With exams over it is time to bake! This is my end-of-exams-celebratory-baking cake and is inspired by Peggy Porschen’s absolutely lovely layer cakes. I recently took a trip to the Peggy Porschen Parlour (you can read about it here) and loved the cakes so much that I bought her Boutique Baking book. It is full of such pretty cakes in lovely pastel colours, perfect for spring/summer. I particularly like the stencil effect she uses on a lot of her layer cakes so it was this book that inspired this cake. I also based the sponge recipe on a recipe from the book, the original recipe is for a gorgeous White Chocolate Passion Cake, I added some lemon and changed the quantities (as sadly I don’t have any 6 inch tins so had to make enough to make a 3 layered 8 inch cake – time to invest in some more cake tins I think!) to make the sponge for this White Chocolate, Blueberry and Lemon cake.
These are 3 of my absolute favourite flavours and I think they work really well together, I used them before for these lovely chewy cookies. This cake is a white chocolate and lemon sponge, filled with a blueberry and lemon curd (homemade!), coated in a whipped white chocolate and blueberry buttercream and decorated with fresh blueberries and a dusting of icing sugar. I used a stencil from this pack, I love the effect cake stencils give, so simple yet so impressive and this bird one is my favourite in the set.
The cake itself is lovely, moist and chocolatey, it is almost like a blondie. To make the white chocolate and lemon sponge (based on Peggy Porschen’s White Chocolate Passion Cake from Boutique Baking):
This will make a 3 layer 8 inch cake.
180g white chocolate
90g soft light brown sugar
330g golden caster sugar
3 large eggs
320g plain flour
1.5 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt
zest of 1 lemon
Preheat the oven to 160C and grease and line 3 sandwich tins (you could also make it in 1 tin and divide into 3 once cooled). Put the chocolate in a saucepan with the milk, brown sugar and 130g of the caster sugar. Heat the mixture and stir so that all the chocolate is melted and bring the mixture to the boil. Take off the heat. In a bowl cream together the butter and the rest of the caster sugar. Add the eggs one at a time and beat well. Add the flour, baking powder, lemon zest and salt and mix in with a spatula. Now add the chocolate mixture to the cake mix (the hot chocolate mixture tastes delicious – try it before you mix it in!) a splash at a time, mixing in well until it is all well combined. Divide the cake mix between the tins and bake at 160C, if you are using individual sandwich tins this will take about 30 minutes. Once cooked the cake should be golden and coming away from the side of the tin. Leave them to cool in the tins before turning out onto a wire rack to cool completely. Do not try to ice a still warm cake, it just goes wrong and with these cakes they will firm up if you leave them for a while, making them easier to trim and ice.
The Blueberry and Lemon Curd is best made first or even better would be to make it the day before so it has time to firm up. The addition of blueberries to lemon curd gives it a fantastic purple colour that I love. You will need:
200g frozen blueberries
2 unwaxed lemons
200g caster sugar
100g unsalted butter
3 eggs and 1 egg yolk
Start with the blueberries, put them in a pan and gently heat them, breaking them up as you stir them. You want them to release there juices and to break up, once this is done then pour the blueberries through a sieve, pushing as much through as you can. You should get a gorgeous deep purple juice/puree. Discard what remains in the sieve. Use a fine grater to zest the lemons and put the blueberry puree, lemon zest and the juice of the lemons in a heatproof bowl with the butter and sugar. Put the bowl over a pan of simmering water, as though you were melting chocolate. Stir and heat until the butter has melted. Whisk the eggs together and then add them to the mixture, whisking well until it has all combined. This now needs about 10 minutes to cook, but keep stirring every now and then. The mixture should be creamy and thick after 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and leave to cool. Keep in the fridge until you need this.
The White Chocolate and Blueberry frosting is make using blueberries to give the lovely colour, you will need:
200g frozen blueberries
250g unsalted butter (softened)
250g icing sugar
50g melted white chocolate
Start with the blueberries by making a blueberry puree like you did for the curd. Heat the blueberries in a pan so that they break up and release their juice and then push them through a sieve. In another bowl beat together the butter and sieved icing sugar, whipping it until it is nice and light. Add the chocolate and mix well. Now add the blueberry juice a bit at a time until you get the colour that you want.
You can now assemble the cake.
Stack the 3 layers on top of each other with a layer of blueberry and lemon curd in between each of them. Use a palette knife to spread the frosting over the cake. The best way to do this is to first spread a very thin layer over the cake to catch the crumbs and give you a neat shape to work with. Leave this in the fridge to firm up before using the rest of the icing to completely cover the cake. Use a cake scraper to get a neat finish on the side of the cake. Decorate with fresh blueberries and a dusting of icing sugar.
I am also now entering this into June’s Tea Time Treats hosted by What Kate Baked and Lavender and Lovage. The theme is layer cakes!
I am entering this into the Simple and in Season Food Blog Challenge for May.