I usually don’t pay much attention to my own birthday; in fact, I have taken it out of my personal Facebook because I didn’t want to make a big deal out of it. However, a blog birthday is a different story; I have to, at least, mention the occasion. Since I forgot to celebrate its birthday last year (oop!), I feel the need to do it this year. OMG!!! Circahappy turns 2, today!!!
I remember my very first post (sorry.. no link 😛 ) that I used iPhone 4s to take photos and struggled to edit them in Photoshop CS4. I had fun doing it, but admittedly, that post was quite horrendous. Is that the same with you guys? Do you wince at your first post the same way I wince at mine? 🙂 Thankfully, my skills have improved since then and I can proudly say that I no longer wince at my photos, well, maybe a little squint. 🙂
Since today is circahappy’s 2nd birthday, I have no choice but to bring you a cake; a chocolate cake with pickled sweet cherries and caramel frosting, that is. Originally, this post was just about these pickled sweet cherries, but since they are so easy to make and they taste so good by themselves, with cocktail or even with dessert, I find it hard not to make a celebration cake with them.
It has been such a long time since I posted my last cake, I hope you enjoy this one because I made it for all of you, who have been here, either just a single comment or a regular weekly visit. Thank you so much for stopping by my little creative space. I would not have lasted this long without your support. Thank you.. Thank you.. Thank you..
- 1 lb. sweet cherries, pitted
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup white balsamic vinegar
- 1 cup water
- sterilized jar (s)
- To sterilize the jar, submerge a lid & jar into a boiling water for 3 minutes, and let dry on a wire rack. Pack cherries into a jar, but need to leave 1/2 inch space at the top.
- Bring the water to a boil, then add salt, sugar and vinegar; stir until all well-combined. let cool for 5 minutes. Ladle the pickling liquid into a jar; also, need to leave 1/2 inch space at the top. Cap with the lid and let cool before refrigerate it. Keep it refrigerate for 5-10 days.
- 10 oz. pitted pickled sweet cherries, rough chopped
- 2+1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 1+1/4 cups Dutch-process cocoa powder
- 2+1/2 cups sugar
- 2+1/2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1+1/4 teaspoons baking powder
- 1+1/4 teaspoons salt
- 2 large whole eggs, plus 1 large egg yolk
- 1+1/4 cups milk
- 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla paste OR vanilla extract
- 1+1/4 cups warm water
- extra pitted pickled sweet cherries, to decorate (option)
- honey, to serve (option)
- Preheat the oven to 350 F. Prepare the cake pans; butter two 8-by-2-inch cake pans and dust with flour; tap out the excess flour. Set aside.
- Into the bowl of an electric mixer, sift together flour, cocoa, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Whisk together thoroughly until well-combined. Attach bowl to mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, add the eggs and yolk, milk, oil, vanilla, and warm water. Beat on low speed until smooth and combined, about 3 minutes; scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.
- Dividing batter into 8-by-2-inch cake pans. Divide pickled sweet cherries into those cake pans. Bake for 45-60 minutes or until a cake tester inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
- Transfer pans to wire racks to cool, about 15-30 minutes. Turn out cakes onto racks to cool completely.
- To assemble
- Use a serrated knife to trim the top of the cake layers to make level. Hold the knife level and split each cake into 2 equal layers; you will have 4 slices from those 2 cakes. Since you only need 3 slices for this cake, you can store the rest in an airtight container for your breakfast next morning. Place one layer on a cake plate, and spread 2/3 cup frosting on top; repeat this step. Cover the entire cake with frosting and top with extra pickled sweet cherries. Drizzle honey on top if preferred.
- 6 sticks unsalted butter, at room temperature, cut into small cubes
- 8 oz. pre made caramel sauce
- 1 teaspoon vanilla paste OR vanilla extract
- 2-4 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted (option)
- Beat the butter in an electric mixer on medium-high speed until pale & creamy, about 2-5 minutes. Reduce the speed to medium. Add caramel sauce and mix to well-combined. Add confectioners’ sugar if needed. If you want to add confectioners’ sugar, add 1/2 cup at a time, beating well after each time before adding another 1/2 cup. Add vanilla and beat until frosting is smooth.
- If you choose to drizzle honey on top, you might not want to add confectioners’ sugar to the frosting.
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Thank you so much.