Sunday, May 31, 2009

Happy Birthday to my sister!

I made a seven-layer cake for my sister's birthday this year, alternating layers of sponge cake, mocha buttercream, crispy hazelnut meringue, and coffee buttercream. This is a variation on a 12-layer cake, but I skipped the chocolate souffle layers (and the accompanying buttercream layers) as it just seemed like too much. The cake overall has many parts, but none of them are very difficult. The sponge cake mixes up and bakes in about 15 min. The meringue is easy to make, but it does require more time for low and slow baking--in this case about twice as long as the recommended time. Despite the fact that we had perfect meringue weather today, the layers stayed chewy for ages. I left them to cool in the oven when I ran some errands, and by the time I came back, they had crisped up. I boosted the flavor of the coffee buttercream with Columbian coffee essence, as I wanted a fairly strong coffee presence. Some of that buttercream was then set aside and mixed with melted bittersweet chocolate to make the mocha buttercream. I used melted bittersweet Ghirardelli chips, which I always have on hand. Because I wasn't making all the layers, I only made half the buttercream recipe, which worked out perfectly. If I'd wanted to pipe anything, though, I'd have wanted more to work with. Apricot-almond coffee cake for breakfast ... a very cakey day! Now to use the Wii fit she received as a present ...

No comments: