut this one in half and froze one side while we ate the rest. This is a pretty big cake so it was a good test of how long it tasted good for. I always advise to have eaten a cake that has been decorated (and therefore sealed) within a week of baking. This cake sat on a plate in my kitchen loosely covered with a piece of silver foil for 10 days – slowly getting smaller and smaller. On the 10th day it was getting a bit stale but right up till then a spread of jam and it was great with a cup of tea!
Why Sugar syrup works
Another benefit to adding sugar syrup to a cake – which I hadn’t realised before is that it gives the cake crust a lovely sweet flavoured crunch. Not a hard crunch – just a gentle one. I actually looked forward to eating that part as much as I did the soft sponge. Nice surprise!
I think a lovely thin slice is perfect. Beau does not! After asking if she could have a slice this is what she cut and filled for herself! I could have made four servings from that giant slice. And before you ask- yes she ate the lot! Growing girl!
I hope this helps with some of your Madeira cake queries.
One of the most popular posts here on Cakes Bakes and Cookies is my mum’s Madeira cake recipe, so it should come as no surprise that I have been asked so many times for the ingredients needed to make a chocolate Madeira cake. After all it does make a superb wedding cake as it tastes lovely and is a nice moist, firm cake that is just crying out to be layered in tiers. It’s really easy to shape too as it doesn’t crumble like a basic chocolate cake will. I used it to make a teddy bear cake recently (more on that soon!) and it was so easy to assemble and carve up. I made way too much cake mix so I had a little layer cake all to myself ….well I did share a bit. I don’t really like buttercream that much so I just filled and topped it with tons of raspberry jam and it was goooood!
Chocolate Madeira cake…mmmmmm!
So here’s the chart with lots of cake tins sizes for you to refer to. The chart is for round cake tins. If you want the measurements for square tins go up one inch in size – so for an 8″ square in you would use the 9″ recipe below- hope that makes sence) If you would prefer to download the chart as a PDF just click on this link Chocolate Madeira cake ingredients for different size cake tins
Line your cake tin with silicon paper and pre-heat your oven to 180ºC (160ºC fan).
Blend the butter, margarine and sugar together until light and fluffy, then add the eggs slowly until they’re really well mixed in. Add the vanilla essence.
In a separate bowl weigh and sieve the flour, cocoa and baking powder. Mix them so that you have a light brown dry mixture. This will prevent you having any cocoa lumps in the mix.
Add the flour and milk to the butter in three alternating goes.
Pour the cake mix into the tin and smooth with the back of a metal spoon. Bake in the centre of the oven. The cake is ready when you can smell that delicious chocolate cake aroma filling your kitchen. The cake will come away from the sides of the tin and a skewer will come out clean when inserted into the middle of the cake.
Leave to cool on a wire rack
I hope this chart is really useful. Thanks to all my lovely readers for their comments and questions.
I have to say that I have been bowled over by how many questions I have been asked about Madeira cake since I started this blog. I mean if you check out my first post on it there are over 200 comments! So I shouldn’t have been surprised by the response to last weeks post on how to adapt ingredient amounts for different sized cake tins with a 10″ recipe along side. But there you have it. I was surprised. As promised in last weeks post, here is the chart with all the ingredients you need to make a Madeira cake from a 6″ all the way up to a 12″. I can’t fit a 14″ in my oven so I don’t possess a tin that size so if anyone needs the ingredients for that you’ll have to measure the volume in ml so that it is 3″ deep and let me know what it is! Then I can work out the rest.
This chart is for ROUND Madeira cakes that are 3″ deep so you can slice them in half to fill if you want to. (Buttercream measurements for different size cakes are being calculated now after a reader requested them. So, no more leftovers to devour for me then! Watch this space.)
Madeira Cake Ingredients(this chart was revised on 27th April 2015)
I’ve also had a few questions about the ingredients on my first Madeira cake recipe post. That recipe was also for an 8″ round cake but the depth of that cake only came out to 2″ deep. The ingredients above will give you a much deeper 3″ cake. That’s why there’s a difference in the ingredients quantities. As I have got more experienced I have tested out other ideas and I think I’ve nailed the Madeira cake recipe now. Another two things to note are that I used to only use butter in this cake as I thought that would taste better but as my mum uses butter and margarine combined I tried that out and the result is a much lighter and more moist cake. The other tip she gave me was to mix in the flour and water in three goes. If you add all the flour then all the water you get a cake with lots of air holes in it and it tends to be more dry than if you add them alternating for three goes. Small things = big benefits in baking!
