Monday, 5 February 2018

RECIPE: Spiced Caramel Feather Cake

I first came across the Feather Cake phenomenon while browsing Pinterest and fell in love with how effective something so simple could be. Essentially, you make 'feathers' out of Candy Melts or coloured white chocolate and then attach them to a cake of your choice. It seemed a pretty quick way to create a showstopper cake, so I couldn't resist having a go for my husband's birthday. I ordered a range of Candy Melts from Hobbycraft, as well as some new paintbrushes and was ready to get started! 

My husband loves caramel, so I made him a Spiced Caramel Cake...

What you'll need:
225g Butter
225g Caster Sugar
4 Eggs
2 tsp Salted Caramel Flavouring
(I picked this up from the baking section at Morrisons)
225g Self Raising Flour
1-2 tsp Cinnamon, to taste
for the icing
4-6 tbsp. Ready-made Caramel or Dulce de Leche
140g Softened Butter
1-2 tbsp. Milk
280g Icing Sugar
2 tsp Vanilla Extract

What to do:
1) Preheat the oven to 180'C. Grease and line two round baking trays with greaseproof paper. 
2) Cream the butter and sugar together, until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs, one at a time and the salted caramel flavouring. 
3) Fold in the flour and cinnamon to create a soft-dropping consistency. You may need to add a splash of milk to create the desired consistency.
4) Spoon the mixture into the baking tins and bake in the centre of the oven for 20-25 minutes, or until a skewer comes out clean from the middle.
5) Remove from the oven and allow to stand for five minutes. Then peel off the greaseproof paper and cool on a wire rack.
6) In the meantime make the caramel buttercream filling - beat the butter in a large bowl and add half of the icing sugar until smooth. 
7) Add the remaining icing sugar and a splash of milk until you have a creamy, smooth buttercream. Swirl in the caramel to create a marbled buttercream.
8) To assemble the cake place one half onto a plate (pop a blob on buttercream on the plate first to stop the cake sliding around), spread some of the buttercream over the top and place the second half of the cake on top. Make sure it is aligned and then spread more of the buttercream all around the outside of the cake, creating a crumb coat. Leave in the fridge to set.
9) Cover the cake in a second layer of buttercream icing, using a palette knife to create a smooth surface all around. Place in the fridge to set.

Now it is time to make the 'feathers', which are easier than you probably think and tasty too! 
What you'll need:
Candy Melts or Coloured White Chocolate (with gel food colouring)
Non-Stick Greaseproof Paper
Paintbrushes

What to do:
1) Melt the Candy Melts/White Chocolate either over boiling water in a saucepan or very slowly in the microwave. Chocolate burns easily, so take it slowly and allow the heat of the bowl to melt the final few chunks.
2) Place a length of non-stick greaseproof paper on a smooth surface. Spoon on about a tablespoon of the melted Candy Melts/White Chocolate, using a paintbrush to create the feather shape. Repeat the process until you've run out of Candy Melts/White Chocolate. It is more effective if you do a range of different sizes, also make sure they aren't too thin as that will make transferring them onto the cake trickier. 
3) Leave the feathers to set completely, then carefully peel them off the greaseproof paper. This part can be done in advance and stored in an airtight container. 
4) To fix the feathers to your cake you can do a combination of pushing them into the cake and using the buttercream to 'stick' them to the sides. I did buy edible glue, but found that the buttercream was strong enough to hold them up.
Have fun playing around with the positioning of the feathers; they look particularly impressive on two-tier cakes. There is lots of inspiration on Pinterest and Instagram for different colour combinations for the feathers or different positioning's. 
Do you like experimenting with cake decorations?

Feel free to leave a comment - I love reading every single one :)

Helen x
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21 comments

  1. Wow! I'd never heard of a feather cake before seeing this - but it looks amazing. Love the colours! Perfect for Easter!

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  2. This looks amazing. I haven't made a feather cake yet but it has been on my list for month now. I should just get on with it because they are so visually striking.

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  3. This is so beautiful and looks so simple to achieve!

    Katie xoxo

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  4. I have never heard of candy melts or feathers like this either! They look awesome! Kaz

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  5. wow this looks amazing and so detailed too. Would love to try something like this at some point. Bet it tastes delicious.

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  6. I love caramel so I guess there's no reason for me to change the flavor. Probably the colors, I want to make it red so that in time for Valentines day. :) - Anosa Malanga

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  7. Oh my those candy melts look fantastic and I have never heard of them before. I'd love to use them in our baking and so would my little lady

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  8. Aren't candy melts such a brilliant invention? So much easier than melting and colouring chocolate!

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  9. I'd never heard of these cakes and honestly thought they looked a bit tricky, but you make it sound so simple! I have a bag of candy melts I've been meaning to use up, maybe I'll give this a try!

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  10. Wow - this looks absolutely amazing. You've made it sound easy, and it is such a great result at the end!

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  11. You have an amazing talent. They look delicious ! Some beautiful Easter colours too

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  12. Wow, that looks incredible! I'm not much of a baker but I think I could just about manage this.

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  13. This looks so cool! I was really keen to find out how you made the feathers...such a fab idea it really is the icing on the cake! x

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  14. Oh wow, these look amazing. Will have to attempt making these

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  15. This looks amazing! So fun to make! And I bet it tastes so good x

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  16. I've never come across this but it looks so effective. I hope hubby was impressed with his cake because I am!

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  17. Oh wow, this looks amazing! Reminded me of peacock feathers the minute I looked at it. I'll have to give this a go :)

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  18. Oh this looks cool... I've never seen these cakes before. They are certainly eye catching.

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  19. Blimey - this looks a bit posh! Super cool decoration... but I'm dying to know what the inside of the cake looked like!

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  20. Wow! This looks amazing and spiced caramel sounds so delicious. I love how eye-catching this is. I've seen them on pinterest too and they always look incredible, as does this one!

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