Winter berry cake with mascarpone & passionfruit

Winter berry cake with mascarpone & passionfruit

Winter berry cake with mascarpone & passionfruit

It was time for afternoon tea at the gorgeous Mowani Mountain Camp in Damaraland, Namibia. The tea and coffee station was set up, probably a jar of rusks that I didn’t pay too much attention to, and a glistening cake beneath a glass cloche.

We were about to head out for an afternoon game safari, with 20-or-so minutes to spare.

Fancy a piece of cake?

In we went for a closer look, lifted the cloche and were hit with the sweet smell of passionfruit and creamy frosting. The cake was pre-cut, so one slice would do us. I guess we were sharing the cake with other guests.

Winter berry cake with mascarpone & passionfruit

The first bite was enough to win us over. It was amazingly moist, a bit dense, yet light at the same time. And that frosting. No oily buttercream or fluffy whipped cream. Instead a mixture of mascarpone and cream cheese – so it’s sweet, thick, creamy and a tad sour.

I simply had to get the recipe. I asked one of the friendly guys that manned the floor, he asked the chef and a print-out of the recipe was given to me the following day.

The recipe calls for 400 g of blueberries, but seeing I only had half that quantity when I made it at home, I made up the other half with raspberries. In comparison to the one we tried, there were a lot more berries in my version. Had the chef used half the quantity the recipe called for? It seemed that way. Perhaps frozen blueberries come at a premium price in Namibia?

This one is a lot more moist than the Namibian original – it’s still a beautiful cake, but I find it’s best eaten the same day and at room temperature. Keeping it in the fridge makes the cake very dense, so a gentle warming is needed if it does end up in the chiller.

Next time I’ll cut the quantity of berries to 300 g, or maybe just stick to blueberries.

Winter berry cake with mascarpone & passionfruit

 

Print Recipe
Winter berry cake with mascarpone & passionfruit
A berry cake recipe from the Mowani Mountain Camp in Namibia.
Course Dessert
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Cake
Icing
Course Dessert
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Cake
Icing
Instructions
Cake
  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C. Grease and line a 20 cm cake tin.
  2. Cream the butter and sugar until thick and light. Add one egg at a time, whisking well between each addition. Whisk in the vanilla.
  3. Sift or aerate the dry ingredients - you can do this by whisking them together. Alternately fold the dry ingredients and milk into the butter mixture.
  4. Coat the berries in a little flour, shaking off any excess flour. This prevents them from sinking to the bottom of the cake.
  5. Gently fold the berries into the cake batter. Pour the batter into the prepared cake tin, smooth the top and reduce the oven temperature to 160°C. Bake for 60-80 minutes, or until a skewer comes out clean when tested.
  6. Set aside to cool before removing from the tin.
Icing
  1. Combine the mascarpone, cream cheese and icing sugar using a wooden spoon. Spread the icing over the cake, dribble over the passionfruit pulp and scatter over the blueberries. Serve cool or at room temperature.
Recipe Notes

Try cutting the quantity of berries to 300 g, or maybe just stick to blueberries, as the cake can get a bit too wet.

Share this Recipe
  • John, I am so glad to see your trip to Namibia wasn’t fruitless. (Yes, pun intended…) I have never had passion fruit – the seeds kind of put me off a bit. I may be over that after seeing your cake. Now I cannot decide whether to make this or the Damen Kapric for my friend’s birthday.

  • Yum. And isn’t it traditional for chefs to throw in a curler when it comes to passing on recipes? Heh.

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