week thirteen

ah, easter in jurien bay. is there anything nicer? (well, it would have been nicer if i didn’t have to spend two of my four days away writing a 15 minute presentation on sexual violence and international law – massive debbie downer right there…) despite that slight blip in the weekend, we did still manage to spend a bunch of time with the family, head to the gloriously clear and inviting beach everyday (i may even have been convinced to jump off the jurien bay jetty at one point) and have a super fun easter egg hunt (so fun, in fact, that i forgot to take any photos).

DSC_0816 IMG_4388

marlow: seaweed. if it’s good enough for the japanese, it’s good enough for me.

thatcher: he would have spent all day running up and down the sand dunes if he could.

week 13 / the 52 project

Advertisements

chocolate & caramel layered easter cake


for the last few years now it has become a bit of a tradition that over the easter long weekend I make a huge, decadent chocolatey cake that i wouldn’t normally have the time for. this generally means that it involves multiple layers, millions of calories, cream, butter, oodles of sugar and lashings of chocolate, so when i saw this cake on the cover of the Coles Easter magazine I knew what this year’s cake was going to be…

image

what you’ll need:

-320g dark chocolate

– 225g butter (at room temperature) + extra 20g

– 1 cup caster sugar

– 9 eggs separated

– 1 1/2 cups self-raising flour

– 1/2 cup brown sugar

-300ml cream

– 600ml thickened cream (whipped)

– 1 1/2 tbs slivered almonds (toasted)

– 1/4 caster sugar

– 150g dark chocolate

 

how to make it:

1. Preheat oven to 170oC. Line and grease 2x round spring-form tins.

2. Melt 220g dark chocolate. Set aside.

3. Beat 225g butter, 1 cup caster sugar and egg yolks until smooth. Beat in melted chocolate. Fold in sifted flour.

4. Beat egg whites to soft peaks. fold into chocolate mixture in 3 batches.

5. Pour 2/3 of the cake mixture into one cake tin and remaining 1/3 into the other tin. Bake both cakes for 20-25 mins, remove the smaller cake and allow to cool, leave the larger cake to cook for a further 20-25 mins. let cakes cool completely.

6. Meanwhile, make the caramel sauce by adding the brown sugar, 20g extra butter and 1/2 cup cream to a saucepan. Heat over medium heat for about 2 minutes until the sugar dissolves, then bring to the boil for 5 minutes until the sauce thickens. Put in fridge to cool.

7. Now, to make the chocolate praline shards for the top of the cake (yummy). Line 2 baking trays with baking paper. Start with the praline – add 1/4 cup caster sugar and 2tbs water to saucepan. Heat over medium heat until sugar dissolves then turn heat to high and Allow the sugar syrup to caramelise. Pour the gorgeous amber sugar over the first of the bKing trays and immediately sprinkle with the toasted almonds. Stick the praline in the fridge for a few minutes to set. Once hard, take to it with a hammer (or knife, or any tool of your choosing) and break the praline up into small pieces. Set aside the praline while you melt 150g of dark chocolate. Thinly (2-3mm) spread the melted chocolate over the second baking tray and sprinkle wi half of the praline pieces. leave chocolate to chill in the fridge until you are ready to decorate your cake.

8. The last element to make is the chocolate ganache. Heat the remaining I whipped cream Ina saucepan. Bring to the boil and then pour over the remaining dark chocolate. Leave it to sit for a few minutes and then give mixture a stir. again let it cool.

9. To assemble your masterpiece, split the larger of the two cakes into two even layers. Spread the bottom layer with half of the whipped cream and then half of the caramel sauce. Repeat with the second layer. Place the final layer of cake on top. Spread with the chocolate ganache and decorate with the dark chocolate praline shards.

happy Easter (or birthday, or any day really).

imageimageimage

we’re going on an egg hunt

…or two!

this Easter thatch was lucky enough to get to go on two Easter egg hunts, which was probably a good thing as t did spend much of the first hunt chasing after ducks and watching the guys on the ride-on lawn mowers rather than hunting for (and eating) the eggs; it also meant that rod was lucky enough to come along to one of them too which is always nice.

it was so cute seeing t and his little friends light up with delight as they stumbled across the hidden eggs, especially once they worked out what they were. i loved getting to see these little people get into the spirit of the season and actually participate in the celebrations. we are so doing this again next year!

image image image image image image image image image image^^love that look on his face when he has just spotted an egg^^
image image image image^^there is always time for a play^^