Having been spending lots of time in my friend Sarah’s kitchen, it is unsurprising that influence of her excellent book Sweet Bite Sized Bakes has rubbed off on me. Miniature need not be fiddly or time-consuming, it certainly can be, but these mini cakes did not take much longer to make, and were certainly quicker to bake, than a large cake.
My mantra of “it’s better in a bundt” will ring out alongside “it’s marvellous in miniature” from now on. A one egg mix makes tonnes of little cakes, so you are in the wonderful position of eating more cakes, but less cake at the same time.
One of my favourite cake recipes, and one I have not made for quite some time is Nigella’s chocolate and marmalade cake, which from looking through my archives I made way back in January 2011. It is a breeze to make and I should really make it more than once ever 18 months. Simply melt butter in a saucepan, add chocolate and when both are melted add sugar, marmalade, eggs and flour. Stir and bake. Barely any washing up which should make it a hit in any kitchen. Whilst making this the other day I felt like I was having a drink with an old friend, and even with my twist on the recipe was just as good as I had remembered.
The theme for We Should Cocoa this month is blackcurrants, so it was easy to swap the marmalade for some of the delicious blackcurrant and chilli jam which Ed bought back from his recent jam making masterclass with Vivien Lloyd.
Nigella’s original recipe is available online, just google for “Nigella Chocolate Marmalade Cake”, I swapped the marmalade for blackcurrant jam, and halved the amount of sugar.
I used my mini muffin and mini canelé silicon trays for my cakes (the mini canelés are about the size of my thumb nail), even if you are confident about their non stickiness I still recommend a good spray of Dr Oetker’s cake release spray – the best I have found for performance, price and ingredients.
The buttercream was made with the new Kerrygold Softer Butter I had been given to try out, which astonishingly is soft enough to whip up a mere 5 minutes after removing it from the fridge, a bonus if you tend towards the disorganised and do not plan ahead. Unlike other softer, spreadable butters in tubs the product is 100% butter (no added vegetable oils) with a little salt. The spreadability comes from the softer milk fats from the Kerrygold cows and the methods used to churn and make the butter.
The mini cakes were sliced in half and spread with buttercream and jam, and I piped a star of mixed buttercream and jam onto the mini canelé cakes.
As well as We Should Cocoa, I am sending these to Sarah’s Forever Nigella, hosted by Amy, where the theme is Sizzling Summer (insert hollow laugh here). Being bite sized these would be perfect to take to a BBQ or picnic.
I’ve made a recipe I had had bookmarked for years so this can also go to Jac’s Bookmarked Recipes.
Many thanks to both Tala for the teatowel and Kerrygold for the butter samples.