If you have read my last post you would know that I am endeavouring to bake my brother his wedding cake. It’s now 2 weeks until C-day (cake day) and I am beginning to fret (eeekkk!). Up until now I have kept my cool. I’ve been repeatedly telling myself that “this will be a cake walk” (pardon my really bad pun!), I kept reminding myself of what I was like the last time I made a wedding cake and how much I have progressed since then. I have been in the corner championing myself and constantly repeating positive affirmations. I have been visualising the end result, a glorious wedding cake sitting majestically on its pedestal and all the wedding folk commenting on how this is the best cake they have ever tasted. I have gone over and sketched every aspect of its appearance so I have it firmly in my mind what I am going to create. Everything was going along swimmingly and I was cool as a cucumber right up until I opened my box of baking goods and saw the black fondant…
It’s not the cake baking I am worried about (I have made these flavours before each with great success. This week’s post is the middle layer of the cake… seriously yum!), it’s the adornment of said wedding cake that has just my mind racing as I try to sleep (and counting sheep turns into calculating the amount of fondant I need!). You see, fondant and I aren’t great mates, in fact, fondant is my nemesis. I have tried numerous times to become besties with this sugary coating, but each attempt has resulted in me crying and fondant laughing wickedly in my face. I have spent countless hours and sleepless nights trawling through YouTube and watching EVERYTHING I could find on how to handle this dough into submission (no more miss-nice-cake-lady from me!) and still fondant comes out on top (boo!)
I have always thought to myself that I want my cakes to taste awesome and I want people to remember my awesome cake every time they bite into someone else’s. I’d rather create a slightly ugly cake with the most amazing flavours than a fancy decorated cake that is dry and tasteless on the inside. I guess fondant know this and has made it their mission to hold it over me…
Now that I have bestowed my worst fear onto you all (thanks for that!), I feel a little lighter, slightly more relaxed and ready to take on fondant once more. I am confident that one day (hopefully within the next 2 weeks) when fondant and I do battle, that I will come out victorious… whoo hoo!
Coconut Cake recipe from Joy of Baking
- 3 eggs
- 163g plain flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 85g unsalted butter, softened
- 175g caster sugar, divided
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 180ml buttermilk
- 30ml cream of coconut
- ¼ tsp cream of tartar
- ½ tsp coconut essence
- 200g butter, room temp
- 200g cream cheese, cold and cubed
- 200g icing sugar, sifted
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- desiccated coconut to serve (optional)
- Preheat oven to 175°C. Grease a 12 capacity cupcake tray**
- While the eggs are still cold separate the eggs, placing the yolks in one bowl and the whites in another bowl. Cover the two bowls with plastic wrap and allow the eggs to come to room temperature before using (about 30 minutes). In a mixing bowl sift or whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
- In bowl of electric mixer, or with a hand mixer, beat the butter until soft (about 1-2 minutes). Gradually add 150g of the sugar and beat until light and fluffy (about 2-3 minutes). Add the egg yolks, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the vanilla extract and beat until combined. With the mixer on low speed, alternately add the flour mixture and buttermilk, in three additions, beginning and ending with the flour.
- In a clean bowl of your electric mixer, with the whisk attachment, (or with a hand mixer) beat the egg whites until foamy. Add the cream of tartar and continue beating until soft peaks form. Gradually add the remaining 25g of sugar and continue to beat until stiff peaks form. With a rubber spatula gently fold a little of the whites into the batter to lighten it, and then fold in the remaining whites until combined. Do not over mix the batter or it will deflate.
- Divide the batter and pour into the prepared pans, smoothing the surface with an offset spatula or the back of a spoon. Bake for about 20 - 25mins minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Allow cupcakes to cool in their tray for 10mins before turning out onto a wire rack. Cool completely before frosting.
- Beat together butter and cream cheese until pale and fluffy.
- Add sifted icing sugar and vanilla extract, beat to combine.
* These make quite dense little cupcakes, more like mini cakes if you ask me!
** I don't line my cupcake tray with papers, but please do so if your tray isn't very non-stick.