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Zesty Lime Cake with Italian Chilli Meringue Frosting

This zesty, spicy show-stopping sponge will surprise and delight your tastebuds.

Zesty Lime Cake with Italian Chilli Meringue Frosting

Serves 10-12

Cake

250g unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup caster sugar
1½ tbsp lime zest
4 large eggs
2 tsp vanilla bean paste
3 cups self-raising flour
1 cup buttermilk
¼ cup lime juice

Lime Syrup

¾ cup lime juice
¾ cup caster sugar

Italian Meringue

1½ cups caster sugar
¼ cup water
3 bird’s-eye chillies, halved
4 egg whites, at room temperature
Pinch cream of tartar

To make cake, preheat oven to 160˚C. Grease and line base and sides of a 20cm round cake tin. With an electric beater, beat butter, sugar and zest until pale and creamy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.

Beat in vanilla. Transfer to a bowl. Fold in sifted flour and combined buttermilk and lime juice in 3 batches. Spoon into prepared tin. Cook in preheated oven for 1 hour 15 minutes, or until a skewer comes out clean.

Meanwhile, to make syrup, place juice and sugar in a small saucepan. Stir over low heat until sugar dissolves. Bring to boil. Gentle boil for 10 to 15 minutes, or until slightly thickened.

Pierce hot cake all over with a skewer. Spoon over syrup. Cool completely in tin then turn onto a serving plate.

To make meringue, stir sugar, water and chillies in a small saucepan over a low heat until sugar dissolves. Increase heat to medium-high. Cook, without stirring, for 7 to 8 minutes or until mixture reaches 120˚C, brushing sides of pan with a wet pastry brush to avoid crystals forming.
Remove chillies.

Meanwhile, beat egg whites and cream of tartar in a large bowl until soft peaks form. Gradually add hot syrup to egg whites, beating on a medium speed. Increase speed and beat for 10 to 15 minutes or until thick and glossy. Spread meringue over cake.

SMART TIP: A blow torch can be used to caramelise meringue

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