This next cake was a small cake order I received. Well, small was the operative word until a last minute change of heart moved it closer into regular cake territory. This customer had recently moved to Aus with her husband and was celebrating her husbands birthday for the first time here together. She said she wanted something special, a homemade ‘Aussie’ cake.
We went over a few ideas and settled on a simple naked sponge with a smattering of chocolate ganache.
Chocolate sponge is a nice way to add a little flavour without going too rich on the chocolate. Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m all about rich chocolate cakes. But it’s definitely not for everyone. I’ll often get people who come from many different cultural and dietary backgrounds and a lot of those aren’t very dessert or sweet-tooth heavy. Sometimes a lighter touch is called for.
I set about layering the cake with a vanilla buttercream. I might have used cream instead, but this cake was going on a journey on public transport in the middle of an Aussie summer so we needed something a bit more stable.
Once we had a smooth outside I let it chill in the fridge before drizzling with dark chocolate ganache.
You can pipe it, but I’ll avoid making any extra mess to clean up if i can avoid it and just used a teaspoon to strategically place the drips.
I baked some macarons for the decoration and filled them with a whipped chocolate ganache. I adorned the cake with these, berries, buttercream flowers, white chocolate decorations and some cookie crumbs.
Here’s how you can make your own little drip cake.
Chocolate Sponge Drip Cake
Light chocolate sponge, filled with vanilla buttercream and drizzled with chocolate ganache.
• 4 large eggs, room temperature
• 120g caster sugar
• 100g plain flour
• 20g cocoa powder
• 1 cup white sugar
• 1 cup water
• 350g unsalted butter, room temperature
• 700g icing sugar
• 2 tsp vanilla extract
• 2 tbps milk
• 150g dark chocolate, chopped
• 75g thickened cream
- Preheat oven to 170°C (150°C fan-forced/335°F). Line cake tin with baking paper
- Place eggs and sugar in large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer. Beat on medium speed until eggs and sugar are combined. Increase to high speed and beat for 15 minutes, or until eggs and fluffy, pale and have at least tripled in volume.
- Sift the flour and cocoa into the bowl. Gently fold mixture, from bottom to top, until completely incorporated. The aim here is to maintain as much of the air in the better as possible
- Pour batter into cake tin; bake for 40 minutes, or until cake springs back when lightly touched in the centre. Leave cake to cool in the oven with the door ajar for at least 20 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool.
- In a small saucepan, combine water and sugar. Stir over low heat until sugar dissolves.
- Bring syrup to the boil and cook until mixture thickens slightly. Allow to cool.
- In a large bowl, beat butter, sugar and vanilla on low until ingredients are incorporated
- Increase speed to high and beat until smooth, fluffy and creamy.
- Beat in 1tbps of the milk, if buttercream is still stiff beat in the second.
Assembly: Cut sponge cake into 4 layers. Drizzle each layer with sugar syrup. Reserve 1/4 of the buttercream, divide the rest between layers of the sponge. Once assembled, use the remaining buttercream to crumb coat the outside of the cake. Chill in the fridge until the ganache is ready.
- Place chocolate in a medium bowl. In a small saucepan, heat cream over medium heat until just boiled. Pour cream over the chocolate; let sit for a minute, then stir ganache until smooth.
- Use a spoon or a piping bad to drizzle the warm ganache around the border of the cake, then fill the border with the remaining ganche. Top with decorations as desired.