Madeira cakes in all sizes!

I have had a request for a scaled up version of my madeira cake recipe for a wedding cake. The texture of madeira cake is firm enough to cope with ornate icing which makes it a good choice for wedding cakes. However, you do have to remember that it does not keep like a fruit cake. You cannot make the cakes a long way in advance and don’t expect to be able to keep a tier for the christening in the old tradition: it will not keep.

Since wedding cakes tend to come in tiers, I’ve put together a set of figures for a whole range of tin sizes. I haven’t made anything as huge as the big ones myself, so I can’t swear to their failsafe-ness but the figures are accurately scaled up. If you are making a cake for anything important I would always urge you to have a dry run to make sure that everything works properly.

Choose either the metric or the imperial measurements, but don’t mix them up. For measuring small quantities in mls, use metric measuring spoons: 1 tsp = 5 mls. A random teaspoon out of the cutlery drawer may well not be anywhere near this.

The first set of measurements are in metric:

8”/20cm round 7” square 9”/23cm round 8”/20cm square 10”/ 25.5cm round 9”/23cm square 11”/28cm round 10”/25.5cm square 12”/30cm round 11”/28cm square
Tomor (softened) g 175 175 225 230 280 290 340 355 395 430
caster sugar g 175 175 225 230 280 290 340 355 395 430
eggs 3 3 4 4 4 large 5 5 large 6 6 large 7 large
plain flour (sifted) g 225 225 290 295 350 375 440 460 510 550
soya milk ml 30 30 35 40 45 50 60 65 70 75
baking powder ml 7.5 7.5 10 10 12.5 12.5 15 15 17.5 17.5
grated rind of lemon 1 1 1 large 1 large 1.5 1.5 2 2 2.25 2.5
vanilla essence ml 10 10 12.5 12.5 15 15 17.5 20 22.5 22.5

And in Imperial:

8”/20cm round 7” square 9”/23cm round 8”/20cm square 10”/ 25.5cm round 9”/23cm square 11”/28cm round 10”/25.5cm square 12”/30cm round 11”/28cm square
Tomor (softened) oz 6 6 7.5 8 9 10 11.5 12 13.5 15
caster sugar oz 6 6 7.5 8 9 10 11.5 12 13.5 15
eggs 3 3 4 4 4 large 5 5 large 6 6 large 7 large
plain flour (sifted) oz 8 8 10 10.5 12.5 13.5 15.5 16 1lb 2oz 1lb 4oz
soya milk tbsp 2 2 2.5 2.75 3 3.5 3.75 4 4.5 5
baking powder tsp 1.5 1.5 2 2 2.5 2.5 3 3 3.5 3.5
grated rind of lemon 1 1 1 large 1 large 1.5 1.5 1.5 large 2 2 2.5
vanilla essence tsp 2 2 2.5 2.5 3 3 3.5 4 4.5 5

All the instructions are in the main madeira cake post. With the larger ones you may have to extend the baking time a little, but it’s not by as much as you might think as the depth of the cake is the same so the heat reaches the middle in pretty much the same time. As usual, use the gentle pressure of fingers to test the cake and you can always use a  skewer to test the centre if you wish.

One I did for my daughter’s birthday:

A celebratory madeira cake

A celebratory madeira cake

13 comments to Madeira cakes in all sizes!

  • dawn

    sorry for my ignorance but what is tomor

  • Atomjack

    Tomor is a hard margarine. There’s more details on our dairy-free spread review page. If you can’t find Tomor, any hard dairy-free margarine would do.

  • garf

    hello how long will one of these cakes remain fresh?
    g j v .uk no spaces 😉

  • It stays really good for three to four days when iced. You have to seal it in when you ice it as that helps to keep it fresh. If you make it one afternoon and ice it the next morning, you get the balance between allowing the cake to cool completely before icing it (very important) and getting it sealed in before it can start to go stale.

  • Helen

    Can I just replace the marge with butter for dairy cake?

  • Hi Helen,
    Sorry about the delay in replying. I’ve been away. You can indeed replace the marg with butter. However, you’ll probably need to adjust the amount of milk you add as the water content of the dairy-free stuff isn’t the same as butter. Test the texture and just add a little more or less milk as needed. Good luck! Sian

  • Helen Andrews

    On the10” what quantities would you use to make into chocolate cake

  • Hi Helen,
    I made a 10” round chocolate one only a couple of weeks ago and I replaced 1 1/2 oz of the flour with cocoa powder. The result rose v well & the flavour was good and chocolatey.

    Good luck.

  • Lynne

    Can you please tell me the quantities needed for a 12 inch square cake?

    With thanks,

  • Hi Lynne,
    I’m on it. I’ll have to do the sums & get back to you, with luck, later this morning.

  • Hi Lynne,

    Sorry to have taken a while: I wanted to double check my quantities as this is a HUGE cake and the figures start to look very big indeed! I have to stress that I’ve never made anything quite this big. Since putting up the original post, I have made a 10″ square and a 12″ round and they both worked just fine, so I’ve scaled up again on exactly the same principle for this one.
    You’re going to need a very large mixer to be able to mix all of this at once. If you don’t have anything that size, I think I would probably mix half of it, tip it into a large bowl, mix the other half and then quickly, but gently blend the two batches together before putting the whole thing into the tin.

    With a cake of this size, it can be a good idea to treat the tin like you would for a Christmas fruit cake and wrap newspaper around it, tied on with non-plastic string to insulate the edges a little. I’d go for cutting strips twice the height of the tin, fold in half and tie round. This should mean that the edges don’t burn in the time it will take for the middle to be cooked. I think you’re probably looking at about 2 hrs cooking time, but I’d be checking it from about 1hr 40, especially if cakes in your oven are usually baked in the minimum baking time in a recipe.

    Here are the quantities (remember that everything needs to be at room temperature):
    500g Tomor
    500g caster sugar
    9 eggs
    650g plain flour, sifted
    6 tbsp soya (or other non-dairy milk) approx – always add a little at a time until you have a smooth dropping consistency
    4 1/2 tsp baking powder
    zest of 3 lemons
    6tsp vanilla extract (I use the liquid sort not the sticky one, as that has lots of sugar in it and I find it alters the balance of the flavour)

    The cake might need a little longer in the tin before you turn it out. The size can make them vulnerable if you turn them out too soon, so I’d probably leave it about 15 mins, but you can’t afford to leave it in there too long or it will start to go soggy on the bottom because of the condensation. It might well be a four-handed job!

    I hope all this helps. I wish you the very best of luck and I hope the celebration which this must be for goes well. Let me know how you get on!

    Best wishes,

  • Lynne

    Thank you so much for this Sian. I use a Kenwood Titanium Major so I hope it will be large enough. I’m having enormous trouble tracking down Tomor or any block margarine that doesn’t contain dairy. Is it OK to use something like “Pure”, or Flora? Both made with sunflower oil.

    Thank you so much for your help,

    Best wishes,

  • Hi Lynne,

    I know how you feel about tracking down Tomor! It’s sometimes available in Sainsbury’s, otherwise your nearest synagogue will probably have a shop which will definitely sell it as it’s kosher. (I have to put in orders with my mum to get it for me as we don’t have one near us!) Pure and other dairyfree spreads will indeed work, but you’ll need to be more cautious with the “milk” as the water content in the spreads is a good deal higher and they make the mix softer than a hard marg does. I’ve used Pure and it’s worked fine with slightly reduced “milk”. You still need the spread at room temperature to get the best blend.

    All the best,

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