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Courting Cake

This is a real summer treat and a good way of using up slightly bruised or over-ripe strawberries or making just a few go further. It was originally made in the North by young girls for their betrotheds, hence the name.

ingredients

makes 16 slices
225 g (8 oz) butter
225 g (8 oz) caster sugar
4 eggs, beaten
350 g (12 oz) self-raising flour
30 - 45 ml (2 - 3 tbsp) freshmilk
300 ml (10 floz) fresh double cream
225 g (8 oz) strawberries, sliced
icing sugar, to decorate

method

1. Grease and line the bases of three 18 cm (7 inch) round cake tins.

2. Cream the butter and the sugar together until pale and fluffy. Gradually add the eggs, a little at a time, beating well after each addition. Fold in the flour, then add enough milk to give a soft dropping consistency.

3. Divide the mixture evenly between the prepared tins and bake at 190°C (375°F) mark 5 for
25-30 minutes, until well risen and firm to the touch, swapping the position of the top and bottom cakes halfway through cooking. Turn out and leave to cool on a wire rack.

4. Whip the cream until it just holds its shape. Sandwich the cakes together with the cream and the strawberries, reserving a few for decoration. Dredge the top with icing sugar and decorate with the reserved strawberries.

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