My mom’s birthday cake

2014-01-18 11.04.30

Last year I didn’t manage to make a cake for my mom’s birthday, because I was travelling for work. This year I couldn’t miss this chance.
I was planning the decoration of her cake since Christmas, when I bought powdered egg whites for the royal icing. For a long time I wanted to try brush embroidery technique but I never really had an occasion to do it. On the other hand I was also quite undecided to start working with royal icing, knowing that it’s not easy.
But there is always a first time for everything!

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Ingredients for the cake:
300g plain biscuits
800 ml whole milk
2 packs pudding (I used vanilla and cream flavors)
100 ml heavy cream
100g white sugar
100g dried apricots
50 ml Marasquino (or rum or any other sweet liquor)
40g white chocolate

For the butter cream:
80g butter, softened
150g powdered sugar
100g biscuit crumbs

For the decoration:
500-600g coloured fondant
Royal icing

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Cut the dried apricots into small pieces and soak them in the liquor. Let stay for several hours, until the alcohol is almost absorbed in the fruits.
Combine 700 ml milk with the cream and bring them to boil. Combine the pudding powder with the sugar and 100 ml milk and whisk until homogeneous. When the milk starts shimmering remove from the heat and add the pudding mixture into it. Whisk well. Return to the heat and keep whisking. When the pudding gets thick, remove the pan from the heat and add in the white chocolate (broken into pieces). Stir until the chocolate melts and then cover the pan with a lid.
Break the biscuits into small pieces.
Line an 18-20 cm spring form pan with baking paper. Spread 1/4 of the biscuit pieces on the bottom. Spread over ⅓ of the soaked apricots and cover with ⅓ of the pudding. Repeat the same process 2 more times. Spread the last ¼ biscuits on top of the cake. Try to make the top as plain as possible.
Cover the cake with plastic wrap and let cool in the fridge for at least 4-5 hours.
Carefully remove the cake from the spring form pan and place it on a cake plate or base.
Prepare the butter cream:
Beat the butter and the powdered sugar until creamy. Combine with the biscuit crumbs and mix until homogeneous. Cover the cake all over with the butter cream. Pay more attention on the sections with more cream then biscuits: there have to be a thick layer of butter between the pudding and the fondant, so that the decoration can stay still and without melting. Also if the cake has uneven areas, fix them with the butter cream as much as possible.
When the cake is all covered let cool in the fridge for another hour or two, before covering it with the fondant sheet.
I made the cake violet, as this is one of my mum’s preferred colours. I decided to leave the icing white for an elegant and simple look.
To be very sincere, I didn’t manage to make my icing with the right consistency and this caused some issues at the beginning of the piping. Nevertheless the final result was satisfactory and this is what matters.
My mom and her guests really liked the cake and this made me very happy.

The small jar that you see on the pictures is filled with the remaining quantities of biscuits, apricots and cream. I didn’t manage to take pictures when the cake was cut because I wasn’t there, that’s why I am showing this jar instead. 

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