Wedding Cake: Carrot and Chocolate Layers

A double-tiered wedding cake with a scrumptious layer of carrot cake at the bottom and a rich chocolate ganache top tier:

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Double-Chocolate Spider-Man Celebration Cake

Boys LOVE Spider-Man, that’s just a fact!

And kids love chocolate – I mean, who doesn’t?

This double-chocolate {ultra-chocolate-y cake with chocolate buttercream} Spider-Man celebration cake was the perfect treat for a dear boy’s 4th birthday:

 

Double-choc SpiderMan Celebration Cake - front

Double-choc SpiderMan Celebration Cake - back

Cowboy-themed 1st Birthday Cake

This cowboy-themed birthday cake was for a special birthday boy who turned 1:

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Rich, gooey chocolate cake with cream cheese frosting and fondant.

I also made a carrot cake in keeping with the theme, as well as low carb brownies for the health-conscious:

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Land Rover Defender Birthday Cake

Boys will be boys and they love their toys…!

My husband loves his ‘Landy’ and he enjoys nothing better than going on a 4×4 trip, testing its limits and performance.

Oh, I can tell you many, many stories of our Land Rover trips we’ve been on, most of them ending in the water or mud or somewhere not very appealing. And I think that is the main appeal {for the boys in any case} of the infamous Defender.

It’s kind of like a dog – man’s best friend. {Well, some men in any case – not the Toyota-drivers…}

Oh, and we’ve heard all the jokes – trust me! But I must just say that those Defenders are mighty strong and sturdy and dependable, contrary to all the jokes, etc. We’ve driven through rivers, where the water reaches the bottom of the windows, covering the entire front ‘nose’ {?!} of the truck, climbed rocky mountains so steep you cannot adjust your seatbelt {an automatic safety feature} and you’re literally pooping your pants, but we always come out on the other side. {Ok, almost always…}
And even I can drive it – it’s quite fun too! Nothing feels better than just ramming over stuff! You also feel so safe when driving through dodgy areas, although a quick getaway is totally out of the question – it’s like driving a snail as a getaway car…

Right, so in honour of {some} man’s best friend, here is the Landy cake I made for my husband’s recent birthday:

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It was a rich and decadent chocolate affair with cream cheese frosting and covered in decorative fondant.

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And yes, it was ‘stuck in the mud’ {hehe!}…

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Xx

Double Chocolate Cheesecake #yum #dessert

Hello!

Well, so much for a healthy week… I have a full-blown cold and feel like just snuggling in bed with a hot water bottle and a good book. I’m reading Little White Lies {by Lesley Lokko} at the moment – what a fab read! I love {and have read} all her books.

Anyways, so that’s what I really want to be doing right now…

Instead, I have a ton of laundry to get through AND my dishwasher has stopped working. Fabulous.

Oh well, nothing like a rich and decadent slice of cheesecake to lift the spirits!

We had dinner with friends last night and I made this double chocolate cheesecake for dessert, and am enjoying my leftover slice as we speak…

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You will need:
{for the base}

2 cups finely crushed ginger biscuits
1/2 a cup of melted butter
1 tsp ground cinnamon

{for the brownie layer}
1/2 a cup of butter
110g dark chocolate, chopped
1 cup sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla
3 large eggs
1/6 cup cocoa
Pinch of salt
1/3 cup flour

{for the cheesecake}
3 blocks of 250g cream cheese
1 cup sugar
2 tbs flour
1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs
1 egg yolk
1/4 cup milk

{for the chocolate ganache top layer}
100g dark chocolate buttons
80ml cream

It might seem like a lengthy recipe but it’s actually quite simple and straight-forward…

Right, so start off by making the base, by combining all the ingredients and pressing the mixture into a springform cake tin. It’s important to use this tin for a cheesecake! {And always put your tin inside a shallow baking tray or cookie sheet, just incase some excess butter from the crust leaks out}
I also like to line my tin with baking paper, it just makes it a little bit easier when removing the cake, to prevent any of the crumbs falling off.
You will need to press it a few centimeters up the sides of the tin if you want the base to go round the sides of the cake – up to you.
Using the bottom of a glass to press the crumb mixture into the tin makes it just a bit easier and gives you a neater finish.

Next, prepare your brownie mixture by heating the butter and chocolate in a heatproof bowl in the microwave {gasp! shock, horror – yes!} until it’s just melted. Quickly stir until smooth and then whisk in half the sugar.
Next, whisk in the eggs one by one.
Whisk in the vanilla and cocoa powder, and finally, stir in the flour until just incorporated.

Pour the brownie mixture onto the biscuit base and bake in a pre-heated oven of 175C for 20 minutes.

While it cools down, prepare your cheesecake filling:
Soften the cream cheese, by beating it in a stand mixer until it is creamy, smooth and almost fluffy.
Add the sugar, flour, vanilla and milk and beat until everything is mixed thoroughly and it has a smooth and glossy consistency.
Add the eggs and mix gently until it’s just incorporated – you don’t want to over beat the eggs…

Set your oven to 190C.

Pour the cheesecake mixture on top of the brownie and biscuit base and bake for about 45 minutes.

Once the cheesecake has finished baking, let it cool as is for about 15 minutes and only then loosen the springform sides.
Let it cool even further with the loosened sides and only attempt to fully remove the cake from the tin once it’s reached room temp.

Next, make the ganache by heating the cream until boiling point and then pouring it over the chocolate buttons. Leave for about 5 minutes and then stir until it’s smooth.
Pour over the cheesecake and refrigerate.

Voilà!

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{Watch out for my hearty lamb shank recipe tomorrow!}

#dessert anyone?

I have such a sweet tooth and that’s just a fact. No use lying about it…

So, here’s my recipe for a super easy, super quick and super satisfying chocolate and peanut butter pot {for 4 servings}.
Chocolate and peanut butter – so very American and so very delicious!

You will need:

4 dark chocolate cupcakes with dark chocolate icing, halved
4tsp condensed milk
4tbs cream cheese
4tbs cream
4tsp peanut butter {use the one without added sugar, as the dessert is quite sweet already}
About 40 dark chocolate buttons

Place the top half of the cupcake {the one with the icing} in the bottom of an oven-safe glass or ramekin.
Layer a teaspoon each of peanut butter and condensed milk on top of the icing {the icing should face up, obviously}.
Next, layer a tablespoon of cream cheese and cream and sprinkle with about 10 dark chocolate ‘buttons’.
Place the remaining {bottom} half of the cupcake on top and bake at 160C for 20 minutes.
Serve warm and do let each person stir up their pud to get everything nice and mingled!

Enjoy! X

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