I love eating food that’s leftover from a party.
And if the party is hosted by me, then definitely I like the food more the next day.
Probably the effort that goes into it (even if its just a tad bit of effort), just puts me off my food the day its made.
If anybody else is cooking, then I don’t mind the food that day- in fact even at its worst I love food made by others! C’mon what’s there not to love about it- some one else has taken the effort, someone else is going to do the dishes, someone else has to worry about it being tasty. All that always adds to the taste.
But, my food, I always hate it the day I make it.
That’s what happened with this cake too.
This cake was made for my friend’s daughter’s first birthday. Initially my heart was set on this cake. But then realized marshmallows are not safe for a one year old to eat as they might get stuck in their windpipe. Plus, my friend’s older daughter is not a fan of marshmallows and thus the marshmallow frosting had to be ruled out. Instead I used the Swiss Meringue Buttercream frosting from Rosie’s site.
So I set out to make the cake. While the cake recipe I was familiar with- I used a similar recipe for my chocolate cupcakes, it was the first time with both the frostings for me. Also, my first time making a proper layer cake.
My first attempt at cutting the layers did not go as planned, and I was left with a broken cake!
I made another batch. Thankfully, I had better luck this time.
I made the cake, made the frosting and tasted each separately and together.
I did not like it as I thought I would.
Probably all the test runs of the frosting, cake and the whole stress of whether people would enjoy it, just did not give me that mouth feel when I had a bite into it.
For starters I found the Swiss Meringue Buttercream too buttery. In fact, its only later that I read on Rosie’s site that yes, SMB is quite buttery, especially to first-timers. And I was like why couldn’t have I seen this before!
Secondly, after having ganache frosting any other chocolate frosting seems second place to me. So did this.
But that was all the day I made it.
I had one big slice left after the party. I cut myself a small piece and microwaved it for 10 seconds (I wasn’t going to wait for the cake to come to room temperature), and Oh my god it tasted so gooood!
Maybe this was what people meant when they said they loved it. They were actually being honest about it!
Now I feel bad I did not even thank them for their compliments.
(This is another thing about me- if I don’t like something I made and people still like it, I would just think they are being kind and forget to thank them because I think that whatever I made actually doesn’t deserve those compliments and hence those compliments don’t register in my head, instead I’m thinking oh! how how sweet of them to pretend to like it. And then later, when I am alone I feel so stupid of not saying thank you for their compliments and hope that they don’t think I’m a snob or just full of myself!)
Both V an I enjoyed the leftovers the next two days!
Since my friend loves owls and her daughter’s birthday party theme was owls, I thought I’ll decorate the cake top with owls. Since I am not that great with deocrating a cake I was happy to find this on Xiaolu’s blog.
I think both Rosie and Xiaolu are beautifully talented people. Love their work and thanks to them this cake was possible!
Of course my work is not as neat as theirs, nor is my photography as beautiful as theirs, but I am a firm believer of practice makes perfect!
Rich Chocolate Cake
This recipe is quite similar to the one bowl recipe I used for the chocolate cupcakes that I made a few weeks back. Its an easy one bowl recipe that delivers every time. I did find it difficult to cut the layers as the cake was really soft and had disastrous results cutting the cake and had to rebake the layers. Rosie uses 3 8-inch layer cake tins and makes a 6 layer cake with thinner layers. I used 2 9-inch cake tins and made a 4 layer cake. Rosie suggests to increase the recipe 1.5 times to have thicker layers and any leftover batter can be used to make cupcakes.
Swiss Meringue Buttercream
I added a little pink gel color to get a nice baby pink touch to the buttercream. Next time I will use a little less butter though. Rosie does add in a reply to someone’s comment, that she has achieved equally good results by using 20% less butter in the buttercream.
I replaced the Ovaltine Classic with Nesquik because that’s what I had on hand.
Assembling the cake
I halved each of the two layers to get four layers. Place the bottom layer on a serving plate. Place small strips of waxed paper under the edges of the cake to keep the serving plate clean during frosting; remove the strips after you finish all your cake decorating.
Spoon a mound of the pink SMB, about 1/2cup, on top of the bottom cake layer. Spread it evenly over the cake with a narrow metal spatula. Place the second cake layer on top. Add 1/2 cup of the chocolate frosting. Spread evenly. Repeat same with the next two layers, alternating between the pink and the chocolate frosting.
For the top layer coat the cake in two parts. Spread in a thin layer over the entire cake as a base coat to seal in any remaining crumbs and smooth the surface. Let dry for 15 minutes. Spread the sides of the cake with a thicker, finishing layer of frosting, working from the top toward the bottom as you rotate the cake.
To frost the cake top, spoon a mound of frosting in the center and spread it outward to all edges. Hold a narrow metal spatula under hot running water, shake off the excess water and use the damp spatula to quickly smooth a section of frosting with long strokes, moving in one direction. Repeat until the frosting is smooth on the cake top and sides.