This is a wonderful cake suitable for all sorts of occasions – birthdays, Valentine’s, Mother’s Day, anniversary’s etc. I made this cake for the first time for my friend Lesley’s birthday and it was such a success that I have made it many times since and each time I give it a different look. This cake was for an 65th Birthday surprise.
Below are the instructions you need to make this cake including my 10 minute video clip ‘How to make fondant frangipanis’ using an individual frangipani petal cutter and a step by step guide to making frangipanis using a one piece rose cutter. Decide which method you prefer and have a go.
List of Materials
- Ingredients for Dark Chocolate Mud Cake
- 100g dark chocolate
- 10g coffee granules
- 70ml water
- 55g SR flour
- 55g plain flour
- 20g cocoa powder
- 0.25 tsp bicarb
- 210g caster sugar
- 2 eggs
- 3 tsp oil
- 45ml buttermilk
- 520g dark chocolate
- 260ml pure cream
- 700g rolled fondant
- 2 tsp Cellogen (if using CMC, Tylose powder or Gum Trag use only 1 to 1.5tsp)
- 1/3 tsp raw egg white
- 2 tsp Cream of Tartar
- a small amount of Crisco or shortening
- EDIBLE GLUE
- 1 tsp Tylose powder
- 500g (17oz) pink sugar-paste (rolled fondant)
- 30g (1oz) bag of chocolate buttons or Freckles
- 227g (1/2lb) box milk chocolates
- 6″ round thin cardboard for lid
- Individual frangipani petal cutter or a one piece 5 petal rose cutter
- Petal dust in yellow
1. To make the Dark Chocolate Mud Cake
Preheat the oven to 160C. Grease the tin and line the base and sides with a collar that extends 2 cm above the top of the tin.
Put the butter, chocolate, coffee and water in a saucepan and stir over low heat until melted, then remove from the heat.
Sift the flours, cocoa and bicarbonate of soda into a large bowl. Stir in the sugar and make a well in the centre. Add the combined egg, oil and buttermilk and the chocolate mixture, stirring with a large spoon until completely combined.
Pour the mixture into the tin and bake for 2 hours (for 11’5″cake) or until a skewer poked into the centre of the cake comes out clean, though it may be a little sticky. Leave the cake in the tin until cold.
2. To make and apply the ganache
Heat the cream until it just starts to bubble, pour over chocolate (which you have blitzed in the food processor to coffee granules size) and let it sit for about a minute to melt. Use a hand whisk to blend it all together then set aside to cool.
Your ganache at this point will be thin. You will have to let it set overnight until it thickens to a slightly thicker peanut butter consistency. Since I don’t have the patience to wait, I just let it cool to room temperature and then pop it in the fridge (don’t cover because you might get condensation). It would usually set in the fridge in about an hour or two. If it sets too hard, just microwave it in 10 second intervals (keep mixing it whenever you take it out).
3. To decorate the cake
Measure the height of the cake.
Roll out 200g of the pink sugar-paste so that you can cut a strip about 46cm (18in) long and 1cm (0.5in) wider than the depth of your cake.
Brush the sides of the cake with a little water.
Roll the sugar-paste up like a bandage, making sure it is not too tight and then unwind it around the side of the cake.
Paint a light line of water around the inside edge of the chocolate box and neatly press the chocolate buttons into the ganache. My buttons were big so I cut each one in half first.
Arrange chocolates on top of the box. Stick one of the chocolates on top of the others as this will help secure the lid at an angle later on.
Moisten the top and sides of your thin cake board with a little water, roll out and cover with 100g (30z) of pink sugar-paste. Trim and neaten edges.
Use 200g (7oz) pink sugar-paste to cover your base cake board (moisten with a little water first), if you are using one. Cut out a long strip of sugar-paste and roll up as if a bandage and unroll to cover around the board
To make the Flower-paste
Flower-paste (also called modelling paste)
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Serves: Makes around 500 grams of paste
Use a little Crisco on your work surface and knead up your fondant so its nice and soft.
Sprinkle the Cellogen, or alternative, over the work surface and knead it into the fondant.
Make a well in the mix and pour in the egg white, knead until mixed through, it may feel a little sticky, add more Crisco to the surface if you need to.
Sprinkle the Cream of Tartar on the work surface and knead into the mix until all incorporated.
Wrap the paste in cling wrap tightly, a few times and place in an air tight container, leave for at least 12 hours before use.
You don’t need to refrigerate it, and it will last for months.
I cut mine up into four pieces, and generally freeze it. It defrosts with the heat of your hands in minutes.
nb.This flower paste is white in the picture as it is for a different cake. Sorry!
To make the frangipanis, first soften the sugar-paste.
Roll out nice and thin.
Using your 5 petal cutter. Press down hard.
Use the balling tool or something similar to push out the flower-paste shape
Stick the petals together one at a time using edible glue.
Carefully paint glue along the last petal edge.
Join together and make sure all the petals are evenly spaced.
Turn upside down and check that there are no gaps
Curve the petals a little and squeeze the stem together to firm everything up.
Place in an egg carton overnight to harden.
Glue the flowers around the base of the cake using edible glue.
To make the glue mix the Tylose powder with approximately 4 tblsp water. Any lumps will disappear if you put the mixture in the fridge overnight.
I arranged the flowers in pairs as it made a more interesting arrangement.
Arrange a few of the flowers together for the top of the lid. As the flowers were hard, I pushed them into a piece of the left over flower-paste which was still soft as I had wrapped it in cling film overnight.
Stick the lid to the chocolates using a blob of ganache.