Black Bottom Birthday Cake.

Black Bottom Birthday Cake

This recipe combines chocolate cake, cheesecake and cream cheese frosting into a single creation. I might go as far as to say it's the best thing I've ever baked!

I developed this recipe for my Dad's birthday at the start of the month. He's a massive fan of the Hummingbird Bakery black bottom cupcakes (so am I!) and requested they be transformed into his Birthday cake ... thankfully it turned out very well indeed.


My recipe uses the black bottom cupcake recipe from the Hummingbird Bakery's 'Cupcakes and Muffins' book as a base but the amounts and method have been tweaked to make it work as a tiered cake.

Black Bottom Birthday Cake Ingredients

For the chocolate base:

- 380g Plain Flour
- 240g Caster Sugar
- 1tsp Bicarbonate of Soda
- 80g Cocoa Powder
- 80ml Sunflower Oil
- 3tsp White Vinegar
- 1tsp Vanilla Extract

For the cheesecake filling:

- 280g Cream Cheese
- 120g Caster Sugar
- 2 Medium Eggs
- 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
- 2 pinches of Salt
- 200g Dark Chocolate Chips

For the cream cheese frosting:

- 600g Icing Sugar
- 100g Unsalted Butter
- 250g Cream Cheese

Black Bottom Birthday Cake Method

Preparation:

1. Grease two circular 20cm cake tins with butter. Line the bottom of the tin with foil backed baking parchment.
2. Preheat the oven to 170 degrees Celsius (150 degrees for a fan oven).

For the chocolate base:

1. Sift the flour, sugar, bicarbonate of soda and cocoa powder into a large bowl.
2. Mix together with a wooden spoon until the mixture is uniform.
3. Place 250ml of water into a smaller bowl, add the sunflower oil, white vinegar and vanilla extract.
4. Whisk with a hand whisk until the mixture is combined.
5. Add the liquid mixture to the larger bowl a little at a time, mixing between additions with an electric whisk.
6. Keep whisking until all the ingredients are well incorporated, then place to one side.

For the cheesecake filling:

1. Place the cream cheese, caster sugar, eggs, vanilla extract and salt in a large mixing bowl.
2. Whisk with an electric whisk until all ingredients are incorporated and the mixture is smooth.
3. Add the chocolate chips and stir in with a spoon.

Creating the layers:

1. Line the bottom of each cake tin with a moderate layer of the chocolate mixture, use a spatula to spread the thick mixture and ensure that the layer goes right to the edges.
2. Spoon three or four tablespoons of the cheesecake filling over each chocolate layer - this can be quite sporadic and doesn't need to form a whole layer.
3. Split the remaining chocolate mixture between the two cake tins. Spread the mixture out so that it lies below the top of the tin. Again, you don't need to form complete layers at this point.
4. Split the remaining cheesecake mixture between the two tins, pour it in and it should fill in the gaps in your layers.

Baking:

1. Cook in the preheated oven for 30 minutes or until a skewer placed into the cake comes out clean. When checking the skewer try to avoid the cheesecake sections of the cake as they contain melted chocolate chips that will dirty the skewer and thus ruin the test!
2. Remove both tins from the oven and leave to cool for as long as possible. Don't remove the cake from the tins until the cheesecake and chocolate chips have solidified a little. The longer you leave it the better!
3. To remove the layers from the tins, run a knife around the edge of the cake then tip the tin onto a wire rack or chopping board. You may need to shake the tins a little, but the cake should come out easily. Peel the foil backed baking parchment from the bottom of the cake and turn the layers back over.

For the cream cheese frosting:

1. Sift the icing sugar into a large bowl.
2. Add the butter and cream cheese, then beat with an electric whisk until completely incorporated.

Building the cake:

1. If necessary, using a sharp knife, trim the tops off one of the layers of cake to create a flat surface.
2. Place one layer on a plate/base/cake stand/whatever you want to serve the cake on. Spoon half of the frosting on top of this layer, staying a little away from the edges to allow for 'splurging out' when you add the top layer.
3. Place the remaining layer of cake on top of the frosting layer. Make sure the layer is central then press down. The edges of the frosting can be cleaned up using a small spatula if you wish!
4. Add the remaining frosting to the top of the cake and spread it with a spatula till you're happy with how it looks.

... and you're done! It's best to keep the cake in a fridge until to want to serve it. Warning: it's very rich, so be modest with your slices!!