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Friday, 19 March 2021

Vegan Chocolate Ombre Cake

This recipe is in collab with Kenwood.

In this post, I'm going to share with you how to make THE BEST Vegan Chocolate Ombré cake!

I am so excited to share my new creation, the classic Chocolate Ombré cake. Layers of moist vegan chocolate cake with silky smooth meringue buttercream, topped with some chocolate sprinkles. A show stopper for any special occasion.

Ombré is the gradual blending of a colour to another, usually transitioning from light to dark. An ombre cake is usually a colourful cake comprising of sponge, buttercream, or both, graduating through a colour.

This chocolate ombre cake is absolutely stunning! I love the tones and shades this cake has. It's a real eye-catcher!

Why I love this cake:
  • The sponges are rich and flavourful
  • The buttercream silky smooth with a delicious chocolate flavour
  • There's melted chocolate in the buttercream (insert drool noises- haha)
  • The cakes are moist
  • It's easy to make yet effective


To help me make this cake, I used the Kenwood Titanium Chef Pattiser Chef XL.
This is a paid post with Kenwood. For more information about product placement and partnerships, check out my Disclosure Policy.

When I opened this brand-new stand mixer and plugged it in, I couldn’t believe my eyes. It has a real wow factor!
Not only does it have an extremely sleek design, it also lights up, illuminating the bowl! How amazing is that!? I've never seen this feature in a stand mixer before. I love it!

The BakeAssist 2.4-inch touch screen offers a variety of functions which is super easy to navigate. It includes dough proving, melting chocolate, kneading dough, mixing a cake, egg-white whisking/whipping aquafaba and swiss meringue. Also, you can alter the touch screen background colour to fit in with your kitchen, mood or food photography. 


For this cake, I made a chocolate meringue buttercream. I used the 'melting chocolate' feature which literally melts your chocolate in the stand mixer, meaning there is no need for a saucepan (bain-marie) which is phenomenal! I also used the 'egg white whisking'' setting in order to create the best light and whipping meringue buttercream.

As a baker, I very often melt chocolate on the hob or in the microwave, but imagine your stand mixer having a heating element that could do it for you, and a mixer that can prove dough to make perfect bread or doughnuts. Well, this Kenwood Patissier can do just that and more. Rather than using separate scales, it has built-in scales so you can weigh your ingredients directly into the bowl. There's an easy release button so no more having to lift the head when you need to add more ingredients. It comes with two bowls that nestle into one another for easy storage. The large bowl is a massive 7 litres and the smaller, which is still large is 5 litres. 
My machine came with 4 bowl tools; a stainless steel K beater used for cakes, biscuits and pastry, a balloon whisk (my favourite and most used kitchen tool) a spiral dough tool and a cream beater which I can’t wait to try out. 

You can get over 25 optional attachments which include things like a spiralizer, food grinder, pasta maker, food processor and juicer for example. This is truly a professional product that will adorn any kitchen and help to make any novice baker into an expert baker. 

It's available in Dark Grey (which is seen in the photos). Gorgeous isn't it?! 


This machine is more than a mixer, but an amazing piece of equipment which is innovative, unrivalled functionality and is perfect for ALL baking needs.


Looking for more chocolate recipes? Look no further:


Notes*
What is Aquafaba:
Aquafaba is the water from a can/tin of Chickpeas. The Chickpea water or brine as it's called, acts as an amazing egg substitute for cakes, cupcakes and this delicious meringue buttercream. You can also get aquafaba in a carton for easy use. Check it out here.

Preparation: 1 hour
Baking time: 25-30 minutes
Serves: 12
Level: Medium
____________________________________________________________


Ingredients for the cake
  • 480ml of dairy-free milk
  • 2 teaspoons of apple cider vinegar
  • 420g of self-raising flour
  • 450g of caster sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda
  • 120ml of sunflower oil
  • 35g of cocoa powder (see cake steps for details)

Ingredients for the swiss meringue buttercream
  • 370g aquafaba (chickpea brine) see notes*
  • 1 + 1/2 teaspoon of cream of tartar
  • 380g of caster sugar
  • 140ml water
  • 400g of dairy-free butter (I use Flora Plant-Based Block Butter)
  • 150g of dairy-free chocolate (for the ombré effect)
+
____________________________________________________________

Method (cakes)
1. Preheat your oven to 180 degrees c fan, and line four, 8-inch cake tins with greaseproof paper.

