Coffee Meringue Dessert Stack

Coffee Meringue Dessert Stack

Hiya!

I have a very short post for you tonight as I am currently on holiday in South Africa.

There are so many very beautiful miniature cakes around that I decided to make an adult gluten free version. Pastel meringue disks layered with coffee cream!

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Meringue Recipe

3 egg whites

Caster sugar (double the weight of the egg whites)

1tsp vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 180°C, weigh your egg whites into your mixing bowl and allow to warm to room temperature.

Weigh double the amount of caster sugar as the weight of your eggs in a heat proof bowl and place in the oven for 5 mins.

Start to beat your egg whites and when they look foamy remove the sugar from the oven and turn the temp down to 100°C.

Spoon the hot sugar slowly into the egg whites while beating, 1 tablespoon at a time.

Add vanilla extract.

Once you reach stiff peak stage (short pointy peaks that do not fall back on themselves) stop and divide the mixture into 4 smaller bowls.

Choose 4 gel food colours and start to colour your meringue. The colour will fade slightly with baking, so you may want to make it slightly brighter than you want them to turn out.

I drew round circles (about 4″ wide) on my baking paper, turned the paper upside down and pipped 3 circles of meringue in each colour. I kept the pink for the tops of the meringue and pipped these with a 1M Wilton piping tip to look like flowers.

Bake at 100°C for 1hour 30mins.

Allow to cool completely before starting the filling.

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Coffee Cream Filling

250ml whipping cream

1tsp caster sugar

1tsp instant coffee (heaped)

Pour the cream into a bowl to whip.

Add caster sugar and coffee.

Start whipping, once it is thick enough that it doesn’t slide when you tip the bowl you are done but be careful not to over whip of you’ll end up with coffee butter!

Place a tip in a piping bag and full it with the coffee cream.

Pipe a circle of coffee cream onto your first meringue disk and then stack and fill the rest. There is a piping & stacking video on Instagram and Facebook.

Once you’ve stacked them, they will need to be kept in the fridge and eaten with 2 hours before the meringue begins to dissolve with the moisture from the cream.

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Enjoy as a light summer dessert and think about me as it is the middle of winter in South Africa!

xx

Raspberry & White Chocolate Unicorn Cake

Raspberry & White Chocolate Unicorn Cake

Hiya,

I’m super excited about this week! I’ve wanted to make a unicorn cake for ages and finally I did! Also there are 4 more sleeps (can you tell I have kids?) until we go on holiday to South Africa and I get to see my family! Yay!

Firstly you will need some gumpaste or florist paste which dries hard, to make your horn & ears. I used white as finding colours can be difficult. I rolled a tube of gumpaste with either end tapered to a point, folded it in half and then twisted it together. I pushed a cake pop stick up the middle so that I could secure the horn to the cake. I also used a tiny bit is edible glue to stick the horn so that it didn’t unravel as it dried. You need to make the horn well ahead of time as it is thick and takes a while to dry.

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Next I rolled out some gumpaste and used a raindrop shaped cutter to cut out the ears. I coloured the center in with pink edible marker and pinched the bottom closed to make the ear shape.

Once the horn was dry I used gold food paint to paint it gold.

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Raspberry and Vanilla Cake Recipe

(makes 3 x 6″ round cakes)

338g butter softened

338g caster sugar

6 eggs

2 tsp vanilla extract

338g plain flour

3 tsp baking powder

60g freeze dried raspberries

Cream the butter & sugar together until pale and fluffy

Add 1 egg at a time, mixing it in before adding the next.

Add vanilla extract. Ensure with each step that you scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula to ensure everything is well mixed.

Sift flour & baking powder and add to the butter mixture, mix until just combined.

Time to add the freeze dried raspberries! The bag I bought were all whole raspberries which are pretty for decoration but better crushed for a cake. Tip the raspberry pieces into the mixture and mix until evenly combined.

I always line the base of my cake tins as the cake comes out so easily this way. Divide the mixture evenly between your tins and level using an offset spatula.

