12 August 2012

Daniel's 4th Birthday and cake recipes

On Wednesday, the first of August, we celebrated little Daniel’s 4th birthday!  Daniel is Smiley. He just has a smile that reaches his eyes and warms your heart!

We planned his birthday party for following Saturday and decided to just have fun on the day of his birthday, allowing the little ones to decorate cupcakes and play with bubbles on the beautiful sunny day!  

Heidi-Mari used a Lindt chocolate cake recipe for the cupcakes.  

1 cup plus 1/2 tablespoon (120 g) butter, softened
1/3 cup (40 g) castor sugar
Pinch of salt
6 eggs, separated
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons (180 g) castor sugar
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons (130 g) flour, sifted (170g spelt flour)
Preheat oven of 180°C. Grease baking pans and line the bottoms with parchment paper.
Melt the chocolate (in a double boiler or over boiling water, off the heat - we don’t use a microwave) and set aside.
Cream butter, castor sugar, and salt.
Add the egg yolks one at a time to the butter mixture.
Add the melted chocolate.
Whip the egg whites, gradually adding the sugar and beating until shiny and just starting to make stiff picks - be careful not to over beat, then it will be to dry.
Carefully fold 1/3 of the egg whites into the chocolate mixture.
Fold in the remaining egg whites and sifted flour.
Pour the batter into the baking pans (if baking a cake) and bake approximately 40 minutes. Baking time will decrease if using 2 cake pans. Check at 30 minutes. Cakes are done when a toothpick inserted in the centre of the cake comes out clean. 
Or pour the batter into muffin pans lined with paper cups and bake for approximately 12 minutes. 
You may have noticed, this isn’t a healthy birthday cake. Its not diary, wheat AND sugar free, only wheat free. We tried numerous times to bake a cake with honey, with no success.  The enzymes in the honey just don’t allow the cake to set.  So we still use sugar in this recipe, the ‘cleanest’ chocolate we can lay our hands on - Lindt, and spelt flour, an ancient flour, not genetically modified like wheat and grown organically with no pesticides. 
Since Danika and Andrew’s birthday party, we’re not using icing sugar anymore to decorate cakes and cupcakes.  We use the chocolate ganaches from the Lindt workshops we attended for chocolate truffles and fillings for hollow chocolates

It works perfectly to decorate cakes and cupcakes.

Amarula/Vanilla Ganache filling
This ganache was originally for our filling and moldings of chocolate and contains Amarula. But we successfully replaced the Amarula with vanilla for the birthday cake icing.  
500g condensed milk
350 g milk courverture 37% (brown milk chocolate - Lindt)
75 g amarula or 15ml vanilla extract
Melt the chocolate over boiling water (take the boiling water off the heat, let the chocolate gently melt over the water, only stir occasionally and make sure no steam reach the chocolate)
Add the condensed milk
Slowly add the Amarula or vanilla. Mix until well combined.
Vanilla ganache filling
Using vanilla pods or a good vanilla extract will serve to enhance and give depth to the white chocolate base.
450 g white courverture 36% (white milk chocolate - Lindt)
200 g glucose syrup
200 g cream 35% fat
Vanilla extract
Simmer the, cream, glucose and the vanilla extract.
Pour the cream over the white milk chocolate and allow to stand for 1 min, then mix from the core to form a smooth shinny ganache.
You might ask, why using these ganaches, instead of icing sugar to decorate the cakes, while it still contains sugar.  We noticed the icing sugar used to decorate the cakes has a worse effect on the energy levels (hyperactivity) and side effects on children than the high quality chocolate. Years ago when CJ turned two years old, I tried a ‘Healthy party’. No sweets, only sandwiches with coloured fillings, coloured boiled eggs, etc.  The effect due to the coloring was even worse than the effect of the sugar. Not to mention, half of the children was disgusted with the menu - “where were the party stuff?”.  A party will always need the sweet stuff, and we just have to work with that.
When you plan a party you have to make peace that your children is going to take in sugar.  You need to boost their immune system before hand, supplement them with enzymes to digest the wrong stuff at the time of the party and will need to give them antioxidants after the party.  Then you need to try and get the best quality of cake and decorating ingredients where possible. For this reason we replace low quality icing sugar with all the bleaching, refining and accompanying colorants, with an excellent quality of sugar like Lindt chocolate.  
We also restrict colourings to the minimum. 

On Wednesday I made the huge mistake to buy thousand and thousands and all kinds of interesting decorating stars and circles from the decorating section of our local grocery store to decorate the cupcakes. 

