Cinnamon and Orange plus White Chocolate ‘Piggy’ Birthday Cakes {100th Post!}

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Here are my birthday cakes! My uncle celebrates his birthday on the same day as me, hence my ‘excuse’ for not being able to choose between two flavours 🙂 Do you share a birthday with a family member? So many people tell me that they share their birthdays with uncles!
He said that the decoration I put on the piped butter cream looks like little piggy faces, here is a close up:

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And here is the gorgeous crown of nut brittle on the cinnamon cake. I have a thing of giving cakes crowns because I think they look glorious. I’ve done it on my carrot cake, my blackberry-banana cake, my (square) banana-chocolate-caramel cake, also on my sunburst tarts!

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And this brittle is super easy to make, you just pour caramel onto the nuts and within minutes it is set and ready to go! It was a very last minute idea……

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These cute wee beauty was a white chocolate mud cake, with raspberry coulis filling and white chocolate buttercream.

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And then there is the older sister, slightly more down to earth and less superficial, and who probably has a couple of kids and is raising them in a house just outside the city, so that they can play on a swing in the summer and go swimming at the beach.
Oh, it’s a cinnamon orange cake with cream cheese frosting and filling and nut brittle.

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I have to admit that I didn’t BAKE them myself as I was on my way back from Wellington to Christchurch, I just iced and decorated them 🙂 I’m getting the recipes that my friends used so I will update them soon!

To make the White Chocolate ‘Piggy’ Cake:
Double this cake recipe to make two layers:

 Chelsea White Chocolate Mud Cake

Then fill the two cakes with any red/pink jam you choose.

Top with your favourite buttercream. Pipe some blobs around the edge, and decorate with candy ‘snouts’ and ‘eye’s 😉

To make a Nut Brittle Crown:
In a saucepan, gently heat 1 cup sugar in a saucepan.

On a greaseproof mat, sprinkle out some mixed nuts.

Keep heating the sugar, not stirring but swirling occasionally, until it turns to an amber coloured caramel. Pour over the nuts and leave to set.

Break up into shards and stick into the frosting on the edge of your cake!

 

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Enjoy everyone 🙂

 

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Chocolate and Liquorice Allsort Birthday Cake

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I imagine my little 13-year-old self was quite pleased with this one, as was my grandfather; it was his birthday cake 🙂
There is nothing quite like a good cake, is there? And when celebration is necessary, cake comes with it hand in hand….birthday cake is probably my favorite thing to bake in the world anyway! I am sure you have fond memories of your own birthday cakes, or perhaps ones that you have made for ones you love.
Or perhaps you make cakes for a living, in which case, I both jealous and incredibly happy for you!
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This is just a nice chocolate cake with whipped chocolate ganache frosting, and than a brocade of liqourice allsorts for decoration; there is no liquorice flavour IN the cake (although I do have a recipe for that, which I am quite excited to try….!). You could easily make it with any other decorations on top, or just leave it plain. I have a photo of it without the candy below the recipe, in case you want to check it out.

Chocolate and Liquorice Allsort Birthday Cake

Cake:
170g butter
1/3 cup castor sugar
1&1/2 cups flour
1&1/2 tsp baking powder
3 Tbsp cocoa
Pinch of salt
3 eggs
1 Tbsp milk
Whipped chocolate ganache:
150g milk chocolate
3/4 cup cream
To decorate:
200g liquorice allsorts

Instructions:

Preheat the oven to 180°C and grease two 20cm diameter cake tins.

Beat together the butter and sugar until smooth, then sift together the flour, salt and cocoa. Beat into the butter with the eggs. Combine until smooth. Add the milk if you think the batter is a bit thick. Divide the batter between the tins and smooth over. Bake for about 15 minutes, and until the cake springs back when lightly touched. Remove from the oven and cool for 5 minutes. Remove from tins and cool completely.

Melt the chocolate over a pot of simmering water. Turn off the heat and slowly mix in the cream. Leave until cool. Pour into the bowl of an electric mixer and whip high speed, or use a whisk or egg beaters. Beat until light and fluffy.

Level off the top of one of the cakes and spread a bit of icing. Then place the other cake on top. Spread the remaining icing over the cake. Arrange the liquorices allsorts over the cake. Store in an airtight container.

