This recipe has been waiting to pop up on here for a few months. For a while, I thought it was destined to stay that way until I realised it was coming into Autumn. Soon I would lose out on posting it due to seasonality and it almost not ‘fitting in.’ Before we are engulfed by all things beige, I’m sending you something with a hint of colour.
I love making my friends and family cakes for special occasions and this Raspberry & Lemon cake was made for my sisters 30th birthday. The elegant duo of lemon and raspberry is a classic and always goes down well. The sponge is tender, contrasting against the raspberry jam that punches through. All coated in a delicate, glossy swiss meringue buttercream which is both zesty and light.
It was a weekend of birthdays for me last week. My sisters 30th and my friends 31st. It meant it was also a weekend of cake. Since we are still in lockdown and I have all the time in the world for once, I decided to make them both birthday cakes.
I’m really missing the culture of coffee and cake; although this heatwave here in England makes me crave ice cream by the tub load. I miss sitting, chatting and relaxing over a slow coffee and sweet cake with a loved one. I don’t often make cakes like this is in my spare time. I prefer a humbler cake at home but the special people in your life deserve something wonderful.
That brings us to this lovely cake. Five layers of brown sugar sponge, dark pecan caramel and glossy light-as-air Biscoff swiss meringue buttercream. A dream. Surprisingly, this cake isn’t too sweet. I was worried it was all going to be a bit much together, but it’s helped by the light texture of the buttercream.
In these weird and unfamiliar times, I like to think that something as simple and small as a piece of cake can help. Even if it is just a little.
I really believe that you should make the most of your birthday. Whether you’re 1 or 101, it should be a real celebration. I no longer do these one day birthdays, I need to eek it out for as long as possible. Preferably spanning a week; book a holiday, plan meals, research the birthday cake you’re going to bake for yourself months in advance…
It’s a day to eat whatever the hell you want, wear whatever the hell you want and say whatever you want because its your birthday.
Besides, you’ll only turn 22 once. This day only comes once a year so why not milk it for all its worth? You’ve waited 365 days for this.
I hope you’ve caught on by now and have realised, it was MY birthday. My celebrations consisted of a takeaway in my pyjamas, a massage, meals, a trip to the cinema and a four-day adventure to Iceland (more about that soon.)
It was only a week ago and I miss this cake already. I miss Iceland already. I spent a really long time debating what kind of route I wanted to take. I was torn between a simple apple cake or a really indulgent five layered chocolate cake. After what felt like days and days on Pinterest, I finally settled on this Mocha inspired number.
By putting chocolate chunks into a coffee sponge, I didn’t need to decide between a chocolate sponge or a vanilla one. I got the best of both worlds. A mascarpone icing is a great alternative to butter icing as it keeps the sweetness down. Layering the sponge with rich, silky, chocolate ganache was a no brainer and just needed to happen.
A voila! A twenty-two year old coffee addicts dream birthday cake.