RED VELVET CAKE (RECIPE 1) / KITKAT & M&M CAKE (FAIL)

 

 

So my gal Soraya had her birthday last weekend a few colleagues and I thought it would be good idea to do a small party for her. As we were talking about this I was “bright” enough to offer to bake the cake for the birthday as I had been wanting to try two things of late 1. A red velvet cake 2. A kit kat cake. This was overly ambitious of me I think seeing as for one I had made neither before and secondly offering to “decorate” a cake that will be viewed in public is quite a challenge to ones ego. I regretted having offered several times but what else was I do to with time ticking there was not much to do as I couldn’t just pull out and it was a bit late to order for cake from Nairobi so I decided to go on and keep my offer. Since I did not have the kitkats and M&Ms to go with the kitkat cake we called our colleague Allan and asked him to go to the supermarket to get us the chocolates and this proved to be quite a challenge, Allan, being the man he is, called me like 3 times trying to figure out what exactly I wanted and this was quite the task, it was like trying to explain to a man the difference between pink and fuschia!!! (no pun intended 🙂 ) even after we talked he still managed to bring me the smaller sized kit kats (which I did appreciate coz it was the effort that counted) in a panic my gal Mona and I begun to wonder what we would do but we decided to ask another male colleague who did not even know what kit kats were and he this time brought us the chunky ones!!! I was doomed and frustrated. All in all I still got complements because we were in the desert and anything goes here  but i feel that this (kitkat cake)  project was an utter fail and I will have to redo it again.

For the cake I actually  enjoyed it. Every one who ate it was quite happy with the out come. I tried two different recipes, I will post the other next week.  I think people equally liked both.

My pal who is not a fun of chocolate cakes actually liked this one because it was not that rich, the chocolate flavour is present but very distant and the cake is very moist because of the oil used. However, because of the amount of cocoa used the red in this cake is not as rich and it turns out to be more maroonish. So if your after color next weeks recipe might be the one to go for. Or try both see what tickles your fancy. HAPPY BAKING!

Makes: 2-3 cake layers (depending on how big you want each individual cake, i made 2)

·        1 tablespoon unsalted butter

·        3 1/2 cups cake flour

·        1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa

·        1 1/2 teaspoons salt

·        2 cups oil (vegetable will do)

·        2 cups granulated sugar

·        3 large eggs

·        6 tablespoons (3 ounces) red food coloring or 1 teaspoon red powder food coloring dissolved in 6 tablespoons of water

·        1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla

·        1 1/4 cup buttermilk

·        2 teaspoons baking soda

·     2 1/2 teaspoons white vinegar.

 

KitKat cake

·        you will need 36 Kitkat sticks to fill up this cake and not end up with the disaster I had, i should have crossed checked this

·        about 1-1 ½ cups of M&MS

  • 1 cup unsalted butter softened
  • 3 1/2 cups confectioners  sugar
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon table salt
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 4 tablespoons milk

METHOD

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place teaspoon of butter in each of 3 round 9-inch layer cake pans and place pans in oven for a few minutes until butter melts. Remove pans from oven, brush interior bottom and sides of each with butter and line bottoms with parchment.

2. Whisk cake flour, cocoa and salt in a bowl.

3. Place oil and sugar in bowl of an electric mixer and beat at medium speed until well-blended.

4. Beat in eggs one at a time. With machine on low, very slowly add red food coloring. (Take care: it may splash.) Add vanilla. Add flour mixture alternately with buttermilk in two batches. Scrape down bowl and beat just long enough to combine.

4. Place baking soda in a small dish, stir in vinegar and add to batter with machine running. Beat for 10 seconds.

5. Divide batter among pans, place in oven and bake until a cake tester comes out clean, 40 to 45 minutes. Let cool in pans 20 minutes. Then remove from pans, flip layers over and peel off parchment. Cool completely before frosting.

