My twin sister’s chocolate birthday cake

  • I adore my sisters. They are all fabulous and caring, loving and fun people! My youngest are twin 11 year old girls who love to cook, enjoy flavours and appreciate food! With determination and love, I set out to make the most scrumptious birthday cake I could, and this is what turned out. It is no Master Chef moment, but it is yummy!

 

Ingredients

1 cup brown sugar

1 cup caster sugar

¾ cup cocoa powder

2 tsp baking soda

1 tsp baking powder

2 cups of plain flour

1 tsp salt

2 eggs

3 tbs sour cream

¾ cup milk

1 cup hot chocolate, I use Jarrah sachets

½ cup olive oil

 

Chocolate frosting ingredients

1 ½ cups icing powder

3 tbs Hershey’s chocolate spread

2 tbs cacao powder

125g butter

Splash of milk

 

Method

Combine the sugars, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, flour and salt and stir around until mixed together. Add the wet ingredients now; eggs, sour cream, milk, hot chocolate and oil. Use an electric mixer on a medium speed for a couple of minutes. The mixture will be thin and a little glossy from the hot water in the hot chocolate. Pour the mixture into 2 baking tins that are greased or lined. For this particular cake I used a 22cm round cake tin and filled it almost half way, then poured the rest of the mix into a 10cm base high tin. Place both cakes into a moderate oven, about 180 degrees Celsius for about 35 to 40 minutes (depending on your tins) – just keep an eye on them. At the 35 minute mark if they look done touch the top and if it springs back it is ready, if not it needs a bit more. Let the cakes cool in their tins.

For the chocolate frosting I am using a new experiment! Place the butter, icing powder, chocolate spread and cacao powder in a saucepan on low heat and stir until combined and smooth. Add a dash of milk and stir vigorously. This enables the icing have a beautiful gloss.

Once your cakes are cool, assemble together with a little frosting in between, then frost the outside with as little or as much as you like. The quantity provided allows for a good coating. See, should have been a plasterer! Decorate with whatever you like – round little balls, fruits, shaved chocolate, all of the above, nothing – whatever your heart desires (or in this case the birthday girl’s requests)! I have used shaved chocolate and blueberries (the birthday girl’s have fabulous taste my dears)! Serve with love and a pleasant rendition of ‘happy birthday’! xo

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My twin sister’s chocolate birthday cake

vanilla birthday cake with caramel frosting

My son loves caramel, and is all about the texture of cake, so this is what I made for his birthday. The frosting is quite sweet, but the cake balances it out. It is scrumptious!

Cake ingredients

180 g butter

1 cup brown sugar

2 eggs

2 tsp vanilla pod scrapings or essence

2 cups self-raising flour

½ cup milk

 

Frosting ingredients

125 g butter

1 cup brown sugar

80ml milk

1 ½ cups icing powder

 

Method

With an electric mixer beat the butter and sugar until well combined. Then add the eggs one at a time, beating in between additions. Add the flour, essence and milk. Keep beating and the mixture will increase in volume and be smooth. Grease a cake tin and spoon the mix into the tin. Bake at 180 degrees Celsius for about 45 minutes.

Place the butter and brown sugar together in a saucepan on low heat. Once combined add the milk and icing powder. Stir until no lumps are evident, then take off the heat and cool down.

Once the cake has cooled down (a couple of hours later) spoon the icing onto the middle of the cake and gently push in a round circle to the edge. The icing will fall down the cake, here mine is a little runny because I didn’t measure the butter too well and it was 38 degrees here in Queensland that day! Add whatever fruits the birthday boy/girl likes and serve immediately!

This cake has a great crumb, and the caramel icing is sweet, creating a great family cake for any occasion!

vanilla birthday cake with caramel frosting

Brendo’s birthday cake

My hubby was turning 40 and didn’t want a ‘big deal’ made of this achievement. So naturally, I bought a flashing light and caution cones and asked his wonderful staff to pop them in front of his office so when he got to work he felt special….hahaha! A cake was in order, so this is what I came up with for a simple bloke who likes vanilla. It was scrumptious! Have a go, you won’t be disappointed!

