White Chocolate Birthday Cake

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This was a white chocolate cake that I made for my daughter’s friend, Susie. She turned 10 and asked for a white chocolate cake. As it’s one of my favourite cakes, I was happy to do it, in fact I will make a white chocolate cake for my daughter’s birthday later this month, too.
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Ingredients
4 large eggs, separated
4 Tbsp flour
4 Tbsp white sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp vanilla bean paste
pinch of salt
For the filling
600 ml double cream
200 g white chocolate (I used Lindt white chocolate from Lindor -the best!)
Method
You need to prepare the filling cream one day ahead, but at least 6-8 hour before assembling the cake.
Warm the double cream in a pan and stir in the white chocolate until fully melted. Set aside to cool, then place it in the fridge for overnight.
In a large mixing bowl, beat the egg whites with the salt, then add the sugar and beat until you get a firm, shiny consistency. Add the vanilla and yolks one by one, beating a little after each addition. Now put down the mixer, and using a large plastic or wooden spoon, fold in the flour, but gently until it’s all combined.
Pour the batter in the baking pan. I used four disposable, paper baking cases, and divided the batter evenly. This way I got four even cake sheets and I didn’t need to cut afterward.
When the cake has cooled, I beat the white chocolate cream and filled the cake.
To decorate this cake, I made a little bunting from paper flowers and fabric.
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Small Caramel Chocolate Cake

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Made this small, 5″ cake for my birthday, just enough for my family to make it vanish instantly after Sunday lunch.

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Chocolate and cream is my ideal cake filling, light and creamy, and can be so versatile if used different chocolates each time. This time I bought Lindor caramel chocolates from Lindt. Very subtle and silky, whipped in double cream and filled in a light vanilla sponge cake. Just perfect, and I got my husband’s absolute approval, too.

 

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Persian Love Cake for Valentine’s Day

 

 

I have been looking for inspiration for something special for Valentine’s day, although this particular day doesn’t mean too much for us. It is a custom which we were not familiar with where we grew up, and only appeared later in our life, therefor there is nothing too special about it for us. But! It is a very good opportunity for baking something a little more special, more glamorous. I have been searching for something new, something different, and came across several time with the Persian Love Cake, but the more cakes, the more varieties on the same subject, and different interpretations each time. Which one to chose, which one is the authentic recipe, I’ll never know. I chose to follow (more or less…) a recipe from Twigg Studios blog, and the looks (the layout of the cake and decoration idea) from The Hungry Australian, and that’s how my version of the Persian Love Cake came to life.
Apparently, there is also a love story behind this cake, although searching a bit deeper I found out, that none of it is true, and that Persian people don’t know anything about it.
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Ingredients:
250 ml plain yogurt
1 tsp baking powder
6 eggs
1 cup caster sugar
2 and 1/4 cup ground almond
6 cardamom pods
2 Tbsp rose water
6 Tbsp chopped pistachios
pinch of saffron strands
100 ml almond milk
zest from 1 lemon
Icing:
150 ml double cream
50 g white chocolate
Syrup:
zest and juice of one lemon
100 g caster sugar
2 cardamom pods
1/2 cup water
Decoration:
food grade dry rosebuds
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Method:
Preheat the oven.
Peel the cardamon pods open and remove the seeds, crush with a pestle and mortar. Add the saffron strands to the milk and warm in the microwave. In another bowl beat the eggs and sugar until thick and creamy, then stir in the yogurt. Add the ground almonds and baking powder, then add the ground cardamom, lemon zest and chopped pistachios. Add the rosewater to the milk and saffron mixture and stir into the cake batter.
I didn’t have rose water at home, so I put a few dry rosebuds in a cup and poured half cup of boiling hot water on them and left covered for about 10 minutes. It smelled wonderful, but with a much lighter rose taste, which I personally prefer better than the strong rose water.
Pour the cake mixture in the previously greased bundt cake form. Bake for about 40-45 minutes.
While still in the oven, make the syrup.Put the lemon juice,the zest, sugar, water and cardamom pods in a pan and simmer until thickens a little.
When your cake is baked, make holes all over and pour the syrup on to the warm cake spoon by spoon.
Warm the double cream in a pan and melt in the chocolate. Let it cool for several hours in the fridge before you beat up lightly, so the consistency is still flowing but thick. If you want, you can leave the ganache out completely, or you can make butter cream instead if you prefer.
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White Truffle Chocolate Cake

