Burnt Sugar: Prepare burnt sugar by placing 1/2 a cup white sugar into a heavy frypan over medium high heat stirring constantly with a wooden spoon as sugar melts. When it becomes very dark brown remove from heat then add hot water very slowly and stir until dissolved. Set aside to cool.
Cake: Preheat oven to 180 degrees C. Line two round cake tins with baking paper.
Sift the flour, baking powder and salt together three times.
Cream the butter with the sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs 1 at a time beating thoroughly after each. Stir in the vanilla and the burnt sugar syrup mixture.
Add the dry ingredients and milk alternately to the creamed mixture. Beat until smooth. Pour batter into the prepared cake tins.