I have been rather remiss in posting this past few weeks. If you noticed, the last post didn’t have any pictures and the previous one on Levain Boulangerie consisted of photographs taken way back during Vesak. The ironic thing is that although I’ve been baking rather diligently the past few weeks (for a colleague who is my first huge (and paying) customer), I’ve been way too lazy to whip out the camera to take photographs. And usually when I’m done baking, it’s evening or night, so that means lousy pictures.
Anyway, I had high hopes for this sponge cake, because it appeared rather highly raved, and one blogger even wrote “不珍藏一辈子后悔”. BUT I was disappointed because it turned out to be a rather ‘rough’ sponge cake, although it baked up pretty high. And to make things worse, this was supposed to be my ‘birthday’ cake, because I wanted to commemorate my birthday with a nice pink cake. So to say that I was VERY disappointed would be an understatement. One thing’s for sure, I’m definitely sticking to my usual sponge cake recipe until I find a better alternative. And to think of it now, I’m definitely going to bake another nice cake as my replacement birthday cake, hopefully soon because it’s been way too hot these few days to fire up the oven and I’ve been resorting to cool treats like froyo for my sweet fix.
So why post something that I’m not too satisfied with? Well, I had thought I decorated the cake quite nicely on the outside and it would be a waste not to post the photographs up, especially since I had carted out my cake stand and other props to take photos. (Although on hindsight, I realized that the camera did catch a great number of flaws on the frosting which I was not too aware of at first glance).

I first got an idea for this cake when I saw Yossy’s beautiful pink ombré cake here, way back at the start of the year (on pinterest I think), then I saw it again on Lisa’s blog – this time a purple version. Alas, as with many other wonderful pages/ideas that I bookmark, they get pushed back in the queue and I forget about them. It was only in late May that I got reminded by Steph (who has crazy beautiful ideas on her blog) about the ombré cake that I wanted to make. And yes, if you can’t tell, I am a fan of ombré. I’ve always had this fascination for gradients, so it’s of no surprise that ombré cakes are on my to-do list. (I’m also a fan of the ombré hair color trend, considering that I just highlighted my hair a few shades of gold and brown ;p) I’ve made cakes in both pink and green, but this is way easier since it’s just a matter of tweaking the frosting – très simple!


Sponge Cake 
Adapted from Huan’s Sweets
Makes a 18cm sponge cake
150g eggs (about 3 large eggs)
110g castor sugar
100g all-purpose flour
26g butter
40g milk
  1. In a metal mixing bowl over a bain marie, add in the whole eggs and castor sugar and whisk until the mixture reaches about 40°C. Remove from the bain marie and using a mixer, beat the egg-sugar mixture on medium-high speed until you get almost stiff peaks. The mixture should take about 20-30 seconds to disappear into itself. Following that, reduce the speed to low and beat for 15 seconds. This is to ensure that the air bubbles in the mixture are not overly large. 
  2. Then, heat the butter and milk until the butter is melted, and allow it to cool to about 40°C.
  3. Sift the all-purpose flour into the egg mixture and gently fold the flour such that the egg mixture does not over-deflate. Once all the flour has been folded in, add in the cooled butter-milk mixture and continue to fold gently until it is fully incorporated. Pour the batter into a lined and greased cake tin, and make sure to rap the cake tin against the counter a couple of times to ensure there are no huge air bubbles in the batter. 
  4. Bake the cake in a preheated oven at about 160°C (fan-forced) for about 25-30 minutes. Allow the cake to cool on the counter for at least 15 minutes before releasing from the cake tin. 

As for the other parts of the cake:

I skipped on the sugar syrup (although I think this would have greatly helped the dry cake) and used the stabilized whipped cream from my strawberry shortcake recipe, but added a couple drops of natural red coloring to get the desired shades of pink. I also added fresh strawberries in the middle cream layer.

Janine’s jots: 
  • Taste: Sponge was sufficiently sweet, although the egg smell was very prominent because no vanilla was added.
  • Texture: Like I said, I was not a fan of the cake. I found the texture way too rough for a sponge cake, although it was fluffy.
  • Storage: The cake stores pretty well in the fridge – it lasted about a week, but if you didn’t add sugar syrup to the sponge layers, beware that the cake will be VERY dry.
  • Would I make this again?: Unlikely for the cake, although the ombré is definitely something I’ll repeat because it’s so simple to achieve but the results look fantastic!


  1. Wow, look sweet and lovely, i like the ombre too..

  2. Shu Han says:

    that is gorgeous! I love the shot of the cut cake, the little strawberries sandwiched in between the layers!

  3. lena says:

    happy belated birthday, janine! sorry to hear about the cake but still it looks very pretty the different colour tones that you did, yeah i remember that stawberry cake that you did for your mum’s birthday too, that looks very beautiful too!

  4. Michele Soon says:

    It’s a lovely cake Janine. Happy belated birthday and hope you had a great one!

  5. Lala says:

    Sounds like it didn’t turn out as hoped for… Hope u had happier things to look forward for ur birthday The color gradient is nice, and overall still looks very appetising

  6. The shades of pink is very beautiful !! And yes, happy belated birthday !! The cake looks lovely !

  7. Happy Belated Birthday, Janine! Your cake looks beautiful, with such a nice sweet pink! Too bad the cake is out of your expectation, but you have made a good job with the deco. It looks lovely!

  8. MaryMoh says:

    Happy belated birthday! Hope you had a most fabulous day. Love your cake esp the icing. Love that different shades of pink…..beautiful. Hope you have more fun baking and cooking. And remember, the pictures, too 😀 MaryMoh at http://www.keeplearningkeepsmiling.com

  9. Zoe says:

    What a sweet-looking cake! Sad that it is a rough kind of sponge cake 🙁

  10. I never made layered cake and this looks so pretty!! I especially love the graduation of pink color on the side. Just gorgeous!

  11. Shirley Tay says:

    Gosh, I love anything PINK! Happy belated bday! I can’t bake so this is perfect enough 🙂

  12. A very sweet looking cake! Is it really that easy? :p I need to try this out one day……:)

  13. This is so girly and pretty!

  14. It’s a pity hearing about your sponge, but I think your cake is overall very beautifully done. I’m so loving the exterior of the cake! Will definitely try icing a cake like this one day… 🙂

  15. Happy Belated Birthday!! It looks so sweet with the pink frosting although it didn’t turn out as what you expected. 😉 Hope you will find one great recipe soon.

  16. what a simple yet beautiful cake. the sponge looks good! nice shading of white/pink part of the icing too.

  17. Anh says:

    so pretty! What a wonderful cake.

  18. Happy Belated Birthday:D Hope you had a great day. Lovely sponge cake.

  19. Amelia says:

    Hi Janine, happy belated birthday.

    Your cake look so delicious, love the texture it look so good.

    Have a nice day, regards.

  20. Amelia says:

    Hi Janine, happy belated birthday.

    Your cake look so delicious, love the texture it look so good.

    Have a nice day, regards.

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