Wednesday, 2 November 2011

After Eight Cake

Birthdays on weekdays are STUPID! I like to spend a whole day messing around perfecting a cake, trying out weird ideas but I can't do that if I have to work most of the day. And day-before birthday cake just isn't the same... So this was a thrown together birthday cake for my mother who turned a mystery age today. She is not a fan of the over indulgent- sweet cake and the 'After Eight' idea is something I've been wanting to try out for ages on cupcakes. Peppermint and dark chocolate is a great sophisticated 'adult' combination. The chocolate cake here is lovely. The almonds add richness and keeps the cake moist.

For the chocolate cake
225g butter
250g caster sugar
4 eggs
2 tbsp milk
1 tsp almond essence
50g ground almonds
100g self raising flour
1 tsp baking powder
50 g cocoa powder

Cream the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy. Beat the eggs with the milk and almond essence lightly in a cup. Add a quarter of the egg mix at a time with a tsbp of flour. Finally fold in the rest of the dry ingredients. Bake for 25-30 minutes at 180oC.

For the buttercream
75g butter
200g icing sugar
2 tbsp milk
2-3 drops of peppermint essence

Cream all the ingredients together until smooth and white with an electric hand held beater.
The decoration is fairly self evident from the pictures above. I just smoothed the buttercream on top and used the after eights to spell out Happy Birthday.

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