The next 48 hours was a total disaster! We usually use normal sweets like smarties, astros and jelly tots to decorate cakes, this was the first time I bought these special decorating stuff.  It must have been the colorants (which clearly have of a much higher concentration of colorants than in normal sweets) which caused my children to go totally wild for 48 hours.  Their emotions were totally out of control.  They would cry for everything, got angry for nothing, and not be able to focus for any length of time! Never before did I experience this.  
This just confirmed to me, that when you need to use sugar make sure you use the best quality available. Stay away from the local baking supply store!  I noticed the other day, the products available in the baking section, very seldom have an ingredient lists. And the boxes with ready bake cake mixes, contains more preservatives, flavorings and colorants than actual flour.  
Bake from scratch and choose your ingredients carefully! 

For Saturday’s birthday cake I was blessed with Heidi-Mari and CJ taking full responsibility to bake and decorate the cake.  Danika and Daniel chose the theme.  Heidi-Mari used our traditional Basic French Sponge Cake for the cake, using spelt flour and NO baking soda and they used the ganaches to decorate the cake.  Since most of the cake was decorated with the brown ganache (chocolate which contains no colorants), we minimized the use of colorants.
For the first time ever I could go to bed at 10pm the evening before a child’s birthday party.  CJ and Heidi-Mari were still decorating the cake, but I knew they would create a show piece after observing and assisting me in decorating at least 50 cakes over the past 18 years. And they did!

Thank you CJ and Heidi-Mari for making Daniel’s 4th birthday a memory making event!

With love


Anonymous said...

Hi Linnie, we have been off wheat and sugar and have cut back milk of the last 5 months. This since reading an article from Christo. The fam has adjusted very well to this change, and we do a lot of baking and making from scratch. Your use of sugar in these recipes caught me by surprise! Is it really that ok, that you are baking with sugar? Do you use xylitol? I don't use agave because of its high fructose base

Linnie said...

Just for the record, sugar is NOT ok for every day use. BUT we have come a long way, we have used, tried and thrown away many $$$ in flops for birthday cakes and treats. So after having gone through all that, we do NOT use sugar on a daily basis, we simply use it for baking birthday cakes. I've tried baking with all kinds of things like Rapendura sugar (it works some times, but not in all cases) We used to use xylitol but stopped about 3 years ago when Christo researched in depth. It causes tummy aches and diarrhoea. Same with fructose. Baking with dates, honey, organic sugar, raw sugar etc does not always work well. So if you boost your children's immune systems well, BEFORE and AFTER the party, you should be ok. Also, if the children are a bit under the weather, we always stay away from sugar as far as possible. Before a party we give the children Activ 8, Assimil 8, Coral Calcium and Omega SLO (Seven Point Five products). After a party they will get Mindset, Activ 8, Coral 8 and Omega SLO and sometimes Silvermax as well (Seven Point Five products). So using sugar is not to be taken lightly...

Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing this day with us, and thank you very much for sharing your recipes!

Unfortunately we can't (some don't want to) cut out milk and sugar totally from our diets, but just changing over to clean, unpasturised milk and cutting out wheat, our boys have gone off their asthma medication and calmed down a lot - not "classified" as ADHD anymore.

They now had a cold (3 days only) for the first time in about a year. They also don't have added sugar in their food, but every now and again will have something like Smarties or Jelly Tots, etc. and their ice cream, but also no colourants, but good quality products.

My husband has gone so far as not to want any type of icing on chocolate cake as long as we use good quality chocolate in the ingredients, and the boys love it, because the cake is delicious and moist.

We couldn't make all the changes, but just the one or two we did make, makes all the difference in our family.

Elize vd Merwe

Urban Homestead South Africa said...

Hi Linnie that is a wonderful cake, well done to you elder two!

Traci Michele said...

SO SO SO CUTE! Happy Birthday Daniel!

Love, Traci @ Ordinary Inspirations

Linnie said...

Thank you Wendy my Friend!

Linnie said...

Thank you Traci, for visiting my blog! I absolutely love your posting on praying for our husbands each day for 20 minutes. Blessings

Sonja said...

Dit lyk baie mooi Linnie! Lekker om weer vir n slag te kom lees wat julle almal doen. xx

Linnie said...

Thank you for your sweet and encouraging words Anna. May God bless you in raising your beautiful family.

Anonymous said...

Thanks again Linnie, Adam's birthday is in 2wks time and he wants a treasure chest to go with the dragon jumping castle. I decided to either bake one huge rectangle cake, cut it in little "boxes" or bake muffins and make round treasure chests.

Any chance of those two older kids of yours coming up to Natal to lend a hand?


Elize vdM

Blog Widget by LinkWithin