There’s butter cake, and there’s really old fashioned butter cake. The kind that uses only a few ingredients to give that fragrant yummy butter cake.
Because there are essentially only 5 ingredients in this butter cake recipe, the quality of the ingredients really shine through. So if you’ve been thinking of how to use that top quality butter for President or Elle and Vire, this recipe is it.
And if you can get your hands on fresh vanilla bean pods, go for it! Otherwise, Nielssen and Massey Vanilla Paste or Essence work well too. Just try not to use the synthetic vanilla essence if possible. You will not regret investing in good vanilla essence.
This recipe calls for salted butter and self-raising flour. I know some of you would prefer to use unsalted butter and plain flour and control the amount of salt and raising agents yourself. Go ahead and use your own proportions for these, if that’s the case. It shouldn’t affect the taste much.
I’ve been baking this butter cake since I learnt the recipe from an article in The Straits Times a few years ago. It’s the secret recipe of a loving grandmother who had been making it for forever. I modified it slightly to reduce the number of eggs used.
I make it so often, and really, it’s so simple, that I can bake this butter cake without having to refer to any written recipe.
And although it’s really quite easy to buy ready-made butter cakes, nothing beats knowing exactly what goes into your food, and the squeals from the kids when they catch wafts of the butter cake baking in the oven is truly priceless.
I’ve shared this with many friends who asked for it after trying the butter cake.
My friend M’s daughter even told her that she should start selling butter cakes after tasting them for the first time.
This recipe makes 3 small loaves of butter cake. The loaf pans I used measure 8.5cm by 19cm and the cakes end up being about 5cm 6-7cm high.
Here’s my really old-fashioned butter cake recipe. I hope you make it soon, and let me know how it turns out.
Important: I think the secret to this recipe is the low temperature that the cake is baked at. Baked at only 145 degrees Celsius (or 290 degrees fahrenheit), you may be tempted to crank up the temperature in order to bake it faster. Don’t. The tender texture of the cake is the result of baking it at this low temperature over a longer time.
- 250gm good quality salted butter
- 1 cup (180gm) caster sugar (or reduce slightly if you don’t want it too sweet)
- 5 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup (150gm) self-raising flour
- Soften butter to room temperature.
- Cream butter and sugar in an electric mixer at medium till the mixture is pale and all sugar is combined. Scrape down as necessary. This should take about 3-5 minutes
- Add in 1 egg at a time and mix thoroughly after each addition at low speed.
- After all eggs have been beaten in, add in vanilla extract.
- At this point, your mixture will look really wet and you may wonder how it’s going to hold together. Have faith and add the flour at this point. Remember to turn the mixer at low speed first to avoid a flour-in-face situation.
- Mix for another 2 minutes at low speed to ensure all ingredients are well combined.
- Pour batter into prepared loaf pans (either spray with non-stick spray or line with baking paper, or both).
- Bake at 145 degrees Celsius for about 45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the cakes come out clean.
- Try to eat the cakes within 1-2 days (they shouldn’t last that long). Otherwise, you can keep them in an airtight container, store in the fridge for up to 1 week. Do remember to warm up the cake before eating.