Brendan's cake

Ingredients for the cake

250g butter

½ cup olive oil

3 cups caster sugar

5 eggs

3 cups plain flour

2 tsp baking powder

1 tsp salt

200ml milk

2 tsp vanilla bean paste

2 heaped tbs Greek vanilla bean yoghurt

 

Ingredients for the cream between layers

250ml cream

1 tsp vanilla paste

2 heaped cups icing powder

 

Ingredients for the ganache

2 tbs cream

220g white chocolate

 

Method

Cream the butter and olive oil together in an electric mixer bowl. Slowly add all the caster sugar bit by bit, taking a few minutes to complete the process. Add the 5 eggs one by one, with electric mixing in between each addition. In a separate bowl combine your flour, salt and baking powder together. In another bowl combine the milk, vanilla bean paste and yoghurt together. Add half of the dry mixture to the main bowl and electric beat, then add half of the wet mixture and electric beat some more. Add the rest of the dry mix, beating, and then add the last of the wet mix. Electric mix the entire amount for a whole two minutes. As you can see, this is a lot of cake batter! Grease and line 2 cake tins you’d like to use, then pour the mixture into each tin, making sure not to fill to more than ¾ of the way up the tins. Bake at 170 degrees Celsius for approximately 1 hour and 10 minutes. This cooking time will vary depending on your cake tins. High tins should be backed at 160 degrees Celsius for the hour and ten minutes, but rounder flatter cake tins like 22cm ones only take about 50 minutes. You know your oven and you know your tin, so just keep an eye on it! Long and slow beats hot and fast – you don’t want to burn your outside and have it cave into the middle – so keep the oven on a slow heat like 160-170 and just bake longer if you need to.

For the cream between layers simply beat the cream, vanilla paste and icing powder together until almost stiff. Once the cake is cool, assemble with this beautifully naughty cream oozing out from the layering!

For the white chocolate ganache simply boil water in a saucepan and place a steel bowl above it. Once the bottom of the steel bowl is hot add the chocolate and cream, stirring with a metal knife as it melts. Once melted stir until there are no lumps. Once the cake is cooled and assembled, run the ganache all over with a flat steel knife. I went for a semi-naked look as my cake was a ‘construction zone’ for my hubby who works in construction. Make more and layer it thick if you like. If you prefer ganache to be more sweet and spreadable just add a cup of icing powder and another tablespoon of cream, whip and you’re done! However you make this cake, I do hope you enjoy it with friends!

Brendo’s birthday cake

Blueberry & Greek Yoghurt Cake

This cake highlights a rustic, flavoursome and aromatic approach to baking. It is incredible served warm, but delightful served at room temperature. Made ahead, this cake freezes well in portions, rendering it a beauty for lunch boxes! Have a go, you may find a new favourite!

 

Ingredients

2 cups self-raising flour

1/2 cup Greek yoghurt

2/3 cup brown sugar

180 ml olive oil

3 eggs

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 cup blueberries

¼ cup rolled oats

Extra oats for sprinkling on top

2 tbs raw sugar for sprinkling on top

 

Method

Combine the flour, yoghurt, sugar, oil, eggs and vanilla in a bowl and mix until well combined. That free hand stir should take five whole minutes. Add the oats and mix well. Add the blueberries and stir. Spoon the mixture into a lined cake tin, here I have used a 22cm round tin. Sprinkle a little oats and some raw sugar or caster sugar (your preference) on the top and then bake in 160 degree Celsius oven for about 45 minutes. This recipe works well with frozen mixed berries, and with fresh raspberries too! I use this recipe for muffins too, and in that case bake at 180 degrees for 30 minutes. Enjoy this sensational cake!

Blueberry & Greek Yoghurt Cake

Banana & Blueberry upside down cake

My six year old daughter wanted to make a cake, so I started a vanilla cake. But she really wanted blueberries and bananas in it, and so the banana blueberry upside down cake was created! It is lovely! We will definitely be making it again!

