Thursday, January 24, 2008
SHF #39 - Baking with Candy - Jaffa Cake
It's Sugar High Friday again this week, and this month, it is being hosted by CandyRecapper, who has chosen the theme of Baking with Candy. CandyRecapper's requirements are simple:
"You can do anything you want, as long as you use some kind of store-bought candy in it. "
I normally don't bake with candy, primarily because I eat it all before it gets a chance to go into baked goods ;)
I have combined this Sugar High Friday with another event - a birthday. One of my work colleagues, Dawn, had quite some time ago mentioned that her boyfriend, Craig, loves baked goods, and that he wanted me to remember that his birthday was 26 January - the same day as Australia Day. I'm sure he said this in jest, but I thought it would be great to surprise Dawn and Craig by making him a birthday cake.
Because Craig's birthday is on Australia Day, I wanted to use typically Aussie lollies in his cake. While Caramello Koalas are my favourite, I couldn't think of any way to incorporate them into a cake without mooshing them up. Also, Dawn hates chocolate cake, which would most naturally complement Caramello Koalas. Accordingly, my stroke of inspiration was to use Jaffas in an orange cake. Australian kids for generations have bought Jaffas at the movies and rolled them down the aisles to annoy the grown-ups in the cinema as they clattered across the floor during the film. I therefore thought it was fitting, in honour of Craig's birthday and Australia Day, to use Jaffas in my Sugar High Friday creation.
The recipe for the orange cake that I used as a base can be found here on Exclusively Food. I chose this recipe because most of the comments from those who made it were favourable, and mentioned that the cake was moist. (I hate dry cake!) I used all orange juice in making the cake, and to fit in with the SHF theme, I added 3/4 cup of Jaffas to the batter. (I almost forgot and had to stir in the Jaffas after I had put the batter in the tins!) Instead of one layer, I made two and sandwiched them together with extra icing.
I tried to break up the Jaffas before putting them in the cake, because they are quite heavy sweets and I knew that they would sink to the bottom of the cakes. Alas, my efforts were in vain, and the Jaffas did sink to the bottom (as you can see from the top picture). However, when I iced the cakes, I turned the layers so that the Jaffa-laden bottoms were in the middle of the cake, ensuring that it will hold together when sliced.
This cake tastes pleasantly buttery and orangy (I made a small test cake for myself in a muffin pan for tasting purposes). It also wafts a lovely citrus smell around the kitchen while baking. Because of the presence of the sweets, it is crucial to line the cake tins, because just like fruit, they had a tendency to stick (as I found out the hard way when I turned out my mini cake from the unlined muffin pan).
I simply decorated the cake with orange icing, extra Jaffas and letters cut from flat strawberry fruit bars. (I am off piping after several disasters trying to pipe on Racquel's birthday cake, including the fact that I couldn't seem to spell at the time!)
If you like using candy in your baking, make sure to check CandyRecapper's site for the SHF Baking with Candy roundup.
(Postscript: The roundup can be found here. Thanks to Candy Recapper for hosting this event and for the roundup.)