One of the Christmas gifts I received this year was quite a large box of Thornton's classic chocolates - yum! Except I can't eat some of them, so what better way to share the generosity shown to me by the giver than to share the bounty of these chocolates?! Chele set the challenge this month, and specified that the added ingredient in addition to chocolate was to be leftovers.
I really wanted to incorporate them into a cake of some kind, after all, cake making is what I enjoy the most and I had other ingredients that also needed to be used up. I considered making a compost cake type cake, or a type of fridge cake where the chocolates could become part of a larger whole, but then decided that I wanted my colleagues to be able to choose their favourite chocolate from the 'menu'. The cake I chose to make therefore needed to be delicious, but not the main event. I made a standard vanilla cake, topped it with vanilla buttercream and then added the chocolates.
200g softened butter
215g caster sugar
215g self raising flour
1 tsp baking powder
2tsp vanilla extract
For the buttercream
100g soft butter (I used 125g, which was too much)
about 200g icing sugar (possibly a little more)
1 tsp vanilla extract
- Preheat the oven to gas 4/180C. Grease and line a traybake tin, 8x12" (20x30cm).
- Place all the ingredients in the bowl of a food mixer and turn on. Mix until well combined.
- Spoon into the tin and spread out. Next time I'll try and spread more out of the middle and towards the edge, as my edges ended up a bit thin.
- Bake in the preheated oven for 35-40 minutes until risen, golden and springy.
- Allow to cool on a wire rack before decorating.
- For the buttercream, beat the butter on its own until very soft indeed. Add the icing sugar fairly gradually unless you want to choke on sugar.... Add the vanilla extract and a little water or milk to make the mixture more spreadable.
- Frost the cake, mark your portions (I did 24) and place on your chocolates.
The eagle eyed amongst you will spot that a few of the chocs made it into me rather than onto the cake, leaving three spaces. I filled these with Galaxy minstrels. My colleagues absolutely loved this cake - I received so many compliments about it, and yet the decoration was so easy to do. I must try making more of an effort with decorations in the future because they really do seem to be appreciated! And as you can see T, I did leave the foil wrappers on those chocolates, otherwise how can you find them on the little menu card?