Today I thought I would share my all time favourite cake to bake, Chocolate birthday cake. Its perfect for birthdays, afternoon tea or even just to bake on a lazy Sunday afternoon. It keeps for at least 5 days in a covered cake stand, but in my house is usually gone within 2. The recipe is partly taken from Rachel Allens favourite food at home cookbook and partly from my own experimenting.
What you will need:
2 baking trays same size
Electric mixer (I use the Kitchen aid)
For the cake
100g or 4oz of butter, softened,
350g or 12oz of caster sugar,
2 medium eggs
225g or 8oz of plain flour
50g or 2oz of cocoa powder
1tsp of baking powder
1/4tsp of bicarbonate of soda or bread soda
250ml of buttermilk (I use easy alternative)*
1+1/2tsp of vanilla essence or extract
*If you cant easily get buttermilk pour required milk into cup and place in 2 tsp of lemon juice. This curldels the milk slightly leaving you with buttermilk. I add in 1/2tsp extra to mask lemon scent*
Preheat the oven to 180*c (350*f). Line the bases of your 2 pans with the grease proof paper.
Put the butter in a large bowl, add the sugar and using the electric mix beat until light and fluffy (until it turns a pale cream colour).
Add in the eggs one at a time, beating well in-between.
Sieve the dry ingredients into a bowl (flour, cocoa, baking powder and bicarbonate soda) into sugar mixture.
Pour in milk mixture and vanilla into the mixture and mix well until a smooth batter.
Divide the cake between the two tins and place in oven.
Its recommended that this cake cooks for roughly 20 minutes but I found it cake take up to 30. Keep checking it with a clean skewer. If the cake is cooked then the skewer when inserted into the cake should come out clean.
Leave to cool on wire rack.
For The Icing
285g of icing sugar
2tsp of cocoa powder
3- 5 tsp of melted butter
boiling water as needed
sieve the icing sugar and cocoa together then beat in butter as needed.
I noticed this can be still to thick and lumpy, for more of a creamy texture at in roughly 4 tsp of boiling water.
if you want more of a runnier icing ad in roughly 6 tsp of boiling water.
Add icing to top of one cake and sandwich the second on top of it.
Spread the reaming icing all over the top of the cake and down the side.
As an extra garnish use any chocolate sweets as you please. Mine are chocolate fingers, crispy m&ms or maltesers.