Monday 28 July 2014

Double Chocolate Skor Cake

I successfully made my husband's birthday cake this weekend.
Double Chocolate Skor cake and cupcakes
It's not the first time I've made his cake, but I think this is the first 100% made from scratch birthday cake, so I was pretty proud of it.  It's also one of those skills that mums (or parents, in general) need, right? Homemade birthday cakes are so much more memorable!

To give you an idea of what I've done before, here are a couple of cakes from the past:

You've got the dark side vs. the good side
(good side? light side? what is it Star Wars folks?)
Yoda floated on his own cake.
This was a "Star Wars" cake - made with chocolate cake (from a box) and boiled icing. As you can tell, it was a treat for the taste buds AND the eyes! (Can you tell I have zero experience decorating cakes? I do have a sense of humour though!)

Another year, I just decided to make a simple chocolate cake with lots of boiled icing. (Also made from a boxed cake mix.)

Can you tell I like chocolate cake with boiled icing? I do. A lot. I especially like it when there is leftover icing... It's so good. (Let me know if you want the recipe for that icing - it's easy and soooo yummy!)

A few years ago, we bought his birthday cake from a local cupcake business, Saint John Cupcake Salon. Sadly, that business has since closed. The cake I got him was based on his favourite cupcake - "Toffee Time." It was a vanilla cupcake, topped with delicious chocolate buttercream and toffee bits. Since we miss that business so much, I thought I'd try to make my own version of the cake.

The Cake: The original cake was a three level vanilla cake, but I decided to do a one layer chocolate cake and a dozen cupcakes. I used my reliable cake recipe, found here. It makes a really chocolate-y moist cake, so I wasn't going to mess with perfection!

The Frosting: For the frosting, I used my own recipe.  The recipe that goes with the cake on the above website never really worked for me.  It was really good, but didn't spread the way I like, so I decided to make up my own recipe, based on what I usually use for vanilla buttercream. It turned out great, so I thought I'd share below:

The Topping: I frosted the cake and cupcakes, and then poured toffee bits into a bowl. (I use Skor baking bits, but in the U.S., I think I've seen heath bits. Just look for some sort of toffee bits in the baking section, where the chocolate chips are.) It took about a package and a half for the cake and cupcakes. I sprinkled Skor bits on top of the cake and gently pressed them to make sure they would stick. On the sides, I put the toffee in my hand and pressed them into the sides. The cupcakes were much easier - just roll them in the bowl of Skor bits. If you eat the cake the same day, the bits are still crunchy. The next day, they get kind of "melty." Both are really yummy.

Chocolate Buttercream:
Note: I was able to frost a single layer cake, 12 cupcakes and still have about 1.5 cups leftover, so this would do a double (or maybe even a triple) layer cake.

1 Cup butter (softened to room temperature, not melted)
1C + 2T cocoa (sift to remove lumps)
6 C icing sugar (sift to remove lumps)
1/2 C milk
2 t vanilla
(you could also add a little espresso powder or instant coffee to give it a hint of a mocha flavour like the cake)

1) Beat softened butter and cocoa together, with paddle attachment. (I assume a regular beater would work, too.)
2) Add 4 C icing sugar, one cup at a time, beating well in between
3) Add 1/4 C milk and vanilla and beat well
4) Add remaining sugar one cup at a time, beating well
6) Add remaining milk until frosting is desired consistency
7) Frost your cake and enjoy the sugar rush!

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