Tuesday, 4 September 2012

Chocolate Birthday Cake

Sorry for my lack of blogging lately but hubby and I have been away on holiday for a much needed break and to celebrate both of us turning 40 in August. We had a lovely time away in the Cotswolds, a beautiful part of England, where we rented a log cabin with outdoor hot tub, which we used every evening after a day of exploring. While away we enjoyed lovely pub lunches/dinners all made from wonderful local produce. On the topic of birthdays, I made this amazing chocolate cake for my hubby's birthday. The recipe is from a Passion for Baking and like all the recipes I've tried from this book, this cake did not disappoint. This is the perfect birthday cake and I'll definitely be baking this again!

Chocolate Birthday Cake

Serves 8-10

225g unsalted butter, softened
225g caster sugar
4 large eggs, beaten
1 tsp vanilla extract
200g self-raising flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 bicarbonate of soda
30g cocoa
2 tbsp full-fat milk
100g good-quality dark chocolate, melted

200g dark chocolate
100 milk chocolate
250ml double cream

1 large packet of Maltesers

You will need 2 x 20cm sandwich tins, greased and the bases lined with buttered baking parchment.

Preheat the oven to 180oc/160oc fan oven/350oF/gas mark 4.

In a bowl of a free-standing mixer, cream the butter and sugar together until pale, light and fluffy. Gradually add the beaten eggs and vanilla extract. Add the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, cocoa and milk, then mix until combined. Add the melted chocolate and mix again until smooth.

Divide equally between the prepared sandwich tins, spread level and bake on the middle shelf of the preheated oven for about 22-25 minutes until golden and a skewer comes away clean when inserted into the middle of the cakes. Turn the cakes out of the tins onto a wire cooling rack and leave until cold.

To make the ganache, finely chop both the dark and milk chocolates and tip into a saucepan along with the double cream. Set the pan over a low heat to melt, stirring constantly until smooth. Pour the ganache into a shallow dish, cool and then chill to firm.

To assemble the cake, place one of the cakes on a cake or serving plate and spoon half of the ganache on the cake and spread. Then scatter with crushed Maltesers.

Cover the top of the second cake layer with ganache, spreading it smoothly with a palette knife. Sandwich the two caes together and finish off with a good scattering of Maltesers.


Unknown said...

Hi Maria - Happy 40th. We're the same age - I turned 40 in June. My other half took us all to Wales (Nr Cardigan) for the week, which was brilliant. Your break in the Cotswolds sounds lovely, and such a treat. Think my other half would love that Chocolate Cake - he's got rather a sweet tooth! Hope all's well with you.xx

Manu said...

What a delicious cake!!!!Happy birthday!

little homebird said...

Happy 40th Maria! I'm ashamed to say I've had that book since it came out and only tried 1 recipe from it! The school hols and general lack of baking mojo have got in the way but I feel I need to get back into baking! Are you enjoying the new series of GBBO?

Maria♥ said...

Thanks for the lovely comments and birthday wishes.

Jill, I am doing well thanks, hope you are too. x

Ali, I know what it's like to lose your baking mojo, it happens to me too. I'm sure you will find it soon! I have been enjoying the new series of GBBO and also Lorraine Pascale's series too. xx

Chele said...

Happy birthday - but heaven help my hips ;0)

Hello said...

Happy 40th birthday, glad to see you are back blogging x This cake looks delicious, especially the ganache drizziling down. Jo's book is on my wish list for Christmas x

cocoa and coconut said...

This looks gorgeous! I love maltesers so much too..what an addicting chocolate

Ps. Happy Birthday

Kim said...

Happy Birthday! Sounds like you had a wonderful break! Gorgeous cake too - love anything Malteser and love how the icing is dripping down the sides!

Unknown said...

Happy Birthday! I have my 40th in January!
My 13 year old has his 14th birthday is in 3 weeks & he LOVES chocolate.....might do this cake for him as have Jo's book.


Anonymous said...

The Cotswolds and chocolate! Can life get any sweeter?

Nic said...

What a gorgeous cake. Many happy returns to you and your husband Maria! xx

The Caked Crusader said...

Happy celebrations!

Lovely cake - love the glaze pooling on the cake stand...mouthwatering!

Choclette said...

Your break sounds fantastic and a great way to celebrate a joint 40th. CT and I also had significant birthdays this year and had a week in the Scilly Isles to celebrate - also a much needed break.

Lovely looking chocolate cake.

Unknown said...

i made this cake for my daughter's b'day as she loves chocolate. the cake was awesome. everybody enjoyed it. you have some good receipes.

Unknown said...

hello - I was wondering if the dark chocolate tasted a bit too bitter/strong in the cake and ganache? do you think I could swap it for milk chocolate, or wpuld I have a disaster on my hands?!