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Friday, December 24, 2021

Vancho Cake ~ Merry Christmas 2021!!

Wishing all a very Merry Christmas !!
Hope all are enjoying the holidays with your dear ones.

As a child, Christmas is the time when I waited to have my mom's freshly baked plum cake. And mom used to bake so many cakes that I actually had it for my birthday too, which falls in January. Just recollecting those fond memories and those days cakes were very special because we got to see plum cakes only once a year, especially if you stay in a place away from Kerala. These days, cakes are so easily baked at home, available in bakeries and served, that you get to devour plum cake every other day if you wish to. Did you bake your plum cakes this year? My elder one is not a big fan of plum cake, and so I always bake lighter fruit cakes for him. He does have a piece of plum cake just for the namesake. 

Do you wish to try something different this Christmas than plum cake? Then, this is the best choice to try out-Vancho cake. 'VAN' refers to vanilla and 'CHO' refers to chocolate. This is the new super hit at home as you get to taste both chocolate and vanilla flavours infused in one cake topped with both white chocolate and dark chocolate ganache. This is a simple cake to frost as it involves pouring of the chocolate ganache on top and doesn't require many expert hands to pipe out designs, especially to people like me 😛 (am a novice in piping out patterns). I just created few patterns using dark and white chocolate, broke in pieces and decorated the top design. Placed a few wafer sticks to add on to the deco. I have used the same vanilla sponge recipe that I used to make the white chocolate cake and chiffon cake recipe to bake the chocolate sponge, so I haven't shared the step by step pics here as it's already listed in the respective posts already. I have shared the making of ganache and assembling of the cake in step by step pics. Do give this simple cake a try and enjoy!!

Preparation time ~ 20 minutes
Baking time ~ 1 hour for 2 cakes
Author ~ Julie
Serves ~ 1200 gm cake
for sponge cake
all-purpose flour (maida) 3/4 cup
corn flour 1 tbsp
baking powder 3/4 tsp
baking soda 1/4 tsp
salt a pinch
powdered sugar 3/4 cup
eggs 3
vanilla essence 1 tsp
any neutral oil 2 tbsp

for chocolate cake
cake flour 3/4 cup
cocoa powder 1.5 tbsp
baking powder 3/4 tsp
baking soda, a pinch
salt 1/8 tsp
vanilla extract 3/4 tsp
eggs  3
brewed coffee  2 tbsp
oil 1tbsp

for sugar syrup
granulated sugar 1/2 cup
water 1 cup

for frosting
whipping cream, 2 cups

for ganache
white chocolate compound 150 gms
dark chocolate compound 100 gms
fresh cream 1 cup(used 2/3 for white and 1/3 for dark)


How to make the sponge cake ? Refer the detailed pics here in this post on sponge cake.
  • Sift the flours with baking powder, baking soda, salt thrice and keep aside. In another bowl, add the eggs and powdered sugar, beat until creamy and pale (may take around 5 minutes). Add in the oil and vanilla essence, mix well.
  • Pre-heat oven to 325 degrees F and line a 6' tray with parchment paper and oil the sides, dust with flour and keep ready.
  • To this add the sifted flour mixture in three to four batches and combine well using a spatula without much deflating the air from beaten egg mixture. 

  • Transfer the batter to the prepared cake tin and tap the cake tin several times(20-25) to release the trapped air bubbles. Then place in oven and bake for 25-30 minutes. Insert a tooth pick in the centre of the pan and check if done (Mine was done in 25 minutes, I pre-heat the oven by using the both rods on. Initial bake time was changed to lower rod along for 5 minutes and then changed back to both rods on).
  • Cool the cake on a wire rack and transfer out from the pan. Cover with a parchment paper once cooled completely and then wrap with a cling wrap or aluminium foil. I left overnight before frosting.
How to make chocolate sponge cake ? Refer to detailed recipe here on step by step pics.

