Sunday, 21 October 2012

Sunday afternoon tea

Lots of visitors this weekend but everyone's gone now. We've lit a fire, battened down the hatches and and are having a good old-fashioned Sunday tea, just like the ones we used to have in front of the children's drama on telly on Sunday nights. Do you remember them? - The Secret Garden and the Wolves of Willoughby Chase (which gave me a terror of wolves lasting well into adolescence).

Assemble some crumpets and muffins, toast them gently in the kitchen then finish them off on a toasting fork in the fire. Spread liberally with butter and Marmite, snarling warnings to the children about the dire consequences of getting either on the designer cushions. Add several cups of tea and some leftover

Chocolate Cake with Vanilla Buttercream Filling and Chocolate Buttercream Icing

Chocolate cake with vanilla buttercream filling and chocolate buttercream icing
Before decoration

Chocolate cake with vanilla buttercream filling and chocolate buttercream icing decorated with chocolate buttons and a candle
After decoration by 8 year olds

300g caster sugar
300g softened butter
6 eggs
225g self raising flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
75g cocoa powder, sieved

Vanilla buttercream filling:
250g icing sugar
80g softened butter
25ml milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla essence

Chocolate buttercream icing:
125g icing sugar
60g softened butter
25g cocoa powder mixed with a little boiling water

Heat oven to 170/gas 4. Grease and line 2 x 20cm tins. Cream butter and sugar together and beat in the eggs one by one.  Fold in the flour, baking powder and cocoa powder, divide between tins and bake for about 30-40 minutes until the sponge has risen and a cocktail stick comes out clean. Cool in the tin for 10 minutes before turning out onto a cooling rack.

To make the icings, mix together the ingredients in a food mixer or using an electric whisk. Start very slowly and keep on going until light and fluffy.

I used Chocolate Buttons to decorate. The giant ones would have been better, and brown and white chocolate fingers are good to stick around the outside of the cake. Or you could go really retro and use a cake frill. Yes, you can still buy them!

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