• - Nini

What's a birthday without cake?


Hello again! Hope you all had a wonderful week and weekend! Oh and also Eid Mubarak for all those who celebrated last weekend (was meant to publish this post earlier in the week) but hope it was festive. Last week was a bit of a chaotic situation as there were so many events that I had to prepare for, that the majority of my week was finding recipes or ingredients. On the weekend I celebrated two birthdays the first being my father’s and the second being a family friend’s 60th! So besides being reminded that you’re a day older, nothing is better than having a birthday cake! Whoever started the tradition of having cake as the staple food for a birthday is genius. Ever since I was a toddler I've always been excited for my birthday, not just because of the presents, but also knowing that my mother would have made an amazing cake for me! That was, and still is, my highlight of the day! Luckily, I was in Nairobi for my birthday this year and mum made a delicious Salted Caramel Chocolate Cake. Ah..just thinking about it makes my mouth water. Don’t know how we came about it but recently in our household everyone in the family loves Salted Caramel, especially my father. He can eat salted caramel ice-cream for days on end. For the traditional birthday cake I thought that it would be nice to make him a Salted Caramel Cheesecake for his birthday, as he is in love with the flavour at the moment. We would have done the traditional birthday cake however the very next day mum and I had to work on making her friend’s 60th birthday cake.

So I found this recipe for Salted Caramel cheesecake online, particularly on Pinterest. Could honestly say, most pins that I have on my board relate to recipes I want to make. This recipe looked pretty easy to make had all the ingredients and looked extremely delicious so nothing could go wrong, right? Got this recipe from Jane’s Patisserie (http://www.janespatisserie.com/2015/11/09/no-bake-salted-caramel-cheesecake/ ) and followed the instructions to the T. When I am making something for the first time I re-read the recipe over and over again making sure I’m not missing anything out. Being that it was a no bake cheesecake I had to make it the night before and leave it in the fridge overnight. I had to wait and see the result until the very next day. So as we fast forward to Friday (Papa’s Birthday) the moment of truth comes, taking the cake rim off the cheesecake and to see if it stands. At this point I had a bit of doubt. My heart was BEATING, my eyes were widening, and my hands were in position where in case it flopped, I could hold it.

Then I became too nervous and had my mother help me because I want the cake to be perfect for him! My father deserves nothing but the best. Mum unclips the cake tin, she lifts it up slowly and I thought "OMG YES IT WORKED", starting to shake my hips for my victory dance and then BAM it flopped! Quickly in a panic we put the cake tin back on, and then contemplated what could have gone wrong! Re-reading the recipe, I realised that it didn’t have egg nor gelatine and in a cheesecake and looking at other recipes of cheesecake you do need one of the two ingredients to bind together the ingredients for the cake to stiffen, if your not baking it that is. Looking further along the page at her NOTE section, I found it quite peculiar. She indicates in this recipe that if it flops put it in the freezer, now why would she say that? Jane must have done this before and had to put in the freezer. Anyway with now having a flopped cheesecake the only thing I could do is put it in the freezer and then later have it has ice-cream salted caramel cheesecake. Which we did have after dinner and it tasted fantastic, a bit rich but still nonetheless great. Just wished it came out as a cheesecake.

Anyway during the day on Friday mum and I were preparing a birthday cake well cupcakes for her close friend’s 60th birthdday. Sixty years is a milestone and we wanted to show that milestone through cake. I had this idea after seeing a board on Pinterest (was surfing the internet quite some time at this point) where it stated: “You look 26, You feel 22, You act 12, that equals to 60”. So thought it would be a great idea that we make 3 variations of cupcakes that each relate to that age, and each cupcake will have a picture of him at that specific age. So mum and I decided we would do two alcoholic cupcakes and one non-alcoholic (to correspond to when he was ‘12”’). So overall we had made 26 whiskey, 22 G&T, and then 12 chocolate/strawberry cupcakes. With both the alcoholic cupcakes got the recipes through Pinterest and they were DIVINE!!! OH lord there was the right amount of alcohol in the cake as well as in the icing. We made the cakes on Friday and then woke up super early on Saturday morning to make the icing so that it was fresh.

Both the whiskey and the G&T were vanilla cupcakes but each had different variations of butter, sugar and of course alcohol. Easy to make, however with the measurement of ingredients for the cake we had to double the recipe in order to get either 22 or 26. However for the icing though we didn’t double the recipe because if we did double it we would have more icing than cake. I think it genuinely depends on how deep the cake tins are, to see how much icing you need. For the non-alcoholic one we decided to make a chocolate cake just to give change, plus who doesn’t like chocolate cake?

Unfortunately being that we were in such a rush wasn’t able to take photos on my camera but got a few shots on my phone of our creations. Below I shall put the links of the Whiskey and G&T cupcakes. With the whiskey it says to use Jack Daniels Honey Whisky but didn’t have that particular whiskey, used an ordinary Whiskey that was in the bar (completely forgot to check the name, so could not tell you what it was but it was whiskey). The chocolate cup cake recipe is a family recipe, which we consider it to be the never- fail chocolate cake, as its super easy and delicious. I think that has to do with the milk in the recipe. Check below if you want to make some amazing cupcakes!

Whiskey cupcakes recipe : HERE

G&T cupcakes recipe : HERE

Chocolate Cupcake (or even Cake) recipe:

Ingredients:

1 2/3 cup flour

1 1/2 cup sugar

1 1/4 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp salt

1/2 cup cocoa

100 g melted butter

1 cup milk

1 tsp of vanilla/ rum essence

3 eggs

METHOD for Cake:

1. Preheat the oven at 180ºC

2. Mix all dry ingredients together (flour, sugar, baking soda, salt, cocoa)

3. Then add butter, milk, essence and eggs. Beat until smooth.

4. Pour batter in cake tin or muffin tin and bake for 30-40 mins.

METHOD for ICING:

- Technically this is not an icing, our icing failed last minute. We puréed fresh strawberries, then placed them on top of the chocolate cup cake and then with a pipping bag placed the whipped cream around the purée of strawberries. Decorated with some melted dark chocolate and fresh strawberries

- 1 punnet of strawberries and I can say roughly 300ml of double cream.

For the music had to make a playlist for the party last Saturday, and it was a mixture of old dancing hits, groovy new tunes and well basically jams. Click HERE if your interested!

What's your favourite birthday cake? Any traditions you do on your birthday? Let me know in the comments box below!! Hope you have a good weekend!

#cupcakes #ginandtonic #whiskey #strawberry #cream #buttercreamicing #vanilla #chocolate #sweet #birthday #60

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