Monday, 1 October 2007
This is going to be the most colourful post I have ever posted!
Today is Children's Day. It's a school holiday for children who are in the primary and pre-schools here. I made this cheerful rainbow chocolate cake for the kids this morning.
I used a straight forward chocolate cake recipe, "Devilishly Moist Chocolate Cake" from The Cake Book, by Tish Boyle. Well, I believe, any chocolate lovers will surely be attacted to a cake with such a name. The cake is made with oil, as such, it's suppose to remain soft and moist even when refrigerated or frozen. I decided on this recipe as I have all the ingredients on hand, and it seems to be one of the simpler cake to make.
I didn't use an electric mixer as stated in the instructions. I used a manual whisk and spatula instead. The only problem I faced was when mixing the wet ingredients to the flour mixture...it took me some arm power to get the mixture smooth. Fortunately, my little helper was around, waiting eagerly to take over while I rest my arm for a few seconds. The mixing became easier after my boy helped pour in the hot water gradually. The final batter was very thin and watery! I halved the recipe as a 9" cake is too big for us. Somehow, my mind was not working well, and I used a 8" instead of a 7" pan. As a result, the cake was rather flat and short in height.
To make up for the height, I sliced the cake into two thin layers and filled it with chocolate frosting (melt over low heat, half cup of cream with 150g dark chocolates) and banana slices. I covered the entire cake with a thin layer of the remaining chocolate frosting.
I decorated the top with colourful kids cereals...Trix and Frost Loops, and added a ring of marshmallows on the side. If not for my kids stronger preference for a chocolate frosting, these colourful bits will look better if I were to use whipping cream.
While I was busy with the cake, my elder boy spent the entire morning fixing the two toy robots (Keroro Gunso) I got for them. He managed to assemble all the various small parts without my help. I thought these two figurines really look cool!
Here's the inside of the cake...I still think the cake layer tasted much better when left in room temperature for about 5~10 mins after it has been taken out from the fridge. Other wise it tasted a little hard and dry. Other than the cereals which has lost their crispness, the cake was actually very tasty...extremely chocolaty...something which I didn't expect, as the cake didn't look anything close to it's name, without any frosting. I guess, you can never go wrong when you pair off chocolates with bananas and marshmallows :)
Here's the recipe for the Devilishly Moist Chocolate Cake.
(makes one 9" cake)
1 1/2 cup (161g) all purpose flour
3/4 cup (61g) natural cocoa powder
1 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 2/3 cups (332g) granulated sugar
1/3 cup (80ml) safflower or other neutral vegetable oil (I used olive oil)
2 large eggs
1/3 cup (80ml) whole milk (I used low fat milk)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup (240ml) boiling water
- Preheat oven to 325 degF. Grease bottom and sides of a 9 x 3 inches round cake pan. Dust the pan with flour and set aside. (I lined the bottom with parchment paper.)
- Sift together flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt into the bowl of an electric mixer. Add in sugar and mix at low speed until blended. (I used a spatula to mix in the sugar). Add in the oil and mix a few seconds until the dry ingredients are crumbly. (I used a spatula to mix in the oil).
- In a small bowl, whisk together the eggs until blended. Whisk in the milk and vanilla extract until blended. With mixer at low speed, add the egg mixture to the flour mixture and mix until blended, scraping down the sides of the bowl necessary. (I used a manual whisk to do the mixing. The batter will be very thick at this stage).
- Add in the boiling water gradually and mix just until blended and smooth, scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary. (The mixture will become very thin and watery.)
- Pour batter into the prepared pan and bake for 45 to 55 mins until a toothpick inserted into the centre comes out clean. Cool the cake in the pan for 20mins before unmoulding. Let cool completely.
- Place pouring cream (I used one tin of Nestle's pouring cream) and 150g dark chocolate in a saucepan over low heat. Stir until melted and smooth. Set aside for 10mins before frosting the cake.
- Slice two large bananas, lengthwise into halves. Squeeze some lemon juice over.
- Slice chocolate cake into 2 layers. Spread one layer with the chocolate frosting, arrange the sliced bananas (cut side down) on the cake layer to form 2 concentric rings. Cut the bananas as necessary in order to form the two rings.
- Spread the other cake layer with chocolate frosting, flip over and layer it over the banana slices.
- Coat the top and sides of the cake surface with the remaining chocolate frosting. Decorate with colourful cereals and marshmallows as desired.
Recipe adapted from The Cake Book, by Tish Boyle