Cakes

Neapolitan Cake – and Marta’s Birthday

 For those who do not know the Neapoliltan Cake it is basically an extraordinary mix of vanilla, chocolate and strawberry flavoured layer cakes. Not only is it attractive but also tastes really good. And I have prepared a GIANT one as a birthday cake for my friend Marta. Today’s post is a mandatory reading, in addition to the recipe I have prepared the photos of the step by step for building this monster 🙂

Have you ever watch the Discovery Channel show “Mega-Structures”? If you do not keep an eye on Youtube. The point is that you will soon realize that you can make a chapter on this cake. The first thing you should be thinking about is; Why did you make such a big cake? Because it’s Marta’s birthday cake and she’s very special to me (and also my first unconditional follower of the blog) deserves the best and biggest cake in the world.

 But the truth is, that I went too far … quite a lot. I wanted to make it 6 layers, that was clear and I have never made a cake with so many layers. And I also have never used my super cool new 8” pans, so I had no idea what will come out of them, so, well, I neither cut nor lazy increased the measures of the recipe a little bit to my criteria and I went too far.

But Marta’s face when she saw me entering the restaurant with such a monster in my hands was priceless, so I think that once again being a little (quite) exaggerated has not gone wrong J In addition, I cannot tell you how much My personal satisfaction has grown by successfully completing such a work. Although I had a bad time, I was all the time nervous and spent the whole week thinking about the cake, how to put it together, how to decorate it, thinking that it would not be perfect, well, such a stress …

 Today’s post has a bit especial format. Since it is a birthday cake I did not know if I could show you the inside. And since this tri-colour inside is so impressive, I’ve decided to make a step by step photo shoot so you can at least see it inside. Also, the last birthday cake I made for another friend (The Oreo Layer Cake) was not published on the blog precisely because I could not put the inside and because it had quite a lot if ingredients too, and then people asked me for the recipe in private. So, It does not happen to me twice anymore. I put the photos of the step by step after the recipe box. This is a fairly long post, but basically, they are only photos, I don’t write too much later. And I also post some pictures of the cutting we did in the restaurant, but please don’t mind the quality of those they are just representative.

Neapolitan-cake-30So, first I post the recipe, it has so many ingredients because I am going to write the exact amounts that I have used in case you are a bit crazy (like me) and want to make it giant. If not, then you know, divide the quantities and make it smaller. With three layers for example would be ideal. And here I leave a photo of the birthday girl super happy with her MEGA Neapolitan Cake.

Neapolitan Cake

Imprimir Receta
Raciones:: 26-28 Tiempo de Preparación:: Really a lot- plan a couple of afternoons
Dificultad:

Ingredientes

  • CHOCOLATE CAKE:
  • 200 g flour
  • 6 Tbsp dark cocoa powder
  • 2 and ½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp of salt
  • 350 g of sugar
  • 120 ml of sunflower oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup of coffee
  • 200 ml milk
  • 1 and ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • VANILLA CAKE:
  • 6 eggs
  • 200 g of sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • 75 g flour
  • 75 g cornstarch
  • 75 g butter
  • STRAWBERRY Cake:
  • 150 g strawberries (fresh or frozen)
  • 250 g flour
  • 2 and ½ tsp of baking powder
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • 350 g of sugar
  • 120 ml of sunflower oil
  • 4 eggs
  • 200 ml milk
  • 1 and ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 drops pink food colouring paste
  • FILLING MASCARPONE CREAM:
  • 750 g Mascarpone(cold)
  • 125 g of icing sugar
  • 375 ml heavy cream (very cold)
  • 1 and ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 Tbsp dark cocoa powder
  • ½ tsp strawberry extract
  • 1 drop pink food colouring paste
  • BUTTERCREAM ITALIAN MERINGUE:
  • 200 g of sugar
  • 60 ml of water
  • 225 g butter (at room temperature but not too soft)
  • 4 egg whites
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 drop pink food colouring paste
  • DECORATION:
  • 150 g of dark chocolate (minimum 50% cocoa)
  • 75 g of heavy cream
  • Colourful Sprinkles
  • Cookies, waffles or anything that reminds you of an ice cream

Instrucciones

1

To prepare the chocolate cake, preheat the oven to 170ºC and grease two pans of approximately 20 cm in diameter. If you do not have two pans the cooking time will obviously be longer, but you can do the same and then cut the cake in two equal layers.

2

In a bowl sift the flour, cocoa, yeast and salt. Reserve. In another bowl mix the sugar with the oil. Incorporate the eggs and beat until it's integrated, you can do it perfectly by hand. Add half of the dry ingredients and mix until incorporated. Pour the coffee, milk and vanilla extract and mix a little more. Finally, incorporate the rest of the dry ingredients by mixing until there are no lumps in the dough.

3

Fill the pans with half of the dough in each and bake for about 40 minutes. In any case, test the stick in the centre of the cake before removing it from the oven. This cake is very moist and it takes time to bake so be sure is baked before removing it. Cool the cakes on a rack.

4

To prepare the vanilla biscuits, repeat step 1 but this time preheat to 180 ° C. In the bowl of the mixer put the eggs, sugar, vanilla extract and salt to beat with the whisk accessory for at least 10 minutes at medium-high speed until you have a mixture that has tripled its size and that Is much whiter. Sieve in the form of rain on the dough the flour and the cornstarch. Incorporate them into soft and gently movements. Melt the butter in the microwave and pour it into the dough by mixing again gently just until it is combined.

5

Distribute the dough in both pans equally. Bake for 10 minutes at 180 ° C. After 10 minutes, reduce the oven temperature to 160 ° C and bake for about 25 minutes more. Remove from the oven, let cool for about 10 minutes and unmould them, it is better to do it when they are still hot. Cool the cakes completely on a rack.

