I browsed quite a few of my books, Readers Digest "Baking Bible", Lorraine Pascale's "Baking Made Easy", Nigella's "How to be a Domestic Goddess" and the Great British Bake Off "How to Bake" (series 2). I decided on making a cake from the Great British Bake Off (series 2) book, as I have set myself a challenge of cooking more recipes from this book before I buy the third series of this book.
As I am quite a fan of devil's food cake, I chose this recipe again, but instead of the normal chocolate frosting I decided on making a marshmellow frosting as this would contrast with the dark chocolate cake. The frosting didn't turn out as I quite would hoped and was runny after I placed in the fridge to cool for 45 minutes. A quick dash to Morrisons for cake frill managed to camouflage the less than perfect application of frosting to cake. I decided on adding white chocolate drops on top of the cake, again to contrast with the dark chocolate cake.
Here is how my cake turned out:
|Devil's food cake|
I initially added the banner to make the cake look pretty, but after we dived in there was no need to.
|Devil's food cake with cake frill and chocolate drops|
For the sponge
4 tablespoons cocoa powder
175ml boiling water
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
100 g dark chocolate
125g unsalted butter
350g caster sugar
2 large eggs
1 tea spoon vanilla extract
300 g plain flour
125ml soured cream, at room temperature
For the filling and topping
350 caster sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons maple syrup
1 tea spoon vanilla extract
125 ml cold water
2 x 20.5 cm sandwich tins greases and the base lined with baking paper
Preheat the oven to 180 C/350 F/ gas mark 4. Put the cocoa into a heatproof bowl and mix to a smooth liquid with the boiling water. Stir in the bicarbonate of soda and leave to cool.
Break up the chocolate into another heatproof bowl and set over a pan of steaming hot but not boiling water (don't let the base of the bowl touch the hot water). Leave to melt gently. Remove the bowl from the pan. Stir the chocolate until smooth, then leave to cool.
Put the soft butter into a large mixture bowl and beat for a minute with a wooden spoon or an electric mixer until creamy. Gradually beat in the sugar, then beat thoroughly for 4 to 5 minutes or until very light. Beat the eggs and vanilla with a fork until broken up, then add to the butter mixture a tablespoon at a time, beating well after each addition.
Fold in the flour in 3 batches, alternatively with the soured cream. Mix the cocoa liquid into the melted chocolate, then fold into the cake mixture. When thoroughly combined - no streaks visible-divide the mixture between the 2 tins and spread evenly.
Bake for 30 minutes or until risen and just firm, and a skewer inserted into the cakes comes out clean. Run a round-blanded knife around the inside of the tins to loosen the sponges, then turn out onto a wire rack and cool. When cold, slice each on horizontally in half, to make 4 layers.
To make the filling put the egg white and sugar for the icing into a large heatproof bowl and set over a pan of simmering water. Using an electric mixer, immediately whisk in the maple syrup, vanilla, water and a pinch of salt. Whisk on full speed for 7 to 12 minutes until thick, glossy and meringue- like: the mixture should hold a soft peak when the whisk is lifted.
Remove the bowl from the pan and keep on whisking for 15 to 20 minutes or until the mixture has cooled, turned white and very thick and is starting to stiffen up.
Slice each cake horizontally into 2 layers. Put a dab of fluff mixture onto the centre if a cake board and set one layer of the first cake cut side up, on it. To make sure that the dark chocolate crumbles don't migrate to the white fluff take out a third if the mixture and cover the rest. Use the smaller portion to sandwich the layers. Then using a clean rounded-bladed knife or icing palette knife, cover the top and sides of the cake with a very thick layer of fluff, swirling it evenly. The fluff will cover up any dips, dents, cracks or imperfections in the sponge and glue together any lose edges. Leave the cake to set overnight.