Saturday, 1 September 2012

Recipe: channel 4 logo cake


The channel 4 cake at the party - as baked by EJ

Last week two of my friends turned 30, to celebrate they threw a big fancy dress party. The theme? Channel 4! It turns out, like my friends, Channel 4 was born in 1982, so as guests we had a wealth of 30 years worth of TV history to choose from for our costumes. Costumes on the night included interactive Countdown, the 118 - 118 guys, Shipwrecked, jockeys, Father Ted and Dougal, the big phone guy from Trigger Happy TV, the  eye child from Garth Marenghi's Darkplace, Phonejacker, Deal or no deal, Paula Yates, The Crystal Maze and many more interpretations...

I thought it only right to bake a themed cake for the occasion! I baked a chocolate victoria sponge cake with Terry's chocolate orange segments to decorate the sides and iced the top of the cake with the old-school channel 4 logo we all grew up with.

Here's my recipe for a chocolate orange victoria sponge cake, I made the channel 4 logo using coloured ready to roll icing purchased from Purple Heart in Brighton. 

To make a chocolate orange Victoria sponge cake, you will need:

A 20cm cake tin, lined and oiled

110g self raising flour
1tsp baking powder
110g caster sugar
110g softened butter
2 eggs
0.5tsp orange oil
100g dark chocolate (I used 70% cocoa)

For the buttercream icing, you will need:
200g softened butter
350g icing sugar
4tsp cocoa powder

For the fondant icing, you will need:
Ready to roll coloured fondant icing:

  • Black - to cover the cake
  • Red, yellow, green, blue and mauve (to match the old-school channel 4 logo)

To decorate:
One Terry's chocolate orange


To make the sponge:

Line a 20cm round cake tin with baking paper

To prepare the chocolate sponge, combine the self raising flour, baking powder, sugar, butter, eggs and orange oil and blend until they form a smooth batter.

Break up the dark chocolate and gently heat in a bowl over simmering water until just melted.

Pour the melted chocolate into the cake batter and stir until it's an even colour and consistency, then spoon into the prepared cake tin.

Smooth over the top of the cake mixture with a pallet knife, then pop it into the oven and bake for 30 minutes, carefully poke with a skewer (I usually use a cocktail stick) to test that the sponge is cooked the whole way through before removing from the oven.

Allow to cool in the tin for a few minutes before turning out, removing the baking paper and placing on a wire rack to cool.

To assemble the cake:
Using a wire cake slicer, cut the sponge into two layers.

Combine the softened butter, icing sugar and cocoa powder to make the buttercream icing.

Sandwich the two halves of the cake together with buttercream icing and spread a thin layer evenly on top to help glue the fondant icing when you cover the cake.

To ice and decorate the cake:
Roll the black fondant icing out to be approximately 3mm thick. It may be helpful to roll it out on top of baking paper, using a little icing sugar to ensure the rolling pin doesn't stick to the icing.

Lift up the rolled out icing across the back of the rolling pin and gently lay it over the top of the cake. Carefully peel off the baking paper, smoothing the icing to the top of the cake as you do. Smooth the icing against the sides of the top layer of the cake and trim off any excess.

If the black icing doesn't leave you with a perfectly smooth finish on top of the cake, add some texture before you continue to decorate, I used a repeat overlapping print of one of my cookie stamps.

To create the channel 4 logo, roll out a small amount of each colour icing approximately 3mm thick and cut out the shapes as follows:

Channel 4 logo template
To create your channel 4 logo:



Lay the logo sections in place on top of the cake (the fondant icing I used was moist enough to stick to the iced cake, if not, you could use a tiny amount of buttercream to glue the pieces down).

As a finishing touch, wedge chocolate orange segments around the side of the cake (between the sponge layers). Et voila!  

EJ with the Channel 4 cake

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