For me, Baileys Irish Cream is a drink I enjoy every now and then with my sister in law, so I felt it was fitting to make her birthday cake using it. And as it was a “big” birthday, I felt it was a good idea to get creative with the decorating.
Baileys Chocolate Cake Ingredients: 150g unsalted butter, chopped 100g dark chocolate, chopped 100g caster sugar 100g brown sugar 50g good quality (preferably Dutch) cocoa powder, sifted 180ml Baileys Irish Cream Liquor 170g plain flour 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder ½ teaspoon baking soda ½ teaspoon salt 3 eggs, room temperature FOR THE MASCARPONE BUTTER CREAM ICING 300g icing sugar 150g butter (soft) Tub of mascarpone FOR THE CHOCOLATE BAILEYS GANACHE 100g good quality dark chocolate, finely chopped 50ml cream 50ml Baileys Irish Cream pinch of sea salt 10g butter, softened to room temperature Method: Preheat oven to 160°C. In a pan over low heat, melt the butter, chocolate, sugars, cocoa powder and Baileys, stirring to get rid of any lumps. Remove from heat and leave to cool for 5 minutes.
Meanwhile, grease and line a 20-21cm round cake tin. Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt and set aside. Add the eggs to the slightly cooled chocolate mixture and whisk to combine. Gently fold in the flour mix until free of lumps. Scrape into cake tin then bake for about 40-45 minutes or until a skewer comes out cleanish. Remove from oven and cool in tin for 10 minutes before removing from the tin and cooling it down completely. Trim the tops of the cake to level. FOR THE GANACHE Place the chopped chocolate in a heatproof bowl and set aside. Bring the cream, Baileys and the salt to a simmer in a pan. Pour over the chocolate and sit for a minute. Gently stir to combine then beat in the butter. Set aside at room temperature and cool until it is thick enough to spread over your cooled cake. Gently stir the ganache occasionally as it cools to keep the temperature even and the ganache smooth. FOR THE BUTTERCREAM Mix the butter and the icing sugar together, then add the mascarpone, beat very well (I use my kenwood for this) TO ASSEMBLE: Level the top of the cake, make a crumb layer using the cream cheese buttercream, refrigerate for one hour. Further cover the cake with the buttercream. Smooth with a warmed palette knife. Refrigerate again. Carefully pour the ganache onto the cooled buttercream coated layer, tilting to give the “dripping” effect.