I love the trend for naked cakes (cakes with little or no icing on top). I have a sweet tooth but am finding a lot of buttercream and sugarpaste a bit too much when I eat it on a cake no matter how beautiful and delicious it looks. This cake is the third and last cake I baked for our local village’s Spring Festival nearly a couple of weeks ago. I had a full bag of pecan nuts which needed using up and also wanted to use up a bag of Sugar and Crumbs Toffee Apple Icing Sugar in the cupboard. These would work amazingly well with some Butterkist Toffee Popcorn to top the cake off.
I had already baked a carrot cake and a banana loaf as seen in my previous two blog posts. By now it was Saturday afternoon and I still had to get this cake baked. I needed to chop the pecan nuts and toast them first. This I did roughly with a small, sharp knife and then chucked them onto a baking tray. They were lightly toasted for about 10 minutes then left to cool down.
The cake itself was made by creaming together butter and sugar for a few minutes until the mixture became light and fluffy. I used my hand held whisk to speed this up. After this I added in three eggs and half the quantity needed of milk, vanilla extract, self raising flour and baking powder. Then the rest was added in, all except I used four eggs the second time round making seven all together. Once all the mixture was combined well, I folded in the toasted pecan nuts.
As you can see in the pictures, the cake is a triple layer cake. So I had to use three 20cm (8″) circular sandwich tins. These I greased and lined. I love the ready made baking parchment circles you can buy in varying diameters as they save the hassle of cutting out circles by hand when you’re pushed for time.
I was very impressed with the way the Popcorn Naked Cake turned out. Each layer rose beautifully in the tin and was left to cool down before turning out onto a rack. While these were cooling down I made up some frosting. It was a buttercream filling using butter, Toffee Apple Sugar and Crumbs Natural flavoured icing sugar and full fat cream cheese. I know full fat cream cheese doesn’t sound healthy but using the low fat stuff just doesn’t work when you’re making icing. It goes all watery and separates. The icing was easy to spread and there was just enough to decorate the two filling layers and the top. About half a packet of Toffee Butterkist popcorn adorned the top of the cake.
At the Spring Festival that afternoon after dropping off the three cakes I had baked my mum and I sampled two of my cakes. We cut each piece in half. Apart from the cream cheese icing in the Naked Pecan Popcorn Cake being a bit too sweet for me, the main cake was delicious. I also had to watch the popcorn as I had refridgerated the cake and it did taste a little bit soggy. What I really needed to do was to have added the popcorn to the top just prior to serving the cake. Having said that, I’ll definitely be making this cake again. It tasted fabulous and looked it as well.
Love Sam xx