Thursday, 31 January 2013

Dad's Birthday Cake

This weekend I'm going home to see my parents as it is my day's birthday. So, this week I have been making his cake. He likes a particular cake in M&S so i tried to emulate it. I started at the weekend by making the sponge.

Chocolate Sponge
3 eggs (weigh these and then add equal weights of the following ingredients,
Self raising flour (6-7oz usually)
Caster sugar (6-7oz)
Margarine (you know I always use flora light!) (6-7 oz)

Put all the ingredients in one bowl, and mix together with a hand mixer. That's it, you're done! Pour into two greased cake tins and bake at 150 (fan) until a skewer comes out clean.

When cool, I popped each cake into a freezer bag and put in the freezer until need.

250g milk chocolate
125ml double cream

Put ingredients in a heatproof bowl over a pan of simmering water (the bowl must not touch the water). Stir occasionally until the chocolate melts and the cream and chocolate combine. Put in the fridge until cool.

Chocolate curls
1 bar of white and 1 bar of milk choc

Microwave on 50% power until the bar is just a little soft - but not melted!! Then start at one edge of the bar and use a vegetable peeler to gently make a curl. It takes some practice but you get them in the end!

Assembly of the cake
Put one of the sponges (defrosted if you have frozen it) on a flat surface and smooth over some of the ganache. Add the second sponge on top. Add more ganache on top and let it run down the sides a bit. Smooth with a palette knife. Grab handfuls of chocolate curls and push against the ganache on the side of the cake. I found tilting the cake whilst doing this helped. I then melted some white chocolate and then let it cool a bit - by letting it cool it pipes a bit easier and you have a bit more control. I then put the chocolate in a disposable piping bag ( from Lakeland - makes life a lot easier!) and either use a fine writing nozzle (no. 2) or just snip off a tiny bit off the end of the bag. Pipe your message and then refrigerate.

Happy Birthday Dad!

P.s. never try and pipe a balloon on a cake if your piping skills aren't amazing. It does NOT look good! I'll be honest - my balloon ended up looking like a sperm!! ahhh! If you do make a mistake with your piping, scrape it off with a knife, then get a hot, but dry, palette knife and smooth over the area you scraped off. You'd never guess you'd made a blooper :)

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