Bake at 160°C for 30-35 mins. Check the cake is done by inserting a skewer into the middle of the cake, it should come out clean. If you think the top of the cake is starting to look too dark but the cake is not ready yet, place a sheet of baking paper over the top while in the oven.

Remove from the oven & cool in the tin for 5 mins before removing to a wire rack.

I made Swiss Meringue Buttercream to decorate the cake, you can find my recipe in the link above and I made 1 and a half times the recipe. I melted and cooled 2/3 cup of white chocolate and slowly poured into into the completed icing.

In 3 smaller bowls I placed 100g of icing each and coloured each bowl a different colour, pink, teal & lilac.

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Level your cake layers to all the same size and I also trimmed off the darker outer layer and the base using a bread knife.

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Stack & crumb coat your cake and place in the fridge for an hour. It was super hot the day I did this and I was terrified the finished cake was going to slide apart as once the horn & ears go on, it cannot go back into the fridge!

Ice the outer layer of your cake and level the top. I placed the horns and ears on before I started piping. Pipe your unicorns mane using the different coloured icing, I also used 3 different piping tips.

Colour a small amount of left over icing black for the eyes. I used a round cookie cutter to mark out where the eyes should be and then pipped the eyes using a 2 piping tip.

Stand back & admire your magical unicorn. I was lucky enough to receive a picture of my cake at the venue, which made me very happy!

Cxx

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Apricot & Orange Slices

Apricot & Orange Slices

Hiya!

One of my favorite things about summer is all lovely fresh fruit, strawberries, watermelon, apricots, to be honest all of them! Although this recipe uses dried fruit, it has a lovely summer aroma and taste to it.

I also wanted to share a recipe that didn’t need to be covered in icing as I know a few people aren’t so keen on it. This recipe requires no icing as the flavour is amazing alone but I had a little vanilla buttercream left over from another project, so I piped a little swirl on top of half the slices and added some sprinkles coz you know how much I love sprinkles!

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Apricot & Orange Slices

250g soft dried apricots

200g raisins

260ml orange juice

250g softened butter

3 large eggs

300g soft brown sugar

2tsp vanilla extract

350g plain flour

2 tsp baking powder

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Cut the apricots into raisin sized pieces, using scissors is the quickest way.

Put the apricots and raisins into a saucepan and pour over the orange juice. Turn the heat up high and bring the fruit to the boil and then reduce the heat to medium for 15 mins or until the juice has been absorbed by the fruit. Be sure to give the pot a stir while it’s cooking so that nothing catches.

Turn off the heat and add the softened butter to the fruit. Stir gently until it has all melted. Remove from the heat & allow to cool while you continue.

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Preheat the oven to 140C on a fan setting. Grease and line a 30 x 20 cm cake tin or roasting tray.

Sieve the flour & baking powder and stir it together.

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Place the eggs, brown sugar and vanilla extract into the mixing bowl and mix on a low speed until well combined.

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Add the fruit mixture and mix it in.

Add half the flour mixture and mix on low. Then add the remaining flour and mix until well combined.

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Pour the mixture into your cake tin ensuring that it spreads to the corners.

Bake for 40 mins. Loosely cover the top with parchment paper to stop it turning too brown and then cook for another 15-20mins. This is a moist cake but a skewer inserted should come out clean.

Allow to cool for 10 mins in the pan before removing to a wire wrack to cool completely.

Slice into 24 squares or 18 rectangles.

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Enjoy your fruity treat!

Cxx

Neapolitan Monster Cake

Neapolitan Monster Cake

Hiya!

Wow, we’re already on the 1st of May! One third of the way though 2017. I’ve recently reviewed my goals (yes, most people would do that quarterly but I’m not like most people) and plans for this year and some of them are on track and a few have fallen by the wayside. My original plan for this blog has gone slightly off track and I am now pulling it back this month. I’m all about the pretty and cute cakes and treats but I got distracted with sharing all my favourite recipes. While yummy flavour combinations and new ways of doing things will always excite me, I’m going to try focusing on the part that I love the most, decorating!

