Cake Challenge: April

This is the cake I made for Jessie’s Birthday this year. I will just admit straight out that these pictures look like they could be used in a post titled “What Not To Do When Photographing Cake.”

1. Do not take pictures in direct sunlight.

2. Avoid late-evening-lighting because its likely your image will be dark and blurred.


3. Take pictures of your cake “before” you dig in, blow out the candles, and remove candles (leaving horrible little holes in the icing!)

On the other hand, however, the actual cake was deliciously moist and chocolatey. I used the same espresson glaze in January’s cake¬†for the icing, with a white chocolate mousse on the side. Again, I apologize for not showing this cake in its full glory, you’ll just have to experiment with the recipe below and make a beautifully decorated cake to redeem this one ūüôā

<Cake Challenge Series: is a collection of posts which document the cakes I bake each month. More specifically, I have a goal this year to bake at least one (hopefully spectacular) layer cake each month, and photograph/post them here. I hope you enjoy this collection as much as I enjoy baking these delicious desserts!>

Other Cake Challenge Posts:
January 
February
March 
May

Chocolate Cake
2 1/4 cup flour
1 cup unsweetened coacoa powder
2 1/4 tsp baking soda
1 1/4 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cinnamon
2 1/2 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
1 cup milk
1 1/4 cup hot coffee (strongly brewed)
2 eggs
1 cup mayonnaise (sounds weird I know, but this is the secret ingredient to SUPER moist cakes!)
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2 1/4 cup sugar

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter 3, 9-inch round cake pans, line each with parchment paper (cut to fit the bottom of each pan).
2. Sift together all dry ingredients (first 6 ingredients listed)
3. Put chocolate in a heatproof bowl. Bring milk to a simmer by heating it in a small saucepan over the stove. Pour hot coffee and milk over the chocolate creating a mocha mixture. Let sit for one minute then whisk to combine.
4. In a mixing bowl beat eggs, mayonnaise,and vanilla together until smooth then add sugar to the mixture. Alternate mixing the dry ingredients and mocha into the egg mixture until smooth. Divide batter into cake pans.
5. Bake for 25-28 minutes. Once cake pans are withdrawn from the oven, let cool 10-15 minutes before removing cakes.

White Chocolate Mousse:
4 ounces white chocolate, chopped
1 cup heavy cream
1 egg white
1 tbl sugar

1. Melt white chocolate and 1/4 cup of the heavy cream in a double boiler. Be careful to avoid overheating the chocolate or it will seize. Whisk and set out to cool.
2. In a mixing bowl beat the remaining 3/4 cup of cream until soft peaks form. In a separate bowl whip egg whites with sugar until stiff peaks form.
3. Fold the egg whites into melted white chocolate (make sure the chocolate is cooled). Finally fold the whipped cream in, as well until just combined (err on the side of under-mixing)

~enjoy ūüôā

Cake Challenge: February Part 2

Chocolate Cake with Almond Cream Filling and Sourcream Chocolate Icing–phew, that’s a mouth-full!

This is the second post documenting the February cake I baked. I wanted to quickly write the recipes down for anyone brave enough to try a triple layer cake at home! Its already half way through March and I feel lost by the fact that I haven’t baked any delicious sweets this month. Baking is literally the butter to my bread. Without it I’m simply a dry, over-toasted slice without the buttery topping to moisten it. Lately I’ve been inspired to make something creative with cake such as icecream cupcakes sandwiches, next week is Maddie’s Birthday and I will be making her a layer “ice cream” cake so maybe that will satisfy me.

Anyway, here’s the recipe!

Chocolate Cake:
4 ounces bittersweet chocolate chopped
1 1/4 cups of sugar
1/2 cups strongly brewed coffee
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons of cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 ts. baking powder
1 stick of unsalted butter
1/2 cup of honey (odd I know)
3 eggs
2 ts. vanilla extract
1/2 ts. almond extract
2/3 buttermilk

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter the bottoms of 3 8-inch round cake pans, dust with flour.
2. Combine chocolate, 1/2 cups sugar, and coffee. Microwave on high for 1-2 minutes of until chocolate is softened. Stir to blend.
3. Sift flour, cocoa, soda, and baking powder. Set aside.
4. Cream butter and remaining 3/4 cups sugar. On medium speed beat in honey, eggs (one at a time), and vanilla/almond extracts.
5. Alternate adding dry ingredients and buttermilk to the mixture.
6. Pour chocolate/coffee mixture in and your batter is complete!
7. Pour a third of the batter into each pan and tap them gently on the counter to remove any air bubbles.
8. Bake 20-25 minutes, remove from oven, cool in pans for 10 minutes before turning them upside down onto cooling racks.

 

Almond Cream Filling:
2 whole eggs
1 egg yoke
1/2 cups sugar
1/4 cups plus 2 tablespoons flour
1 1/2 cups milk
2 ts. almond extract
1 ts. vanilla extract

1. Beat eggs in a small bowl until well mixed
2. In a saucepan, combine sugar and flour. Gradually whisk in about 1/2 cup of milk until smooth. Whisk in eggs and remaining milk
3. Bring mixture to a boil over medium heat, reduce heat and cook for 3 minutes stirring constantly
4. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla/almond extracts
5. Cover with plastic wrap placing directly onto the cream filling to prevent a film from forming.
6. Refrigerate until thoroughly chilled.

 

Sour Cream Chocolate Icing:
12 onces bittersweet chocolaté, coarsely chopped
1 stick unsalted butter
2 tablespoons light corn syrup
1/4 cup half-and-half (I used heavy cream)
1/2 cup sour cream

1. Melt chocolate with butter and corn syrup in a saucepan over very low heat. Remove from heat and whisk until smooth
2. Whisk in the half-and-half and sour cream. Use while soft (pay attention to this- the icing will get firm!)

Have fun, bake yummy cakes!

Cake Challenge: February Part 1

Hello! Happy Monday. This weekend I continued my goal and in the last few days of February made another triple layer cake… I am overjoyed to announce that I didn’t make nearly as many mistakes this month than in January with my Mocha-espresso-drizzle-cake. Actually the mixing, baking and icing process went quite smoothly. (get the recipe/detailed description in¬†part 2¬†of this post!)

If you are ever in the mood for baking, my suggestion is to “bake with your mom!” <or someone you love> I have had so many bonding experiences with her through comfort when stressful emotions bubble up in me if something goes terribly wrong, through listening to her many years of wisdom in the field of food, and through the successes that we’ve shared together! Stay tuned for my March cake coming soon!

<Cake Challenge Series: is a collection of posts which document the cakes I bake each month. More specifically, I have a goal this year to bake at least one (hopefully spectacular) layer cake each month, and photograph/post them here. I hope you enjoy this collection as much as I enjoy baking these delicious desserts!>