Spooky Halloween Chocolate Cake
The cake is easy to make so you can spend more time decorating. Start the cake a day or two ahead
- 300 gm plain flour or cake, 2 cups
- 500 gm caster sugar 2 1/2 cups
- 70 gm cocoa powder dutch 3/4 cup
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 250 ml vegetable oil 1 cup
- 500 ml buttermilk 2 cups
- 5 ml lemon Juice 1 teaspoon
- 40 ml water 2 tablespoons
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 eggs
- 500 gm butter unsalted softened
- 25 gm cocoa powder 1/4 cup
- 360 gm pure icing sugar 2 heapedsifted
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 200 gm dark chocolate melted
- 1/2 teaspoon fine salt
- 700 gm black icing
- 50 gm icing sugar for rolling
- 1/2 egg white
- 1/2 cup icing sugar extra, this is to mix with eggwhite to make glue
- 1/2 teaspoon black food colouring
- 1 packet Lollies for decorating
I used two 8 inch or 18 cm cake tins, lined and greased. Oven 180 C/ 350 F. You will need a large pallet knife for spreading, a rolling pin, a fine mesh sifter, a small paint brush.
Mix all of the dry ingredients together for the cake well in a mixer.
Mix the eggs, oil, buttermilk, lemon and vanilla in a bowl then add to the dry ingredients and mix on low till combined well.
Pour into the two cake tins equally.
Bake in a pre heated oven for approximately 40 minutes. Test the cake with a tooth pick by inserting into the centre of the cake. The pick should come out clean. Cool the cake in the tin for 10 minutes before running a sharp knife around the tin, removing and then leaving to cool on a rack . Refrigerate for several hours or overnight (The freezer can speed up this process)
Cut each cake into two through the centre leaving 4 equal rounds.
To make the frosting
Beat the butter till light and fluffy. Meanwhile melt the chocolate and let it cool a little. Gradually add the sifted icing sugar and the cocoa powder and then the chocolate and vanilla and beat till light. Chill a little so it is easy to spread.( can be made ahead then brought back to room temperature)
Fill each layer of the cake with about 1 cup of icing, leaving an equal amount to cover the cake.
Start by adding a large amount onto the top of the cake and start spreading it right across the top and down the sides. It will take a while to get the frosting even and completely covering the cake in a nice thin layer as smooth as possible. The cake only needs a fine coating. Chill to set.
Knead the black icing till smooth. Sprinkle a small amount of icing sugar onto a bench with a sifter and brush till it is very well spread and thin. The sugar will make the black icing look white if you use too much. To make a cake of this size you will need to roll out approximately a 15 in / 38 cm diameter icing. As you roll run the pallet knife under the black icing continuously so that it doesn't stick to the bench.
Fold the icing in half and put the folded half onto the middle of the cake and then unfold to cover the entire cake. (The icing can be gathered together and re-rolled if you have trouble with splitting or tearing, before you put it onto the cake. Once it touches the buttercream though it is on the cake and can't be moved.)
Smooth down the side pushing out the folds. You should be able to get rid of all of them except the one. Cut a v into the icing and remove the excess, then push it together and smooth over with a piece of plastic or shiny satiny material. Cut the icing off at the bottom of the cake around the plate. (Plan to put decorations onto rough sections).
I rolled out a long black ribbon and cut it into a 3 in or 7 cm size. I wrapped this around the base of the cake and formed the end into a black rose. This is optional for you.
To make edible glue for sticking on the decorations, put the egg white into a bowl ( don't use a whole white!) and start mixing in the sifted icing sugar until you have a paste that is easy to spread. This paste will look better if it is coloured black so add a drop or two of colour and re- adjust the thickness by adding some more icing sugar.
Use this paste on the end of a toothpick to paste on whichever decorations you would like to use. Use a small brush or a pastry brush to get rid of any icing sugar stuck to the black icing.
To make the bloody syrup, mix red food colouring with glucose syrup ( available in the supermarket)