Given that Easter is early this year, it really does feel as if we have barely got past the chocolate-fest that is Christmas before we are launched into another one.
But despite all of the moans and groans, I think that personally we all like it. If not for the chocolate then for the fluffy chicks and bunnies that we can adorn everything with. I have walked past a lot of shop windows in the past couple of weeks that are adorned with small fluffy creatures, even those of belongings to banks.
The weather isn’t particularly spring like in the UK at the moment. It is definitely on the cool side and this week the sun hasn’t had his hat on very much. The forecast for the weekend isn’t looking great either – wet and windy – so what better reason do you need than to hunker down and make a cake that is covered in chocolate.
The sponge is a simply vanilla cake, sandwiched together with vanilla buttercream and raspberry jam. Then it is covered in white chocolate buttercream and decorated with chocolate eggs, chocolate shavings and, of course, chocolate bunnies, who are positioned around the side like little guardians. Guardians of what I am not sure. The eggs, maybe. They are keeping them safe from wayward human fingers.
It is a shame they are made from chocolate themselves. Sadly they don’t put up much resistance. But it is the thought that counts.
Whatever you have planned for the coming long weekend, I hope you enjoy yourselves. I will see you next week with a belly full of chocolate.
Easter Nest Cake with Guardian Bunnies
For the cake:
- 140g butter, melted and cooled slightly
- 175g golden caster sugar
- 3 large eggs
- 110g rice flour
- 50g ground almonds
- 1.5 tsp gluten free baking powder
- 0.5 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tbsp milk
For the butter creams, filling and decoration:
- 55g unsalted butter, softened
- 0.5 tsp vanilla extract
- 250g powered sugar
- 30ml + 1 tbsp milk
- 300g white chocolate
- 5-6 tsp raspberry jam, approximately
- a square of dark chocolate, chocolate eggs and chocolate bunnies for decoration
- Grease and line two 20cm round cake tins with non-stick baking paper. Pre-heat the oven to 180 Celsius/160 fan/350 Fahrenheit.
- In a medium bowl mix together the slightly cooled melted butter and sugar. Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing well in between each addition.
- Add the flour, ground almonds, baking powder and salt and mix well.
- Finally mix in the vanilla extract and the milk.
- Divide the batter between the tins and bake for 20-25 minutes, until risen, a pale golden brown colour and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.
- Leave to cool in the tins for 10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
- Once the cakes are cold, mix together the softened butter and the vanilla extract. Add the powered sugar a little at a time, mixing well in between each addition. Add 30ml of milk and mix well.
- Place a cake on the serving dish.
- Set aside 60g of the vanilla buttercream (you will need this for the white chocolate buttercream) and then spread the rest over the cake.
- Spread a layer of raspberry jam over the buttercream. Don’t take it all the way to the edges otherwise it will squish out.
- Place the other cake on top.
- Melt the white chocolate and allow it to cool a little before mixing in the vanilla buttercream you set aside earlier. Add a tbsp or so of milk if it is a little too firm.
- Spread the white chocolate buttercream over the top of the cake and ease it down the sides.
- Add chocolate eggs and bunnies. Use a vegetable peeler to shave bits off the square of white chocolate around the eggs to create a nest effect.
© The Pink Rose Bakery 2016
FYI – the chocolate eggs and bunnies that I used came from Marks and Spencers. The eggs were £1 and the bunnies £1.50.