Merry Christmas! I hope you're all having a wonderful Christmas, relaxing, peaceful and joyous!
Can you guess what it is yet? Well, obviously the clue is in the title of the post - an Igloo! This is why I don't generally bother to try and decorate my cakes with any degree of creativity - I am simply not creative! However, I fancied giving this a go after a discussion on a message board I read. I wish I had had time to make some little penguins or other decoration, but this week ran away with me.
The main cake was baked in a 1 litre (I think!) pyrex bowl and then some of the extra cake mixture was baked in a little loaf tin, to allow the entrance way to be cut out. I levelled off the top of the cake baked in the bowl to allow it to sit flat on the plate, cut a piece off the little loaf cake and shaped the entrance way and after cutting the main cake in half to put a generous layer of jam in the middle, I covered the whole lot with vanilla buttercream.
Chocolate evaporated milk cake
200g self raising flour
25g cocoa powder
225g caster sugar
110g softened butter
6 ounces evaporated milk -- (a small tin)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 180C/Gas 4. Grease a 1 litre pyrex glass bowl and line with two strips of baking parchment, to form a cross to help the cake come out when cooked. Grease and line a small loaf tin too.
- Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, flour, cocoa powder, vanilla extract and evaporated milk and beat well until mixed.
- Divide between the pyrex bowl and the small tin. Don't overfill the pyrex bowl - the cake will rise as it cooks. I filled mine about 2/3 full.
- Bake the small loaf tin for about 35 minutes, but my pyrex bowl took nearly an hour - the mixture is quite dense. I ended up covering it after about 40 minutes to prevent the top burning - it caught a little, but as I was levelling the top off anyway, this didn't matter.
- Unmould when you can and then allow to cool.
- When cool, decorate as an igloo as described above.
The cake was a fairly basic, sweet chocolate cake, but was pleasant enough to eat if nothing special. It is a fairly robust cake, well suited to shaping for designs and I would use it again for that reason, but not particularly for its flavour. Next time I'll try and use fondant icing for the decoration to get a more professional finish, but feeling full of cold and under the weather wasn't inducive to attempting fondant icing on a dome shaped cake for the first time ever! It was enjoyed as part of our secret santa present swap at work and was well received.
Perhaps cake decoration should be one of my new years resolutions for 2011 - please feel free to laugh loudly at my amateur cake decorating 'skills'!!!