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Mondrian Battenberg Cake

Introduction & method

I've always liked Battenberg cake - squares of sponge held together with jam and all wrapped in marzipan. But the colours, yellow and pink, well, not a good combination at all. So I decided to make a version based on the paintings of Piet Mondrian.

Mondrian Battenberg Cake Recipe


If you can get shop-bought marzipan, use that, otherwise it's quite easy to make your own. Mix the caster sugar and ground almonds together, then stir in the egg white. The mixture will be a stiff paste, and you may need to loosen it with a splash of water. But be careful, too much water will make the marzipan too sticky and unusable. Wrap the marzipan in plastic film and keep it in the fridge until you need it.


Pre-heat the oven to 190°C (374°F). Cream the sugar and butter together. Stir in the flour and eggs. Divide the mixture into two equal halves, and then divide one of the halves into three equal parts. Stir a tiny amount of the different food colourings into each third.

Line a loaf tin with greaseproof paper and spoon in the uncoloured batter. Smooth the top of it with a palette knife. Take a second loaf tin, and cut two pieces of thin card to act as dividers. Wrap them in greaseproof paper (see the video if this makes no sense to you!). Spoon the different coloured batters into each compartment.

Put both loaf tins into the oven and bake for 25 minutes. Do not open the oven during this time. When the sponges are done (a skewer inserted into the centre should come out dry), switch off the oven, leave the door ajar and let the sponges slowly cool down.


When the sponges are completely cool, slice off the crusts and carefully cut the sponges into the sizes required by your design. Spread the top and sides (but not the ends) of each piece with jam. Assemble your block of sponges. Calculate the size of marzipan sheet required to wrap the sides (not the ends) of the cake. It will be two times the breadth plus two times the height plus an extra 2cm (1 inch) to form an overlap. Cut the width of the marzipan to the width of the cake plus 1cm (half an inch). Smother the marzipan with jam, leaving a 2cm margin at one end for the overlap.

Place the block of sponges upside down near the centre of the marzipan strip. Carefully lift one end of the marzipan up the side and over onto the top. Moisten the unjammed overlap margin with a little water. Lift the marzipan up and over and gently press the edge down to form a seam.

Refrigerate the cake for half an hour or so, and trim any overhanging marzipan from the edges. Congratulations, your cake is finished!


The video above is from the Keef Cooks YouTube channel. Click here to see the video recipe of Mondrian Battenberg Cake on YouTube.

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Ingredients & Info

 200 grams ground almonds
 200 grams caster sugar
 1 egg white
 1 splash water
 250 grams self-raising flour
 250 grams white sugar
 250 grams unsalted butter
 4 eggs


Red, blue and yellow food colouring. Some smooth, dark-coloured jam such as blueberry or cherry.

US Customary/Imperial

Makes 1 cake
Prep time: 1 hour.
Chilling time: 30 minutes.
Cooking time: 25 minutes.
Total time: 1 hour 55 minutes.