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Tag Archives: frosting

Clementine Layer Cake with Raspberry Meringue Buttercream


Here is a quirky celebration cake, or if you’re looking for a cake to make that requires a few cake decorating skills. Nothing too challenging, I assure you!

I created this one lazy Saturday, with nothing more in mind than I wanted to make a cake that looked good and on which I could try out a few new skills in icing and decorating. As I’m the classic rustic baker, this cake is quite achievable for anyone with some basic skills! I was inspired by a recent trip to Saga in Enmore, in Sydney’s inner west where the legendary Andy Bowdy makes awesome cakes! Check out the website here!

You could use all or just some of my ideas, and tailor make the cake to suit your own creativity.

And by the way, for us Aussies, who only recently have (limited) access to clementines, mandarins would be great too!

The full description of the cake is this: Clementine and Almond Cake with Raspberry Meringue Buttercream, White Chocolate Crumb, White Chocolate Passionfruit Drizzle, Toffee Fruit.  The cake itself is based on that wonderful, and now quite universal, orange almond cake from Claudia Roden, first seen in A New Book of Middle Eastern Food by Claudia Roden.

I have included the quantities for a full size cake mixture. You probably won’t need the entire mixture – however if your cake is a baked in tins larger than the ones I’ve used (10cm/4in), you may need the whole lot. If you do have some mixture left over, just bake it in muffins molds for some seriously moist and delicious little cakes!

The same with the meringue buttercream. I have given quantities enough for a large amount of frosting. You can make less, or keep the remaining buttercream for another bake.

So here’s my recipe for the cake and its assembly.

Ingredients

Clementine Cake
3 clementines skin on (or 3 mandarins)
4 free-range eggs
250g caster sugar
1 tsp baking powder
250g ground almonds

Raspberry Meringue Buttercream
4 egg whites
2 cups white sugar
2 cups unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 teaspoons freeze dried raspberry powder or enough to make a deep pink buttercream

White Chocolate Crumb
100g white chocolate
1 tablespoon passionfruit fondant creme* or a few drops good quality yellow food colouring

White Chocolate Passionfruit Drizzle or Dribble!
100g white chocolate
1 tablespoon passionfruit fondant creme* or a few drops yellow food colouring
A few drops milk

Toffee Fruit
3 tablespoons caster sugar
A few clementine segments and whole strawberries

Method

Cake

Preheat oven to 160 degrees C fan forced, 170 degrees C non fan forced. Butter 3 small cake tins well, and line the bases with a circle of baking paper – I used tins 10cm/4in in diameter.
Place clementines in a medium saucepan, cover with water, bring to the boil and cook until soft, about 20 minutes. Drain, cool and chop (discard seeds), then blitz in a food processor. Add the eggs and sugar and process until combined. Add the baking powder and ground almonds and blitz making sure  everything is thoroughly mixed. The mixture is quite a wet one, so you can, if you’re nervous add 1-2 tablespoons of plain flour to make the batter a little less runny.
Pour the batter into the prepared cake tins.
Bake for up to an hour, or until until golden brown and a skewer inserted in the cakes comes out clean. If the cakes are still wet, bake for longer.  However, the cakes may take less than the hour – check at the 40 minute mark for “doneness”.
Cool the cakes before carefully turning out of the tins, removing the baking paper.

Raspberry Meringue Buttercream

Place the egg whites and sugar into a metal bowl and set over a saucepan filled with about 5 cms of simmering water.
Heat, stirring frequently, until the temperature of the egg whites reaches 60 degrees C.  Transfer the heated egg whites and sugar to a large mixing bowl or stand mixer. Mix at high speed until they have reached their maximum volume, 5 to 10 minutes.

Mix on medium or medium-high speed while pinching off small pieces of butter and throwing them in. Mix in vanilla. Continue beating for about 5 minutes until the meringue and butter mixture is completely amalgamated, thick and of icing consistency. Carefully fold in the freeze dried raspberry powder.

White Chocolate Crumb

This method is tricky and possibly controversial! There are no doubt recipes which tell you how to bake white chocolate in the oven until it caramelizes and goes crumbly. I can’t guarantee the success of my method – a lot will depend on the power of your microwave and you own baking intuition in judging timings.
Essentially, you are cooking the white chocolate after it has melted, causing it to seize.
My method is pretty easy – stick the white chocolate in pieces  in the microwave (not on high- medium or even lower), and carefully melt. Then add the fondant creme or yellow food colouring mixing it through the warm chocolate. It will start to seize up. If it’s crumbly enough for you, then it’s done. If you want a more distinct crumb, place the chocolate back in the microwave on a low heat and cook for longer. I would advise going in 20 second bursts until you are satisfied with the crumb texture.

