Cake Mondays 002: Chocolate Peanut Butter cake with Salted Caramel.


Chocolate cake with Peanut Butter frosting and Salted Caramel

Chocolate cake with Peanut Butter frosting and Salted Caramel

I don't need to say much about this cake, other than it was completely amazing! I will definitely be making it again! I don't like too much buttercream, so I sandwiched just enough between each layer - but more buttercream would lead to a more impressive looking cake. Some people said last week's cake looked too complicated - so I kept it really simple this week. You can't go wrong with it. Dead easy! 

I've chosen this salted caramel sauce as it's incredibly simple to make. If the thought of cooking sugar makes you want to cry, this is perfect. You don't need a thermometer and honestly I don't know how you could go wrong with it. When I first made it, I was concerned it was a bit thin - but an hour in the fridge solved that.

Ingredients:

-230g dark chocolate
-4 eggs
-350g caster sugar
-170g butter
-340g plain flour
-1.5 tsp baking powder
-1.5 tsp bicarbonate of soda
-250ml milk
-2tsp vanilla extract

Frosting:

-500g icing sugar
-120g butter at room temperature
-3 tablespoons peanut butter


-75g butter
-75g light brown sugar
-2 tablespoons golden syrup
-125ml double cream
-1/2 teaspoon sea salt

Method

1. Grease and line 3 20cm cake tins. Preheat the oven to 160C. Melt the dark chocolate. Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, then add the eggs.

2. Mix in the melted chocolate and mix until well combined.

3. Add the bicarb, baking powder, flour and the milk, alternating each turn. Add the vanilla extract.

4. Bake for 20-25mins until the cake skewer comes out clean. Leave the cakes to cool completely on a wire rack.

5. To make the frosting, mix the three ingredients together and beat (best in a freestanding mixer) for 5 minutes, or until the frosting is light and fluffy.

6. To make the salted caramel, melt the butter, sugar and golden syrup together in a heavy based pan. Simmer for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the cream and a teaspoon of sea salt. Continue to simmer for another minute, then taste (don't burn your tongue!) if you prefer your caramel sauce to be saltier, add more to taste (I used about 1.5 tsp). Put into a jug and allow to cool down fully.

7. Once the cakes and caramel have fully cooled spread a layer of peanut butter frosting topped with a layer of salted caramel in between each cake layer. Top with the frosting and drizzle the caramel sauce.

This rich cake is utterly delicious, and is best served with fresh cream either whipped or poured directly on to the cake. Enjoy!

Chocolate cake with Peanut Butter frosting and Salted Caramel

Chocolate cake with Peanut Butter frosting and Salted Caramel

Genesis


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Bodysuit - ASOS
Skirt - River Island
Shoes - Topshop
Necklace - New Look
Bracelet - Primark

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I think I have just resigned myself to the fact that the quality of my outfit photos is going to be pitiful until I have more time/brighter evenings! But look....clothes! Just wanted to quickly share this outfit. Any excuse to wear these amazing shoes. Ali bought them for me for Christmas. Just check out that curved heel! They aren't too uncomfortable either. Plus glitter! Don't even ask me what's going on with my hair in these photos, I'm not sure either. Bodysuit/general life inspiration from Bethany! I'm off to laze around with Lola and listen to more Grimes!

My favourite wee face #lolathesausage Watching the Brits, Lola's loving it

Cake Mondays 001: Chocolate Orange Cointreau Cake

Hey folks! Time for a recipe share! It has been forever, I know. I basically bake every single day with my business so I rarely get to try new recipes and this has been bothering me. I used to bake a lot for pleasure and now I don't really have the time and when I've finished baking several hundred cupcakes on a Saturday there is no way I am going to turn that oven back on.

Chocolate Cointreau Cake

Chocolate Cointreau Cake

Nom

I try to take Mondays off if I can. Every Monday evening, Ali and I have our friends round for dinner and we usually end up watching a selection of Disney movies and/or Die Hard. I've decided to take this opportunity to try baking new cakes if I can. It's nice to have a day off baking, but I would rather be learning new skills with my time off. So here starts my new feature, a new cake on Mondays. I can't promise it will be every single Monday, but I can promise to try my very best! This is the first one I baked. It was fairly easy, although the ganache was supposed to drape around the cake and dribble down the sides, but I don't think I chilled the cake enough so it melted the buttercream a bit, when I resmoothed it I got that marble effect which I actually quite like - although it was a complete malfunction.

