Post # 1
So… I’m making my own cake and I need input on both flavours, and execution of the tiers. Seriously… I have time to experiment. Go crazy!
I do have a few restrictions… some of my guests can’t eat nuts. They are fine to be around nuts, but can’t eat them, so the nut tiers are going to be separated from the non nut tiers. Beyond that… hit me with ideas!
I definitely want a chocolate and beetroot tier with salted caramel and pistachio brittle chunks, but I’m struggling to make the brittle. Has anyone got any advice, or should I just start using a candy thermometer? Also, any good advice for getting the balance of salt/caramel just right? I’m trying to get the texture so it pops in the mouth.
I also definitely want a spiced cake tier, with mulled wine spices and blackberry jam. That’s just going to be a basic victoria sponge. Nice and easy.
The other layers… I need to work out if I need one or two extra tiers. Maybe dark chocolate with raspberries? Lemon fondant? Hazelnut and vanilla with sesame seeds, or chocolate fudge with something boozy, like baileys or amaretto? EXCITE ME please! And give me baking hints and tips!
EDIT: Or… how about pear and vanilla, or apple and lavender? How would you get the subtle flavours just right though… that’s the problem…
Post # 3
New idea…how about a coffee and baileys tier?
Or how about a lemon and vanilla tier?
Post # 4
@Rachel631: If you have people that have nut allergies I wouldn’t put the nut layers anywhere near the non-nut layers. And I thinking have simpler flavors might keep more people happy…I agree with PP with having flavors vanilla/chocolate or lemon/vanilla because these flavors are pretty common and simple. 🙂
Post # 5
I agree that you should include a more simple combo. Maybe vanilla with chocolate mousse filling….or chocolate with bavarian creme or peanut butter mousse filling.
For the other layer, you coul do something like a fruity layer. Banana(could soak with rum) or orange with white chocolate.
Some other combinations you could play with:
Coconut Rum cake with coconut filling
Sweet potato-giner cake with toasted marshmallow filling
Dulce de leche cake, esspresso filling
Red velvet, cream cheese filling
Post # 6
@Cyclebride: I like the sound of banana and rum! Do you think it would be better than coffee and baileys?
If I was going for a simple flavour, I could go for lemon drizzle cake with lemon curd and meringue pieces, I suppose. It has the wow factor, but it tastes quite “clean” and simple.
There will be other desserts as well, including a fruit cake, cupcakes and hopefully scones. But seeing as I’ve got such a load of stick for making my own cake from some doubters, I want to show off what I am REALLY capable of in the kitchen! Plus, my stepmother made her own (excellent) wedding breakfast, so I’m feeling competitive…
Post # 7
@Rachel631: Chocolate and beetroot cake? I have never heard of that! It sounds intriguing, as I loooooove beets!
As for new flavours, I dunno….I like the good old chocolate paired with raspberry or mocha. I’m boring. I really like lemon though. Oooh, what about a gingerbread cake with a lemon curd filling? Mmmm.
Oh, and when you are making brittle, make sure you don’t use salted pistachios (salted nuts burn SO quick, I never have any luck with them), and make sure to get your sugar syrup to that hard crack stage, or else it won’t “set” properly and become hard. A candy thermometer is your best bet. I never use one though…I just drop a little bit of the mixture into cold water and when it forms a ball, I know its at the hard crack stage. But don’t be like me.
Post # 8
@LilacViolet: Aha! You legend. I’ve been using salted nuts because they are cheaper, but it makes sense… of course they’ll burn because the salt affects the osmotic balance. I don’t use a thermometer… I’m of the old school of cooking where I meaure and judge everything by eye (I never use scales, measuring jugs or thermometers… much faster!). Works fine on a daily basis because I’m generally a good judge of weights, measures and temperatures, but it’s probably why I’m not having much luck with making brittle. I’ll try again in a few days.
Beetroot cakes are very common (it’s an old cook’s trick). You can’t taste the beetroot at all, though. Beetroot is used to keep the cake moist and it also makes it last longer. It will just taste like a chocolate and nut cake… unless you tell someone you put beetroot in, they will never know. You probably have had it before, but you didn’t know what it was!
So now I have: chocolate (and beetroot) with salted caramel and pistachio brittle chunks
– mulled wine spices and gingerbread with blackberry jam
– lemon drizzle cake with vanilla, lemon curd and meringue pieces
– ???? coffee and baileys, or banana and rum. I’m leaning more towards coffee and baileys though, because we already have a fruit tier.
I do like the idea of gingerbread cake with a lemon curd filling, but it will be quite similar to the mulled wine and blackberry tier (I’ll add gingerbread to the mulled wine cake though… there’s ginger in it already). Dark chocolate with raspberries has already been done in the chocolate tier and the fuit tier, and hazelnut and vanilla with sesame seeds is another nut tier, which I don’t want. The other one I liked the sound of was sweet potato and ginger cake with toasted marshmallow filling, but I’ve never made a cake like that before, and I’d be very worried about getting the flavours correct.
I think I’ve got quite a good mix now, actually. There should be something for everyone in there.
Post # 9
Coffee and Bailey’s sounds wonderful!
I love a good banana cake with rum…. tough choice!
When I make my cake, I think I’m going to make a few different flavors, too. 🙂
You will have to post pics and tell us what your final decisions were.
Post # 10
I recently had red velvet cake with chocolate mousse filling and it was amazing!
Post # 11
@Rachel631: All of these cakes sound amazing!! I want them so bad.
I don’t think you NEED a candy thermometer – just do the ball thing. I’ve never used a candy thermometer and I’ve never burned my brittle (except when I used salted nuts – I never knew the reason for that though!)
Post # 12
@LilacViolet: I have the reverse problem… the nuts go funny and the brittle does not set… caused by not getting the mixture hot enough, I think!
I’m quite good at making certain things, but I don’t really have much experience with making candies, that’s the problem. I can make OK fudge, but I fall down when it comes to hard sugar candy…
Post # 13
@Rachel631: Yep, you are right, the mixture has to get to the “hard crack” stage (a certain temp. which i do not know because I do not use a candy thermometer…haha).