Friday, 30 November 2012

"Mum to be" Battenberg Cake

I made a cake for my colleague who had her leaving presentation this week, to start her new Yummy Mummy life. We didn't know the sex yet so I made a cake topping with generic colours, try to avoid the blue or pink. I made a battenberg cake as that is Ali's favourite, which was the first for me: also for baking and tasting. It turned out quite good, and the team demolished the cake in a short space of time. I used the battenberg recipe from the BBCgoodfood website.

"Mum to be" Battenberg Cake

Ingredients for the almond sponge
175 g very soft butter
175 g golden caster sugar
140 g self-raising flour
50 g ground almond
1/2 tsp baking powder
3 medium eggs
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp almond extract

Ingredients for the pink sponge
1 X ingredients for almond sponge
pink/red food colouring 

For the cake decoration
200 g apricot jam
500 g marzipan (I used golden marzipan)
little icing sugar, for dusting

250 g brown icing (for the teddy bear)
some different coloured icing ( I used Renshaw Funky Flavoured Sugargough, as you can have 4X100g in a pack at all different colours)
edible writing pan

You have to prepare the decoration at least two days ahead as the icing needs time to harden. I  just used a video on youtube- to find a tutorial: just type in: fondant bear. Actually is like playing with play dough. It isn't difficult, as you can see the bear, duck and the train is recognisable and actually this is my very first try with icing sculpting.
So I prepared the toppings two days in advance and just left in the living room to harden. 

Heat the oven to 180C and prepare a round baking pan. To make the almond sponge, put the butter, sugar, flour, ground almonds, baking powder, eggs, vanilla and almond extract in a large bowl. Beat with an electric whisk until the mix comes together smoothly. Scrape into the tin, spreading evenly and bake for 25-30 minutes-when you spoke with a skewer, it should come out clean. Cool the tin for 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling while you make the second sponge.
For the pink sponge, prepare another round tin. Mix all the ingredients together as above but don't add the almond extract. Fold in some pink pink food colouring then scrape it all into the in and bake as before.

To assemble level the cakes(cut off the top if you have a little dome) and cut the sponges in half (all sponge layers should be the same height). Depending on the high of your sponge layers(sponge circles should be the same with and height) start cutting out sponge circles. For this cake I had 5 sponge circles. 

When you finished cutting one sponge layer lift out every second sponge circle, place it on top on the others and use it as the template. To make up the battenberg layers just use a pink, then a almond sponge till you made up the whole sponge layer. 

To assemble, heat the jam in a small pan until runny, then sieve. Brush the sponge layer with jam , than lay another layer on top but reversing the order of sponges.

When you finished with the cake, brush the surface with the remaining jam. Roll out the marzipan on a lightly dusted surface with icing sugar to just big enough to cover the cake. Carefully lift the marzipan and smooth over the cake. 
Place on top the decoration and serve:)

And this is the cake while cutting. I apologise as I don't have the best mobile to take a picture and in the office we don't really have proper knifes to slice a cake sharply.

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