Yesterday I was lucky enough to spend the day in London with one of my closest friends to celebrate her birthday. Kiran has her own website, The Swindian, a delightful blog that chronicles her experiences as foodie in London and has both great recipes and restaurant reviews. She was recently given a duck by Gressingham Duck with the request that she make something simple so that the world can see how easy it is to cook and enjoy. Kiran told me she had never roasted a duck before, but I think she did a fantastic job! It was so tender and flavourful and the homemade red wine gravy is something I will be dreaming about for a while.
Of course as it was a birthday celebration, there must be a cake as well. I’ve made Kiran’s birthday cake twice before, once when we lived together in university and again last year. Each year I always make her the Cake of Death, which she christened after I gave her a massive piece that she maintains “almost killed” her. Unfortunately, this year I’m away from home quite a bit so my free weekends are few and precious. With my busy schedule this year, I decided to go for a more rustic cake that didn’t involve lots of intricate piping. I made the cake a week in advance and froze it, then I prepared the white chocolate mousse and caramel the night before her party. Finally, each part of the cake was either put in a tupperware container or wrapped up well and taken with me on the train to London. It took less than 15 minutes to put the cake together at Kiran’s flat.
This cake was incredible. The white chocolate mousse is a made up recipe, a bit of a mishmash of my recent pumpkin mousse recipe and my good old white chocolate mousse recipe from a few years back. It is so so dreamily smooth and light (in texture, sadly not calories) and I adore caramel. Topped with Maltesers, I really struggled to find anything I didn’t love about this cake. The caramel is a bit of effort to make, but the rest of the cake was super easy to throw together. You could easily buy caramel if you’re short on time.
Happy baking and happy birthday to my dear friend Kiran!
Caramel Double Chocolate Mousse Cake
Cake of Death
- 1 3/4 cups/220g all-purpose flour
- 2 cups/400g white sugar
- 3/4 cup/ 90g unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup/250 ml strong brewed coffee, room temperature
- 1 cup/250ml buttermilk (add a few tsp of white vinegar or lemon juice to the milk)
- 1/2 cup/125ml vegetable oil
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ~200g Maltesers
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease, coat with cocoa powder, and line with baking parchment two 8 inch round cake pans.
- In large bowl combine flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Make a well in the center.
- Add eggs, coffee, buttermilk, oil and vanilla. Beat for 2 minutes on medium speed. Batter will be thin. Pour into prepared pans.
- Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 40-45 minutes, or until toothpick inserted into center of cake comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes, then remove from pans and finish cooling on a wire rack.
- Decorating instructions: Once completely cooled, cut each layer in half. Top each layer with one third of the mousse. Spread the caramel over the top layer of the cake, gently pushing it to the edges so it dribbles down the side. Top with Maltesers. Keep in the fridge until ready to eat!
White Chocolate Mousse
- 250g full fat cream cheese
- 250g white chocolate, finely chopped
- 125g icing sugar, sifted
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 400 ml double cream
- In a medium sized heatproof bowl, melt the white chocolate either over a waterbath or in the microwave, heating in 20-30 second intervals and stirring frequently until completely melted. Set aside.
- With an electric mixer, whip the double cream in a large mixing bowl to soft peaks. Set aside.
- In a separate mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese on medium speed until it is softened. Add the icing sugar and mixed spices.
- Mix in the melted white chocolate.
- Gently fold in the whipped cream by hand until evenly mixed throughout.
1 recipe of Salted Caramel - this post can explain it much better than I can and there are photos!