This Coles Cooking Club member wanted to create something special for her husband for Valentine’s Day. This must-try Valentines Day cake was the result.
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Preheat oven to 180°C. Grease three 20cm (base measurement) round cake pans and line the bases and sides with baking paper. Use an electric mixer to whisk the eggs, sugar and vanilla in a large bowl until pale and creamy. Add the milk and oil and beat until just combined. Sift the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt over the egg mixture. Stir to combine.
Pour the mixture evenly among the lined pans. Bake for 30-35 mins or until a skewer inserted in the centres comes out clean. Set aside in the pans for 10 mins before turning onto a wire rack to cool completely. Use a large serrated knife to trim the tops of the cakes to level. Place in the fridge for 1 hour to chill.
Meanwhile, to make ganache, place the chocolate in a medium heatproof bowl. Place the cream in a saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 3 mins or until the cream comes to a simmer. Pour over the chocolate. Cover and set aside for 1 min. Use a balloon whisk to stir until mixture is smooth and well combined. Place in the fridge until firm. Stir in the choc-hazelnut spread until combined.
To make buttercream, use a clean electric mixer to beat butter in a bowl until very pale and creamy. Gradually add the icing sugar, beating until well combined. Beat in the vanilla and milk, adding a little more milk if necessary.
Add 1/4 cup of the buttercream to the ganache and stir until combined. Spread half the ganache mixture over the top of 1 cake. Top with another cake and spread with the remaining ganache mixture. Top with remaining cake. Reserve 1 cup of the buttercream. Spread the remaining buttercream over the top and side of the cake, using a round-bladed knife or palette knife to smooth the surface.
Use food colouring to tint 1 tbs of the reserved buttercream blue. Place reserved white buttercream in a piping bag fitted with a 1cm fluted nozzle. Pipe around the edge of the cake. Top with fondant hearts. Place blue buttercream in a clean piping bag fitting with a 5mm plain nozzle. Pipe a line on the front of the cake to resemble a heart monitor. Use a little of the remaining buttercream to attach a fondant heart to the end of the line. Decorate with sprinkles.
Icing love hearts: To make fondant hearts, roll out ready-to-roll icing on a surface lightly dusted with cornflour to make a 3mm-thick disc. Use a small heart-shaped cutter or sharp knife to cut out heart shapes. Set aside for 20 mins or until firm.
COOK. STORE. SAVE.
Use it up: Use any leftover sprinkles and red fondant hearts to decorate homemade bikkies for a sweet gift.