For the cake
50g butter, softened
50g caster sugar
1 egg (at room temperature)
1 tsp vanilla extract
50g self-raising flour
50g strawberry jam
50ml double cream
½ tbsp icing sugar
Few drops of vanilla extract
9 shortcake biscuits
1 medium and 2 small strawberries
About 1 tsp freeze-dried strawberry pieces
Preheat the oven to 180C/gas mark 4. Grease and line a 10cm round, deep, loose-bottomed tin.
Beat the butter and sugar for five to 10 minutes.
Lightly beat the egg with the vanilla. Gradually add this to the butter mixture, beating well. Sift the flour into the mixture and fold in until just combined, then gently fold in a teaspoon of warm water. Scrape mix into the tin and level with a spatula.
Bake for 20-25 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Leave to cool for 10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack.
Use a long, serrated knife to slice the cake horizontally into two equal layers. You can level the top to create a flat surface but a slight dome is fine.
Place the bottom cake on a board. Spread a few teaspoons of jam over the surface. Place the other cake on top.
Whip the cream with the icing sugar and vanilla until it holds soft to medium peaks. Spoon on top of the cake and use a palette knife to create a slightly textured finish.
Spread some jam over the back of each shortcake biscuit to act as “glue”, leaving the top quarter uncovered. Avoid any lumps in the jam.
Press the biscuits around the side of the cake, with the un-jammed sections uppermost. There should be a few millimetres between each biscuit for cutting the cake.
Decorate with fresh and freeze-dried strawberries.