Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Devils Food Cake Birthday Cake for an awesome friend

What a nice and relaxing weekend with lots of baking!  It started with acting like an adult Friday night and going to listen to the National Symphony Orchestra.  Then there was brunch at Founding Farmers with a couple of great guys, and then there was cake!  This is a birthday cake for my very good friend Stephanie. (It also served as a thank you for her being my first guest blogger!)  It was delivered to her birthday party where there was drinking of Skittles infused vodka, yes you read that right, and a night that ended with dancing and singing at the top of our lunges.  What else do you want to do after eating birthday cake on a Saturday night, I ask? 

She told me exactly what she wanted and this is it.  Devil's food cake, (There are four layer because I hadn't had my coffee when I made this and followed a recipe that really should have only made one layer of cake.  So, I actually made two layers in the morning and then two layers in the afternoon.) nanaimo cream filling, buttercream frosting, with crushed peppermint Joe Joe's.  You might be going, what is nanaimo cream?  I mean I had to look it up.  Apparently, there are nanaimo bars....

So, the cake which is completely dairy free turned out moist and not too sweet, with the peppermint Joe Joe's adding a nice unexpected flavor.  Next time I will just remember to have my coffee and then start baking for the day.  

Nanaimo cream filling being prepared.

Layer one...don't forget to cut off the top of your cake layers so that each layer lays flat on top of one another.  

...and four layers later its time to make the frosting.

Okay crumb layer done...now in to the fridge for a hot second to chill.

all frosted...time to play with crushed Joe Joe's...warning this might get messy


The birthday girl with her cake!

This might be my first four layer cake ever!
Devil's Food Cake:
*makes 2 thick layers or 4-1 inch thick layers
1 cup (2 stick) Earth Balance butter substitute, softened (or 2 sticks unsalted butter)
3 cups sugar
4 large eggs, room temperature, yolks and whites separated
2 teaspoon vanilla
18 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
3 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/2 cups strong coffee, room temperature
1/2 cup soy milk (or 1/2 cup skim milk)

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Line four or two 9 inch round cakes pans with parchment paper and spray with non-stick cooking spray.

2.  In a large mixing bowl, cream together butter and sugar until well combined.  Add in vanilla and egg yolks, mix well until combined.  If the batter appears dry whisk in 1/4 cup of the coffee.

3.  In another large mixing bowl sift together cocoa powder, flour, salt, baking soda and baking powder.

4. Combine milk and remaining coffee in a measuring cup.

4.  Add the flour and coffee mixtures to the sugar-butter mixture, alternating between flour and coffee, mixing between the addition of each.  Begin and end with flour.

5.  In a small mixing bowl, using an electric mixer, whisk egg whites until stiff peaks form but are not dry.  Gently fold egg whites into cake batter, just until combined.

6.  Divide the batter between each cake pan.

7.  Bake for 18-20 minutes, or until tester comes out clean.  While cakes are cooling prepare Nanaimo cream filling.

Nanaimo Cream:
1/4 cup Earth Balance butter substitute, softened (1/2 unsalted butter)
3-4 tablespoons soy milk (3-4 tablespoons skim milk)
2 tablespoons vanilla pudding powder
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups powdered sugar, sifted.

1.  In a large mixing bowl, cream Earth Balance.

2.  In a measuring cup, whisk together soy milk, vanilla pudding powder and vanilla extract.

3.  Whisk wet ingredients in to Earth Balance until well combined.

4.  Whisk in powdered sugar until cream has reached a nice spreading consistency.

5.  Divide cream filling so that there is approximately equal amounts to go between each layer.  Place parchment paper under bottom layer of cake to keep the cake plates surface clean.  Layer the cake, with filling in between each, then place cake in refrigerator and prepare frosting.

Buttercream Frosting:  (recipe adapted from Magnolia Bakery)
2 sticks (1 cup) Earth Balance, softened (or unsalted butter)
1/2 cup soy milk (or skim milk)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
4-6 cups powdered sugar, sifted
10-15 Peppermint Joe Joe's, crushed

1.  Place the butter in a large mixing bowl and using an electric mixer cream butter.  

2.  Add 3 cups of the sugar along with the vanilla and milk.  On medium speed, beat until smooth and creamy, about 3-5 minutes.  

3.  Gradually add the remaining sugar, 1 cup at a time, beating well after each addition until icing has reached desired consistency.

4.  If you have time, lightly frost the cake, creating a crumb layer(see picture above), then refrigerate for 20-30 minutes.  In the mean time crush 10-15 peppermint Joe Joe's, until small fine crumbs are reached.

5.  Remove cake from refrigerator and then frost with remaining frosting.  

6.  Using you hands, add the crushed Joe Joe's to the side of the cake.  (This will be very messy and I recommend putting a dish towel under your cake plate.)  Serve at room temperature (no refrigeration necessary) and Enjoy!

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