Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Chocolate and raspberry celebration cake.

Hurrah I passed my driving test! A nerve racking experience I thankfully do not have to repeat. Cake was in order, firstly as a celebration and secondly as an apology to everyone for not telling them I was taking it despite many requests.

I had wanted to make a cake like this for a while but it seemed a little to extravagant to be sitting in a cake tin for the two of us to eat. And besides I do not think it will keep for very long.

I made a chocolate cake, filled with cooked down raspberries and softly whipped cream. I then smothered the whole thing in white chocolate butter cream, studded the sides with chocolate fingers and topped the whole thing off with more fresh raspberries. I know, I know, it sounds a lot but does not take long to make, the longest thing was waiting for the cakes to cool.

Chocolate and raspberry celebration cake

For the cake

225g butter
160g caster sugar
65g light brown sugar (If you prefer use all caster sugar)
160g self raising flour
65g cocoa powder (I used green and blacks)
1/2 tsp baking powder
4 eggs

For the filling

150-200g raspberries
60-80g good raspberry jam
150-200ml double or whipping cream (I used elmlea)

For the frosting

90g butter
1 tsp vanilla paste
375g icing sugar
2 tablespoons whole milk
150g white chocolate, melted and cooled


2-3 packs of chocolate fingers
200g raspberries

Preheat the oven to 190C/170C FAN and grease 2x 20cm springform cake tin and line the base. If you only have one (like me) make all the cake batter, bake one cake and then bake the next. 

Put the butter, sugars, self raising flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and eggs into a bowl. Using a free standing, or hand held electric whisk, beat until all the ingredients are fully combined and smooth. The batter will be very thick.

Dive the batter between two tins (or halve the batter and cook one cake at a time) smooth and level the batter using a spatula.

Bake in the oven for 22-25 minutes until the cakes are springy to the touch and a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean (If you do not have a skewer a dried strand of spaghetti works a treat!)

Whilst the cakes are in the oven make the filling. Pop the jam and raspberries into a saucepan and heat gently until the jam has melted and the raspberries are breaking down. This will take 6-8 minutes. Put the jam aside to cool.

Leave the cakes to cool in the tins for 5 minutes; they will shrink away from the edge as they cool. Carefully ease the cakes from the tins and leave to cool completely on a wire rack (remember to remove the lining paper!)

Once the cakes are completely cool they are ready to be assembled! If either of the cakes need levelling use a very sharp serrated knife to do so, make sure the cakes are cold for any trimming you do, it will be easier.
I had to trim one slightly
Place a cake on a serving plate. Carefully spread with the cooled raspberry jam mixture, careful not to let it drip down the sides. 

Lightly whip the cream until soft peaks form and then place dollops over the raspberries. Very gently press the second cake layer on top. Squish down carefully, you do not want the filling oozing out as you will be covering the sides of the cake in buttercream. If any does spill out use a palette knife to scrap it off the cake.

To make the buttercream carefully melt the white chocolate and leave to cool. Beat the butter, vanilla paste and icing sugar until it is all starting to come together. Add the milk, a tablespoon at a time and beat the frosting until it is very light and fluffy, ~3-5 minutes. Add the cooled, melted chocolate and beat to until it is fully incorporated. 

Using a palette knife carefully spread the buttercream around the sides of the cake and on the top, work with little amounts of buttercream at a time, it will be easier. The buttercream on the sides of the cake needs to be thick enough to anchor the fingers in place. When you are done there should be no cake showing.

Place the fingers around the edge of the cake, in whatever design you choose. I alternated white and milk chocolate fingers.

Finally top the whole cake off with fresh raspberries. I only put the raspberries on an hour before I wanted to serve it as I was not sure if they would bleed into the buttercream.

This cake needs to be eaten either the day, or the day after it is made. It also must be kept in the fridge if you plan to keep it overnight, when serving it keeping it at room temp for a few hours is not a problem (maybe not in blazing sunlight!)

This cake was very nice, I was slightly suspicious of the all in one cake batter but it made a good robust cake that stood up to the filling well and held together very nicely when sliced. I would possibly still try other chocolate cake variations though.

I only had two packs of chocolate fingers but ideally would have liked to have used three so that the the fingers were flush next to each other instead of having a gap between. 

I also wonder about Swiss meringue buttercream to cover the cake, I love SWBC but time restraints meant that regular buttercream was the way to go this time. 

As you can probably tell from the photos it was eaten very quickly and I did not get a really pretty photo. Still peoples reactions are worth a lot!
This cake could be made in so many variations the mind just boggles, the cake could be vanilla or lemon, various fruits could be used for the filling, the buttercream could vary in flavour and  type. Instead of chocolate fingers you could use curls, or wafer fingers. Its making my head spin just thinking about it!

All in all I love this cake and need another celebration or event so that I can make another variation of it! 


  1. Congratulations on passing your driving test! Good pick of a celebration cake. I've been wanting to make something similar for ages - in fact I have 2 boxes of chocolate fingers in my cupboard waiting for the right occasion. I love the raspberry filling in the middle - yum!

  2. I had the boxes in my cupboard for a while, I stocked up when they were on offer!