This weeks cake is a good combination of both cute decoration and exciting flavours with decadent neapolitan cake layers and fillings. I made the bow with florist paste which sets hard but the rest is all swiss meringue buttercream and I just love how versatile it is.

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There are 2 separate cake recipes below as I made the vanilla and strawberry mix together and then the chocolate cake after. The feet are made in a similar way to cake pops. I crumbed the off cuts from levelling the cakes and mixed in some buttercream so that I was able to make the shape I wanted and added it to the cake after the crumb coat had set.

Vanilla ingreds

Vanilla & Strawberry Cake

225g butter, softened

225g caster sugar

225g plain flour

2 tsp baking powder

4 eggs

1 tsp vanilla extract

½ tsp strawberry flavouring

¼ tsp pink gel food colouring

Heat the oven to 175°C

Line 2 x 6″ cake tins with parchment paper

Cream butter and sugar until pale and fluffy, scrape down the sides to ensure it is well mixed.

Sieve flour and baking power together and stir so that it is evenly mixed.

Add 1 egg at a time to the butter mixture with the mixer on a low speed and alternate with a ¼ of the flour.

Once all the eggs and flour have been combined divide the mixture in half. In one bowl add the vanilla extract and mix well. In the other bowl add the strawberry flavouring and pink food colouring and mix to ensure the colour is even.

Place the mixture into the cake tins and spread to flatten.

Bake for 30-35 mins on the middle shelf. To check they are done insert a skewer into the middle of the cake which should come out clean.

Allow to cool in the tin for 10mins before removing to a cooling rack.

 

Choc ingreds

Chocolate Cake

113g butter, softened

113g caster sugar

100g plain flour

1 tsp baking powder

20g cocoa powder

2 eggs

Heat the oven to 175°C

Line one 6″ cake tin with parchment paper

Cream butter and sugar until pale and fluffy, scrape down the sides to ensure it is well mixed.

Sieve flour, cocoa and baking power together and stir so that it is evenly mixed.

Add 1 egg at a time to the butter mixture with the mixer on a low speed and alternate with a ½ of the flour.

Once all the eggs and flour have been combined place the mixture into the cake tin and spread to flatten.

Bake for 30-35 mins on the middle shelf. To check it is done insert a skewer into the middle of the cake which should come out clean.

Allow to cool in the tin for 10mins before removing to a cooling rack.

Fillings and Buttercream

I made 1 and a half of my standard Swiss Meringue Buttercream, recipe in the link, and flavoured it with vanilla bean paste. I removed 2 tbsp of icing before colouring the rest purple. I will use the white icing for the white of the eye, then colour it blue for the iris and then colour it black for the pupil.

For the strawberry layer I microwaved ¼ jar of good strawberry jam in a microwave safe bowl for 20 seconds and then pushed it through a small sieve to remove seeds and lumps.

For the chocolate layer I made milk chocolate ganache with 60ml of cream and 200g of milk chocolate.

Ready to ice

Next up I levelled the cakes to all the same height and then cutting each layer in half to make 2 layers of each. I kept the dome on the vanilla cake as my monster has a round head.

I’ve never owned a cake turntable and always been quite happy to decorate a cake on an upside down bowl but I recently bought one and boy am I glad I did. While my old way was manageable, this was soooooo much easier. I highly recommend them if you enjoy cake decorating. I didn’t by a fancy one and it was just off Amazon but it was a way smoother experience than my usual way.

When stacking a cake always remember to put a little icing down on the board before placing your first cake layer on. I made a little video of me stacking the cake which will go up on Instagram and Facebook this week if you’d like to watch. It’s rather mesmerising when its all sped up.

On each layer I made a boarder with the buttercream before filling it and stacking the next layer. I then crumb coated the cake before placing it in the fridge for 1 hour. I wanted the icing to be really set before I tried to pipe the eye.

