Monday, 1 August 2016

Earl Grey and Cassis Cake

It was my friend Cat’s birthday and I think she’ll agree that she’s a very lucky birthday girl - cake-wise at least. She got 3 cakes, 2 of which were from me! I had planned an earl grey and black currant/cassis cake, when her sister asked me to re-make a the cake from last year. So the first cake she got was this pared-down version of last year’s banana nut crunch cake.

As I was making her second cake, I was reflecting on how long we’ve been friends - a long time. How long? Since the days when she worked at Blockbuster! Do you remember Blockbuster? Ahh, those were the days.

Anyway, do you know Ribena? It’s a black currant drink concentrate and it’s something that I’ve been wanting to incorporate into a cake for a while. So I tried out a black currant (aka cassis) curd.

Check out the verdict at the end of the post!

Earl Grey Cake Layers
I used the recipe by Tessa Huff and baked in 3, 6-inch cake pans for 35 min.

Cassis Curd (Make ahead of time)
½ cup Ribena
3 eggs
6 Tablespoon butter

  1. Combine Ribena and eggs in a small sauce pan. Put on low heat and whisk continuously until thick.
  2. Place butter in a bowl and strain the curd with a fine sieve over top. Stir to combine.
  3. Cool completely before using.

Toasted Meringue Decor
4 teaspoons of meringue powder
4 Tablespoons of Ribena (or water)

  1. Combine meringue powder and liquid and whip with a hand held blender until thick and stiff.
  2. When ready to decorate, spoon onto cake and make peaks with a spoon. Toast with a kitchen torch.

Tea Syrup
See directions here and cut amount in half.

Early Grey Swiss Meringue Buttercream
See directions in this earlier post.  
Colour ¼ cup buttercream purple using gel food colouring. Colour the remaining buttercream blue.

  1. Place first cake layer on your cake board or plate. Brush tea syrup on top.
  2. Pipe a dam around the perimeter of the cake using the blue buttercream.
  3. Spread the cassis curd inside. Place next layer and repeat. Finish with final cake layer.
  4. Crumb coat the cake with blue buttercream. Freeze for 10 minutes.
  5. Add final buttercream coat. Smear purple buttercream around the cake and use a bench scraper to smooth it out and blend.
  6. Add meringue and toast with a kitchen torch.

Verdict: Overall, this cake was really tasty. It has moist cake layers and visually, it was eye-catching. I just wish that the cassis flavour cake through more - it was a tad egg-y in flavour. In the future, I would just stick with black currant jam. I think Ribena could work well in a frosting.