Yes, sometimes I make cakes.
I have been known to plan them in great detail. Usually while exercising.
I've found a good way to plan an original cake is to think one or two weeks ahead of where you're at, seasonally. 24th of July? Think late August.
Late August? Boom. Sunflowers.
A yellow cake with a chocolate ganache - yellow like the day, chocolate like the night. The equinox is coming, you know.
Is it a little brown around the edges? Yes.
Don't think I'm not grumpy about it.
But the thick, chocolate ganache was perfect.
The flowers were fun - I was going for Van Gogh.
I like some texture on a cake, you know?
Summertime. The livin' is still easy.
BUT FOR HOW MUCH LONGER?
Sunflowers Cake (Yellow Cake with Chocolate Ganache)
(yellow cake recipe based on Joy the Baker)
For the cake:
4 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup butter, softened
2 cups sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
4 large eggs
2 cups milk
Butter and flour a 13x9 cake pan. Preheat oven to 350F.
Sift together flour, baking powder, soda and salt. Set aside. Measure out milk, add vanilla extract. Set aside.
Cream butter and sugar together, about 3 minutes. Add eggs one at a time, beating for about a minute between additions.
Add flour mixture, alternating with milk mixture, in 3 additions (so 2 additions of milk). Stop beaters and finish combining with large wooden spoon.
Pour batter into prepared cake pan, smooth with spatula. Bake at 350F for about 45 minutes. Test with toothpick in center for doneness.
Let cool in pan 10 minutes, then dump onto cake board. Finish cooling.
Slice down the middle, as evenly as possible.
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 cup heavy cream
Bring cream to a simmer on stove. Place chocolate in heatproof bowl. Pour simmering cream over chocolate and stir until combined. Will be runny - let sit until desired consistency is reached (process can be speeded by putting in refrigerator, but keep a careful eye on it...it can stiffen up quickly).
4 cups powdered sugar
1 cup butter*
1 tablespoon vanilla
3 tablespoons milk
Combine powdered sugar and butter and beat for 2 minutes. Add vanilla and milk and beat for a minute more. Color as desired.
*for a stiffer, less melty frosting (easier to decorate with), replace 1/2 cup butter with 1/2 cup shortening