Jamie Oliver

forum: Food & Drink

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#1 Sun 18 Feb 07 3:59pm

sweetie-pie

Member
From England
Member since Sun 01 Jan 06

Surprise Cake!

I want to make my partner a surprise cake for his birthday. I am thinking of making the chocolate and red wine cake from Gennaro Contaldo's book 'Passione'.

Now, we live together and I have limited time to make a cake when he's not in the house. I'm also not experienced with baking in the slightest and could use some advice. Basically, I want to know how far in advance I can get away with baking the cake and still be eating the cake when it is at its best.

Any ideas?

SP

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#2 Sun 18 Feb 07 11:59pm

The White Rabbit

Forum super champ
From Sydney, Australia
Member since Tue 22 Jun 04

Re: Surprise Cake!

For cakes that are not fruit cakes you are probably looking at 2 days at the most. This depends on the cake (and how much fat there is in it). They'll go crumbly as they go stale. Best to make cakes the day of the party. Send him out for something or get one of his friends to take him out.

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#3 Mon 19 Feb 07 1:15am

cupcake

Forum champ
From Cambodia, eh?
Member since Tue 09 Nov 04

Re: Surprise Cake!

I do a lot of baking, and can share with you that cakes are always, ALWAYS served best at room temperature. This is when the flavours are most alive. Having said this, I've never worried about making a layer cake the day prior to serving, provided I do one of these three things:

* Bake the cake layers, cool completely and wrap carefully yet tightly, with two layers of plastic wrap and refrigerate till next day. Remove from fridge, unwrap and allow cake to return to room temperature. No probs! Cake is yum and ready to be frosted with love and sweet goodness.

* Bake the cake, frost away and cover with a cake dome, leaving cake unrefrigerated if intended to be used the very next day.

* Bake the cake, gloriously frost it, cover with a cake dome - Oh hell, clear space in the fridge! - and refrigerate for a couple of days. And following the above rule of thumb, remove from fridge, and allow 2-3 hours for cake to return to room temp before sampling its cakey goodness.

Now, you can also freeze cake layers - simply wrap with two layers of plastic wrap, and place in a zip-locked freezer bag. Keep in mind that people do exactly that with a layer of their wedding cake and enjoy it a year later, so certainly you can do the same in a much shorter time frame if that's what you want.

CÜPCAKE

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#4 Mon 19 Feb 07 8:00pm

sweetie-pie

Member
From England
Member since Sun 01 Jan 06

Re: Surprise Cake!

Thanks!

I have worked out that the only realistic time for me to make it is on Friday afternoon while he is at work (I can sneak home early). We're leaving early Saturday morning to visit his family. Once the cake is made, I will hide it in the boot of the car.

Does anyone have good icing recipes, that don't require refrigeration that I could do the day before? I am thinking something chocolately would be good. smile

SP

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#5 Tue 20 Feb 07 6:04am

The White Rabbit

Forum super champ
From Sydney, Australia
Member since Tue 22 Jun 04

Re: Surprise Cake!

Icing, I'd just mix icing sugar, cocoa powder and a little butter and water. Avoid large amounts of butter, cream or egg white containing icings. I hope your car is somewhere cool.

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#6 Tue 20 Feb 07 10:58pm

sweetie-pie

Member
From England
Member since Sun 01 Jan 06

Re: Surprise Cake!

My car is outside .... at the moment its very cool indeed, and that shouldn't change by the weekend!

Thanks for the tips!

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