Fire-and-ice cake

Fire-and-ice cake

By
From
Desserts
Serves
15-20

The reason I call this fire-and-ice cake is because the tuile biscuits resemble flickering flames, while the buttercream looks like ice. You can use different flowers for the top of the cake, but do make sure they have dramatic shapes and colours.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
3 quantities Victoria sponge
1 quantity Tuiles, mixture only, unbaked
1kg unsalted butter, softened
350g icing sugar
jar apricot puree

To decorate:

Quantity Ingredient
heliconia stricta flower
bird of paradise flower
calla lilies
hazel twigs
strawberries, hulled and cut in half
1 fig, cut into quarters
kumquats, cut in half
small block florists’ oasis, covered in foil

Method

  1. Grease and flour three round cake tins (you will need one 18cm, one 20cm and one 25cm tin). Make up the sponge mixture and divide it between the three tins. Bake as instructed, but bear in mind the small cake will need slightly less time in the oven and the large cake slightly more.
  2. Pre-heat the oven to 200ºC. Cut three templates from margarine tub lids in the shape of a flame – small, medium and large. Following the tuile recipe, use a palette knife to spread the mixture very thinly over the template onto a baking tray lined with non-stick baking parchment, then lift the template off. Bake in the oven for 3–4 minutes, until lightly golden.
  3. Remove from the oven. To create the curved flame shape, you will need to place the warm tuiles over two cylindrical objects of slightly different diameters (a rolling pin and the cardboard tube from a roll of kitchen paper work well). Place the wider end of the tuile over the larger object, and the pointed end over the smaller one. As the tuiles cool, they will take on the curved shape. Continue this process until you have approximately 15–20 tuiles in each size.
  4. To make the buttercream, beat the icing sugar and butter to an almost white batter. Slice each sponge in half horizontally and spread with a little of the buttercream and apricot purée. Sandwich the sponges together again.
  5. Place the large sponge on a cake board with the medium one on top and the small one on the top of that.
  6. Spread the remaining buttercream evenly over the sponges and position the tuile biscuits around the edges of each cake (the buttercream will hold them in place).
  7. Place the flowers, twigs and leaves into some foil-covered oasis and place on the top of the cake. Secure with cocktail sticks if necessary. Scatter the strawberries, figs and kumquats around the top of the cake to finish.
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