Saturday, 15 December 2012

Dark Chocolate Candy Cane Cake

Chocolate and Mint. Arguably one of the best combinations of all time. And when it is in the form of a chocolate cake with a dark chocolate frosting spiked with peppermint and garnished with crushed candy canes... it is no exception! I first made this cake for somebody else, but I, along with the rest of my family, was slightly jealous that we did not get to indulge in the cake eating experience. So, at our next family dinner my mother requested demanded that I make one for us! It is now going to be a holiday staple around my house... it is simply divine. We served it with some festive peppermint ice cream alongside... ohhh baby! I just love the holidays!

Dark Chocolate Candy Cane Cake

Chocolate Cake:
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup boiling water
  • 2/3 cup butter
  • 1 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 1/4 cup flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 1/3 cup buttermilk
1) Stir together the cocoa powder and the boiling water, set aside.
2)Cream together the butter and sugar. Add in the vanilla, then the eggs.
3) In a separate bowl, sift together the dry ingredients. Alternate adding the dry ingredients to the butter mixture with the buttermilk, mixing until just combined after each addition. Blend in the cocoa powder/water mixture.
4)Pour the batter into two greased and floured 9" round cake pans. Bake at 350 for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean. Cool the cakes inside their pans for at least ten minutes, then let them cool completely before frosting.

When I bake cake, I usually bake it a few days of even weeks in advance. Once your cake is baked and cooled completely, you can wrap up the individual layers and pop it in the freezer. It can chill out there for up to 3 months! So that when it is time for cake, all you have to do is pull it out of the freezer and decorate it. By the time your guests have arrived and it's dessert time, your cake will be ready to be devoured, and you will have minimal "last-minute-cake" stress. :)

Dark Chocolate Peppermint Frosting:
  • 2 2/3 cup icing sugar
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder
  • 6 tbsp butter
  • 5 tbsp milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/4 tsp peppermint extract
Cream the butter, add the cocoa powder, milk and vanilla and peppermint. Gradually add the icing sugar until it is the consistency you dream of.

Assembly time!
Place one cake layer on a fancy platter which you are going to present your masterpiece on. Cover the top with about one third of the frosting. Place the other cake layer on top, and coat the top and the sides of the cake with the remaining frosting in an even layer. Use your knife or spatula to make pretty little swirls of frosting on the top of the cake.
For the sides of my cake, I took peppermint flavoured candy canes and crushed them using a rolling pin. Then I took the crushed candy in my hands and gracefully slap it on the sides of the cake, pressing gently to adhere it. Those little bits of candy cane that don't stick to the sides and just fall onto the platter need not go to waste! Just sweep them off the plate and continue adhering them to the rest of your cake.

TADAA! A chocolatey-minty-masterpiece :)

PS I decided last minute to decorate the top of my cake with two little candy canes making a cute little heart. Awe.

<3 Lari

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