My brother-in-law’s parents are in the process of moving. As they were going through the possessions they had in storage, they found a pair of heirloom cake stands. They thought of me and figured I would get the most use out of them, which is incredibly generous and thoughtful of them. The gold-leaf cake stands used to belong to Shivka, my brother-in-law’s Russian great-grandmother. She brought them over from Europe as she sailed to Canada. The porcelain plates and silverware I’ve been photographing along with my baked goods for the blog used to belong to my paternal grand-parents. I’ve also picked up a few accessories from second hand shops and the dollar store along the way. I’ve been searching for vintage-style cake stands for a while but only came across a wooden one (which is beautiful…but keeps needing to be oiled to mask the woody smell), so I was pretty excited about this gorgeous gift. Thank you Ben & Ginette!
This Guinness chocolate cake with cream cheese frosting is another one of Nigella’s hits. The stout adds depth to the dark cake, and the sugar balances out the bitterness. Nigella pours cream into the frosting, which subdues the tangy cream cheese flavour. The frosting is whipped til a frothy texture is achieved. This dessert is meant to resemble a pint of Guinness, with its black base and pale head that sits on top. Suggestion: add a few tablespoons of Baileys to the cream cheese frosting for St Patty’s Day celebrations.
Recipe Source: Feast by Nigella Lawson
Yields 12 slices
1 cup Guinness
250 grams unsalted butter
75 grams (3/4 cup) cocoa powder
400 grams (2 cups) superfine sugar
3/4 cup sour cream
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
275 grams (2 cups) all-purpose flour
2 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
300 grams cream cheese
150 grams (1 1/4 cups) confectioners’ sugar
1/2 cup whipping cream
1) Preheat the oven to 350F.
2) Butter a 9-inch round springform pan and line it with parchment paper.
3) Pour the Guinness into a large, wide saucepan. Add the butter. Heat until the butter has melted.
4) Whisk in the cocoa powder and sugar.
5) Mix the sour cream, eggs and vanilla together in a small bowl.
6) Pour the egg mixture into the Guinness mixture.
7) Whisk in the flour and baking soda.
8) Pour the batter into the prepared pan.
9) Bake for 45 to 60 minutes.
10) Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let cool completely before removing the cake from the pan.
1) In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk, whip the cream cheese until smooth.
2) Place a sieve over the bowl and add the confectioners’ sugar. Whip until incorporated.
3) Pour in the cream and whip until the frosting reaches a spreadable consistency.
4) Spread the frosting on the top of the cake.