The cake tasted beautiful, I really love this buttercream although it is expensive and time consuming to make. I love buttercream but the sugar can give me bad headaches so this is a perfect alternative. This cake is adapted from 'Say it with Cake' by Edd Kimber.

Ingredients:

-225g unsalted butter at room temperature
-325g plain flour
-50g cornflour
-4 1/2 tsp baking powder (I couldn't believe there was so much in there! But it worked, and you couldn't taste it)
-1/2 tsp salt
-350g caster sugar
-Zest of 2 large oranges
-1tsp Orange Oil (I use the Taste the Difference one from Sainsbury's)
-4 medium eggs
-300ml buttermilk (if you can't find this, you can make your own with milk and lemon juice)

For the Italian Meringue Buttercream:


-250g caster sugar

-6 medium egg whites
-450g unsalted butter (this is important, I used slightly salted butter because I was too lazy to go to the shop but I think it would have been much better unsalted)
-4 shots of Cointreau OR 250g orange curd (I used cointreau but the orange curd works well too).

NOTE: If you don't have a sugar thermometer, use this recipe instead).

For the chocolate ganache: 
-150g dark chocolate (70% cocoa solids)
-200ml double cream

Method:

1. Preheat the oven to 180C (160C fan oven). Line and grease 3 20cm tins. Whisk the flour, cornflour, baking powder and salt together and set aside.

2. Put the butter into a large bowl/mixer. Beat the butter on a high speed until smooth and light. Add the sugar and orange zest and beat until light and fluffy. Add the orange oil and mix to combine. With the mixer on medium speed, add the eggs one at a time. With the mixer on low, add the flour mixture in three additions, alternating with the buttermilk. Divide the batter between the 3 lined tins and bake for 25-30 minutes, until a skewer comes out clean, the cakes are golden brown and spring back when touched. Allow to cool in the tins for 10 minutes before removing on to a wire rack.

3. NOTE: If you don't have a sugar thermometer do not try this, like I have done before. It will fail and you'll waste loads of sugar. Instead, use a swiss meringue recipe. It's much more simple and can be done without a thermometer.

To make the Italian meringue buttercream, put 60ml water and the sugar into a pan over medium heat. Bring to the boil and have a sugar thermometer ready. Meanwhile, put the egg whites into a clean (if there's any trace of grease this might fail) bowl. Start whisking the whites on a high speed when the syrup in the pan reaches 115C. Cook until the thermometer registers 121C. With the mixer still running, pour the syrup in a slow stream down the side of the bowl containing the whites, avoiding the beaters. Continue whisking on a high speed until the meringue reaches room temperature.

4. With the mixer on medium speed, add the butter a few pieces at a time. Don't worry if it looks curdled, just keep mixing it. Trust me. Keep mixing until a smooth buttercream is formed. Add your cointreau or your orange curd, whichever you chose - and continue mixing.

5. Assemble your cake, sandwiching a generous filling of buttercream between each layer. Smooth the buttercream around the top and sides. Place the cake in the fridge and chill for AT LEAST 15 minutes while you make the ganache.

6. Place the chocolate in a bowl and set aside. Boil the cream in a medium pan, once it has reached boiling point - pour it over the chocolate. Allow to stand for a few minutes to form a silky ganache. I added some cointreau to this as well, but that's optional. Pour the ganache over the chilled cake, tempering it around the edges to spill down. Now - this is where mine went wrong! I didn't chill the cake really, I think I left it for about 5 minutes because I am impatient and lazy. My ganache melted the buttercream but it actually merged with it when I smoothed it, making it really tasty.

If you use a Swiss Meringue rather than Italian, allow the cake to come to room temperature before serving as the consistency of the buttercream will be too much like butter if you leave it in the fridge. It's fine to chill for the ganache, but once that's done leave it out of the fridge.