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Saturday, 12 October 2019

Spiced woodland cake recipe

Vegan!

3 layers of delicious and moist chocolate cake, with a spiced buttercream coating, chocolate ganache swirls, meringue toadstools, and cookie hedgehogs!
This woodland cake is the perfect autumnal treat!

Preparation- 10 minutes
Baking time- 28-30 minutes
Serves- Approximately 10-12
Level- Medium

...
Ingredients for the cake
-480ml of dairy-free milk 
 -2 teaspoons of apple cider vinegar
-420g of self-raising flour
-2 tablespoons of cocoa powder
-470g of golden caster sugar
-1 teaspoon of baking powder
-1 teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda
-120g of coconut oil (melted)

Ingredients for the butter-cream
 -210g of dairy-free butter
-500g of icing sugar
-1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
-1/2 teaspoon of ground nutmeg
-1/2 teaspoon of ground cinnamon
-1 teaspoon of allspice
-Dairy-free milk (if needed)

Extras
-Dark chocolate
...

To make the cakes
Step 1- Preheat your oven to 180 degrees c and line three 6 inch cake tins with grease-proof paper.

Step 2- In a bowl, combine the dairy-free milk with the apple cider vinegar and whisk until fully combined.
Set aside for 10 minutes to curdle. This creates a vegan 'buttermilk'.

Step 3- In a large mixing bowl, sift the flour, cocoa powder, sugar, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda. Mix well to combine.

Step 4- Add the melted coconut oil into the 'buttermilk' and whisk to combine. 

Step 5- Add the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix.

Step 6- Pour equal amounts of batter into the lined cake tins.
Make sure to tap the tins on the worktop to remove any air bubbles.

Step 7- Pop the cakes into the center of the preheated oven and bake for around 28-30 minutes. You will know they are baked when you put a knife or skewer in and it comes out clean and they are springy to the touch.

Step 8- Place the cakes on a cooling rack and allow to cool fully.
Once cool, pop them into a sealed container to keep them fresh before frosting.

To make the buttercream
Step 1- In a bowl/stand mixer, cream the butter on high then add in the icing sugar.

Step 2- Add in all of the spices and whip together until combined, light and fluffy.
Add a splash of dairy-free milk if too thick.

Step 3- Stack and fill the cakes, then crumb coat the whole cake with the buttercream and pop into the fridge to set. 
This will take around 1 hour.

Step 4- Add a final layer of buttercream to the cake, smoothing it out with a spatula or cake scraper.
I added texture by running a small spatula around the cake.

To decorate, I added chocolate ganache into a piping bag fitted with a medium french patisserie tip nozzle and piped some swirls around the top of the cake, added on a dusting of cocoa powder, some homemade meringue toadstools, and chocolate gratings.


Best eaten within a few days!
Serve fresh or store in a sealed container in the fridge, the buttercream will firm up at room temperature.
Best eaten within a few days!


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