Monday, 23 September 2013

Baileys Chocolate Cake

I'll admit, I haven't been paying too much attention to this blog lately. This saddens me. But it's gotten harder and harder to bake things lately because I'VE BEEN SO BUSY MOVING IN AT UNI ARGHHH. Phew. It got intense there. I've been here at the University of Exeter's Cornwall campus, Falmouth for just over a week now. Going from being a only-child-living-at-home to a flat of 8 rowdy 18 year olds has been quite an adjustment, but I'm loving the freedom and unaccountability and am really starting to love it here. If only I didn't have to go to lectures...

But I digress. Before I departed for the glorious shores of Cornwall, I did make something of a backlog of recipes (all 2 of them) to tide me through the first few weeks of Uni. I made this cake as a thank you, you probably guessed by the writing on it, to my best friend's parents, who gave me a touching card before I left. Any excuse to make a cake, I say.

This chocolate cake is a recipe I haven't shared before. It's moist, rich and delicious, but, interestingly, I don't think it lasts quite as well as my own chocolate cake recipe, and I'm not just saying that. I found it had the tendency to dry out slightly after a day or two, whereas mine stayed fresh for days and days. Nevertheless, it's superb fresh.

I filled the cake with a quantity of my baileys buttercream, and coated the cake in a ganache made with baileys and chocolate instead of the traditional cream. It worked wonderfully! (Note: the ganache will actually help the cake keep moisture, meaning it stayers fresher for longer!) The left over ganache gave me a base for my piping incing - I just added enough icing sugar to get it to a stiff, pipeable consistency. After I'd written my message, I finished the cake with a sprinkling of grated chocolate - a perfect end!

Chocolate Cake 
Makes 2 thick 6'' cakes, or 2 normal thickness 8/9'' cakes

225g butter, softened
225g soft brown sugar
200g self raising flour
25g cocoa powder
4 eggs
125g dark chocolate
120ml milk

1. Preheat the oven to gas mark 5. Grease and line cake tins. Cream together the sugar and butter, and melt the chocolate and milk in a bowl over a pan of simmering water until combined. Set this mixture aside to cool slightly.
2. Crack the eggs into the butter mixture, one by one, beating after each egg has been added. Fold in dry ingredients and cooled milk and chocolate mixture.
3. Pour into prepared tins and bake until a knife inserted in the centre comes out clean, or until the cakes have stopped 'singing' (making a bubbling noise) - sounds weird but it really works! This should be about 30 minutes for standard cake tins, but will take longer in deeper tins.
4. Let the cakes cool on a wire rack in the tins for at least 15 minutes before turning them out.

Baileys Ganache

300g dark chocolate
150-200ml baileys

1. Melt the baileys and chocolate in a saucepan over a low heat until combined, and they have reached a pourable consistency. If the mixture is too thick, add a little more baileys to thin.
2. Pour over sandwiched cake layers.

Recipe for the decorating icing will be the next post!

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