Glitzy and glamorous with its gleams of gold and silver sparkles, this skyscraper of a bake makes a show-stopping centrepiece to any celebration table.
FOR THE CAKE
- 300g unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 200g caster sugar
- 225g soft light brown sugar
- 3 large eggs, beaten
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 350g plain flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 100g cocoa
- Pinch of salt
- 150ml buttermilk
- 150ml boiling water
FOR THE GANACHE
- 200g dark chocolate, finely chopped
- 225ml double cream
- 25g unsalted butter
- 25g caster sugar
FOR THE SHARDS
- 326g extra dark baking chocolate
- 326g milk baking chocolate
- 3 x 20cm loose-based sandwich tins
- Gold and silver edible stars
- Edible gold glitter
MAKE THE CAKE
- Preheat the oven to 180C/gas mark 4.
- Gradually add the eggs, mixing well between each addition and scraping down the sides of the bowl from time to time. Add the vanilla extract.
- Sift the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, cocoa and a pinch of salt into the mixture and mix until almost combined. Add the buttermilk and boiling water and mix until smooth.
- Divide the cake batter between three 20cm sandwich tins and bake on the middle shelf of your preheated oven for about 25 minutes until well-risen, firm and a skewer inserted into the middle of the cakes comes out clean.
- Cream the butter with both of the sugars until pale and light.
- Leave the cakes to cool in the tins for 2-3 minutes, then carefully turn out onto a wire cooling rack and leave until completely cooled. While waiting for the cake to cool, prepare the ganache and the chocolate shards.
MAKE THE GANACHE
- To make the ganache, put the chopped dark chocolate in a bowl. Add the cream, butter and sugar to a small saucepan and heat until just boiling.
- Pour the cream mixture over the chocolate and leave for 5 minutes until the chocolate has melted. Stir until smooth then set aside until thick enough to spread.
MAKE THE SHARDS
- For the shards, mix together the extra dark and milk chocolate baking chips and temper.
- Spread your tempered chocolate thickly over sheets of baking parchment and sprinkle edible gold and silver stars over the top. Allow to cool at room temperature.
- When cooled, apply a little gold glitter, if desired, and cut into a variety of triangles and rectangles in different shapes and sizes.
ASSEMBLE THE CAKE
- Place the first cake layer on a serving plate and spread with a thin layer of ganache. Top with the second cake layer and repeat. Top with the third cake layer and gently press the layers together.
- Using a palette knife, spread the top and sides of the cake in an even layer of ganache. Press the shards around the edge of your cake and add to the top, pressing them down into the cake sponge to keep them in place.