Tray bake jam slices

What is a tray bake?  It is a cake baked in a tray and then cut into slices.  I love making tray bakes. It is mostly straightforward and usually tastes delicious. Also an easy way to bake far more than you need in one go!

The other day I went through my recipe books looking for something to bake. I have a good selection of cookbooks and actually recently changed the shelf on which they are housed. The old shelf was having trouble holding all those books. Have a look: shelf for cookbooks before   shelf for cookbooks

Such a small change, but so much better!

But back to the tray bake.  From the recipe book by Herman Lensing, Huiskos, Nostalgie is die beste geurmiddel (Home Cooking, Food that connects with your soul), I once again (as in this blog post) took some inspiration and went with this recipe in his book: Inez se konfytvierkante (Jam squares by Inez).

This is a recipe of Cape Town food lover and food writer, Errieda du Toit’s mom, Inez. In the last part of Herman’s recipe book, he shares 13 delicious recipes from his friends. He explains that when his own mom passed away, he wanted to say goodbye to her while cooking with some of his friends and in that way also celebrated some other mothers. Herman calls Errieda his food-mom because she taught him how to write about food.

Here is  the recipe for Inez’s Jam Squares:


  • 2 eggs
  • 210 g (250ml) castor sugar
  • 230g (250ml) butter at room temperature
  • 560g (1000ml) flour
  • 20 ml baking powder
  • pinch of salt
  • 5 ml vanilla essence
  • 400 g jam (apricot, raspberry, blueberry or plum jam)
  • icing sugar for decoration 


  • Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F).
  • Line a baking tin (20 by 25 cm and 1.5cm high) with baking parchment and grease or spray with non-stick cooking spray.
  • Whisk the eggs, sugar and butter until creamy.
  • Add the dry ingredients and the vanilla and mix until you have a stiff dough.
  • Divide the dough in two halves and put one half in the fridge for 30 minutes.
  • Press the other half of the dough evenly into the prepared baking tin. Prick the dough a few times with a fork.
  • Spread the jam in a thin, evenly layer on top of the dough. (I used a variety of jams.)
  • Grate the rest of the dough on top of the jam layer and spread equally.
  • Bake in the oven for about 30 minutes or until the top of the cake turns light brown.
  • Cut into squares or fingers while still warm and let them cool down in the baking tin.
  • Sift some icing sugar over and enjoy with a cuppa!

       Happy baking!

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