It has been one year since I’ve found a little new hobby, my sweet blog chocolatechalk.com. One WHOLE year! Here’s one of my recent favourite layer cakes to celebrate my first milestone: a rich lemon and vanilla cake with white chocolate. It is really light and soft, with a balanced taste and gentle lemon-y taste, sweet and intense vanilla flavor and all this tied up with white chocolate which does really good balancing job here, hiding lemon’s excess acidity leaving just its’ gentle scent.
I thought that apart from the recipe I’d also share with my achievements for the past one year. I hope you are happy for me 🙂
- From blogger I grew into a food magazine author. For now I work with these Russian projects: Honest Food Magazine, Creme Brûlée and MondayDelights.
- Last year some of my recipes were published in Shape Russia, InstaMam Magzine, Hipsta Mama and feedfeed.
- Recently I have been nominated to Russian Best food blog of 2015 Awards. The voting is on now until the 18th of February (one person can vote once per day). Please support me (just hit an orange button under my photo to leave a vote) 🙂 I’d be beyond happy and thrilled to know my recipes are wanted and useful 🙂
- The most amazing thing that has happened to me over this one year of blogging is meeting and getting to know so many of you. I’m extremely glad to receive every single comment, your thanks, your trust; I’m always happy to know about your baking successes! Every comment I receive is like the first time ever, always exciting and it makes my day. Your feedback (ok, compliments, too, I won’t hesitate here LOL) never gets old, so if you read me, ever used my recipes, please leave a comment below, tell me how and when you’ve found me, what have you cooked/ baked and in general if there’s anything you want to tell me, come on, do it now 🙂
Meanwhile here’s to my first Blogiversary 🙂
Lemon matches well with sweet vanilla and white chocolate in this layer cake. These flavors go really well with lemon making you want to have at least one slice.
The recipe requires natural white chocolate with cocoa solids.
Lemon and vanilla layer cake
The recipe makes a 6″/ 15 cm 4-layer cake, serves 8 – 10
- 1 egg
- ½ t finely grated lemon zest
- 2 T + 2 t/ 1.33 oz/ 40 ml lemon juice, freshly squeezed
- ¼ c/ 1.67 oz/ 50 g white sugar
- 2 T/ 1 oz/ 35 g unsalted butter
Fill a small saucepan 1/3 full with water, bring it to a gentle simmer. In a heat proof bowl, whisk the egg, lemon zest, juice and sugar with a balloon whisk. Place the bowl over the saucepan with simmering water and, stirring it with a whisk continuously, bring the mixture to 167ºF/ 75ºC (the sugar should dissolve completely and mixture should become smooth and thicken up). Remove from the water bath, stir in the butter. Cover the curd surface with cling film, let it cool to room temperature then chill in the fridge at least for 1 – 1.5 hrs.
White chocolate custard:
- 7 oz/ 200 g good quality white chocolate, chopped
- 1 stick/ 3.5 oz/ 100 g unsalted butter, cubed
- 2 eggs
Put the white chocolate and butter in a medium heat proof bowl, melt it over the water bath or pulse in a microwave. The mixture should become smooth and glossy. Let it cool, then stir in the eggs with a whisk. Prepare a water bath and make the custard using the same method listed in the lemon curd recipe above. Let the custard cool to room temperature then chill in the fridge, stirring with a spoon every 20 minutes, until slightly thickened (about 1 hour).
Lemon and vanilla buttercream:
- 1½ sticks/ 5 oz/ 150 g unsalted butter, cubed, softened
- 14.1 oz/ 400 g white chocolate custard, recipe above
- 3 oz/ 85 g lemon curd, recipe above
- 1 t vanilla bean paste or seeds from ½ vanilla pod
- ½ t finely grated lemon zest
In a bowl of a stand mixer, beat the butter on medium-low until creamy and light, 3 – 5 minutes.Gradually beat the white chocolate custard into the butter and continue beating until thick and creamy. Add the lemon curd, vanilla bean paste and lemon zest and beat until fully incorporated. Refrigerate until needed. Beat again until light before use.
- 5 oz/ 140 g good quality white chocolate, chopped
- 1 stick/ ½ c/ 105 g unsalted butter, softened
- 1 c/ 7 oz/ 200 g white sugar
- 5 egg yolks at room temperature
- 1 t finely grated lemon zest
- 2 c/ 8.8 oz/ 250 g all-purpose flour
- 3½ t baking powder
- ½ t salt
- 3/4 c/ 7 oz/ 200 ml milk at rom temperature
- 1 t vanilla extract
Prepare 2 x 6″/ 15 cm spring form cake pans, lightly grease their bases and line with parchment paper. Preheat the oven to 340ºF/ 170ºC.
In a small heat proof bowl, melt the white chocolate over a water bath or in microwave, stirring it frequently, until smooth and glossy.
In a large mixing bowl, beat the butter and sugar until light and creamy, 3 – 5 minutes. Add the egg yolks, one at a time, beating well after each addition, then add the lemon zest, melted and cooled white chocolate and beat again until incorporated.
In a separate bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder and salt. Combine the milk and vanilla extract in a glass. Using a spatula, stir about 1/3 og the flour mixture into the batter until incorporated, then stir in half the milk mixture. Repeat with another half of the flour followed with remaining milk and then remaining flour. Stir the batter until just incorporated. Do not overmix.
Divide the batter evenly between the cake pans. Bake in the preheated oven for 30 – 40 minutes or until done: a skewer inserted in the centre of sponge should come out clean.
Remove the pans from the oven, let cool for 15 minutes, then run a butter knife around the edge of the ans to release the sides of sponges and transfer them to a wire rack to cool completely. If necessary, when sponges are cool, level their tops with a serrated knife. Cut the sponges in half horizontally to have 4 equal layers.
Place the first layer on a serving platter. Spread an even ~¼”/ 6-8 mm layer of the buttercream over the sponge, cover with the next layer and repeat the sequence finishing with the last sponge layer. Cover the top and sides of cake with a thin layer of remaining buttercream (crumb-coat), refrigerate for 15 – 20 minutes, until set.
- coloured sugar
- edible golden flakes or shapes
Apply a final buttercream layer to the cake, level the sides and top with spatula. Decorate the top with coloured sugar, sprinkle with golden flakes.
Keep refrigerated before serving.