Here comes December when the weather gets crisp and chilly and now the snow is on its way for parts of the country with a cold snap taking hold!! It can be very dull and depressing as the days get very short and I spend most of our time laden with layers. This is the time when my oven is very busy as I get busy with Bakethon. This is my third year that I am particpating in Bakethon. Champa had started it . Earlier we baked for every day in December. However, this year I plan to do it twice a week. The reason being my other commitments both at work and home.
Last weekend, I baked a simple chocolate sponge, however decided to do a different frosting(kind of getting bored of buttercream and fondant icing). I loved the ganache I made for my son’s birthday in October. I thought of making it thicker by using extra thick double cream and whipping it.
To cut down the sweetness, I added in caramalised salted peanuts in caramel sauce made with extra thick cream. This coated my salted peanuts with toffee !! Loved it. This I sandwiched and topped in my sponge.
For the Ganache I used:
1 cup of extra thick double cream
2 cups of chocolate bar chopped
Mix the two ingredients in a saucepan and place on heat. Let the chocolate just melt in the warm double cream. Avoid the boiling of double cream. Once the chocolate melts, switch off the gas and whisk the mix with a whisk. This adds a shine to the ganache. Let this cool for couple of hours before using. Once set, whip till the the consistency changes to a frosting like thickness.
To make the caramalised salted peanuts:
I used the ready made salted peanuts half a cup
Sugar 1 cup
Water 1/3 cup
1 cup of extra thick double cream
1 tbsp of butter
Salted peanuts as many you like
Using sugar and water make the caramel read. When making the caramel, one needs to make sure that the sugar dissolves completely. Do not stir the sugar until a part melts. Once this stage is reached, just shake the pan gently to get the rest of the sugar into the dissolved part. In about 10 minutes, the mix gets a lovely golden colour. Switch off the gas. To this add the butter and stir. The mixture will splutter, so be careful. To this add in the cream and stir. Soon the consistency and colour will change. Add in the salted peanuts and mix. Pour the mix out on a greaseproof sheet and cool.
To make the sponge:
For this I am posting my normal sponge recipe. For a chocolate sponge I use 2 tablespoons of cocoa powder sieved in the flour mix.
Bake a normal base cake/any flavour you like using the measures:
Plain flour 220g
Castor Sugar 220g
Baking powder 1.5 tsp
Vanilla essence few drops
To decorate with ganache:
Sieve the flour with the raising agent and cocoa powder. Keep aside.
Cream the butter and sugar. Add the eggs, one at a time. Beat.
To this add the sieved flour spoonful at a time and fold.
To the finished mix add the essence.
Preheat oven at 180 degrees and bake the cake till done(My oven needs 40 mins to do the job)
When done, keep aside to cool for 20 mins. Normally the cake leaves the sides of the tin. If not, scrape the sides loose with a sharp knife and overturn. Let the cake cool completely. Slice the cake into two equal portions. Now decorate the cake as you wish.
Use the ganache to cover the first slice of the cake. Sprinkle in the caramalised peanuts. Place the second layer of the cake on this. Use the rest of the ganache to cover the cake top. Finish with caramalised peanuts as a topping.
You may visit Champa’s Versatile Vegetarian Kitchen to check all our bakes this month.