This morning, I woke up to the sound of my mom muttering something while standing in front of my closet. I had just fallen asleep a few hours before, so I did not even bother to ask what she was doing there. "Do you have anything green I can possibly borrow?" She asked from what seemed like far, far away as I was drifting back to sleep. Her voice sounded so tiny.
She asked again, so I sat up in bed with my massive bed head and in a very irriated voice asked why she needed something green. "It's St. Patrick's Day! I don't want to get pinched!" I laughed and quickly jumped out of bed as I realized I did not have anything St. Patrick-y on my blog. I sat in front of my computer and looked for recipes and came across Nigella Lawson's Guinness Chocolate Cake recipe. Easy Peasy.
I quickly washed up and drove to the grocery store to buy a bottle of Guinness and a tub of sour cream. I must say that it is quite awkward bumping into a friend's mom at 9:30 in the morning with a bottle of alcohol in my arms. I found myself carefully turning the label around as I spoke to her, hoping she did not notice. Or if she did, hoping that she somehow magically knew I was going to bake a cake with it. Hopefully she made that connection. Just hopefully.
Anyways, an hour later, I had a cake baked and cooling, and icing made.
Instead of going forth with Nigella's cream cheese icing, I made Swiss Meringue Buttercream and spiked it with a bit Bailey's Irish Cream to continue on with the Irish theme.
Swiss Meringue Buttercream:
(This is half of a full recipe, as I only needed enough to cover the top of the cake. To make a full recipe, please double the ingredients.)
- 3 large egg whites
- 3/4 cup of granulated sugar
- 2 sticks (or 1/2 pound) of room temperature butter, cubed
- 4 capfuls of Bailey's
- 1 tablespoon coffee extract (optional)
1. In a stainless steel bowl, whisk egg whites and granulated sugar together.
2. Place the bowl over a pot of simmering water (make sure the bottom of the bowl does not touch the simmering water, or your eggs will cook!)
3. Continue whisking the egg mixture until it is warm to touch and no granules of sugar can be felt.
4. Transfer mixture to a standmixer, and using a whisk, whip at medium-high speed until soft peaks form.
5. When slightly cooled (about a minute), start throwing in the cubes of butter.
6. When buttercream comes together, add the liqueur and extract. You may adjust the amount of extract and alcohol to your own liking, but do so by adding a little at a time.
7. Whip at a lower speed for a few more seconds until well incorporated.
(Having problems with your buttercream? If your mixture turns very soupy after adding the butter, it means the mixture was too warm, or your butter too soft. To resolve, fill a ziploc bag with ice and tape it, or hold it, against the side of the mixing bowl, and your buttercream should come together. If your mixture looks like cottage cheese, it means the mixture was too cool, or your butter was too cold, when added. Just let the whisk run, and your buttercream should come together.)
Once the cake is completely cooled, schmear buttercream on top, and enjoy!
Happy St. Patrick's Day, everyone! : )
For those of you in a hurry, I think this recipe may work using a boxed cake mix. Just substitute the water for Guinness. If you try this method, please send me an email with your results.
I did not level the cake because
I felt it was a easy, laid-back type of cake.
However, if you would like to, feel free to do so!
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