Ingredients

125 g butter

½ cup brown sugar

2 eggs

1 tsp vanilla pod scrapings or essence

2 cups self-raising flour

Splash of milk

3 ripe bananas

A handful of blueberries

Method

Combine the butter and sugar and beat until well combined. Add the eggs one at a time, beating with electric mixer in between. Add the vanilla, flour and milk and electric mix until the mix is smooth. Line a cake tin with some baking paper. Cut the bananas into quarters and arrange on the base of the cake tin. Scatter the blueberries around and then sprinkle 2 tablespoons of brown sugar over them. Spoon the batter on top of the fruits. Bake at 160 degrees Celsius for about 45 minutes. Set aside for 15 minutes, and then whilst still warm, invert the cake to show the bottom as the top. Ta da! You’ve done it! Now the hardest part of all: keeping it from the kids and enjoying a portion whilst it’s still warm and heavenly!

The finished product!

 Upside down, ta da!!

Banana & Blueberry upside down cake

Vanilla cake to please

This cake is delightful! Because the main role is played by vanilla, do invest in vanilla pod or premium vanilla pod scrapings. I promise it makes all the difference! Sometimes I bake this with wholemeal flour and other times with white, do what you like, it turns out fabulous either way! This particular cake was for our Parish Priest’s 5th Ordination anniversary celebration! We are so blessed to have such a fantastic role model and dedicated leader. Have fun with this, we certainly do!

Ingredients

125 g butter

½ cup brown sugar

3 eggs

1 tsp vanilla pod scrapings or essence

2 cups self-raising flour

Splash of milk

 

Buttercream Icing

125 g butter

1 ½ cups icing powder

1 tbs milk

1 tsp vanilla pod scrapings or essence

 

Method

Combine the butter and sugar and beat until well combined. Add the eggs one at a time, beating with electric mixer in between. Add the vanilla, flour and milk and electric mix until the mix is smooth. Pour batter into a lined cake tin. Bake at 160 degrees Celsius for about 45 minutes, or until you can press the top lightly and it rises back to you. Whilst the cake is in the oven let the butter go near room temperature, then when soft stir in the icing powder, milk and vanilla. Let the cake cool completely prior to icing. I usually make my cakes the day before I need them and ice them the next day so that the exterior settles and it is easier to ice without scrapping crumbs into the icing mixture.

Vanilla cake to please

Father’s chocolate birthday cake!

What do you give a wonderful man who does so much for his community and friends?! A cake! Our Parish Priest is a lovely man who does like to indulge in a little chocolate from time to time, so a chocolate cake was in order for his birthday party, and I was asked to create it. What a nerve racking honour! So with determination and love, I set out to make the finest birthday cake I could, and this is what turned out. It’s no mighty extravagant thing like on tv, but it is humble, and good on the inside! Have a go yourself and you’ll be pleasantly surprised at the simpleness of this scrumptious little beauty!

 

Ingredients

1 cup brown sugar

1 cup caster sugar

¾ cup cocoa powder

2 tsp baking soda

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp salt

2 cups plain flour

2 eggs

3 tbs sour cream

¾ cup milk

1 cup hot chocolate, I use Jarrah sachets

½ cup olive oil

 

Frosting ingredients

350g dark chocolate

180ml sour cream

1 ½ cups icing sugar

 

Method

Combine the sugars, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder and salt and stir around until mixed together. Add the wet ingredients now; eggs, sour cream, milk, hot chocolate and oil. Use an electric mixer on a medium speed for a couple of minutes. The mixture will be thin and a little glossy from the hot water in the hot chocolate. Pour the mixture into 2 baking tins that are greased or lined. For this particular cake I used a 22cm round cake tin and filled it almost half way, then poured the rest of the mix into a 10cm base high tin. Place both cakes into a moderate oven, about 180 degrees Celsius for about 30 to 40 minutes (depending on your tins) – just keep an eye on them. At the 30 minute mark if they look done touch the top and if it springs back it is ready, if not it needs a bit more. Let the cakes cool in their tins.

For the frosting I have used my age old sour cream dark chocolate frosting! Place the cream in a saucepan over low heat and heat without boiling, when warm add the chocolate and stir until silky smooth. This will take a few minutes. Sift in the icing powder and stir briskly or use an electric mixer for a minute or so.

Once your cakes are cool, assemble together with a little frosting in between, then frost the outside with as little or as much as you like. The quantity provided allows for a relatively thick coating. On this particular wonderful occasion, I have used Australian native wildflowers to decorate. I hope you enjoy your beautiful cake as much as we did celebrating a brilliant man. Love and peace. xo

 

Father’s chocolate birthday cake!