Sunday, 10 June 2012

White Chocolate Valentine's Gateau

Hey guys,

Today I baked a cake for one of my best friend's leaving party to celebrate her going away to Australia to study abroad for a year :'( Because I knew this was a special occasion, I wanted to make something I hadn't baked before but also something that wasn't too difficult or time consuming, as I had less than a day to make it! I looked through a few of my recipe books and decided on a White Chocolate Valentine's Gateau from a  book I received in my Christmas stocking a few years ago called 1 Mix, 50 Cakes because its more special than a bog standard round vanilla sponge. Of course I had to decorate it with edible glitter as I'm glitter obsessed, which made it even more special! You can buy the book here:

I made a few changes to the recipe by adding double the amount of white grated chocolate to the mixture to make it extra chocolatey, used stork margarine instead of unsalted butter and substituted the plain white flour and baking powder for the same amount of self-raising. A good tip is also to take your fridge ingredients out an hour or so before i.e. eggs, butter etc so they can warm up to room temperature.

* oil or butter for greasing
* 175g/6 oz plain white flour
* 1 tbsp baking powder
* 175g/ 6oz unsalted butter, softened
* 175g/ 6oz caster sugar
* 3 eggs, beaten
* 1 tsp vanilla extract
* 55g/2 oz white chocolate, grated
* 2 tbsp white rum (optional) I used:

* 200g/7 oz white chocolate, broken into pieces
* 2 tbsp milk
* 200ml/7 fl oz double cream

Preheat the oven to 160 degrees/325 Fahrenheit/Gas Mark 3. I would recommend using the fan setting on the oven to circulate the warm air and ensure the cake is cooked evenly.

The book says to sift the flour and baking powder into a bowl (or just the self-raising) and add the butter, sugar, eggs and vanilla extract. Beat until smooth, then stir in the grated chocolate. I did this in a different order as my method for this differs. First I cream the margerine (butter) and sugar together until pale.

Then I beat the eggs in one at a time.

Lastly, I stir in the flour a bit at a time with the vanilla extract. This way you will make sure all the ingredients are well combined and have a light, fluffy cake.

The little lumps are pieces of chocolate :)
Spoon the mixture into the prepared tin and smooth the surface with a palette knife or back of your spoon. I used a silicone mold from John Lewis, which you can buy here.

Bake in the preheated oven for 45-55 mins, or until risen, firm and golden brown. Mine was done in 45 mins, so make sure you check through the oven door (don't open the door too many times as the cake will deflate). You can also put a skewer through the middle - if it comes out clean the cake is ready and it should feel springy to the touch. Leave to cool in the tin for around 10 mins so that it doesn't lose it's shape and break, then turn out onto a wire rack to finish cooling. You can take this time to lick your utensils before washing them up like I did :p

Meanwhile for the frosting, melt the chocolate with the milk in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of barely simmering water. Remove from the heat and stir until smooth, then leave for 10 minutes.

Whip the cream until it holds soft peaks, then fold into the cooled chocolate mixture. It is essential that you let the chocolate cool enough otherwise it will become sloppy and maybe curdle. If your mixture isn't the texture you would like, try adding more whipped cream or leaving it to chill in the fridge to stiffen up.

Sprinkle the cake with the rum, if using then spread the frosting over the top and sides of the cake with a palette knife. Leave plain or decorate as you wish.

I got some really good feedback and everyone had seconds - success!!
Me at the party with my (partly squished) cake!
Loving her cake!

Let me know what you think of the recipe and how your cake turns out! xxx

P.S. my friend has just set up her very own fashion website - check it out!


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