Sunday, January 26, 2014

An Adventure in Coffee....

So I was asked recently to make a birthday cake for a 70th birthday.

My brief:        
               They're not a big family so the cake can't be too big. The person who it is for doesn't have a particularly sweet tooth. It can't be too rich and it's got to have a space for a number 70 candle.
So after some deliberation I came up with the idea of a coffee cake. Now that on its own seemed a bit plain, so to make it more decorative I gave myself the challenge of decorating it with a dark chocolate piped lace effect around the outside and pipe chocolate lettering.

On the first trial, the cake mix didn't want to play nicely with a deep tin. I had hoped I could cook one big cake and slice it into layers. So I turned that into cake balls!
But the second bake was much better!!

As it had to be transported (luckily it's cold enough in England to make things with chocolate!) I had great fun in stress testing the cake for changes in temperature and movement. I didn't temper the chocolate or do anything fancy- I just kept it in the fridge and it held up great!

So here's the recipe for the coffee cake. It does have a strong coffee flavour so you could half the amount of coffee if you don't like it strong.
Note: To make the birthday cake I used 8oz of butter, sugar, flour, 4eggs and 4 teaspoons coffee and this will fill 3 cake tins. 

Strong Coffee Cake:
  •         6oz Butter
  •         6oz Light Brown Soft Sugar
  •         3 Eggs
  •         6oz Flour
  •         3 teaspoons coffee dissolved in a little boiling water (don't make it too watery)
For the filling and topping:
  •         4.5 oz Butter
  •         9oz Icing sugar 
  •         3 teaspoons coffee dissolved in a little boiling water
  1. Pre heat oven to 180C or Gas Mark 4.
  2. Beat together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
  3. Gradually add the eggs.
  4. Fold in the flour and stir in the coffee until incorporated.
  5. Divide the mixture equally between two cake tins and bake for 20-25 minutes.
  6. When the cake has cooled; to make the icing beat together the butter and icing sugar then add the coffee. Spread in the middle of the cake then spread over the top. To give a professional finish, sift cocoa powder over the top of the cake.
Here's the tutorial I found on how to make the chocolate lace cake wrap. I decided to use the same pattern in the video as it was perfect for a man's cake.

Also, I recently brought a cake lever. I can't recommend it enough for making layered cakes. It saves so much time and effort!

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