25 February 2016

Birthday Cake

My brother and I were born on the exact same date, 7 years apart. So a little bit like twins, we share a birthday. Every year. We have to share. And it's a good thing I am OK with sharing too because I love celebrating birthdays. With cake and tea parties and the like. 

My brother... he has a very special birthday this year. His 40th and that required a very special cake. But he's a guy with simple tastes. He likes buttercream and he likes raspberry jam. It's not much to go with really.. but I did what I could and this is what I came up. 

It was sort of my birthday cake too. So I guess the fussy outside speaks of me while the flavour combination speaks of my brother. See, that's me sharing. 


It's not actually that elaborate. Basically it's a dressed up vanilla and jam sponge. And considering you could buy most of the toppings ready made, it's really fools play. I however made all the decoration from scratch, but that's how I roll.  If you are any way decent at putting two layers of cake one on top of the other, sandwiched with buttercream and jam... then you will be able to do this.

It's not that difficult to do.

White Chocolate and Raspberry Birthday Cake

The Cake- Makes two 6 inch, deep pan cakes- for anything bigger i.e. 8 inch pans,  I suggest doubling  the recipe.

125g salted butter
225g caster sugar
275g self raising flour
3 large eggs 
125ml buttermilk
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp of vanilla extract

Line two 6 inch cake tins with parchment and leave to one side. Preheat your oven to 350F, 180C or Gas mark 4. 

In a bowl cream your butter and sugar until light and fluffy and pale.
Add in an egg, one at a time until the yolk has disappeared. Then add the next, scraping down the sides of your bowl.  
Dry whisk or sieve your flour and baking powder together.
Add the vanilla to the egg/sugar/butter combination.
Add half your dry ingredients to the butter/sugar/egg/vanilla mix and then half the buttermilk. Mix until combined and repeat. Be careful not to over mix the batter here as you want the layers to stay light and fluffy. The buttermilk helps with that too. Just make sure all the ingredients have been mixed together.
Fill your cake tins to about half full, each, and bake in a preheated oven on the middle shelf.
Bake for 20 to 25 minutes. You'll know when they are done as the tops are golden, have a slight spring when you gently push down on the top or a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clear. Allow to cool in the tins for about 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire tray and allow to cool fully before filling with jam and cream. 

The White Chocolate Dripping

100ml of double cream
200g white chocolate

Break up the white chocolate and pop it into a heat resistant bowl. Heat the double cream in a small pot until just before boiling, pour over the white chocolate. Cover the bowl over with a plate and allow a few minutes for the chocolate to melt.

Stir until the chocolate and cream are fully mixed and set aside to thicken.

The White Chocolate Buttercream 

225g soft, room temperature, unsalted butter
500g sifted icing sugar
up to 60ml of the white chocolate ganche you made for the dripping.. about 4 good tablespoons

Using an electric mixer, beat the butter on high until it is very soft and pale. (TIP: pop the butter in the microwave for a few seconds until very soft.)
Add in the icing sugar a few teacups at a time.
Add a tablespoon of the ganache in until the desired texture has been reached, you might not need all of it. 
Mix the holy moly out of it until light and fluffy. The faster and longer you mix this, the lighter and fluffier it will be.

Putting it all together...

Once the cake is cool add the first layer, top side down. The underneath part is flattest. Fill with a layer of buttercream and your jam filling. Here, I picked a raspberry conserve. Add the next cake layer, again top side down. Fill in any gaps and smooth out your buttercream. Pop the cake in the fridge for a few moments, to harden the buttercream and make the cake more stable to work with.

Remove the cake from the fridge and add the buttercream to the top and sides and smooth out. I have left this semi-naked because a) I'm a tad lazy and b) that's how I like cakes to look. Using a teaspoon, spoon the chocolate right at the edge of the cake to create the drips, then fill in the middle for the top coating. Add your decorations....

  • For the donuts you need look no further than HERE and the macarons look HERE... But look, honestly those can also be bought in supermarkets so if you are new to baking, pick your battles. Make the cake from scratch, buy the decorations. 

Honestly no need to be killing yourself. NO ONE is going to judge you if you roll up a  party with a cake looking like this.. and if they do! PPPffftttt... Turn your back and walk away. You got no time for that! You don't need that kind of negativity in your life. And those folk don't deserve your cake.


  1. I wish it was my birthday today too!!! This is such a fun-lovin' cake Hazel! I love all the creativity with it ... who would have thought to decorate the cake with donuts?! Truly wonderful, and I'll bet it tastes amazing! What a special arrangement you have with your brother to share his birthday/he shares yours ... whatever. It must have been kind of fun and annoying at the same time when you were kids ;) My sister's birthday is one week from mine, and in the spirit of economy my mother would often combine the birthdays too.
    Happy Birthday Sweet Hazel!! and Happy 40th to your big brother!!!
    Wendy xox

    1. Thank you Wendy.. I always had to share a birthday growing up so I guess I am used to it by now! It's nice to get my own spin on things though... that'll never change! Hazel x

  2. That is such a fun cake. I hope you had a wonderful birthday.

    1. Thank you Gina! The cake didn't last long, so I guess it was wonderful!

  3. Wow what a fantastic cake! happy birthday to you and your brother. My son and his cousin share the same date but a year apart and my cousins in canada both have the same day as each other but again a year or two apart. I love it when that sort of thing happens. x

    1. Yup, it is fun! In my family, we have two born on the 6th, but different months, two born on the 18th, again different months and then my brother and I on the 24th- we got it right on the month though!! I love it! Easy to remember dates too! Hazel x

  4. Wow that is a stunning cake! I love how you've even got perfectly piped macaron filling, amazing attention to detail!

    1. Thanks Kim! I appreciate that lovely compliment!


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