I huge storm cloud then came over and I lost all my light and I couldn’t capture the cake with just the eye, the feet being added or me piping the monster’s fur. You could use any star shaped tip you have. I used a big one for most of the fur and then filled in near the mouth and on the edge of the paw with a smaller star. Lastly placing her pretty green bow on her head.

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I hope you find a fun way to make a neapolitan cake, I really loved the different flavours together and really enjoyed making my little monster.

Have a great week!

Cxx

Chocolate Fudge Dragon Cake

Chocolate Fudge Dragon Cake

Hiya!

Saturday was my son’s 5th birthday! I know everyone says it but where did the time go?! When he was born he weighed 2.9kg or 6.4lb and arrived on his due date! I read that only 5% of babies arrive on their due dates. Crazy huh!

Over the years he has had a rainbow cake, a sculpted dinosaur cake (never again), a ninja turtle cake and a lego cake. This year he asked for a dragon cake, so together we designed his cake. I always prefer buttercream to sugarpaste so I showed him pictures of the gorgeous unicorn cakes around at the moment. We decided on a 3 layer chocolate fudge cake with marshmallow swiss meringue buttercream and raspberry jam between the layers. Dragon wings, tail, feet, teeth, eyes and spikes were all made from french meringue. Although it could have done with a 4th layer of cake to make it a little taller, I think he’s rather cute and my son LOVED it!

A little note for anyone who thinks this looks very time intensive. As I am a Mum and my time is limited with looking after 2 littlies, I took 3 days to make this cake. Meringue lasts the longest so I made this on the Wednesday and stored them in a airtight container. I baked the cakes on the Thursday, once they were cool I wrapped them in cling film until I was ready to decorate the cake. On Friday I made the buttercream and decorated the cake for Saturday.

Meringue

For all the details on making meringues see my Meringue Hearts blog post.

Here I used 4 large egg whites which I weighed and then doubled the amount of caster sugar used.

Once the meringue was ready and had no more sugar grains, I removed 2 TBS of white meringue before colouring the rest yellow.

All templates were hand drawn by myself after comtemplating some of my sons toy dragons. I used a small piping bag with a small whole cut to pipe the teeth and eyes and then used a cocktail stick to make the points of the teeth more defined.

I painted yellow stripes of gel food colouring into my bigger piping bag to give a brighter colour to the tail, wings and spikes. For the details on the wings I used the smaller piping bag and to attach the wings to the cake I added 2 cocktail sticks to each wing.

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As I wanted the meringue very dry with no lovely gooey middle I baked the eyes and teeth, which were very thin, for 45 mins. The wings, feet and tail I baked for 1.5 hours and the spikes were 1 hour as they could still be a little gooey.

Once cool I stored them in an airtight container until I decorated the cake.

Chocolate Fudge Cake (Makes three 6″ round cakes)

 

263g self-raising flour

3 3/4 TBS cocoa powder

1 1/2 tsp bicarb

225g caster sugar

3 eggs

225ml sunflower oil

225ml milk

2tsp vanilla extract

2 TBS tinned caramel (the really thick type)

Preheat the oven to 160°C with a fan.

Line your cake tins with parchment paper, it makes it so much easier to get the cakes out of the tins!

Sieve flour, cocoa and bicarb into a large bowl and stir in caster sugar.

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In a medium sized bowl combine oil, milk,  vanilla extract, caramel and eggs. Whisk together well making sure the caramel breaks down.

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Add liquid to dry ingredients and mix well, the mixture will be quite runny.

Divide cake batter into cake tins, I weigh each tin as I’m pouring the mixture in. I only have two 6″ cake tins so I weighed out the cake batter and kept a third aside. Once the first two cakes were cooked I quickly cleaned a tin and filled it with the mixture that had been waiting. There was no difference in the outcome of the third baked cake but I was very gentle with the mixture when I poured it into the tin as the bicarb had already started working and making bubbles.

