I had the pleasure of being invited to the lovely Ruth’s 40th birthday on Saturday night and what better way to say happy birthday than one of my sweet creations. I worked with Ruth for over 6 years and I used to treat my friends and colleagues with baked goods on a regular occasion. Who wouldn’t want to bake for a very appreciative audience?
I was tempted to try one of my old favourites like lemon drizzle but instead I baked outside of my comfort zone and prompted myself to try a white chocolate cake. I was glad I did as it was a good looking cake, full of flavour and best of all it was pretty easy to make. It was an iterative process in that I started with a white chocolate and then decided what would accent it well in terms of flavour and balance.
I have never baked with white chocolate before but I have eaten it and know how sweet it can be. I viewed some recipes for a white chocolate cake and many of the supporting comments suggested that the cake was over sweet, something I definitely wanted to avoid.
As a balance to the sweet rich cake. I decided to try raspberries and cream as a filling and as a last minute addition I added some lemon zest to the mix. However as it is not raspberry season, being only early spring, I bought imported fruit and I knew their flavour would not match up to the tart and sweet ruby red globes you get at the height of an Irish summer. So I decided to reduce the sugar content of the cake and replaced it with melted white chocolate and white chocolate chips and the balance was perfect.
Next weekend I hope to plant my own raspberries to harvest this summer after asking my dad for his expert advice on all things green. Hopefully I will be able to bring you lots of raspberry recipes this summer, stay tuned.
The following recipe has been tried (easy) and tested (delicious) and now all I need to do is how to learn to ice cakes. I myself would be happy with the bare look but to impress the cake needed to be dressed.
8 oz plain flour
8 oz butter (at room temperature if possible)
6 oz caster sugar
4 large eggs
1 tsp baking powder
2 oz melted white chocolate
2 oz white chocolate chips or chopped white chocolate
300 g raspberries
300 ml of single cream
1 small lemon
1 tsp caster sugar
Grease two 8 inch tins or 1 10 inch springform tin with butter and line base with non-stick paper
Preheat oven to 180C Conventional oven and 160C fan oven.
- Cream butter and sugar together until light and fluffy.
- Add 1 egg and 1 tablespoon of flour and beat well.
- Add the remaining eggs, 1 by 1, and beat well after each addition.
- Add melted white chocolate and beat on high for 3 minutes.
- Add chocolate chips or shards to the remaining flour and stir well.
- Add the flour and chocolate mixture to the butter, sugar and eggs mixture and fold in gently.
- Divide the mixture between 2 tins and bake in preheated oven for 25/30 minutes
depending on your oven.
- The cake should be well risen and a skewer inserted into the centre should come out clean.
- Remove the cake from the tin and allow to cool on a wire rack.
- Meanwhile whisk the cream with sugar and lemon zest until light peaks form.
- Break-up half of the raspberries and fold these, with the remaining raspberries, through cream mixture.
- Cut each cake in half to create four layers.
- Sandwich each layer with the cream, lemon and raspberry mix until you have reached the last layer.
Your option now is to serve as it is or attempt to ice it like I did. I did not have a plan for the icing and so I was not particularly happy with its look but with a bit more practice I know it will get better.
If you have any tips on icing please let me know. The next time I make this cake I’ll take picture without the icing.
Until next time…………………..