Monday, 18 June 2012

Chocolate and peanut butter biscuit cake {recipe}

I have a confession to make.  I am not very good at following instructions when it comes to baking requests.  Every time I ask my husband what type of cake he would like he requests what I like to call boring old chocolate cake (let's call it BOCC for the rest of this post shall we?).  He loves BOCC.  No bells and whistles.  The recipe for this cake comes from the Women's Weekly kid's birthday cake book.  Plain chocolate cake made with cocoa, and his favourite icing to have with said BOCC is boring old chocolate buttercream.  Not a fabulous icing made with fabulous chocolate, melted and whipped with love.  Just boring old buttercream made with boring old cocoa.  

I always end up denying him of his dream and making something much more interesting, and yet he still continues to request BOCC.  This year he asked for BOCC with peanut butter icing.  A slightly more interesting take, and I decided to honour his request.  Sort of.  I WAS only going to make one modification.  I knew that peanut butter chocolate chips existed and decided to take a trip to USA Foods to buy some.  Alas they didn't have any in stock.  I spied some Nutter Butters.  

Nutter Butters are peanut butter sandwich cookies from the US.  Hmmmm.  Crushed up cookies in the BOCC was a great idea!  Cookies were bought and preparations were made to bake this BOCC with a twist.  

Incidentally, if you are looking for a good BOCC, look no further than the Women's Weekly recipe.  It is dead easy to make so it's a good one for baking with the kids, it's not delicate and it is good for carving in to shapes.  It is nice and moist and isn't too dense.  I actually quite like it!  

You basically just throw flour, cocoa, butter, vanilla, caster sugar, eggs and water into a bowl.  

Oh.  I remember.  I cheated again.  I decided to use premium cocoa instead of boring old cocoa.  Look at this stuff.  How could you not want to use it in every recipe that calls for cocoa?

It has such a beautiful colour and the aroma is to die for.  I get off on shoving my nose in the bag.  The one I am using at the moment is from The Essential Ingredient.  

It is $15 for 500g and I think it is well worth the cost.  It really takes the chocolate flavour of cakes to the next level.  Heaven!  

Anyway, back to the BOCC.  Once everything is in the bowl of your mixer, beat it on medium speed until is is well combined and paler in colour, about three minutes.  Prepare the pan of your choice (we used an eight inch round pan) by greasing and lining it with baking paper.  Here is my eager baking assistant preparing our pan.  

Before pouring the mixture into the pan we broke up six Nutter Butters and put them in the base of the pan.

We also broke up six more Nutter Butters and folded them in to the cake mixture, just for good measure.

Pour the mixture into the pan and bake in a moderate oven until cake is cooked, which in our case was 40 minutes.  

As you can see in the photo, our cake cracked on the surface.  This happens when the oven is too hot and the surface of the cake cooks before the mixture has had a chance to rise.  I kinda like how it looks with this cake though!  It reminds me of a big brownie. Normally I would take the top off the cake to make it level but this looked so appealing that I decided to keep it.  Imagine peanut butter frosting falling in to those crevices - yum!    

Now on to the icing.  You might remember the peanut butter filling from my dark chocolate peanut butter cake.  We halved that recipe and used it to top this BOCC with a twist, and it suddenly ceased to be BOCC but a very appealing looking cake.  It was a bit late in the day when we made our cake and it hadn't had a chance to cool properly before we iced it and ate it, but you know what? Warm cake with peanut butter icing, melting in to those fabulous looking cracks? Don't mind if I do!  

You can't see it, but the icing was bordering on melting on top of the still warm cake.  Yum!

Of course Elloy needed help blowing out his candles.  :-)

Not bad at all for a BOCC.  :-)

{Rich Chocolate Cake}
recipe from The Australian Women's Weekly

1 1/3 cups self raising flour
1/2 cup cocoa
125g unsalted butter, softened
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/4 cups caster sugar
2 eggs, room temperature
2/3 cup water

Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius.  Grease and line your chosen pan.  

Sift flour and cocoa into a medium bowl (I've recently quit sifting but go right ahead if you must!).

Add remaining ingredients and beat on low until combined.  Increase the speed to medium and beat until well combined and paler in colour, approximately three minutes (less if you are using a Kitchenaid). 

If you are going to add biscuits to your cake, now is the time to do it.  We chose to put some on the base of the pan and mix some more in to the batter.   

Put mixture in to a pan and use a palette knife to spread to the sides. 

Bake until cooked.  Stand in the pan for ten minutes before turning out to cool.  

If you want to top the cake with peanut butter frosting you can get the recipe here.

Susie xx

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