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Vanilla Heart Tea Cakes

14 JUNE 2012

Dish type: Canapes

Makes 12 small cakes
Prep time: 30-45 minutes
Cook time: 50-60 minutes

Ingredients:

• 250ml/9fl oz/1 cup yoghurt
• 250ml/9fl oz/1 cup sunflower oil
• 450g/1lb/3⁄3 cups self-raising (self-rising) flour
• 450g/1lb/2 cups castor (superfine) sugar
• 4 eggs
• 1 vanilla pod (bean), cut lengthwise down the middle and scraped
• 2 tablespoons smooth apricot jam
• cornflour (cornstarch) for dusting
• 300g/10oz white sugar paste (rolled fondant) icing
• 12 small white sugar-paste (fondant) flowers

VANILLA CREAM

•250g/9 oz/1 cup cream cheese
• 30g/1 oz/  cup icing (powdered) sugar
• vanilla pod (bean), cut lengthwise down the middle and scraped

ROYAL ICING

500g/1lb 2oz/4 cups icing (powdered) sugar • 3 large (extra-large) egg whites

Method:

Preheat the oven to 180˚C/350˚F/Gas Mark 4 and line a 22cm/8-inch square cake tin (pan) with baking (parchment) paper. Combine the yoghurt, oil, flour, castor sugar, eggs and seeds from 1 vanilla pod in a large bowl and mix well with electric beaters. Pour the mixture into the tin and bake for 50 minutes to 1 hour until a skewer (toothpick) inserted comes out clean. Allow to cool. Trim the top side of the cake to make a flat surface and turn it over so that the bottom of the cake is facing upwards. Spread with a thin layer of smooth apricot jam.

Dust a flat, clean work surface with cornflour and roll out the sugar-paste icing to about 2mm/8 inch thick. Place the rolled-out sugar paste over the cake and trim the edges. Use a heart-shaped cookie cutter to cut 12 small heart-shaped cakes and cut each heart through the middle sideways.

To make the vanilla-cream filling, combine the cream cheese, icing sugar and seeds from vanilla pod in a bowl and mix well. Sandwich pairs of the heart-shaped cakes together again with the vanilla cream; the one with the sugar paste must be on top.

For the royal icing, combine the icing sugar and egg whites in a bowl and whisk until you have a smooth paste. Drizzle the icing over the cakes and top each one with a sugar paste flower.

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