I’m another year older and for the first time, I actually feel wiser! I’ve done so much over the last year, started and new job AND started researching for my dream of having my own teashop. No doubt the next year of my life will be just as busy and exciting. Whatever happens, I can guarantee that there’ll be cake along the way!
So what better way to celebrate than by making my own birthday cake.
Chocolate Celebration Cake
200g good-quality plain chocolate, chopped
125g self-raising flour
125g plain four
25g cocoa powder
200g light muscovado sugar
200g golden caster sugar
3 free-range eggs
75ml/2½fl oz crème fraîche
For the vanilla buttercream icing:
100g unsalted butter, softened
200g icing sugar
milk, to loosen
For the topping:
200g dark chocolate
40ml tblsp water
1 punnet of strawberries
Preheat the oven to 170C. Grease and line two 8in sandwich tins.
Melt the chocolate, butter and water together in a saucepan over a low heat, stirring occasionally, until smooth. Set aside to cool slightly. Meanwhile, sift the flours and cocoa powder into a bowl and mix in the muscovado and caster sugar.
Beat the eggs and crème fraîche together in a separate bowl, then beat in the chocolate mixture. Fold in the flour mixture until smooth.
Divide the cake batter between the tins and bake for 35-40 minutes, or until the top is firm to the touch.
Meanwhile, for the vanilla buttercream, beat the butter in a bowl until soft, then gradually beat in the icing sugar. Add the vanilla and add a few drops of milk if the mixture is a little stiff.
For the ganache I used the recipe on the back of the Dr Oetker Extra Dark Chocolate pack.
Put 200g chopped Dr. Oetker 90% Chocolate into a heatproof bowl with 100g unsalted butter and 40ml water. Put over saucepan of barely simmering water and stir until melted. Remove from the water and cool for about 20 minutes to thicken.
Put a cake on a wire rack over a large plate. Spoon ganache over the top, letting it run down the sides. Tap the wire rack to smooth the surface.
Finally, I covered the top of the cake with a punnet of fresh strawberries.
I’ve been spoilt rotten with cards, presents and flowers. I’m truly blessed.