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Made this beauty for a girls night out the other week, where we gathered to taste lots of delicious cakes and especially to enjoy each other’s company. We had about 10 different cakes to taste on that evening, and Boy, was I full the next day?! Anyway, I say it worth every crumb!
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This is actually my favourite chocolate cake recipe that I reproduce every Christmas for the past few years, so basically I can say is our traditional Christmas desert. My Mom never makes a cake like this for Christmas. She usually makes a few different tray bakes, and bite size cookies, and of course the very traditional Beigli (in two flavours: walnuts and poppy seeds) which is the most popular Hungarian pastry for Christmas.
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This cake though, became my very own tradition, and I hope that one day my kids will talk about it to their friends and children with a smile on their faces and referring to it as The Traditional Christmas Cake of Mom.
Ah, well, Christmas is not even here, yet, look at me talking all about it! We will be travelling to Europe again, to see family and friends over the winter holidays, so I might not even be able to bake this cake this year, although in previous years I managed to do it even though I don’t feel very comfortable baking in another kitchen other then my own. Will see, will see….
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Here’s the recipe for you.
Ingredients:
1 cup water
5 Tbsp cocoa powder (unsweetened)
2,5 cup all purpose flour
1 cup brown sugar
2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 little natural yogurt (without any flavour)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp baking powder
2 eggs
200 gr butter (unsalted)
1 tsp almond extract (this time I actually put 2 tsp and I loved the more intense almond taste)
juice squeezed from 1/4 orange
100 gr good quality dark chocolate roughly chopped
salt
Ganache cream:
600 ml heavy cream
150 gr white chocolate
You need to prepare the cream on the previous day of baking. In order to do this you need to pour the cream into a pan, put it on the stove. Chop the chocolate in small pieces and stir in the cream until its melted. Make sure it’s not boiling, it only needs to get warm enough until the chocolate melts in. When it’s done, put it aside to cool completely, then put it in the fridge for the night or at least 6 hours.
Method:
Preheat your oven. Put the water, cocoa powder and butter in a pan and stirring it, bring it to boil on the stove, then put it aside to cool down.
Mix the flour, salt, bicarbonate of soda, baking powder and sugar in a bowl. Stir in the water with the butter and chocolate, add the eggs, vanilla extract, almond extract, orange juice, yogurt, and finally the chopped chocolate. Stir everything just only until all is combined.
Grease and line (the bottoms only) the tins with baking paper. I used 3 separate tins, each of 9″ (23 cm) large, so at the end there was no need to cut any layers.
Pour the batter evenly into the cake tins and bake for about 30 minutes. Take it out from the oven then leave to cool in the tins completely before filling your cake.
With an electric mixer beat the white chocolate cream and fill the cake. I put generous amount of cream on each layer, and I covered the cake whit the remaining filling, but I wanted to have a rustic half naked cake, so I scraped off any excess to achieve this vintage look. Finally I decorated it with roses from my garden.
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Jawsome Shark Cake… for my shark obsessed boy

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So, I’ve got this 6 year old funny little guy in the house who has developed a huge shark obsession during the spring and summer this year, and apparently this isn’t over yet, not even close! I must admit that I quiet like it, too 🙂 I bought him several picture books and educational books from Usborne and National Geographic (which he really loves, by the way), we went to watch the big sharks at a big aquarium in Italy, and I even bought myself a pair of shark earrings for the summer to show my ultimate support. I haven’t introduced him to the movie Jaws though….not there yet!

His favourite species are the Great White and the Hammerhead Shark for some reason, and by now he knows lots of types of sharks, what’s more his 3 year old sister learned them from him as well.

I made him a special potato print Shark T-shirt before the summer (and before his haircut 🙂 ), and I must say I was very pleased how it turned out. He loves it too!

 

 

So, we’re all into sharks these days, and having a shark theme cake for his birthday in August in Italy made by the local bakery was not enough. Just not enough, and he made me promise that I’ll make him one too. Of course!

 

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Here we are few months later, and here is the little Shark Cake. I tried to make a sugarpaste shark topping, which looks quite funny without any teeth! Must be a very old (and fat!) shark, even though apparently sharks don’t loose their teeth, or if they do, they will grow it back at once, …so my son tells me….

 

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I did not bake the cake, I used ready baked cake sheets, which I bought in Hungary this summer. They are honey based, thin cake sheets, and I cut out small circles to make 6 layers.

 

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For frosting I made white chocolate ganache and tinted with blue food colour. It turned more like aqua blue because the white chocolate and cream were a bit yellowish, but then I guess aqua is good, considering that sharks live in water/aqua after all.

 

 

Ps.While I wrote this post I was listening to the song “Baby Shark, do do do do….” because that’s what my son is watching on YouTube right now.
And every day.
Since spring or so…
And we all like it! 🙂

Pistachio Pudding Cupcake with White Chocolate Cream

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I had few packs of American Jell-O pistachio pudding in my cupboard for a while, and I bought them specifically to bake them into cupcakes or some sort of cake. I used one pack now to make a small batch of cupcakes. They didn’t turned out as green as I thought they were, but then I haven’t used any food colour. Anyway, even though they were not so green, but at least they tasted wonderfully, so overall I was happy with the result, and so was my husband, who loved them!

 

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I found recipes on the Internet using pistachio pudding, but they also used boxed cake mixture. I aim to bake every time from scratch, so only use boxed cake when I see one in the store that look appealing and calls my name to try it. So, since I don’t keep any cake box in the house, I made up my own recipe.

