Sunday, 1 April 2012

Chocolate Birthday Cake with Chocolate Fudge Frosting

It's our son's 9th birthday today. He has unwrapped gifts, eaten pancakes for breakfast and celebrated with chocolate cake. He's blown out 9 candles, opened cards and had a big birthday party. His little friends have sung to him, he's played party games and lots of people have made a fuss of him. If that's not a HAPPY birthday, I don't know what is.

Chocolate Birthday Cake with Chocolate Fudge Frosting
cakefrom Annabel Langbein's The Free Range Cook
frosting from Nigella Lawson's How to be a Domestic Goddess

For the cake:
3 cups self-raising flour
2 cups sugar
1½ tsp vanilla extract
¾ cup cocoa powder
2 tsp bi-carb soda, sifted
200g butter, softened
1 cup unsweetened yoghurt
3 large eggs
1 cup boiling hot coffee

For the frosting:
75g unsalted butter
180g best quality dark chocolate, broken into small pieces
300g icing sugar
1 tablespoon golden syrup
125ml sour cream
1 teaspoon real vanilla extract

whipped cream for sandwiching the cakes together

For the cake:
Heat oven to 160 degrees C (fan forced). Grease the sides and line the base of  2 x 20cm round cake tins with baking paper.

Place all ingredients except for the cake in the bowl of an electric mixer and mix  until the ingredients are combined and the butter is fully incorporated.

Pour mixture into prepared tins and smooth top. Bake for 35-40 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Allow to cool in the tin. 

For the frosting:
Melt the butter and chocolate in a good-sized bowl either in the microwave or suspended over a pan of simmering water.

While the chocolate and butter are cooling a little, put the icing sugar into a food processor and blitz. 

Add the golden syrup to the cooled chocolate mixture, followed by the sour cream and vanilla and then when all this is combined pour this mixture down the funnel of the food processor on to the icing sugar, with the motor running. Add more icing sugar if the mixture is a little wet, or some boiling water (a teaspoon or so), if the mixture is a little dry. It should be liquid enough to coat the cake easily, but thick enough not to drip off the cake.

To assemble the cake:
Choose your cake stand or plate and cut out four strips of baking paper to form a square outline on it (this stops the frosting from running on to the plate). Then sit one of the cakes, uppermost (ie slightly domed) side down. Spoon the whipped cream onto the centre of the cake bottom and spread with a knife or spatula until you cover the top of it evenly. Sit the other cake on top, normal way up and sandwich the two together.
I find it easier to spoon all of the frosting on top of the cake and spread it evenly over the top pushing the excess towards and down the sides then spread the sides evenly. Leave the cake for a few minutes till set, then carefully pull away the paper strips. Decorate in whatever way you fancy, or have been instructed to by your son!

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