Yikes. These blog post gaps kept getting longer as baking here in the Bakernaut kitchen went into a bit of hibernation over the last year. Well, our kitchen was finally finished a few months back and it’s been such a treat to be able to roll out dough on a proper surface without bashing the rolling-pin into the side of the fridge!
I have also recently decided not to go down the make-cakes-to-order route as I generally find it too stressful and time consuming (with the exception of the cake a bit further down in this post!). I want to enjoy my baking, use it as a time to be creative and make the most out of my time in the kitchen. And that means no more 2am split buttercream rescue work (yippie!).
As a family we have also recently changed our eating habits; my boyfriend has decided to go vegan after 20 years as a vegetarian and I am on my way there too, although I’m finding the change a bit more difficult than he does. This has meant a big change in terms of how to bake and it’s something that I struggle a little with, having been a life long lover of butter and cream. But I’m getting there, there are a lot of amazing vegan recipes out there to explore. The thought of sticking to a completely plant based diet is truly exciting, especially when you look a little deeper into the animal product industry, it’s practices and the environmental impacts it has.
So far I have only tried a handful of vegan cake recipes but I was especially excited to make some fantastic cinnamon rolls that were completely plant based. The kids didn’t even notice the difference from the classic ones, which was pretty remarkable! Some “rawreos” with a recipe from the guys at The Happy Pear were appreciated by a friend who quit sugar over a year ago and who has struggled to find tasty treats, and a vegan chocolate birthday cake also worked out really well. I have been baking a load of bread too…
Saying that, I’m still making non-vegan cakes every now and then – it’s what I know and still feel most confident with. I took on my last order ever (never say never but…) from a friend back in the summer, it was for a special birthday and she wanted a classic Swedish Princess cake as well as a chocolate cake for her party.
I chose to fill and cover the chocolate cake with a fantastically tasty Chocolate Buttercream from Linda Lomelino over at callmecupcake.se that I will share with you now. It uses salted butter and is more like a mousse than a traditional buttercream. It goes so well with a moist chocolate cake as it’s not too sweet and has a lovely salty undertone.
- 100 g milk chocolate, chopped/broken into pieces
- 100 g dark chocolate (70%), chopped/broken into pieces
- 300 g softened salted butter
- 90 g icing sugar
- pinch of salt
- 1/4 tsp vanilla powder or a few drops of vanilla essence
- Melt both chocolates and then set aside to cool to room temperature.
- Beat the butter until very pale and fluffy, then add the icing sugar, salt and vanilla and beat for 1 minute.
- Add the melted chocolate (make sure it's not too warm) and beat for another 2 minutes or until very fluffy.