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Blackberry and Brown Sugar Cake

Blackberry and Brown Sugar Cake

Brought to you by: OcadoLife
    8 serving

Prep time:

Cook time:

Serves: 8

A fairly simple, but very effective cake that uses blackberries for a lovely autumnal flavour. The cake itself is a typical sponge, but uses brown sugar to add a hint of caramel. For the topping, you need to prepare a jam, so you might find it easier to make that the night before. This recipe uses blackberries for the jam, but you can use gooseberries, which turn a lovely pink shade in the pan. The cake was created by Flora Shedden, the Scottish baker, author and youngest-ever Bake Off finalist, who describes herself as spending most of her time being surrounded by flour and flowers. The cream and yoghurt topping make the cake well suited for serving as a dessert, as well as for afternoon tea.

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  • 250g unsalted butter, softened, plus extra for greasing
  • 250g light brown sugar
  • 250g self-raising flour
  • 1 vanilla bean paste
  • 5 large eggs
  • 125g blackberries
  • 125g caster sugar, plus an extra 20g to sweeten the cream (optional)
  • 150g double cream
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 50g greek yoghurt
  • 25g flaked almonds, toasted


Step 1

Preheat the oven to 190°C/170°C fan/gas 5. Grease a 20cm loose-bottomed cake tin with butter and line with baking paper. Pop a freezer-/heat-safe plate in the freezer (you’ll need this when making the jam).

Step 2

Using either a freestanding mixer with a whisk attachment or an electric hand mixer, beat the butter and brown sugar together until light and fluffy. Add the flour, eggs and vanilla bean paste; whisk briefly, until combined. Don’t overmix, or you might end up with a tough texture. Spoon the batter into the prepared tin and level out the top. Bake for 50 mins-1 hr, or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Leave to cool in the tin for 5 mins or so, then turn out onto a wire rack and leave to cool completely.

Step 3

Meanwhile, start on the jam. Heat the blackberries in a large pan with a small splash of boiling water. Once softened, add the 125g caster sugar. Cook over a medium heat, stirring often to prevent sticking. Once it has been bubbling for 10-15 mins (or has reached 104°C on a jam thermometer), see if it’s ready by doing the wrinkle test: take the plate out of the freezer, spoon on a little jam and allow to cool for a couple of mins, then poke the jam with your finger; if it starts to wrinkle, it’s ready (you want a slightly runny-set jam for this). Remove the pan from the heat and set aside for the jam to cool fully. You can make the jam a day in advance, if you like; store in a bowl in the fridge overnight.

Step 4

To assemble, place the cake on a serving dish; if it has a domed surface, carefully slice the top off to level it (enjoy this piece as a chef’s treat!). Use an electric hand mixer to whisk the cream, vanilla and 20g caster sugar, if using, to stiff peaks. Don’t overwhip – it might turn grainy. When the cream holds its shape, whisk in the yoghurt.

Step 5

Spoon the mixture onto the cake, creating swirls and dips. Spoon the cooled jam into these swirls and allow a little to drip over the edge. Finish with a sprinkle of flaked almonds. Enjoy straight away, or keep cool until serving. This is best eaten on the day it’s assembled, but it can be stored in the fridge for up to 2 days.

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