 

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Ingredients:
-1 cup flour
-3/4 cup caster sugar (I usually bake with brown sugar, but this time I used white)
-3 eggs
-1 tsp vanilla extract
-1 cup milk
-60 ml sunflower oil
-1 pack Jell-O pistachio instant pudding
-1 tsp baking powder
-salt
Icing:
-600 ml double cream
-200 gr white chocolate
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Method:
To make the white chocolate cream, you need to warm the cream and melt the chocolate in the warm double cream, then let it cool and keep it in the fridge for overnight. Beat the cream next day, before icing the cupcakes.
Preheat the oven, and line the cupcake pan with the baking cases.
Using a big bowl, first I stirred the eggs with the vanilla, sugar, then I put everything else into the bowl and gave a good stir until was well combined, kind of how you would do with a boxed cake mix.
Divide the batter evenly in the baking pan and bake for about 25 minutes. Let them cool before icing. I decorated mine with pink and purple chocolate shavings.
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White Chocolate Birthday Cake

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It’s been my birthday this past week, so I made myself a cute little cake to share with my family and some friends. It was gone in like 20 minutes…. 🙂
Light, fluffy, creamy, white, and super girly. This is how I would describe my birthday cake. I remembered that my kids and husband loved my little girl’s birthday cake that I made for her 2nd birthday last June (you can check under the post Twinkle Twinkle Little Star Birthday), and that’s why I wanted to make the same. Almost the same, apart from a little pink colour in the batter, which I can not show because as I mentioned before the cake was gone before I could say “Hold it, I need to take a photo”…or anything else for that matter.  Ah, well, this is only the sign of most appreciation from my brood, so all is good.
This cake is super easy to make. Really. And needs only few ingredients. And the best part of it are the pretty real flowers on top. Just love them!
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It yield 3 layers of cake in 18 cm cake pan.
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Ingredients:
5 large eggs, separated
5 Tbsp flour
5 Tbsp white caster sugar
1 tsp baking powder
salt
2 tsp vanilla extract
White chocolate cream:
600 ml double cream
200 gr white chocolate
Method:
You need to prepare the white chocolate cream one day ahead, but at least 6-8 hours before you fill the cake. Warm up the double cream on the stove and stir in the chocolate until completely melted. Set aside to cool, then put in the fridge for overnight. Whip the cream just before filling and covering the cake.
Preheat your oven. Grease the cake pan, or cake pans if you bake the layers separately.
In a large bowl start whipping the egg whites with the sugar until you get a really firm, shiny  peak. Gradually add the egg yolks, one at a time. Add vanilla, too.
Mix the flour, salt and baking powder. Add the flour mix to the egg cream, but don’t use the electric mixer anymore, just a big spatula, and only stir until all combined, and be gentle, don’t brake it.
Poor the batter in the cake pan and bake for 30-35 minutes, or until a toothpick cames out clean.
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Spicy Pear & Marzipan Cupcakes with Caramel Cream

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I wanted to make apple cupcakes, but then I thought why not bake something with pears instead, it would be a fresh change as I never made cupcakes with pears before. I searched for recipes, finally I found three out there which I liked, but none was 100% what I had in mind, so I came up with my own version. The only thing in common was the use of pears. Some were using spices, some used marzipan, and others used caramel. I combined them all and here I am.
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On Sweetapolita site I saw those tiny marzipan pears, and I decided I would make them too. Just love them!
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Ingredients:
-1 and 1/2 cup flour
-3/4 cup brown sugar
-4 large eggs
-2 pears diced in small cubes
-200 gr soft marzipan
-250 gr butter at room temperature
-1/3 cup milk
-1 tsp baking powder
-1 tsp mixed spice
-1 tsp cinnamon
-1 tsp almond extract
-freshly grated nutmeg
-salt
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Icing:
-600 ml double cream
-100 gr white chocolate
-4 Tbsp canned Caramel
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Method:
This recipe yield 24 cupcakes. I only made 12 cupcakes and I baked a 3 layer 5″ cake of the remaining batter. Will freeze and use some other time.
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The double cream has to be warmed up on the stove the previous day. Put the chocolate in the warm cream and stir until fully melted. Make sure the cream doesn’t reach boiling temperature, just warm enough to melt the chocolate. Let it cool down, add the caramel then put away in the fridge over night.
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Preheat the oven, line the cupcake pan with the paper cases.
Dice the pears in small cubes and mix with the spices, then put aside. Mix the flour with baking powder and salt.
Beat the butter and sugar and add gradually the marzipan. Add the eggs, one by one, beating after each addition.
Add the flour and the milk, and carefully mix until all combined. Finally stir in the pears.
Scoop the batter in the cupcake holes. I always use an ice cream scoop to do this. Bake for about 20-25 minutes.
Beat the caramel chocolate cream and frost the cupcakes after they have cooled.
I made little pears from golden marzipan and brushed them with golden sugar dust.
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