OK, this was definitely not easy and I don't think it would make its way back into my kitchen. Not something ud want to hear from a food blogger, but seriously, it was no cake walk. You might have noticed that chocolate has not really made its presence felt on my blog. Its not because I dislike chocolate, but I don't really like it an awesome lot to actually give it a major importance either, unlike Ro who would worship the chocolate god (if there was one). He will only order a chocolate ice cream at Thorntons, have the Belgian dark choc ice cream from Haagen-Dazs and buy chocolate bars with more than 70 percent cocoa to munch on..all other chocolates are not 'real' chocolates, I believe.
Last week we had taken a Thorntons triple layer chocolate cake to a friends picnic party and Ro had been going on and on about how awesome it was and he wouldn't stop at that...but insist I bake a choc cake for him. My reaction was..if Thorntons tasted so darn good, why pester me..just head to Sainsburys and pick one up. Oh but that wouldn't be fun..he had to get his wife to slog it out and bake a choc cake which, by the way, I had already posted on my blog (My moms beat and bake chocolate cake which was the easiest cake ever). So something new I decided to try and since Thorntons was one of my inspirations or rather as a revenge I decided to go all out and bake a two layer cake and fill it and frost it. Bad idea, oh yes, incredibly screwed up idea, especially for someone whose concentration levels are zero, not to mention patience and laziness.
For starters, I only have one 9 inch cake pan and have to clean it, wash it, butter it and line it once I'm done with the first cake. This is such a waste of time because I have to wait close to 2 hours just to start on my second cake. So by the time I was done baking the cakes and cleaning up and bickering about making Ro happy, I was in no mood to frost and fill. So once the oven cooled down, I left them in there thinking I'd do it the next day. Went for a movie (Inception..awesome movie, its a much watch) which got over at 2.30 am, woke up at 12 the next day and was in a mood to have Saravana Bhavan meals for which we had to travel about an hour. So after all that chakkar, we got back home late and was again in no mood to frost and fill the cake (cake, what cake, by then I had actually forgotten about the cake altogether). When we were about to hit the sack Ro asked me like one lost puppy dog, 'can i have a slice of that cake you made yesterday,' and I suddenly realized I screwed up. Shouted at him for having no patience at all and promised I'd have it ready when he got back from work on Monday..and so I started the frosting and filling on two sad looking dry cakes on Monday. Not a pleasant experience working with ganache, and I really don't want to hear the word chocolate for a long long time. Even the photography session was an effort and it hasn't really come out well..apologies!
For the cakes:
Cooking chocolate- 200 gms, broken into pieces (good quality, preferably more than 60 percent cocoa)
Butter- 200 gms at room temp.
Instant coffee powder- 1 tbsp
Water- 125 ml
Plain flour- 85 gms
Self- raising flour- 85 gms
Soda powder- 1/4 tsp
Dark or light brown sugar- 200gms (I used dark)
Caster sugar- 200 gms
Cocoa powder- 25 gms
Buttermilk- 75 ml
Bring a saucepan with water to a boil. Simmer, place another heat-resistant cooking vessel on top of it and melt the butter and chocolate pieces.
Dissolve the instant coffee in water and add to the chocolate mix. Stir well and keep aside.
Whisk together the plain flour, self raising flower, soda powder, both the sugars and cocoa powder.
Whisk the eggs and buttermilk in a separate bowl and add to the flour bowl along with the chocolate mix. Stir well until just combined, do not over beat it.
Divide the batter and pour into two greased and lined 9 inch cake pans and bake in a pre heated oven (160C) for 60 to 70 minutes or till a skewer inserted comes out clean.
Once done, keep the cake on the rack for about 10 minutes, loosen the sides and insert on to the racks and wait till its completely cooled.
You can cling wrap it and keep it in the refrigerator a day before I guess (wink! wink!)
Baileys Irish cream ganache
Cooking chocolate- 150 gms, broken into small pieces (again more than 60 percent cocoa)
Baileys flavoured thick pouring cream- 285 ml
Caster sugar- 3 tbsp
Melt the chocolate like how I mentioned above and keep aside for a few minutes for it to lightly cool.
Add the whipping cream bit by bit, mixing well after each addition.
Add the sugar at last and mix well, till its dissolved completely.
Place one cake on a cake stand (ya I didn't have one and so struggled with it on a plate) and generously douse some of the ganache and spread it evenly.
Sandwich the other cake and pour the remaining ganache, making sure it spills to the sides and using a knife, smoothen it out (absolutely messy affair).
If you have left over chocolate, grate some onto the top, or dust some cocoa powder on top and dig in :)
Notes: I bought the Baileys pouring cream from the store, but add a 1./4 cup of Bailey's liqueur to the normal cream and ud be fine. Or you can even choose to avoid the baileys and go just chocolate.
Inspite of the cake being a bit dry, the ganache kinda made it ooey gooey..so no worries there.
If you have a taller cake tin, use that and then slice the cake into two equal halves, which would have made my life so much more easier.
PS: I have created a separate facebook account for my bloggie friends. Do add me if you are on FB. My id is firstname.lastname@example.org. You would probably see two Nisha Thomas profiles...do add the one that says Open Book by the side. I didn't want to mix my two accounts.