Baby Bell's 2nd birthday was in March, so I decided that instead of buying a cake and paying lots of money, it would be cheaper and more fun to make my own. Well, I can honestly say it was cheaper to make my own, but it was A LOT of work!
We had a Hello Kitty theme.
I got a book from the Library entitled The Whimsical Bakehouse and it had a great selection of recipes from cakes to frostings to cheesecake to decorating with chocolate! I decided to go with a simple chocolate cake since I was making this cake for a very picky bunch of people: my inlaws! Don't get me wrong, they are WONDERFUL people, they are just really really picky and aren't up for trying new and exciting recipes. I bought some cake flour from the Surplus store for $1.00 and I already had all of the other ingredients in stock, except for the Oreos and Heavy Whipping Cream.
For the filling I went with the Oreo Cookies and Cream Filling. I figured everyone loves Oreos, right? I decided to go with their house recipe for Buttercream, which was the same choice. This was the best buttercream recipe I have ever tasted! Both the filling and frosting make enough to frosting my entire cake plus I had a some leftover for future use. Maybe for cupcakes, perhaps?
I use the Betty Crocker Bake and Fill, but I think next time I'll just use cake pans. The Bake and Fill did do the job, it was just weird for me to work with since it was my first time. The recipe belows calls for doing 3 cups of the batter in one pan and filling the rest in the other, so one will be more full then the other. I think this might be because these cakes where meant to filled so they are lopsided. I didn't do this method because I used the bake and fill, so I'm not sure what the times would be if you wanted to just fill them evenly. I would start with the lesser time and keep checking every 5 minutes or so. The Bake and Fill took about 45 minutes to bake.
The total time it took from start to finish was about 4 hours. I reccomend, though, giving the cake a lot more time to completely cool before frosting it. I was a little hasty and had a hard time with it. The cake must be put in the fridge if not consuming right away. Don't worry, it won't be dry. In fact, as long as you give it a half hour to an hour to sit out in room temperature, it will be very moist! I made my cake the day before and I found that the longer it sat the more flavorful it was. Everyone raved about this cake, so I will definitely be making this one from now on.
Chocolate Butter Cake (9 Cups Batter)
1 C hot coffee
1 C cocoa powder
1 C cold water
3 C cake flour
2 Tsp baking soda
1/2 Tsp baking powder
3/4 Tsp salt
2 Sticks unsalted butter
2 1/2 C sugar
4 Large eggs
1 1/2 Tsp vanilla extract
1. Grease and flour two 10x3-inch round pans.
2. Preheat oven to 350 F.
3. In a small bowll, combine and whisk until there are no lumps the coffee and cocoa powder.
4. Add and whisk until smooth the water.
5.On a piece of wax paper, sift together cake flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
6. In a seperate bowl, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
7. Slowly add eggs, one at a time and vanilla.
8. Add the dry ingredients alternately to the butter and egg mixture with the cocoa, mixing until smooth.
9. Pour 3 cups of the batter into one pan and the rest into the other. Bake the less full pan for 20-25 minutes, and bake the fuller pan of 30-35 minutes.
10. Cool each cake a wire rack for 15-20 minutes before turning them out of their pans.
Oreo Cookies and Cream Filling (6 Cups)
2 1/2 C heavy cream
1/4 C confectioner's sugar (I call it "powdered sugar")
1/2 Tsp pure vanilla extract
20 Oreos (I used double stuffed.)
1. In a bowl, beat cream, sugar, and vanilla until stiff.
2. Gently fold in Oreos.
6 C confectioner's sugar
1/2 Tsp salt
1 Tsp vanilla extract
1 C boiling water
2 3/4 C vegetable shortening
1 1/2 Sticks butter, slightly chilled and cut into 1 inch pieces
1. In a bowl, stir together sugar, salt, and vanilla.
2. Add and whip at low speed the boiling water. Let cool.
3. Add and whip unitl smooth the vegetable shortening and butter.
4. Increase teh speed to medium-high and whip until light and fluffy and doubled in volume. This should take 10-20 minutes.
Assembling the cake
I could just tell you but I think it is better if you watch step by step videos from this website: http://www.wonderhowto.com/how-to-layer-cake/
1. Make sure cake is completely cool before frosting.
2. Place cake in fridge if you are not eating it right away.
3. Allow 30 minutes to an hour to set out at room temp. before serving.