White Chocolate Drizzle

This needs to be made when you are ready to apply the drizzle/dribble to the cake.
Melt the white chocolate in a bowl over a pan of simmering water, taking care that the bowl does not touch the water. Or live dangerously as I did and melt the white chocolate in the microwave on a low heat setting.
Once melted, add the  fondant creme or yellow food colouring. As with the white chocolate crumb, the chocolate will probably seize. Take off  the heat and add a few drops of milk and beat vigorously until the mixture is of drizzling consistency. It comes back pretty well.

Toffee Fruit

Put the caster sugar in a small frying pan over a medium heat and dissolve the sugar, being careful not to stir the sugar. Once the melted sugar has hit that beautiful toffee/tea colour, remove from the heat, and carefully pour most of the toffee over the clementine segments and strawberries on the baking paper. Pour the last bit of the liquid toffee onto the baking paper so that you can break it up into shards once cold.

Assembly

Carefully cut the 3 cakes horizontally in half, to create 6 layers. This can be quite tricky as this cake is incredibly moist and can break easily.Work out which of the 6 layers are good, and which  you want to disguise. Pick the best for the top layer, a sturdy one for the bottom layer, and all the rest in between.
Place the bottom layer on a cake plate or cake board. Ice with the meringue buttercream, again being careful  as the cake is fragile. Repeat with the other layers, making the frosting on the top nice and thick. Ice the sides of the cake. A good palette knife will help with achieving a smooth texture.

Now for the decoration! This is where you can use your creative license! I dribbled the white chocolate drizzle down the sides of the cake, scattered the white chocolate crumb over the cake and around the base, placed the toffee fruit on and around the cake, and lastly decorated the cake with the toffee shards.
But absolutely you can have fun with this cake and do whatever you like to make your cake a quirky and visually spectacular creation!

*My local kitchen store stocks a range of Roberts Fondant Cremes see here for the link to the Passionfruit one I used in the recipe. However you can easily get the yellow effect by just using yellow food colouring, and don’t worry about the passionfruit flavour.

 

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Raspberry Cupcakes

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I made these colourful and flavourful bright pink raspberry cupcakes a while back when I was experimenting with colour in cakes. I’m posting again, as it’s such a simple and eye-catching recipe. The cake mixture has frozen raspberries in it and a drop or two of red food colouring.

The buttercream icing has raspberry fondant creme mixed through, plus a touch more red food colouring.  Fondant creme or paste is available at specialty kitchen shops. I get mine from The Essential Ingredient in Sydney. If you can’t get the fondant creme, just leave it out – red food colouring will easily give you the colour you need.

I decorated with a few crystallized rose petals – fresh petals would be pretty too!

Ingredients

Cupcakes

125g self-raising flour

125g caster sugar

125g butter

2 large free-range eggs

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 tblsp milk

Handful of frozen raspberries

Raspberry Buttercream Icing

50g butter, softened

250g icing sugar, sifted

1 tsp lemon juice

1 tblsp raspberry fondant creme

A drop of red food colouring

Method

Cupcakes

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C and line a muffin tin with cup cake cases.

Put all the ingredients except the milk and raspberries in a food processor and blitz till smooth. Add the milk while pulsing to make a soft, dropping consistency.

Carefully fold in the raspberries.

Spoon mixture into the cases, filling the cases equally.

Place the tin in the oven and bake for 15 minutes or until the cup cakes are cooked and golden on top.

Take the cup cakes in their cases out of the tin and cool on a wire rack.

Ice with the raspberry buttercream icing.

Raspberry Buttercream Icing

In a separate bowl, cream together the butter and icing sugar until combined, then add the lemon juice, raspberry fondant creme and a drop of red food colouring, beating continuously.

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Coffee and Walnut Cake

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Here is a very easy recipe for a coffee and walnut cake. It’s almost  a “one bowl” cake  –  you only need to add the coffee and walnuts  to the basic mix at the end. Cook as two layers and fill and ice with buttercream as I did, or make one larger cake, or you could even make twelve cupcakes! It’s such a versatile recipe.

Ingredients

Cake

50g ground almonds

125g self-raising flour

1/2 tsp baking powder

125g caster sugar

125g butter

2 large free-range eggs

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

3 tsps instant coffee powder

2 tbls milk

50g chopped walnuts + a few extra for decorating

Buttercream Icing

125g butter, softened

250g icing sugar, sifted

2 tsp instant coffee

1 tbls milk

Method

The Cakes

Preheat the oven to 170 degrees C. Generously butter two 18cm (7″) cake tins.

Put all the ingredients except the milk, coffee and walnuts into an electric mixer and mix until smooth and well incorporated. Dissolve the instant coffee into the milk, and add together with the chopped walnuts into the mixture.

