I love baking and the pleasure that it brings to me and others in equal measure. To satisfy this passion, I have been baking a birthday cake for each person in my group at work. However, this week the tables were turned when Tarun asked if I could show him how to make his own birthday cake. Accordingly, I sought out my inner teacher this week and gave Tarun a baking lesson.
Knowing that Tarun likes chocolate cake, as a friend of mine had already given him a lesson in how to bake a mud cake, I chose Nigella's old-fashioned chocolate cake from p269 of Feast. Tarun was unconvinced that he was up to the challenge of this double decker beauty, but Nigella promised that this cake was simple to make.
We had a few interesting moments making this cake, because Tarun does not have a food processor or a stand mixer. However, we got there in the end, with Tarun doing the lion's share of the work so that he could learn - but in my case, perhaps it was the blind leading the blind!! I was slightly worried about the cake because the batter seemed very thick, but my worrying was needless - the cake turned out beautifully, with a rich chocolatey smell and a taste to match. Tarun was already an expert at melting chocolate from his earlier baking lesson, so he basically made the icing himself.
Instead of Nigella's enchanting sugared violets, we decorated Tarun's cake with jaffas - which had the advantage of there being plenty left over to eat later ;).
Everyone at work who tried the cake that I spoke to loved it - especially the very thick, rich, chocolatey icing. Well done Tarun - and happy birthday!