Steamed Sponge with Mascarpone – Recipe

I'm going on a mini solo Asia trip soon to see family in Malaysia, a friend in Singapore and another friend in China. It also happens to be my friend's birthday when I go to China, which means of course I want to make a cake. One slight spanner in the works: he doesn't have an oven. So I've been working on my cake-steaming technique to prepare.

I decided to keep this simple, not even using an electric whisk and using a balloon whisk to whip the egg whites. It takes a bit longer, but it still works.

Using oil instead of butter makes this cake particularly light and moist, which is especially useful when you don't have an electric whisk to fluff things up.

Ready? Let's go.


2 eggs, separated
2 tbsp caster sugar
100ml olive oil
150g more caster sugar
150g self raising flour
100ml milk
1 tsp vanilla
Pinch of salt

For Topping:

150g mascarpone
100ml double cream
3 tbsp caster sugar
1 tsp vanilla bean paste


1. Whisk the egg whites until they form stiff peaks, and whisk in the 2 tbsp sugar.

2. In another bowl, whisk the other ingredients together. Gently fold in the egg whites.

3. Grease and line an 8" round baking tin. and pour in the mixture. Pour a little water into a large wok, place on a small steaming rack stand on the bottom and place the cake tin on top (make sure it isn't touching the water). Cover and steam for about 40 minutes, or until the cake springs back when you poke it. Let it cool completely.

4. Whisk the topping ingredients together and spread on top of the cooled cake once removed from the tin. Serve with raspberry coulis and some berries if you like.

Enjoy, and have fun!


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