Baking is one of mine and Darcie’s favourite things to do together, it always has been. As soon as she was able to hold a spoon I would get her involved with helping me to bake cakes. I’ve always loved baking myself and have so many fond memories of making rock cakes and lemon meringue pies with my Nana, and so it’s always been something that I’ve wanted to carry on doing with my own children. Ernie is less interested and so for now it has remained mine and Darcie’s quality time together. Darcie and I bake, she decorates, and then Dan and Ernie magically appear to eat – and everyone is happy!
Tala Cooking recently got in touch to see if we would like to collaborate and create an Easter Cake recipe, and that was all the excuse we needed to get our aprons on and into the kitchen. They were kind enough to send us a variety of their products to use for our creation which made it even more fun – the sugar shaker was a particular hit with both the children and I’m not sure I’ll ever rescue it back from the toy kitchen! All the products were really fantastic quality and I know they’ll become staples when we bake from now on. I’ll share more details throughout the post but for now let’s get back to the cake!
Making our cake
Regular readers will know about Ernie’s dairy intolerance, and with that in mind I always try to make cakes that he can eat with us. Now he’s a fully fledged toddler there’s no way we can get away with eating cake around him unless he can have a slice too! I allowed Darcie to choose the decorations to go on top of the cake and unsurprisingly she chose chocolate, chocolate and more chocolate. So the cake and icing are dairy free, and the decorations are not, but they are easy enough to remove and so long as Ernie has some cake to munch on he’s not too fussed to not be having all the extras.
Darcie insists on wearing her ‘piggy apron’ to do baking, so on that went and we got cracking!
I wanted to keep the cake relatively simple, which is definitely the best policy when you have a three year old helper, so we started by making a chocolate sponge.
Here is the recipe for the cake we created:
Chocolate Sponge Recipe
10 oz butter or dairy free alternative (I use Flora Buttery which is the best all round alternative in my opinion)
10 oz sugar
10 oz self raising flour
3tbsps cocoa powder
Milk or dairy free alternative if required (I used almond as that’s what we had in the fridge)
Mix together the ingredients in the order listed making sure to get rid of any lumps. Add a splash of milk at the end to achieve the desired consistency – you want it to be runny enough to pour it into the tin.
I used the Tala Non Stick 23cm Springform Tin which was true to it’s word and the cake didn’t stick at all! We (mainly me) decided to keep things simple and leave it as just one cake rather than putting any filling in the middle, which was probably just as well considering the amount of butter icing that was about to be loaded on the top.
Decorating the cake
For the butter icing I simply mix more Flora Buttery and icing sugar together until I get the consistency and amount that we need then add cocoa powder to make the chocolate icing and left some plain for piping later.
Darcie got to work covering the cake in chocolate butter icing using one of the Tala Mini Silicone Headed Spatulas. (She may or may not have also had a taste – who can blame her?). We then used the star nozzle and piping bag to pipe rosettes all around the edge of the cake. I was so impressed by how well Darcie iced the cake, she picked up how to use the piping bag in no time which I think is pretty amazing for a three year old!
I then let her loose with all the decorations and extra bits she had chosen from the shop. She added big chocolate eggs, mini eggs and a chocolate rabbit as the pièce de résistance.
Ta Da! Our cake was complete! Now the only thing left to do was call the boys in to come and have a slice with us. This was such a lovely activity for Darcie and I to do together and using a few new things from Tala like the dry measure and icing bag gave her the opportunity to learn new skills which she is now very proud of.
Easter is the perfect time to do activities like this with the kids and I do hope that some of you will recreate mine and Darcie’s Easter cake recipe. Please tag me on Instagram if you do – Darcie would be thrilled to see all of your Easter cakes!