First sift the all-purpose flour with the baking powder and salt in a mixing bowl or pan.
Keep everything ready as you have to be quick enough to mix the batter.
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius (375 degrees Fahrenheit) for 15 to 20 minutes.
Grease a 7.5 to 8 inches round pan with butter or a neutral tasting oil.
You can also choose to line the baking pan with parchment and then grease it with oil or butter.
Take slightly more than a ½ cup of butter and melt it in a small pan on stovetop or microwave it in a bowl. Simply melt the butter. No need to heat it.
You need to get about ½ cup of melted butter. So measure the melted butter in a ½ cup measuring cup. Set aside.
Mixing wet ingredients
In another bowl take sugar, curd (whisked), apple cider vinegar and vanilla extract. Add water.
First beat the curd separately in a bowl and then add to the other wet ingredients as this helps it to mix evenly without having any tiny lumps.
Whisk briskly till all of the sugar is dissolved and the curd gets evenly mixed.
Add the baking soda to this wet liquid mixture
Stir until the baking soda is mixed evenly. The baking soda will cause some bubbling in this wet liquid mixture.
Making cake batter
Add the liquid mixture and melted butter to the dry sifted ingredients.
Mix very well with a wired whisk. Break apart any lumps by tapping on them with the whisk, but be carefully to not over-mix the batter.
Pour the batter in the greased baking pan.
Tap the pan on the countertop a few times so that extra air bubbles are released. You do not need to even the batter with a spatula. The batter spreads on its own.
Baking eggless vanilla cake
Place the cake pan in the preheated oven on the middle rack.
Keep the heating in both the bottom and top elements of the oven on if you are using an OTG or regular oven.
Bake the cake at 180 degrees Celsius (375 degrees Fahrenheit) for 30 to 35 minutes or until the top crust is golden. Check the doneness of the cake with a bamboo skewer. It should be clean with no sticky batter.
While baking, If the vanilla cake browns too quickly on the top, then cover the top with an aluminium foil or butter paper.
Place the pan on a wired tray or rack and let the cake cool to room temperature.
Once the eggless vanilla cake cools, you can serve it as it is or use the cake to make pastries or gateau.
Making jam glaze icing
Take ½ cup of any jam of your choice in a small skillet or pan. I have used homemade Strawberry Jam. Add tapioca starch or arrowroot flour or cornstarch, water and butter.
Place the pan on low heat and begin to mix the glaze ingredients.
Keep stirring until all of the ingredients have evenly combined.
Simmer on low heat until the glaze thickens, stirring often. Do not boil or cook the mixture too much. Set aside and allow the jam glaze to cool slightly, so that it is warm and not hot.
Frosting vanilla cake
When the eggless vanilla cake cools, remove it gently from the pan.
Place it on a board, tray or plate or a cake stand.
Place some of the jam icing on top and use a spatula to spread the glaze evenly on top and sides of the cake.
Sprinkle some unsweetened desiccated coconut on top. You can even spread it at the sides. Omit coconut, if you are not a fan of it.
Cover with a large steel bowl, taking care that the coconut and jam icing do not touch the bowl. Let the glaze cool completely and set. Later slice and serve. You can also keep in the refrigerate for 1 to 2 hours and then serve.
Note that the butter solidifies when cooled in the refrigerator. This make the texture of the cake slightly dense. So let the cake come to room temperature before serving. Or you can warm it lightly in your oven at 90 degrees celsius (195 degrees Fahrenheit) for some minutes.
Flour: I recommend that you use unbleached and/or organic flour. This recipe works well with both all-purpose flour as well as unbleached pastry flour.
Butter: Use a neutral oil in place of butter. For butter, use unsalted butter. In a pinch you can opt for salted butter, but omit adding that one pinch of salt in the recipe.
Jam: Any sweet jam works well for the glaze. My favorites are orange jam, mango jam, pineapple jam and of course strawberry jam.
Vinegar: If you do not have apple cider vinegar, use white vinegar or swap vinegar with lemon juice.
Leavening ingredients: My recipe includes both baking powder and baking soda. They are not replaceable with each other. To get the best results, use the proportions mentioned in the recipe and make sure that they are fresh and within their shelf-life.
Sweetness: To make the vanilla cake less sweet, you can add ½ cup of sugar. You can also use jaggery, coconut sugar or palm sugar.
Baking and Storage Notes
Storage and reheating. Leftovers can be stored in the fridge for up to 4 days in a sealed container. When you refrigerate this cake, the butter in it solidifies and the cake becomes slightly dense. While serving, lightly warm the cake in your oven at 90 degrees celsius (195 degrees Fahrenheit) for some minutes.
Baking time: The baking time varies with oven types, temperatures inside the oven etc. So it can take less or more time for the cake to bake in your oven. Keep an eye on the cake as it bakes so that it does not brown too much.