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I have never made a cake before. I need a chocolate cake for this weekend. Help meeeeee!

(18 Posts)
SkodaLabia Wed 17-Jun-15 13:22:29

I want to make a chocolate sponge cake that I can decorate all over with blobs with a piping bag. Reckon that'll be easier than trying to do sheet icing.

Any tips or tricks? It needs to be big, to feed 20 kids plus about 5 adults.

What is the stuff called that goes in the middle? Buttercream?

What is that stuff that you pipe on the outside? Is that buttercream again?

I'm staunchly optimistic. grin

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Wed 17-Jun-15 13:32:20

You'd be better off imo making cup cakes for that many people.

The recipe I use for 12 big cup cakes is -

1 cup of sugar
1 cup of butter or baking marg
4 eggs
1 cup of plain flour
2 tsp baking powder
2 oz cocoa powder

Bit of a mishmash of weights there but that's how I do it!

Cream marg and sugar, add eggs, add flour, bp and cocoa.

On the other hand, if you want a fail safe recipe that you KNOW will come out perfectly, go to tesco and buy 2 boxes of Betty Crockers Devils food mix. Each box will make 12 big cup cakes. Cheating but you can experiment with 'proper' baking when you are less stressed and can play around a bit with recipes.

I bake a lot but did Betty Crocker once and you should've heard the compliments I had !grin

You can also buy a tub of icing, it'll be next to the cake mix.

FinallyHere Wed 17-Jun-15 14:00:43

Id encourage you to do cupcakes, too. My recipe is very old fashioned but i know it can be relied upon.

5oz self raising flour
2oz proper cocoa powder, not drinking chocolate
5oz caster sugar
5oz butter (at room temperature, out of fridge til its very soft)
Bag of cocoa nibs or a bar of chocolate smashed up, hold some back for decoration
3 eggs
A dash of milk incase the mixture is all a bit stiff

Idealły, enough baking tins with small indentations , one each to hold papers, a plain baking sheet will be fine. Set out the papers before you start, you wont have time once the mixture is ready.
This makes about 12 large cupcakes or about 24 mini ones. Minis good, if there any plenty so people can have more.

Set out a teaspoon to dollop mixture into papers before you get going. Once the wet ingredients touch the dry ingredients, the baking powder starts to work so you need to get them i to the papers and i to the oven pretty sharpish.

I get really hot with the oven on, so its good to change into cool clothes before i start, may just be my age.

Set oven to gas mark 5/6

Creme butter and sugar, add eggs one at a time and beat to throughly incorporate each egg before adding the next one. When all in, add the chocolate bits then use the teaspoon to dollop a spoonful of mixture into each case, to about half full, much easier to manage if the mixture doesnt run over as they rise.

Cook in middle of oven for at least 20 mins, then start to check them. At first, they will be 'singing' making a noise that i can't describe but you will recognise the singing when you hear it. Keep checking every three minutes til the singing has all bit died away, set of timer of you will, like me, forget and they will burn. Sad face.

Take em out and leave to cool while you make the next batch. Dont try to make more than one batch at a time, its too much to get into the oven fast. Wash up as you go along, esp while they are baking so dishes are clean ready for next go. You can creme butter and sugar and add eggs, just don't add the dry ingredients til you are ready to put em in the oven.

Leave til cool to touch, but they are delicious hot from the oven.

Brilliant icing, for two batches, creme 200g philadelphia creme cheese and 100g butter and incorporate as much icing sugar as you can, id usually go for 250g icing sugar. Makes lovely icing.

To decorate spread the icing over each cupcake, add a nib or tiny chunk of chocolate to the top of each and carefully sprinkle cocoa powder out of a tiny sieve, or a pinch between your fingers on to each cupcake. The contrasts of brown and creme look lovely.

If you had the energy, when baking the cupcakes, you could omit the cocoa powder from the first batch, replace with extra 2 oz of self raising flour. This gives you half chocolate and vanilla cakes. Ice the chocolate cakes with the icing mixture, then add as much cocoa as fits into the rest of the icing sugar, and use the chocolate icing sugar to ice the vanilla cakes. Still use the tiny chunk of chocolate to decorate, but dust with icing sugar.

The contrasts look lovely. Sigh, enjoy.

Oh, and , another time, cook a batch of plain no cocoa cakes and add a handful of dried fruit and a teaspoon of mixed spice. These really are best straight from the oven, no icing required, just the thing to lift the spirits on a cold, drizzly autumn or winters day.

The variations are endless, lemon juice and icing sugar mixed together, pour over the plain cakes and decorated with white icing and a few strands of lemon peel for lemon drizzle.

Hungry now. hope it goes well. xx

MarvellousCake Wed 17-Jun-15 14:06:10

Easy (and v impressive) chocolate cake:

SkodaLabia Wed 17-Jun-15 14:55:42

Ooh, that BBC food one looks nice! Is there a rule of thumb for quantities when it comes to a cake, eg what size cake tins feed how many people?

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Wed 17-Jun-15 15:02:13

You won't be able to make a traditional sponge big enough to feed the number of people you want to unless you make it a tray bake.

JinglyJanglyJungleBigGameTours Wed 17-Jun-15 15:03:05

I think you might struggle to cut a 8" cake into 20+ slices but maybe I'm just greedy! grin

What size of cake tins do you have or will you have to buy some anyway? It might be easier to make the cake in a large baking tray if you don't already have a cake tin, and it would be easier to cut too, though obviously more surface to ice.

An easy way to cheat with the decoration if it all goes wrong is to stick chocolate fingers around the edge and then grate chocolate on top, it hides many mistakes!

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Wed 17-Jun-15 15:03:26

That cake looks fab!

JoandMax Wed 17-Jun-15 15:06:37

I would go for a Mary Berry recipe - I always use hers and cakes always turn out brilliantly!

I would do a big cake and also some cupcakes with same recipe to make sure you have enough

plantsitter Wed 17-Jun-15 15:09:36

If you have a food processor this Nigella one is extremely easy and utterly delicious.

Sizzlesthedog Wed 17-Jun-15 15:14:18

Sainsburys do a brilliant kit for a traybake choc sponge. It has butter icing and choc sprinkes and buttons.

You need 2 eggs, but otherwise it's all there. Serves 18.

I've had several compliments about this cake.

It even comes with a paper tray to bake it in so no washing up.

chocolateyay Wed 17-Jun-15 15:16:54

This is all you need to know. It never fails! I use fresh strawbs in the centre

howtodrainyourflagon Wed 17-Jun-15 15:26:58

Use Betty Crocker mix if you're not confident. I bake quite a lot from scratch but often use Betty Crocker for big occasion cakes when I don't have time to get things wrong.

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Wed 17-Jun-15 15:47:34

Howto- I had someone email me and ask me for the recipeshock

sliceofsoup Wed 17-Jun-15 15:56:36

Make that, it doesn't need buttercream in the middle. It is a rich choc fudge cake, and I get requests for it all the time. When slicing, don't slice in triangles. Slice across. Should be enough as you only need a small piece. But if you think it isn't, do a batch of cupcakes as well.

JinglyJanglyJungleBigGameTours Thu 18-Jun-15 08:14:17

Ha! Dame What did you tell them? grin

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Thu 18-Jun-15 11:22:03

I said I'd dig out the recipe sometime.......wink

JinglyJanglyJungleBigGameTours Thu 18-Jun-15 14:40:32


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