2. In a small 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'.

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

4. Add the oil to the 'buttermilk' and whisk to combine.

5. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix until a smooth batter.

6. Separate the batter equally into 4 separate bowls.
1st bowl: Add in 20g of cocoa powder
2nd bowl: 10g of cocoa powder
3rd bowl: 5g of cocoa powder
4th bowl: Leave plain
This creates your ombré effect. 

7. Pour the batter into the lined cake tins.
Make sure to tap the tins on the worktop to remove any air bubbles.

8. Pop the cakes into the preheated oven and bake for 25-30 minutes.
Check them after 25 minutes.
You will know they are done when you put a knife or skewer down the centre of the cakes and it comes out clean and they are springy to the touch.

9. Place the cakes onto a cooling rack and allow to cool fully before frosting.

Buttercream (method)
1. Place the chocolate into the Kenwood heatproof bowl and set the bowl on to the Kenwood mixer. Set to the 'melting chocolate' setting and melt on heat 7 for approximately 5 minutes until smooth and fully melted. Set aside to cool while you prepare the buttercream.

2. Place the chickpea brine (aquafaba) into a small saucepan and place onto the hob, over medium heat. Allow to reduce to 200g of the original mixture. You will need to weigh the aquafaba to check you have the correct weight. You want 200g of reduced aquafaba. Once ready, remove from the heat and set aside to cool.

3. Add the sugar and all the water into a small saucepan, place onto the hob over medium heat and allow it to simmer/boil. You want the mixture to ready 116°C (240°F). This will take around 10 minutes. If you don't have a thermometer, you want to make sure the mixture is seethrough and is bubbling. 

4. In the meantime, pour the reduced aquafaba into the Kenwood bowl and add in the cream of tartar. Whisk on the 'egg white setting' on high speed for 5-8 minutes until soft peaks form. 

5. When the sugar syrup has reached its temperature, reduce the speed of the mixer and slowly drizzle it into the bowl and whip until is incorporated. You'll want to whisk the aquafaba mixture until the sugar syrup has cooled down.

6. Add in the dairy-free butter, little chunks at a time until it's all in the bowl.
Once all the butter has been added the mixture be thick like buttercream, continue to whisk on medium speed for few minutes.

8. Divide the meringue equally into three separate bowls. Divide the melted chocolate between the bowls.
1st bowl: Add 3/4 of the melted chocolate.
2nd bowl: Add 1/4 of the melted chocolate.
3rd bowl: Leave plain white.

You should have three shades of brown, light to dark.

9. Place the darkest chocolate sponge on a turntable, and using the darkest buttercream, s
pread a little bit of it over the top then place the second darkest cake on top and use the lighter chocolate butter on top of that one. Continue stacking and filling the cakes with their corresponding colours.
Crumb coat the whole cake with any of the buttercream colours and place into the fridge for 30 minutes. Chilling the crumb coat makes it easier for adding the final layer of buttercream on the cake.

10. Spread the buttercream with a pallet knife or offset spatula evenly around the cake, going from the dark buttercream at the bottom ending with the white on top. Use a cake scraper or pallet knife to smooth the buttercreams together. This will create a gradient effect. 

11. Add any leftover buttercream into a piping bag fitted with a star tip nozzle and pipe swirls around the top edge of the cake and finish with a sprinkling of vegan chocolate sprinkles.












Serve fresh, or store in a sealed container in the fridge. Allow to come to room temperature before serving.
This buttercream will set at room temperature. 



Check out the new Titanium Chef Patissier XL here
This is a paid collaboration with Kenwood.
 A huge thank you to Kenwood for collabing on this recipe with me!

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