For Frosting

1.      Cream butter for a few minutes in a mixer with the paddle attachment on medium speed. Turn off the mixer. Sift 3 cups powdered sugar and cocoa into the mixing bowl. Turn your mixer on the lowest speed (so the dry ingredients do not blow everywhere) until the sugar and cocoa are absorbed by the butter. Increase mixer speed to medium and add vanilla extract, salt, and milk and beat for 3 minutes. If your frosting needs a more stiff consistency, add a little more sugar. If your frosting needs to be thinned out, add additional milk 1 tablespoon at a time.

2.      Frost the 1st cake layer. Set the 2nd layer on top of the first. Frost the 2nd layer and along the sides of the cake too.

3.      Stick Kit Kat’s to the sides of the cake, leaving a very small space in between each Kit Kat (1/4-inch).

4.       Wrap a bow around the cake, securing the Kit Kat’s. Fill the top of the cake with M&M’s.

5.      If you refrigerate the cake for a couple of hours or so, it will be much easier to cut and serve.

6. HAPPY EATING!!!

 

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BANANA BREAD

Bananas are one of my favourite fruits or even food, what I like most about this recipe is that it helps us use up over ripe banana’s that you would normally throw out. If you do not have time to bake just before they go bad. Peel them and freeze them, when your ready to bake bring them to room temperature before using them. I do not remember where I got my first recipe for banana bread but I adopted this one from Crafty Café  HAPPY BAKING!!

Makes 1 loaf.

INGREDIENTS

·        3 very ripe medium sized bananas

·        1/2 cup butter or margarine (preferably unsalted)

·        1 ½  cup flour

·        ½  cup sugar

·        2 eggs

·        ¼ cup buttermilk (to make your own go to this link)

·        1 teaspoon baking soda

·        ½ teaspoon salt

·        teaspoon of ground cinnamon

METHOD

1.      Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius and grease your loaf pan

2.      Chop up the bananas and butter

3.      Out in a bowl and using an electric beater mix up till they are all chopped up and mushy

4.      Next add all the other ingredients one at a time, ensure it well combined

5.      you can add walnuts or chocolate chip cookies if you want (about a ½ cup)

6.      pulse till just combines

7.      Put batter into prepared tin

8.      Bake for 55-60mins until a toothpick comes out clean

9.      Cool, serve

10.  HOW EASY IS THAT!!

11. HAPPY EATING!!

pulse 10 seconds- just until incorporated

Optional- add in 1/2 cup walnut pieces or 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips

Pulse 2-3 times.
Turn batter out into the prepared pan.
Bake for 55-60 minutes or until cooked throughout and a toothpick comes out clean.
Cool completely before serving.

Easy (one bowl) Chocolate Cake

 

Easy (one bowl) Chocolate cake

 

A few years back when I really frustrated I went home and decided to bake. I did not have many ingredients so I took what was available out of the pantry and decided to Google for some recipes for cake. I came across an easy chocolate cake and I really liked it.  Truth be told that was also the day I begun to realize how therapeutic baking is. Well since then I have tried many other recipes all revolving around more or less the same ingredients but when I tried this one from All Recipes and I was in love. They have quite a number of them there but try this one first then the others. You will not be disappointed.

 

From the photos above you can tell that I was not able to get a picture of the whole cake. First time I made it I decided to share it with my friends so as to distribute the calories 🙂 by the time I thought that I should take a photo more than half the cake was gone. On the second Instance one of the friend I gave the cake to loved it so much that she asked me to make it for a bridal shower and I sliced it up before realizing I should have taken a photo! All in All photos or no photo this cake is great you will not be disappointed if you try it. HAPPY BAKING!

 

Serves 24

 

Ingredients

  • 2 cups white sugar
  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup boiling water

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour two nine inch round pans.
  2. In a large bowl, stir together the sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add the eggs, milk, oil and vanilla, mix for 2 minutes on medium speed of mixer. Stir in the boiling water last. Batter will be thin. Pour evenly into the prepared pans.
  3. Bake 30 to 35 minutes in the preheated oven, until the cake tests done with a toothpick. Cool in the pans for 10 minutes, then remove to a wire rack to cool completely.
  4. HAPPY EATING!