"Betty Leopard": Baby's 0th Birthday

Friday, 16 March 2012

Baby's 0th Birthday

This is the cake I baked for my friends new baby girl, to celebrate her 0th birthday! Although she was due yesterday, she actually arrived seven and a half weeks ago, taking everyone very much by surprise. Her parent decided to throw her a little party on her due date which was handy as little Lois even arrived before we'd managed to throw a baby shower for her mum!
I could have gone with a tried and tested recipe that I knew like the back of my hand, but I came across a recipe for a gorgeous looking Double Chocolate Fudge Cake in the Tesco Real Food online magazine a few days ago that I knew I had to have a go at! It's the cake on the cover and can be found on page 10.

It wasn't a particularly hard recipe. The cake itself was really easy and baked really well, even in my rubbish oven. It smelled awesome and was lovely and moist and spongy, like a good cake should be!
The filling and frosting were slightly more tricky.
Inside there is a white chocolate filling, made from white chocolate, butter (I used a dairy free spread), and icing sugar. Making it wasn't really the problem, but applying it was! As soon as I put it on it just ran everywhere, straight down the sides of the cake and all over the tin lid it was sat on! I did the best I could in scraping it back up and putting in back in the cake. It did begin to set after a while and but there was no where near as much inside as there should have been.
I had exactly the same problem with the chocolate ganache frosting. I made it up fine, then left it to cool, hoping it would thicken up and be spreadable, but even after an hour when it was stone cold, it was still really thin and runny. It may have been partly my fault as I used reduced soy milk instead of cream, I'm not sure. I even tried reheating it to reduce it further, but it was still runny. In the end I bit the bullet and started applying it to the cake really slowly and thinly, in the hope that it would set better that way. As with the white chocolate, it ran a lot. Fortunately applying it slowly did help a bit, a lot did stay on the top, but a fair amount just ran straight down the sides as well. At this point I was getting really pissed off and had to take a break to avoid throwing the whole thing straight in the bin.
However, after my little time out, I came back to it an noticed that the frosting that had collected on the tin around the cake was setting - so I grabbed by spatula and started scraping the frosting off the base and spreading it onto the sides of the cake. I continued pouring the ganache over the cake, letting it run, set, then spreading it back on the cake. It was a long and messy process, but did finally work, as my pictures testify!
I have to say, I was terrified the whole time between finishing it and getting it to the party that I'd open the tin and just find all the ganache had decided not to play ball and run back off the cake. Luckily, it made it there intact and everyone said it was really good. I've had a fair few chocolate fudge cakes in my time and I really liked this one, even if I do say so myself!
I'll still want to use soy milk next time, as my boyfriend doesn't eat dairy, but I'll reduce it a lot more before I even start. I think I might also try pouring both the icing mixes onto a baking tray and see if it sets before I try putting them on the cake.

This might make it sound like a nightmare recipe, but, once it was done I wasn't sorry I'd tried. It definitely tasted like it was worth the effort :)

Sorry I've been a bit absent lately. I've had a pretty epic piece of work to finish, which has sapped all my energy, motivation and inspiration for blogging. I finally submitted it this morning, so I hope to get a few posts in over the weekend :)
Thank you all for still reading and hello to all my new followers! I'm at 95 now, which amazes me! I will have to start thinking about a 100 follower giveaway!



  1. I agree, the cake not only looked brilliant, but tastes amazing (I'm eating it as I type) X

  2. That cake looks amazing <3 I want some!


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