Yesterday evening was a great moment as my 100th follower signed up and I would like to say a huge thank you for everyone’s support and encouragement. I have been thinking about what recipe I would post if I did get 100 followers and it dawned on me that the perfect recipe to share is the one we use as a family when we celebrate. It is our ‘go to’ birthday cake – Chocolate Smartie Cake.
Coincidentally, it is my youngest brother’s birthday. He turns 25 today, so it felt quite apt when I baked the cake this morning. There is one slight problem – the cake is in France and my brother is London. So Little Man – Happy Birthday! We shall be thinking of you when we eat it later this afternoon.
I don’t know anyone who has tried this cake and not enjoyed it. Before I get a swathe of comments from my brothers – the traditional family cake normally has chocolate fudge icing in the middle and on the top, so, if you choose to do this just double the quantities for that icing. I personally prefer it with a buttercream filling in the middle and find that a mocha icing cuts through the sweetness of the cake.
Chocolate Smartie Cake
For the Cake:
- 200g soft margarine
- 200g caster sugar
- 175g self-raising flour
- 50g cocoa powder
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 3-4 drops vanilla essence
- 2tbsp milk
Mocha buttercream for the filling:
- 35g soft margarine
- 35g butter
- 1tsp instant coffee dissolved in 1 tsp boiling water
- 1-2tbsp milk
- 1tbsp cocoa powder
- 100-125g icing sugar
Chocolate Fudge Icing:
- 100g plain chocolate
- 50g butter
- 1 egg (beaten)
- 175-200g icing sugar
1. Preheat your oven to 170C fan and line a 20cm deep cake tin.
2. Cream together the butter and sugar.
3. Slowly add in the eggs being careful that they don’t curdle (if in doubt add a little flour at this stage to stabilise your mixture).
4. Sift in the flour, baking powder and cocoa then stir well before adding the vanilla essence and milk and then beat the mixture together for a couple of minutes.
6. Pour the cake batter into the cake tin.
7. Place in oven and bake for about 30/45 mins (or until a skewer comes out of the cake clean). (Note: I tend to turn the oven down to 160C fan after about 30 minutes to stop the cake browning too much on top.)
8. Remove from oven, place the cake on cooling rack and leave until completely cold.
9. Whilst the cake is cooling make your mocha filling. Place the butter, soft margarine and coffee in a bowl and beat together. Sift in the cocoa and icing sugar using an electric whisk, beat the icing together, adding a little milk if needed to loosen the icing.
10. Once the cake is cool, cut it in half as carefully as you can. Spoon the mocha filling on the bottom half of the cake. Using a knife evenly spread out the icing, placing the other half of the cake on top once you are happy.
11. Then make the chocolate fudge icing, by melting the chocolate and butter in a bowl above a pan of simmering water. Once everything has melted, add the beaten egg to the chocolate mixture and stir vigorously (The mixture should start to thicken). Leave the mix to cool a little before sieving in the icing sugar and stirring the mix until all is combined.
12. Spoon the icing onto the top of the cake a little at a time and using a knife smooth the icing evenly over and down the sides of the cake.
13. Finally decorate with the smarties.