Of course I had to bake for the first children’s birthday of 2016. And what would be better for this occasion than a simple rectangular cake with a colorful number surprise? The recipe is all over the internet, for example here or here, and the idea is easy: you bake a colorful cake, cut out the desired number or any other shape, and again bake it into an uncolored cake. Voilà – you got a surprise cake!
I still have Wilton food colors from my rainbow cake, so I only needed to get a cookie cutter with a number shape. I used the number one, so I could cut out several numbers from each slice of cake. Still, there is a lot of leftover cake.
Of course you can use the remaining cake to make cake pops. But after a few failures, I have to say that I hate cake pops! So I made muffins from the colorful rest and decorated them with some leftover numbers.
Since this cake not only has to bake two times, but also needs to cool completely in between, I had some time left. Furthermore, I also had leftover frosting from my baby cake. So I also made some confettilicious cupcakes. Maybe they are a little less suited for small children, but delicious for grownups.
Ever since I got the Sweetapolita bake book, I wanted to make one of the delicious sprinkly cakes out of it. I decided early for the pastel vanilla birthday cake. This cake is pastel pink and blue, so what better occasion could there be than a baby shower?
My friend will have a baby girl, so I switched the colors and made the cake pastel pink with a blue border. Also, I made the cake flour myself by this recipe and used whipping cream instead of heavy cream, as you cannot buy these ingredients here in Germany. For the coloring, I used Wilton’s red red and royal blue.
I made the vanilla bakery frosting some days in advance and was really pleased with its consistency. It has a really nice and smooth texture. However, it is also really sweet, and by this I mean you can hear the sugar crunch between your teeth. The frosting is then put between four cake layers together with cookie dough pieces and sprinkles, creating a really high cake (the online recipe has three, but the book features a four-layer version).
In the end, I even had to make more frosting – I guess I just used too much for the crumb coating, as I am lacking practice in the cake frosting department. Nevertheless, the cake looked nice in the end. Still, it was way too sugary for our taste – I like sweet stuff, but this was even too much for me. But for its great looks, I certainly will make this cake again, only with a few changes I already have in mind.
Once again, I made a cake for a birthday. This time, it should be something without whipped cream, but rather with fruit and a little lighter. At the current temperatures here in Germany, you might not know it, but it is actually winter. So I decided for a cake with pears. I did not want to exchange the whipped cream with butter cream or something similarly fat, so I made a pear poppy seed cake. The recipe (in German) is once again from Dr. Oetker.
The recipe asks for a ring cake, and many times, my attempts to get the cake out of the baking pan destroyed it completely. Hence, I used my silicone baking pan this time. If you let the cake cool completely before turning it out, you get a beautiful ring cake, even without greasing the form. At the time being, I am a huge fan of silicone baking pans.
The cake is decorated with white chocolate and more poppy seeds, creating a nice effect. I hope it was tasty!
Sometimes I can be a real great housewife. For example when I go to work in the morning, come home and feed my three month old while my boyfriend goes grocery shopping for me, I then bake three types of muffins, in the meantime go shopping again because something is missing, I then go to the gym, and afterwards make another tarte.
Yes, it was my birthday. 🙂
In the end, we had vegan chocolate cherry muffins, not-so-vegan berry crumble muffins, sugar and salt free apple banana oat muffins for my nine month old guest of honor, and a lemon tarte. And I fell into my bed like I was half dead. But then I could celebrate the next day with my guests and a lot of cake.
A few weeks ago, I got a message with a link to this video:
Well, today was the birthday of this message’s sender. So guess what I made for her.
The recipe uses cups, and so I could finally use my American measuring spoons for the first time. Though the recipe has also measurements in grams, I noticed that they sometimes differed notably from what I weighed. While the amount of cream was exactly what I measured, 2/3 cups of Nutella were 200 g for me, which is double the amount of the recipe!
I was surprised how easily the oreo cream could be removed. It even stayed completely in shape.
Since you cannot really buy heavy cream or vanilla extract in Germany, I used whipping crea and vanilla sugar. It seems to be a common problem with this recipe that the cream gets too liquid, so that the layers mix. According to the recipe, whipping cream should work as long as you whip it until it is creamy. However, for me this did not work out at all. In the beginning, the cream was nice and fluffy, but after adding sugar it got totally liquid.
So I tried two sachets of Sahnesteif, but unfortunately that did not help. In the end I decided to switch the brown and white layer, because the dark one is less liquid. This rescued the layer effect a little. The cake turned out to be a little too liquid in the middle, I should have baked it for a little longer. But it was delicious!
Some of my friends seem to have a favorite cake. For someone like me, who loves everything that is sweet and has severe problems with decisions, this is a strange concept. But if there is something like a favorite cake and I happen to know it, I try to bake it for the birthday of the respective person.
So this January, I tried again to make a Frankfurter Kranz (Frankfurt crown cake, according to Leo). After the low fat version of last year (a very bad idea for butter cream), I did the full fat thing. Thanks to the silicone cake pan, the cake itself was fine, but I am not able to create a nicely shaped crown cake altogether. I also don’t know how to put the brittle on the cake neatly, and something in the cake turned liquid in the process. Anyways, I will have another try next year!
Anyways, I promised that I would make a candy mountain cake for a friend’s birthday. Since we were both on vacation on the day itself, I made the cake for my own birthday and we shared. So here it is, the candy mountain candy cake:
For this cake, I used the „wonder recipe“ (in German). I prepared something in between 1.5 and 2 times the amount and baked one 26 cm cake and two smaller ones. The large one was cut in three layers and filled with lemon curd (I used this recipe, also in German, double amount), and I also used lemon curd between the smaller ones. Then I carved the candy mountain shape from the two small cakes. In the end, I used white ganache to cover the cake, and colored it pink for the candy mountain. With all the cooling times in between, it took three days of work, but it was worth it.
All my friends are getting their PhD recently. Yesterday, I went to the fifth defense this year. Of course, I made my PhD cake again. This time, I decided to try a chocolate plate on top and a rainbow cake inside, covered with fondant.
For the chocolate plate, I went to three different stores here in Bonn, but could not find what I needed. You can buy chocolate bars and sculptures of all sort, but it seems that nobody in these stores is able to sell me a big, squared chocolate plate. Quite disappointed, I just decided to make it myself. I was afraid it would break, but it actually was quite easy and remained stable enough.
For the cake, I started with the recipe by Sallys Tortenwelt (in German). I can recommend her lemon cream and chocolate ganache, but I did not like her dough at all. It tasted kind of bitter, so I used more flour and sugar in my version. In the end, I could have used a little more lemon cream, but it still looked and tasted nice.
This weekend, two friends of mine celebrated their wedding. This was the reason, why I made a test cake last week – I wanted to test the texture of the vegan „butter“ cream (it is suitable for multi-layered cakes).
Here the result: a three layer chocolate lemon cream cake. Overall, I am happy with it, and I think the guests liked it as well. But next time, I would use marzipan or fudge as a topping, because the raw cream just does not look very nice.
For the buffet, I also made a poppy seed cake and a vegan cheese cake with plums. As always, there are pictures below.