A Special Birthday Celebration (Cakes Galore) … By Lucy Simmons
November 24, 2015
A celebration for Auntie Sue..............Cappuccino & Pecan cake with a coffee mascarpone cream and spun sugar hearts, Florentines, Chocolate Madeleines and Macaroons 3 ways; caramel & sea salt, green tea & peppermint and passionfruit.....just a few of her favourite things........
- Yields: 1
Cappuccino & Pecan Cake:
1. Preheat the oven to 180C, grease and line 2 x 8inch cake tins. Make up the strong coffee mixture and leave to completely cool.
2. In a large bowl beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, sieve in the flour and add the eggs, beat until the mixture has completely combined. Fold in the pecans and half of the coffee into the cake mixture. Divide between the two cake tins and bake for 20-25 minutes so an inserted skewer comes out clean. Leave to cool in the tins for five minutes poking a few small holes in the top. Add the extra sugar to the coffee and pour 4 tbsp of the coffee over the cake. Leave to cool.
3. Icing: Beat the mascarpone with the sugar and remaining coffee. Spread a thick layer of icing in the centre of the cake and the remaining coffee icing on top, dusting with cocoa powder. In the corner make a pile of chocolate dipped coffee beans.
4. Sugar decorations: Place the sugar and water in a saucepan and place over a low heat. Wait until the sugar has melted then turn up the heat until it is a nice golden colour. Pour the mixture on to a baking tray, greased and lined with greaseproof paper, pour half to make a sheet of sugar and then make hearts with the remaining sugar. When the sugar sheet has cooled break it up to make shards.
Macaroons recipe. For the passion fruit and salted caramel macaroon I doubled the recipe and used yellow food colouring and for the peppermint macaroons I kept the recipe the same and added mint green food colouring.
1. In a small saucepan mix together the sugar, cornflour, passionfruit juice and cream and whisk over a medium heat until the mixture starts to thicken. Take off the heat and whisk in the white chocolate until fully melted then leave to cool for 5 minutes before whisking in the butter. Leave this mixture to cool completely, it will set into a thick spreadable filling. Spread a thin layer of the filling on one macaroon and sandwich two together.
Salted caramel filling:
1. Place the sugar and water into a medium saucepan, place over a low heat and let the sugar melt. Once fully melted, turn the heat up to medium. In a small saucepan bring the cream to the boil then take off the heat. Once the sugar has reached a lovely caramel colour, quickly whisk in the cream, be careful as the mixture will start to bubble and hiss, don't worry just keep whisking and the mixture will calm down. Whisk in half the butter a cube at a time then place the pan over a bowl of cold water. While it cools, whisk in the remaining butter then pour the caramel into a bowl and place in the fridge to cool.
2. Once the mixture has cooled remove it from the fridge and using an electric whisk, beat until it doubles in size and is nice and creamy. Fold in the salt flakes to taste. Sandwich the macaroons together using the caramel.
1. In a medium saucepan heat the cream until it reaches a simmer. Add the chocolate and allow the mixture to rest for 3 minutes until it starts to melt, then stir until it is all combined and add the peppermint flavouring. Pour into a bowl and place in the fridge. Keep checking this mixture, stirring every 5 minutes so it doesn't get too thick. When it is thick enough, spoon into a piping bag and pipe in the centre of the macaroons then sandwich together in twos.
Preheat the oven to 180C and grease a madeleine tray. Place this tray on to a baking tray as this is easy to take in and out the oven.
1. Whisk the egg and sugar together until pale and fluffy. Using an electric mixer on low speed, mix in the flour, cocoa powder and baking powder. Fold in the melted butter. Leave the mixture to rest for 15 minutes, then fill each mould 3/4 full with the mixture and bake for 10 minutes turning the tray after 5 minutes. Once cooked, remove from the oven, leave in the tin for 5 minutes, then turn out.
2. Melt the white and dark chocolate and drizzle over the madeleines whilst still warm.