Deciding on the kind of birthday cake they want is usually quite high on the Mudlets’ lists of things to do, as their special day approaches but this year, for whatever reason, Little Mudlet hadn’t furnished me with a single idea by the time we entered the week leading up to her birthday. So I put on my thinking hat and came up with a plan.
A few weeks ago, whilst attending the Macmillan coffee afternoon at school, I remembered that she had been quite taken with one particular set of homemade chocolate buns and I thought that it would a relatively easy job to scale these creations up to make one large Chocolates Cake – no, I haven’t made a typo, I mean chocolates!
You see the buns in question had been sumptuously decorated with a gloriously rich and smooth butter icing, then topped with maltesers, munchies, little stars and other chocolates. They looked and tasted amazing and were a massive hit with all the children, Little Mudlet included.
With my mind made up, I set about making the actual cake sponge which was a 10oz (as in 10oz of each ingredient except the flour which was 8 oz flour and 2oz cocoa) rich, chocolate affair. Seeing the cake sitting on a cooling rack, it dawned on Little Mudlet that she had no idea what I was actually making for her and so she asked me what the cake was going to be.
“Chocolates cake!” I replied
“Well obviously!” she responded, looking across at the aforementioned sponge, “But what’s it going to be?”
“Chocolates cake!” I repeated, at which point she flounced off and I heard her complaining to her sister that I wouldn’t tell her what her cake was going to be. I smiled to myself and carried on.
For this particular cake I wanted a nice smooth butter icing and so decided to take a bit more time with it than usual:
- First I whipped about 150ml of double cream until it thicken to the point where a peak formed when the whisk was removed.
- I then set about 100g of good quality plain chocolate to melt, so that it would have time to cool down before I added it to the mix.
- Next approximately 125g of softened, unsalted butter was cut into cubes, popped into a bowl and then beaten until smooth.
- Then I added approximately 250g of sifted icing sugar which was then beaten into the butter, until the mixture had a lighter and fluffier appearance.The weight of the icing sugar is approximate and based on my preferences, so more or less could be added to taste.
- A good dollop of vanilla extract was added next, along with the whipped cream which I folded into the mix.
- Finally, the now cooled but still runny chocolate was added and the whole mix was beaten until it had a lovely smooth texture.
With the butter icing ready, I sliced the cake in half and spread a generous layer over the centre before replacing the top half and then the remainder of the icing was used to completely coat the top and sides with a generous layer. All that remained for me to do was to decorate it with maltesers, munchies and giant chocolate buttons and then dust it with gold edible glitter. Satisfied with the finished cake, I took it into the lounge to show the birthday girl and with a smile and a wink, I said:
“There you are poppet …….. one chocolates cake!”