Frosted layered cake is seldom on my list of cakes to bake.... it's just time consuming. The planning, baking & assembling of the cake is just too much. Furthermore, I'm often intimidated by the assembling process as I'm not good at decorating & yet I want my cake to turn out as perfect & professional as the ones displayed in cafes & cake shops. I know.... I need to be more realistic...
Recently, I saw Annie Rigg's book Make, Bake & Celebrate! (yes, I still buy baking books.... just can't resist it.....) What I like about her book is the cake decorations are beautiful & yet they don't require me to be perfect! The decorations for the Chocolate Malted Cake that I made yesterday is very close to the one done by Annie. It's simple, elegant & yet it's imperfect. I like that!
Since my family & I are not really great fans of frosted cakes, I decided to make only half the recipe. So what you see here is a 4 layered-4 1/2-inch cake instead of the 3 layered-8-inch cake found in the book. Before assembling the cake, I managed to taste the scraps of the cake. Yummy! .......it must be the Horlicks added to the cake! But with the chocolate frosting, that special taste seems to disappear into the bittersweet frosting. Don't get me wrong....the cake is still delicious but I want the taste of Horlicks more.... So next time, I'll try this cake with white frosting instead & see what happens.
Malted Chocolate Cake
Recipe by Annie Rigg from her book Make,Bake & Celebrate!
250g / 2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
a pinch of salt
150g /10 tbsps unsalted butter, soft
225g / 1 big cup (caster) sugar
3 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 tsp vanilla extract ( I used vanilla paste.)
175ml / 2/3cup buttemilk
2 tbsp malted milk powder (I used Horlicks.)
150g / 5oz milk chocolate- coated malted milk balls (Maltesers / Whoppers)
assorted chocolate sprinkles / nonpareils
three 20cm / 8-inch round cake pans, greased & baselined with greased baking parchment
1. Preheat the oven to 180 deg C (350 deg F).
2. Sift together flour, baking powder,baking soda & salt.
3. Cream butter & sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer until really pale & light - at least 3-4 minutes. Gradually add beaten eggs to the creamed butter in 4 or 5 additions, mixing well between each addition & scraping down the bowl from time to time with a rubber spatula. Add the vanilla & mix to incorporate.
4. Gradually add the sifted dry ingredients to the cake mixture alternately with the buttermilk. Mix until smooth, the fold in the malted milk powder. Divide mixture evenly between the prepared cake pans. Spread level & bake on middle shelf for about 20 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the middle come out clean. Let the cakes cool in the pans for 3-4 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
(I made only 1/2 recipe & baked the cake in a 10-inch swiss roll pan. Then, using a round 4 1/2 inch-cookie cutter, I cut the cake into four pieces & used them to assemble my 4-layered cake.)
Malted chocolate frosting:
200g / 6 1/2 oz dark / semi-sweet chocolate, finely chopped
150g / 5 oz milk chocolate, finely chopped
250ml / 1 cup double / heavy cream
50g / 1/3 cup malted milk powder
2 tbsp golden syrup
175g / 1 1/2 stick butter, soft
1. Place chopped chocolates into a medium heatproof bowl.
2. Put cream, malted milk powder & syrup in a small, heavy-based saucepan over medium heat & whisk until combine. Stir occasionally until the cream just comes to the boil. Pour into the bowl of chocolate, stir & set aside to allow chocolate to melt. Once melted, stir until silky smooth & leave until cold & starting to firm up. Gradually beat in the butter, 1 tablespoon at a time, until glossy & smooth.
(I made only 1/2 recipe for the frosting. I replaced the bittersweet & milk chocolate with 1/2 Valrhona Manjari 64% & 1/2 Equatoriale 55% chocolate.)
To assemble cake:
1. Lighltly crush about 100g / 3 1/2 oz, of the milk chocolate-coated malted milk balls.
2. Place one of the cake layer on a serving dish & spread 3-4 tbsps of the malted chocolate frosting over it, then scatter half the malted milk balls on top. Cover with a second cake layer. Repeat this process, finishing with the last cake layer. Spread all but 3 tbsps of the remaining frosting evenly over the top & side of the cake using a palette knife. Spoon the reseved 3 tbsps malted chocolate frosting into the piping bag & snip the end to a fine point. Pipe dots aroung the bottom edge of the cake & around the top edge tool if you like .
3. Arrange the whole malted milk balls (I didn't use.) & chocolate srpinkles / nonpareils on top of the cake just before serving.