Since we took a trip to the Cake and Bake Show in Manchester last week and Missy Woo got to help with one of the demos when there was a sudden and unexpected lack of peeled apples, which is fairly critical for a toffee apple cake, Missy Woo has been on at me to make a cake. I told her when we were there that she could make her own cake sometime when we were talking to the lovely Ruth from the Pink Whisk, the person she ended up helping.
Missy Woo is now like an elephant - she never forgets. You can't make promises like that and then conveniently forget them. She will keep on until she gets it. On Friday, she asked me again when she could make it and I suggested that she could on Saturday, her last weekend of freedom before she and her brother go back to school. We have a whole weekend to fill, just me and the children as husband is at work. She was further inspired by finding out her 8 year old friend often makes cakes for her family that turn out yummy, apparently.
I knew she would choose chocolate cake and luckily, had most things in. Whenever I am making chocolate cake, my first thought is to turn to Ruth again and use her recipe, which is super simple as it uses cocoa powder rather than having to melt chocolate, and it always works. The original recipe is here (it's actually for chocolate muffins but those quantities work for an 8 inch tin) but Ruth was lovely enough to give me a copy of her book which has the recipe scaled for different sized tins which is so handy.
So, Missy Woo set to work baking with me as adviser. This is what I did:
- Told her how to line a tin
- spray cake release around the tin
- got all the ingredients out for her
- explained some things to her about weighing and measuring some ingredients
- reminded her of a few things to do
- got the mixer out for her and fitted the blade
- cracked the eggs into the bowl
- scraped down the sides of the mixer bowl when she couldn't reach
- poured the cake mixture in tin from the mixer bowl
- put the cake in the oven
- took it out and tested
- removed from the tin to cool
- cleaned the blade of the mixer so she could reuse it
- finished off weighing out icing sugar
- added cocoa powder and milk to bowl to make buttercream
- split the cake
- helped her spread buttercream in the middle and top
- spread the buttercream round the sides
- open the sprinkles
- been around to answer questions when she wanted help
And Missy Woo
- drew a circle of baking paper
- cut it out
- turned the oven on
- weighed out all the ingredients for the cake
- microwaved the butter briefly to soften it
- put the ingredients into the mixer and turned it on
- decided when to stop the mixer and add new ingredients
- scraped some of the sides of the bowl
- timed the cooking of the cake
- helped to test the cake with a cocktail stick
- weighed out the butter and some of the icing sugar for the icing
- placed the buttercream ingredients in the mixer
- mixed the buttercream to her satisfaction
- spread some of the buttercream
- sprinkled stars and gold glitter on the cake
- licked the bowl, and the scraper, and the mixer blade, and the bowl. And the palette knife. And the little knife. You get the idea.
And here, in all its glory, is the finished cake.
Not bad for a first attempt, huh?