  • Separate the egg yolk and egg whites in two bowls when cold. Leave at room temperature for 30 minutes.
  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees F and line a round 9" cake pan(I used Wilton's  6' cake pan as I halved the original recipe) with parchment paper at the bottom and lightly butter the sides. Ideally a tube pan should be used for chiffon type cakes as the cake needs to be inverted soon after bake when hot as the cake tends to shrink and lose its volume when cooled, but a round pan also worked fine.
  • Sift the cake flour in a bowl and then measure 3/4 cup (If making cake flour by substituting, then add 2 tbsp of corn flour in a cup and then add the rest all-purpose flour to fill one cup).
  • Sift together cake flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, granulated white sugar and salt twice in a bowl. Beat the egg yolk in a bowl using a hand whisk. Add in the oil, vanilla extract. Mix well. Pour the brewed coffee and stir well.
  • Add this mixture to the sifted flour mix and gently stir using a wire whisk to combine well. Add a tbsp more coffee according to the consistency of the batter so that it's well combined, don't get it watery as when we add the meringue the consistency will thin out and be correct.
  • In the meantime, beat the egg whites in a grease free oil free bowl using an electric hand whisker or stand mixer. Beat until soft peaks form or when you see streaks with your whisker. Gradually add in the granulated white sugar and beat until almost stiff peaks form. Fold in this meringue in the combined batter using a wire whisk or spatula until just blended(don't over mix to deflate the batter).
  • Pour the batter in the prepared pan and run a knife through the batter to get rid of air bubbles. I gently tapped the tray on the table 2-3 times to get rid of the air bubbles. Place in oven and bake for 30-32 minutes or until when the skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean.
  • Immediately after removing the cake from the oven, run a knife through the sides and invert the cake on a buttered wire rack. Remove the parchment paper and leave to cool completely before frosting the cake or serving.

How to make ganache?
  • Heat the cream in a pan and don't boil. Chop the dark compound in small bits and keep in a bowl. Similarly, add the white chocolate compound to another bowl. Divide the cream mixture in 2/3 and 1/3. Add 2/3rd mixture to white chocolate and 1/3rd to dark chocolate. Let it stand for 5 minutes and then mix to a smooth ganache. Cover and keep aside till use.

How to make whipped cream and chocolate cream? I have shared the detailed step by step pics of making whipping cream here in this recipe, pls refer.

  • I chilled the beater blades and bowl in the fridge overnight and thawed the cream in the fridge overnight(earlier it was in the freezer). Remove the blades, bowl and cream from the fridge. Pour the cream to the bowl. 
  • With the beater blades attached, beat the cream for 4-5 minutes until it turns stiff peaks (Remove 1/3rd of the cream when there are soft peaks to mix with 2tbsp of chocolate ganache. Incorporate the dark chocolate ganache in the whipping cream first and then beat. Beat this mix separately in another bowl). Both creams should be beaten to stiff peaks. The test to make sure it's done is by tilting the bowl upside down and find that the cream doesn't move at all and stays stiff. Immediately transfer the cream to the refrigerator till use by covering with a lid or cling wrap.

How to make sugar syrup?
  • Make a sugar syrup using 1/2 cup sugar and 1 cup water. Put this on a stove and heat till the sugar is dissolved. Put off stove and leave to cool completely.

How to assemble the cake?
  • Once the cake is cooled, the cake can be cut in two or three layers as per the height of the cake. My cake was best for a two layer cake, but my kids wanted to make it a three layer, so I somehow managed to cut it in three. Use a serrated bread knife or twine to cut the layers. I used a serrated knife. Be very careful when you cut the cake in layers, as the cake is very soft and delicate.
  • Then place a dollop of cream on the cake base and place the base on the turn table. Place the first layer of the cake. Add pieces of parchment paper over the sides of the cake all around to get a neat finish at the end. Add sugar syrup on the first layer and then place the chocolate whipped cream on top of this layer and spread using an offset spatula. 

  • Add the second layer and pour sugar syrup on this layer. Add the plain whipped cream and  finally place the third layer, add the sugar syrup and spread the cream on the sides. Spread gently because you may get crumbs on the offset spatula. 
  • Once you have finished a crumb coat, refrigerate the cake for half to an hour before you add more layers of frosting.

  • Add more whipping cream to give the finished look, make designs on the side. Pour the white chocolate ganache on top. Then pipe the dark chocolate ganache on half side of the cake and using a tooth pick make designs. Then added chocolate wafers and chocolate designs(that I made earlier but forgot to click pics, will share sometime later) on top with a cake topper. Refrigerate to two hours to set and enjoy !!

*  If making cake flour by substituting, then add 2 TBS of corn flour in a cup and then add the rest all-purpose flour to fill one cup.
* I used whipping cream to make ganache too so didn't add any sugar to the cream but if using fresh cream add powdered sugar or icing sugar.


Angie's Recipes said... Best Blogger Tips

Such a beautiful birthday cake! The sponge cakes have a tender and smooth crumb. Perfect!
Merry Christmas to you too, Julie!

Suja Manoj said... Best Blogger Tips

Gorgeous cake, perfect made, love it.