For the cake:
· 3 large eggs
· 1/4 cup butter + 1/2 tablespoon for greasing pan
· 1 cup flour
· 2 teaspoons baking powder
· 2/3 cup granulated white sugar
· 1/4 cup milk
For the rum syrup:
· 2/3 cup water
· 1 cup sugar
· 1/3 cup dark rum
· 3 cups sweetened cream
· fruit (candied or fresh) of your choice
1. Separate eggs into two mixing bowls.
2. Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C).
3. Grease 6 cup ring mold with butter.
4. Cut butter in four pieces, place in a small glass bowl, and melt it in the microwave. Be careful: butter melts quickly (about 30 seconds) and risks to explode if you don't give it a stir about half way through.
5. Sift flour with baking powder into another bowl or onto a sheet of baking paper.
6. Using a whisk, or an electric hand mixer with a whisk attachment, beat egg yolks with sugar until light colored - about 2 minutes.
7. Add sifted flour and baking powder, melted and cooled butter, and milk. Mix until well combined.
8. Using clean whisks, beat egg whites into stiff peaks. Stir 1/3 of the whites into the batter until fully combined. Carefully fold in the rest of the egg whites - takes about 20 folds.
9. Pour and spread the batter evenly into the greased mold. Bake at 350°F (180°C) for 25 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool for five minutes before turning out onto a serving plate.
While the cake is baking, prepare the rum syrup.
1. Mix water and sugar in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil on medium heat. Remove and cool 10 minutes. Stir in rum.
2. While the cake is still hot from the oven and cooling on the serving plate, prick it in 30 or so places with a skewer. Spoon the syrup onto the cake. It helps get the most syrup into the cake if you rest the full spoon on the cake and then turn it slowly.
3. Once all the syrup is gone from the pan, drain the unabsorbed syrup from the serving plate back into the pan and repeat the process. It may even take a third time, but eventually all of the syrup should be absorbed by the cake. Allow the cake to cool, then wrap and refrigerate until serving time.
To serve, fill the center of the cake with a mound of whipped cream and decorate with fruit.