Ever wondered why homemade cakes never seem to taste or look like the ones on the supermarket shelves?
Well, Pulse is always here to help. This week we'll let you in on a closely guarded secret that only experienced pâtissiers (pastry chefs) know.
Consider it our Valentine's Day gift to you.
For the Icing (Dark Chocolate Ganache)
300g Dark Chocolate (chopped)
500ml Fresh Whipping Cream
For the cake
2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup cocoa
1 cup sugar
1 cup margarine
1 cup buttermilk (Maziwa Lala)
1 teaspoon baking soda (In Kenya it is called bi-carbonate of soda)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup vegetable oil
3/4 cup of the Pulse's Secret Ingredient
The Secret Ingredient to perfect cakes
Introducing...Corn Flour! Commercial bakers use a special flour commonly called "Bakers Flour" which in the Kenyan market is not packed for retail. The flour makes a world of a difference in the texture of cakes.
Good news is that you can make your own bakers flour using normal all-purpose wheat flour and a few tablespoons of corn flour. In this recipe, we added 3/4 cup of corn flour to 2 cups of all-purpose flour to produce that dense but flaky texture of a perfect fudge cake.
- In a large mixing bowl cream together the margarine and sugar.
- Add eggs one by one as you mix in well. Mix in the vegetable oil.
- In a separate bowl, sift together the all-purpose flour, corn flour, baking powder and baking soda.
- At intervals, alternate adding the dry ingredients and the buttermilk to the wet ingredients.
- Prepare the baking pan by spreading some margarine on the inside and dusting off with some flour. You can go ahead to line the pan with baking sheets for easy removal of the baked cake.
- Pour in the cake batter and leave it to settle as you prepare the oven.
- Heat up your oven at 180 degrees Celsius and set the timer for 60 minutes. Let the oven heat up for 15 minutes before placing the cake to bake for the remaining 45 minutes.
- Pour the fresh whipping cream into a sauce pan and allow it to come to a boil. Add in the chopped dark chocolate and stir until well combined. Allow it to completely cool. You can make the ganache some hours in advance or alternatively place in the fridge for 30 minutes after the sauce pan has cooled.
- After the cake is done, allow it to also completely cool before icing it. You can also layer it just in case you would like a taller cake. Decorate as desired, you can use chocolate marshmallows, chocolate chips, chocolate shavings, sprinkles and any other candies you like.
Happy Valentine's Day from all of us at Pulse!