Bake for 30-35 mins. Check the center of the cake with a cocktail stick before removing from the oven, it should come out clean.

Allow to cool in the tins for 5 mins and then remove to cool on a rack.

Marshmallow Swiss Meringue Buttercream

For all the details on making buttercream see my Swiss Meringue Buttercream vs American Buttercream blog post.

Buttercream ingreds

I used my usual Swiss Meringue Buttercream recipe but flavoured it with 3/4 cup of marshmallow fluff. It was so yummy I think I could have eaten the whole bowl of icing by itself.

I then took a 1/4 out and coloured it yellow and coloured the remainder lime green.

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My son loves raspberry jam so I warmed a couple of TBS in the microwave and pushed it through a sieve to ensure there were no seeds left. After leveling each cake layer I started assembling the cake.

Start with a tiny bit of icing on the cake board to keep the first layer of cake in place. I then spread a thin layer of jam onto the cake before covering it in icing. Repeat with your remaining layers although I did not spread jam on the top.

Crumb coat and refrigerate. After an hour remove from the fridge and cover with your decorative layer of icing. I covered the whole cake in green icing and then added blobs of yellow before smoothing the icing with a cake smoother.

I returned the cake to the fridge for another hour before adding the final touches.

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I hope you love my quirky dragon cake as much as my son did and if I’ve inspired you please tag #sprinkesinthewild so that I can see too!

Cxx

 

 

Lime & Coconut Sprinkle Cake

Lime & Coconut Sprinkle Cake

Hiya!

Happy New Year! I have great expectations for 2017 and hope you do too.

To keep with the 2017 colour of the year, Greenery, I’ve chosen a fresh ‘green’ cake to share with you. Lime & Coconut Sprinkle Cake made a great New Year’s Day centre piece for our table. I hope you find an occasion to enjoy it too.

Lime & Coconut Cake

(makes three 6″ round cakes)

ingredientsetup

340g softened unsalted butter

340g caster sugar

340g self-raising flour

2tsp baking powder

6 eggs

1tsp vanilla extract

3 limes (zest & juice)

50g desiccated coconut

Preheat the oven to 175C

Place a circle of parchment paper at the bottom of each 6″ round tin.

Cream butter & sugar until pale.

Add 1 egg at a time, combining before adding the next.

Add vanilla extract, 3tbsp lime juice & lime zest

Sieve the self-raising flour & baking powder into the liquid mixture and add coconut.

Mix until just combined.

Divide equally between the cake tins.

Bake for 30mins or until a skewer inserted comes out clean.

Remove the tins & cool for 10 mins before removing from the tin and cooling on a rack.

I find that once decorated this cake will keep fresh for at least 1 week if kept covered.

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To Decorate…

Make around 5 cups of buttercream, either Swiss Meringue or American Buttercream will work. Find the recipe here Swiss Meringue Buttercream vs American Buttercream

Zest 2 limes and add 2 tbsp of lime juice, mix well.

Stack and fill the cake layers with your buttercream and crumb coat. Put in the fridge for 15mins.

Remove from the fridge and buttercream the sides only of your cake taking the icing a little bit higher than the top of the cake.

Put in the fridge for 1 hour until the icing has set.

Sprinkles

You will need about 800g of sprinkles of your colour & texture choice and 2 x 6″ cake boards. The boards cannot be bigger than your cake.

Pour sprinkles into a large shallow tray.

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Hold a cake board on either end of the cake and roll the cake in the sprinkles. The weight of the cake helps the sprinkles to stick into the buttercream so don’t feel like you can’t rest the cake in the sprinkles. Stop & jiggle the sprinkles tray if they end up in 2 hills either side of the cake and then continue. Once the sides are covered stand the cake up in another tray and pour some sprinkles on top. Use a cake smoother to spread on top of the cake and gently push down to help them stick.

Transfer your cake to the cake drum or stand & neaten up the bottom or pipe some buttercream around the bottom.

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Tada! Enjoy your cake.

Cxx