How to make Madeira cake
Line the cake tin with baking paper. I use sunflower oil to grease the tin so the cake stays soft. Butter tends to bake too quickly giving you a harder cake on the outside.
Pre-heat your oven to 180ºC (Fan oven160ºC)
Start by creaming the butters together then add the sugar and beat till it’s pale and fluffy.
Very slowly add the eggs – a spoonful at a time. Add a spoon of the flour to prevent curdling if necessary. Add the vanilla essence and mix.
Sieve the flour and baking powder into a separate bowl and have the hot water ready. Add the flour and water in three goes. This produces the fluffiest and most moist cake rather than adding all the flour then all the water.
Bake for time stated on the chart for your size cake tin or until a skewer comes out of the centre clean.
Don’t open the oven door for the first 30 minutes. It will make the cake sink.
Leave the cake to cool on a wire rack for 15 minutes before turning out of the tin carefully.
Happy baking bakers
P.S. I wish I had £1 for every time I misspelt Madeira!!! p.p.s. Here’s the link for the instructions on how to make the Madeira cake.
P.P.S.I’ve been re-testing these cakes for the timings which have been taking much longer than originally stated – sorry guys. I’ve just got the 10″ left to test so if you’re baking that size just keep an eye on it after an hour. I’ll be testing the 10″ just as soon as I have more room in my freezer!
Last week I made a two tier wedding cake for a friend and I decided that it was about time I really mastered getting the right amounts of ingredients for different sized cake tins, rather than doubling and hoping for the best. I got the basic gist of how to work it out from Ruth Clemens on her Pink whisk blog. You take your basic recipe and then measure the volume of water that the cake tin will hold. Now my Madeira cake recipe is for an 8″ cake but I find that the cake isn’t as deep as I’d like it to be. It usually only comes out about 3/4 of the depth of the tin, so I have been experimenting.
My goal was to have a cake that would rise to just above the rim of the cake tin so that I could skim off the top to make sure that it’s perfectly flat – ready for decorating. So I used my 8″ recipe in a 6″ tin and voila. Perfect result. So that was my base to work with.
I love Madeira cake. I mean REALLY love it. It’s part of my past. So when I was asked recently “How do you convert your Madeira cake recipe into a chocolate cake?” I thought it would be a great recipe to share with you all. I also still had the Morello Cherry and William Pear compote and Belgium chocolate ganache from Tesco’s to try out so they were a perfect fit!
This cake is really easy to make and is slightly firmer than my previous chocolate recipes, yet it’s still moist – making it a perfect foundation cake (as my mum would say). In other words it’s perfect for covering in sugarpaste for a celebration cake and the best thing is the fact that it doesn’t crumble like other chocolate cakes do. I do hate a crumbly cake, especially when you’re trying to get a crumb coating of buttercream on it!
Madeira cake recipe
(Makes an 8″ cake – 1 ½” deep) 75g butter at room temperature
75g margarine (Flora is best) at room temperature 200g caster sugar1 tea spoon vanilla essence3 eggs (large) 175 g plain flour
50g cocoa powder
1 ½ teasp of baking powder3 tbsp milk
Line an 8″ cake tin with silicon paper and pre-heat your oven to 180ºC (160ºC fan).
Blend the butter, margarine and sugar together until light and fluffy, then add the eggs slowly until they’re really well mixed in.
In a separate bowl weigh out the flour, cocoa and baking powder. Mix them so that you have a light brown dry mixture. This will prevent you having any cocoa lumps in the mix. Sieve into the butter and sugar mix and blend.
Add the vanilla essence and milk and mix well.
Pour the cake mix into the tin and smooth with the back of a metal spoon. Bake for 45 minutes in the centre of the oven. The cake is ready when you can smell that delicious chocolate cake aroma filling your kitchen. The cake will come away from the sides of the tin and a skewer will come out clean when inserted into the middle of the cake.
Leave to cool on a wire rack
When completely cool cut into two halves and fill with compote/ buttercream /jam. I loved the Tesco’s compote. It would be great for making a black forest gateau.
Cover the top of the cake with a dusting of icing sugar or a really decadent chocolate ganache (if you want a ganache recipe you can find mine on this post)
I re-heated the Tesco ganache in a saucepan and poured it all over the cake till it just dribbled down. There was a little left over which Tim said could not be wasted! He scooped it up with a spoon. I then placed the finished cake on the kitchen table to cool. Actually, it was to bribe the girls to do their homework before the Sunday evening witching hour! No homework. No cake!