My aunt, Anuradha Narayanan, was a birthday wizard. For her kids, she would make beautiful cakes in a pressure cooker. For my fourth birthday in Bengaluru, she made sure the kids had a merry-go-round and a chariot, and that each kid got their own sweet box to take home. No other birthday has matched up since. This cake has three parts, the vanilla sponge cake, the chocolate icing (which is ganache, before anyone said ganache), and our favourite and easiest part — drawing with pieces of colourful chocolate! I love this cake; it is perfect. And candied sugar is the only thing kids want at parties (or I want just now). The cake is a Victoria sponge, iced with melted chocolate and cream (you know, ganache), and whatever chocolate sculpture you want to make. Knock yourselves out!
**Adult Supervision Required**
1 1/2 cups maida (if possible, don’t use whole wheat/whole grain flour)
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 cup butter
1 cup sugar (regular white sugar should do)
3 whole eggs
1 tsp vanilla essence
5 tsp milk
1 tsp of baking soda so it rises well
Dark chocolate or milk chocolate
Garnish: A handful of colourful chocolate pieces
For the cake:
1. Sift the flour well and mix with other dry ingredients.
2. Add sugar, and mix well.
3. Add eggs, one by one, and mix well with a spatula until smooth.
4. Bake in a preheated oven at 200 degrees Celsius for 30 minutes, until you can put a butter knife through the cake and remove it cleanly. (Don’t pick at the cake’s ends, it has to be iced!)
For the icing:
1. To melt dark or milk chocolate with cream in a vessel, place a vessel in hot water and slowly stir the chocolate inside.
2. Add as much sugar as you want, depending on how sweet you want your icing. Don’t lick it! It needs to go on the cake.
For the chocolate drawing: Using all your colourful chocolate pieces make a leaf, a regular clown face, or if you’re going to get really snazzy – a drawing of a cartoon character. Or just do the birthday boy or girl’s age; it never gets old! Unless you know, they get old. Once that’s done, eat!
enthucutlet is a bimonthly food magazine that tells unusual stories about food in India (and sometimes beyond), and has been conceptualized by Hunger Inc. Hospitality which is responsible for The Bombay Canteen, O Pedro and Bombay Sweet Shop.
enthucutlet aspires to tell fun, unusual, heart-warming, and surprising stories in the vast realm of food in India. Organized into seasons like your favourite shows, each edition of enthucutlet delves into an idea that is thought provoking and is at the centre of all the features in it. These are contributed by a diverse set of writers ranging from economists, to neuroscientists, to food experts and everyone in between.