I love to bake treats for my family like cupcakes or if I really want to show my husband just how much I love him, a caramel chocolate cake.
I’ll admit, when I’m in a hurry I resort to my favourite premix boxes but I recently came across the book One mix, 100 cakes by Christine France and it changed the way I surprise my family with baked treats.
The concept of the book is pretty obvious: One basic cake mixture and then you just add a few ingredients to make the cakes different; you can make cakes, cupcakes and even puddings.
I decided to #TashaTests the chocolate sandwich cake for my husband’s birthday. He loved it so much he didn’t want to share!
I followed the mixture just like the book said and my cakes came out flawless, the one thing I did change was to use caramel in the middle, instead of Nutella, just because my husband loves caramel.
Another variation is for those that prefer not to dust the finished cake with icing sugar; you can always make your own butter icing, and add little speckled eggs to make it look colourful.
I guarantee you that your cake will not be flop if you follow the recipe as is, but play around with the fillings and toppings for excitement and different taste experiences.
Just remember to have fun and take pictures of your cakes and post them to Hometimes Facebook page for me to steal ideas from.
- butter for greasing
- 150g plain white flour
- 1tbsp baking powder
- 175g unsalted butter, softened (recipes may substitute oil, cream or yogurt)
- 175g caster sugar (recipes may substitute light or dark muscovado sugars or honey and sugars)
- 3 eggs beaten
- 1tps vanilla extract (recipes may substitute other flavouring extracts, e.g. almond, coffee, orange or flower water)
- 2tbsp milk
- 2tbsp cocoa powder
- 140g of chocolate spread like Nutella, icing sugar for dusting
Preheat the oven to 180ºC. Grease 2, 20cm sandwich cake tins.
Sift the flour, cocoa and baking powder into a large bowl and add the butter, caster sugar, eggs and the vanilla extract. Beat well until the mixture is smooth, and then stir in the milk.
Divide the mixture between the tins and smooth the surface with a palette knife. Bake in the preheated oven for 25-30 minutes, or until well risen and firm to the touch. Leave to cool in the tins for 2-3 minutes, then turn out and finish cooling on a wire rack.
When the cakes have cooled completely, sandwich together with the chocolate spread, then dust with icing sugar and serve.
The book contains many, many more exciting variations and flavour combinations, and I think is definitely worth being added to the recipe book collection of any baker.
Words: Natassha Burrell