6

To prepare the strawberry cakes repeat step 1. Clean and blend the strawberries with the blender until you have a fine purée. Reserve. In a bowl sieve the flour with the yeast and the salt. In another bowl mix the sugar with the oil. Incorporate the eggs and beat until they are integrated. Add the strawberry puree. Pour in half the flour and mix lightly. Now incorporate milk and vanilla extract. Mix a little more and finish adding the rest of the flour and mixing until there are no lumps. The dough will be a very pale pink, to make it more intense add two drops of food colouring and mix until the colour is uniform throughout the dough.

7

Fill the pans with half of the dough in each and bake at 170 ° C for about 45 minutes. Remember as always check that they are well cooked by doing the stick test. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely on a rack.

8

To prepare the filling mascarpone cream, we first make a basic vanilla cream that will be the cream of the layer of white sponge cake and from it we will get the other two. Beat the mascarpone with the icing sugar using the sticks until creamy, about 1 minute. Add the cream that must be very cold and beat at high speed until it gets thick, for about 2 minutes.

9

Divide the cream into 3 parts, you will need less cream of the pink because it goes only in one layer, so divide it in 2/5, 2/5 and 1/5 parts or so. Add the strawberry extract and the pink colouring to the smaller cream part. To one of the other two parts, add the vanilla extract and you will have the vanilla cream. And to the rest add the cocoa powder and mix well until it is homogeneous. Reserve the creams in the refrigerator until you use them.

10

To prepare the Italian meringue buttercream, you must first prepare the meringue. To do this, heat the sugar with water in a saucepan. Introduce a kitchen thermometer to control the temperature of the syrup.

11

Meanwhile, beat the egg whites in the blender bowl with the salt and vinegar at a low speed, so that its get foamy. When the temperature of the thermometer reaches 100 ° C, raise the speed of the mixer to medium-high.

12

When the temperature of the syrup reaches 118 ° C, remove from the heat and without stopping the mixer, pour in the whites very slowly and in the form of a yarn while still beating the whites at medium-high speed. Be very careful and do not pour the syrup on the moving whisk or it can splatter and burn you.

13

Continue beating at high speed for about 10 more minutes, until the meringue cools. Before adding the butter make sure the bowl is cold, if necessary wait 5 or 10 minutes more for the meringue to cool.

14

Add butter little by little in pieces while continuing to beat at medium speed until all is combined, add the vanilla extract and then increase the speed of the mixer and beat the mixture for 5 minutes more. There is a moment when it seems to be split, but at the last minute of mixing it takes the necessary consistency.

15

Separate 1/5 part of the buttercream and add the drop of pink colouring to obtain the cream that we will use in the base and give the ombre effect.

16

Now that you have all the parts of the cake ready, I will continue explaining the assembly of the cake using the photos of the step by step to make it easier. Now comes the funniest part! Before starting, prepare all cake layers, all of the same height and ready to go stacking. I also removed the edge using a round template about 2 cm smaller than the pan and cutting them with a knife. This ensures that the walls are really straight. To level them the best is to use a cake leveller, but if you do not have one a large sawing knife and a little knack can make it.

Notas

as this cake has a lot of work and you have to prepare 3 cakes and 2 creams, I recommend that at least you prepare the cakes in advance and freeze them, which is what I do. In addition, it is advisable to freeze them as they become easier to handle when assembling the cake and make fewer crumbs when cutting them.

NOTE 2: The cake should be kept cold due to the mascarpone cream. So, make room in the fridge.

CAKE ASSEMBLY STEP BY STEP

We started by placing the first layer of chocolate base. Cover with a part of the chocolate mascarpone cream (about half).

 Stack the other cake layer and cover with the rest of the cream.

 It is the turn of the vanilla layers, basically repeat the same operation as for the chocolate but using mascarpone vanilla cream.

 Between layer and layer apply a little pressure so that the cream stabilizes and check that the stack is staying straight.

 Place the first layer of strawberry cake and cover with all the strawberry mascarpone cream, in this case we only make one layer of cream.

 Place the lid that will be the last strawberry layer. It is better that you use the part of cake that was touching the bottom of the pan of the reverse, because it is the smoothest part possible and thus will obtain a better finish when frosting the cake.

 Take a last look at the structure, check that it is completely straight and you can start giving the first layer of frosting the “crumbs stopper” with the Italian meringue buttercream (white). This layer should be very thin and the goal is to make the base and as its name says, cover the crumbs so that the cake stays with a super smooth and clean frosting.

Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes for this first thin layer to harden.

 Then you can begin frosting the cake with the rest of the buttercream. Start at the top using the white buttercream reserving about 6 cm of height free in the base. You should have some cream left over for decorating.

 Cover the base with the pink buttercream, also keep a little bit to decorate later. And you can begin to smooth using a spatula.

 Place it in a vertical position completely parallel to the surface and start turning the base of the cake. Without moving the spatula and almost without applying pressure will smooth the surface and creating the ombre. Patience, this requires practice and if you do not make it perfect, nothing happens.

 When it is all covered and smooth, refrigerate for about 30 minutes before you start decorating it to harden the buttercream.

 The first thing is to make that yummy chocolate ganaché. Chop the chocolate, put it in a small bowl, pour the cream and heat in the microwave for 30 seconds. Remove, mix a little and reheat another 30 seconds. Remove and melt the chocolate with the remaining temperature by stirring well. Pour over the cake and smooth with the spatula so that it falls slightly from the sides.

  Sprinkle with some colourful sprinkles.

 Using the buttercream leftovers, fill in a piping bag and make 3 or 4 cream spirals with a star tip that we will use as a base to put some cookies and wafers as decoration.

 It’s ready now!! Isn’t gorgeous??!!

Sweet Dreams,

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