This weekend was my housemate Leash’s birthday, and to mark the festivities I set to work baking a cake fit for a princess. I decided to go a little old-school with a classic 2-tier victoria sponge lightly smothered in baby pink vanilla buttercream frosting.
With such a simple recipe, you can really afford to kick back and enjoy the baking experience. I preheated the oven to 180°, popped the cork on a bottle of red, turned up the speakers and got to whisking.
225 is the magic number here, so to add 225g softened butter to 225g caster sugar and whisk until light and fluffy. Then add 4 eggs (one at a time!), a drop of vanilla essence and a pinch of nutmeg. Sift 225g plain flour and 2 tablespoons of baking powder, and gently fold this through until everything has nicely combined. I poured in a couple of tablespoons of milk here to loosen the mixture slightly as it was quite thick.
Now given the teeny tiny size of my makeshift oven (yes, a full blown oven is considered a “luxury” to most Parisian apartments), I had to bake each cake separately – in a 20cm-wide-greaseproof-paper-lined cake tin for around 25 minutes until it was golden brown on top and the good old-fashioned toothpick test came out clear.
Once the cakes were cool, I wrapped them in foil and frosted them the next day. For the frosting, mix around 250g icing sugar into 175g softened butter and a splash of milk. I then added 4 drops of red food colouring to make a candyfloss pink tint, and spread this evenly over the first cake to make a sandwich layer, and then again over the second.
For the décor, I cut out a star shaped stencil from some baking paper, and gently pressed this onto the frosting. Then I dusted over some sprinkles and cocoa powder, and carefully removed the stencil. Finally, I added a few teaspoons of cocoa powder to some left over frosting and using this to pipe the birthday girl’s name across the middle of the star.
I made my own mini piping bag by fashioning a cone out of baking paper, filling it with the chocolate frosting and clipping a tiny hole at the end – it worked quite well for 5 little letters, but for more intricate decoration, it might be wise to invest in a “proper piper”. Chuck in a few chocolate buttons to frame the cake, and here was the end result…
My petite cucina
What’s playing today?
A friend recently played me Tha Connection and I’m ever so grateful. This is – Theme Song of Foul Play