Divide the batter equally between the two tins.  Place the tins in the oven and bake for 25- 30 minutes or until the cakes are cooked and golden on top, and a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean. Remove from the oven, leave in the tins for 5 minutes before carefully turning out of the tins to cool on a wire rack.

Buttercream Icing

In a food processor, cream together the butter and icing sugar until light an fluffy. Dissolve the instant coffee into the milk. Add this mixture to the icing, process until light and creamy.

To assemble

When cakes are completely cool, spread half of the buttercream icing on the bottom layer, and top with the second layer.

Roughly ice the top and sides of the cake with the rest of the buttercream using a palette knife. When you get to the sides, occasionally dip the palette knife into cold water as you ice to remove some of the thicker icing and to create the “naked icing” effect.  The idea is that the top of the cake is well iced and that the side sides are stripped back for a rustic look.  I’m still mastering the naked icing effect! Place the reserved walnuts on the top of the cake for decoration, or add a flower or two.

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Lemon Curd Cake with Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting

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Another one bowl cake  – I love them as they  are SO easy! This cake has a good dollop of my home-made lemon curd in the cake, and spoonful or two also in the cream cheese frosting.

The 2 tone colour combo was a bit of an experiment. I recently acquired a 3 cake mold set complete with plastic divider so you can make a layered cake with different colours. I only made one layer, and tried just two colours. Below is the picture from the box the molds came in.

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Not so sure of the success of the colour combo idea, maybe it needs practice. So the following recipe is for the cake alone –  if you want to try different colours, have a go!

The recipe makes 1 big cake or 2 smaller, flatter ones.

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Ingredients

Cake

225g softened butter

225g self-raising flour

1 tsp baking powder

200g golden caster sugar (ordinary is fine too)

4 large free-range eggs

1/4 cup lemon curd* (bought is fine)

Method

Preheat oven to 180 degrees C or/160 degrees C  fan forced. Grease 1 large cake tin (23cm/9″) or 2 smaller tins (18cm/7”). Place all the ingredients except the lemon curd in a food processor or stand mixer until well combined and smooth.Gently stir in the lemon curd.

Spoon the mixture into 1 or 2 cake tins. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the centre of the cake comes out clean. Cool in the tin(s) for 5 minutes, then remove from the tin(s) and leave to cool on a wire rack.

Cream Cheese Frosting

These quantities are for the frosting for the top of the cake. Double if you want to fill the centre of 2 cakes.

100g softened butter

200g icing sugar

50g cream cheese

1 tbls lemon curd*(bought is fine)

Method

Cream the butter and icing sugar until soft and well combined. Beat in the cream cheese and lemon curd, being careful not to overbeat, but make sure there are no lumps.

To Assemble

For 1 cake, ice the top of the cake with the frosting using a palette knife. Be liberal!  Drizzle the top with extra lemon curd. For 2 cakes, fill the centre of the cakes with frosting. Alternatively, you could fill with whipped cream.

*Lemon Curd

Ingredients

Juice of 2 lemons

4 tbls sugar

2 tbls butter

2 egg yolks, beaten lightly

Method

Place all the ingredients in a double boiler or bain marie. Cook over a medium heat, stirring with a wooden spoon, until the mixture thickens. Remove from heat and place in sterilized jars. Refrigerate before using.

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White Chocolate Yoghurt Cakes with Passionfruit Frosting

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This cupcake recipe is easy as! I made the cakes, iced them and photographed them in under 2 hours. And ate a couple too! The yoghurt and white chocolate make the cakes very moist.

The addition of fondant paste to buttercream creates the passionfruit frosting. This paste comes in tubs in various flavours  – I acquired passionfruit, plus raspberry fondant paste from The Essential Ingredient, Rozelle.

http://www.sydneyessential.com.au/

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Ingredients

75 grams softened butter
1 cup sugar
1 cup yoghurt (full fat or reduced fat)
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla paste
2 cups self raising flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
150g melted white chocolate
Method

Preheat oven to 170 degrees C.

Cream the butter and sugar in food processor. Add the yoghurt, eggs and vanilla paste and whiz until well combined.

Add the flour, baking powder and salt. Process until smooth – be careful not to overmix as this will toughen the cakes.  Stir in the melted white chocolate.

Pour the mixture into cupcake cases in a muffin tin.

Bake for  15-20 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the cakes comes out clean. Remove the cakes from the oven and leave to cool.

Ice with the pasionfruit frosting and decorate as desired!

Pasionfruit Frosting

Ingredients

100g softened butter

200gms icing sugar

1 tblsp passionfruit fondant paste

A few drops of yellow food colouring

Method

Cream the butter and icing sugar in the food processor or electric mixer. Add the fondant food colouring and beat until really well combined.

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