Food Thoughts has been working with Great British Chefs, the team of top chefs and food bloggers behind the fastest growing food website in the UK. This recipe has been created by Angela Field who develops recipes for her blog Patisserie Makes Perfect and indulges in her passion for photography. As the name would suggest, she has a keen interest in patisserie and strives to use the best possible ingredients and classical techniques throughout her work.
This stunning Blackberry and Marshmallow cake recipe is a true showstopper. Multi-layered, iced to perfection and perfectly piped with rosettes of marshmallow, this is the ideal bake for a special occasion. Everybody needs a great chocolate cake in their repertoire. It’s one of the classics and this iconic cake comes in many forms. The sachertorte, Devil’s food cake, gooey brownies, chocolate fondant and the black forest gâteau – the varieties are limitless. These cakes are embedded in the fabric of our lives, from a much needed mid-morning pick-me-up with a cup of coffee, a celebration cake, a well-earned treat or an indulgent way to end a meal.
There’s a chocolate cake for all of life’s occasions, and the secret to creating a rich chocolate layer cake is good cocoa powder. Unlike adding chocolate to your cake, cocoa powder will keep the finished sponge light, make it intensely chocolatey and give it a rich dark colour without affecting the texture of the sponge. I recommend using a good quality 100% cocoa powder that is unsweetened. This will give a real chocolate hit in your baking. In this Blackberry and Marshmallow cake recipe the cocoa powder is combined with water before being added to the batter, which helps to keep the cake moist and to disperse the cocoa evenly. When blackberries are in season, use them fresh; they work so well with chocolate,. We have used a blackberry liqueur jam to sandwich the layers of cake together, and fresh blackberries to decorate the cake. To compliment these intense flavours and to add a touch of lightness to the cake it’s coated with marshmallow buttercream. The final touch and to make this cake really special, there’s a gravity-defying drippy chocolate glaze spilling over the sides.
You will need
- FOR THE CHOCOLATE CAKE
- 75g Food Thoughts OrganiC Cocoa Powder
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 120ml of boiling water
- 175g of unsalted butter, softened
- 150g of caster sugar
- 150g of soft dark brown sugar
- 4 eggs, beaten
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 2 3/4 tsp baking powder
- 280g of plain flour, sifted
- 180ml of whole milk
- FOR THE BLACKBERRY LIQUER JAM
- 300g of blackberry purée
- 120g of caster sugar
- 20g of pectin
- 3 tbsp of cassis, or other blackberry liqueur
- FOR THE MARSHMALLOW BUTTERCREAM
- 200g of marshmallow creme, such as Marshmallow Fluff
- 150g of unsalted butter, softened
- 300g of icing sugar, sifted
- 2 tbsp of whole milk
- FOR THE CHOCOLATE GLAZE
- 45g of unsalted butter
- 75g Food Thoughts Luxury Dark Chocolate Chips
- TO SERVE
- 100g Food Thoughts Luxury Dark Chocolate Chips (tempered)
- Blackberries, 1 punnet
- Gold leaf
To make the chocolate cake, preheat the oven to 170°C/gas mark 3.
Grease and line the bases of two 6 inch deep cake tins with baking parchment and set aside.
Place the cocoa powder, vanilla extract and boiling water in a bowl and whisk until completely combined. Set aside.
Add the softened butter and both types of sugar to the bowl of a stand mixer. Beat them together until pale and creamy. You may need to scrape the sides of the bowl down to make sure they are mixed evenly.
Add the eggs to the butter mixture a little at a time and beat between each addition so that the ingredients are combined. It may look a little gloopy, but that’s fine.
When all of the eggs have been added, scrape in the chocolate mixture and beat well to combine.
Add the salt, baking powder and a third of the flour to the mixing bowl. Beat to combine, scraping down the sides as necessary. When all of the flour has been mixed in, add another third of the flour and half of the milk. When fully mixed add the remaining flour and milk and combine.
Divide the mixture evenly between the two cake tins, smooth the tops so they are as even as possible and bake for 60 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean.
When cooked, leave the cakes to cool completely in their tins, then turn them onto a wire rack, removing the greaseproof paper from the bottom.
To make the blackberry jam combine 60g of the sugar and the blackberry purée in a saucepan and heat gently until all of the sugar has dissolved.
In a small bowl, mix the remaining 60g of sugar and pectin together and add to the saucepan. Stir to mix it in evenly and cook the mixture until it reaches 104°C. Add the liqueur, cook for a couple more minutes then place in a sterilised jar and leave to cool until you add the lid. This makes more jam than you need, so you’ll have some leftover for breakfast.
To make the buttercream, combine the butter and icing sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer and beat them together at a low speed. When the butter and icing sugar are blended together, add the milk and beat further. Finally, add the marshmallow fluff and beat until fully combined.
Take the cooled cakes and trim the tops to make them flat. Cut each cake in half so you have four layers of cake. Place a blob of buttercream on a plate or cake stand to secure the sponge and put the first layer of cake on top of it. Pipe a ring of buttercream around the edge of the cake and spread an even layer of jam inside the ring.
Place the other piece of cake on top, pipe a ring of buttercream around the edge of the cake and spread a layer of jam inside the ring. Add the top layer of the other cake as the third layer and pipe a ring of buttercream and fill it with jam. The final layer should be the bottom layer of the final cake – ensure the bottom of the cake is now the top so that the flat side is facing upwards.
Spread a thin layer of buttercream on the outside of the cake and the top, you will still be able to see the cake through the buttercream. This crumb coat is just to make icing the cake easier. Place the cake in the fridge for 45 minutes to firm up.
When the icing is firm, spread the rest of the icing over the cake, reserving a little so that you can pipe blobs on top of the cake.
Return the cake to the fridge and make the glaze by adding the butter and chocolate to a saucepan and heating gently until they both melt and mix together.
Allow the glaze to cool to room temperature, then using a spoon trickle the glaze over the edge of the cake so it drips down and then pour the remainder of the glaze over the top of the cake so that the top is covered.
To make the chocolate decorations, prepare your tempered chocolate and spread onto strips of food grade acetate. Drag a cake comb along the strip to create lines of chocolate.
While the chocolate is still wet, curve the acetate into a cylinder and place in a mug or other cylindrical object while it dries. Once dry, peel off the acetate and loosen the rings.
Take the remaining buttercream and place it in a piping bag fitted with a French tip. Pipe a ring of blobs around the edge of the cake fill in the ring with blackberries and decorate with gold leaf and tempered chocolate curls.
The cake can be stored at room temperature, but if it’s quite warm then it should be stored in the fridge as the marshmallow buttercream can melt a little.