Lasts for  3 days

Makes 12 slices

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Enjoy your birthday cake endeavours, and the rest of your endeavours for that matter 🙂

My Favourite Caramel Birthday Cake

Sometimes I feel a little bad I don’t broaden my horizons and try a different cake every year…but then I remember why I make this cake consistently, it’s just that good.
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It’s big, triple layered and covered in one of the best frostings I have ever tasted. There’s even a little raspberry jam between the layers: don’t freak out! It’s just enough to add a little interest and colour but it won’t detract from that caramel goodness, I promise 🙂
The cake stays pretty moist (providing you don’t leave it in the oven too long, it’s not foolproof) when done properly and feeds a crowd very nicely (we had two cakes between about 17 people and there was still about 1/3 left of each cake! Yes, I had it for breakfast. Guilty as charged). I wrapped some lace around it because it looked pretty but you can do as you like! 
I really hope you give it a try sometime 🙂

My Favourite Caramel Birthday Cake
Cake:
2&2/3 cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
Pinch Salt
250g butter, softened
1 cup white sugar
½ cup brown sugar
4 eggs, separated
1 cup milk

Frosting:
90g butter
1 cup brown sugar
3 cups icing sugar

To fill:
Raspberry Jam

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius and line/grease three 20cm diameter cake tins.
In a medium bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder and salt. In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream the butter and sugar until nice and light and fluffy. Beat the egg yolks in one at a time. Alternate mixing in the dry ingredients and the milk, starting and beginning with the dry (I did this by hand because I didn’t want to overmix it). It will be quite thick, but do not fear. Beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form. Fold into the batter 1/3 at a time, mixing gently and folding until just combined. The batter should be soft dropping consistency, so not too thick that you have to spread it around the tins. If it is too thick, add a tablespoon or so more milk.
Divide the batter between the tins and bake for about 35 minutes until the skewer comes out clean when inserted (I have accidentally over baked this, so I hovered around the oven and whipped them out as soon as they were done). The tops should spring back when lightly touched. Cool half an hour in the tins then turn out onto wire racks to cool completely.
When ready to assemble, place a layer of cake on the serving plate. Spread some jam onto the top, leaving a 1cm border. Place the next layer on top and repeat the process. Finally, arrange the top layer on top of this.
To make the frosting, melt the butter and brown sugar together. Heat gently until the brown sugar has dissolved completely (this is important as if not you can end up with grainy frosting; however, I assure you this is still delicious!). Bring to the boil, then remove from the heat and add the icing sugar a bit at a time. When cool enough to spread on the cake, it’s time to get down to it! Frost the cake in any way you may desire. If it helps, I started with a thin crumb coat and then put about 1/3 on top and helped it spread itself down the sides. I then iced the sides, and when it began to set, I smoothed out the edges with a knife dipped in water. The frosting does set quite quickly, although you can easily reheat it a bit. When the cake is iced to your standards, you are all done. Pat on the back, it will all be worth it, I promise!
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A Ridiculously Good Chocolate Cake and my Birthday Cake Part 1

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Well, why NOT have two birthday cake? And besides, how do you choose between chocolate and caramel? I didn’t; just make both! I turned a quite grown up age a few days ago, and even though I wasn’t sure I quite felt up to it (milestones, where does the time GO?!) I could not pass the opportunity to make myself a cake. Or two. Actually my uncle shares a birthday with me, so it was for him too, I’m not that greedy.
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Making this cake was a bit of a last minute decision, but was it worth it! This recipe is incredible, everyone said it was to die for and there were a lot of second helpings. Please try this cake.
Even better, it is so quick to make, one bowl, just cocoa (but still with a rich flavour), oil so it’s super moist and it keeps for a while. Don’t be scared of the coffee, I promise you won’t taste it. Plus it’s a good way to use up leftover coffee!
You can decorate anyway you want of course (every one ended up picking off the maltesers but they looked good while they lasted…). If you wanted to frost the sides, I would double the frosting recipe.

The Best Birthday Chocolate Cake
2 cups flour
1&1/2 cups sugar
2/3 cup cocoa
2 tsp baking powder
1&1/2 tsp baking soda
1 cup milk
½ cup oil
2 eggs
1 cup hot coffee

Icing:
100g butter, softened

¼ cup cocoa
1&1/2 cups icing sugar
2 Tbsp milk

Malteasers, to decorate

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Line two 20cm diameter baking pans and grease the sides.
In a large bowl of an electric mixer, mix the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking powder and baking soda until combined. Add in the milk, oil and eggs and mix until combined on a low speed. Still at a low speed, add the coffee and mix until combined, then turn up the speed and  beat for about 2 minutes to aerate the batter some more. If you don’t have an electric mixer, you could always do this by hand.
Divide evenly between the two tins and bake for about 40 minutes until a skewer comes out clean when inserted. Cool for half an hour, then turn out onto wire racks and cool completely.
To make the frosting, simply beat the butter and cocoa until extr a light and fluffy, then add the icing sugar a bit at a time, mixing until combined after each addition. Add a bit of milk in between the additions so it doesn’t turn too thick. The icing is ready when it is airy and a good consistency to spread onto the cake without being too thick.
Place the bottom layer of the cake on the plate or serving tray and level off the top with a serrated knife. Spread half the frosting on top to fill it. Carefully place the top layer on top and this and use the rest of the icing to frost the top. Arrange the malteasers around the edges and you’re done! Easy as that.
Makes a very large birthday worthy cake, which keeps very well, about 4 days in top form!

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Enjoy your Sunday everyone and watch this space for my other birthday cake recipe (pictured in the back of the first photo) 🙂