FOR THE CAKE
- butter, for greasing
- 225g caster sugar
- 2 eggs
- 275ml vegetable oil
- 125ml buttermilk
- 1 tbsp red food colouring
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 175g cake flour
- 15g cocoa
- 1⁄2 tsp baking powder
- 1⁄2 tsp table salt
- 2 tsp white-wine vinegar
- icing sugar, for dusting
FOR THE ICING
- 75g white chocolate, roughly chopped
- 175g unsalted butter, softened
- 375g icing sugar
- 2 tbsp milk
1. Preheat oven to 180°C. Grease 7 x 6cm cooking rings (4cm deep) and line with baking paper.
2. Place on a baking tray lined with baking paper.
3. In a large bowl, whisk the caster sugar and eggs together using an electric whisk until pale and fluffy.
4. On a slow speed, add the oil a little at a time until it has all been incorporated.
5. Beat in the buttermilk, food colouring and vanilla extract.
6. Sift the flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt together, then fold in, followed by the vinegar.
7. Divide the mixture between the cake rings, filling them three-quarters full.
8. Bake in the oven for 35 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centres comes out clean.
9. Leave to cool in the rings for 5 minutes, then remove the cakes from the rings and place on a cooling rack to cool completely.
10. To make the icing, melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl set over a pot of barely simmering water, making sure the surface of the water doesn’t touch the bowl. Leave to cool.
11. Beat the butter and half the icing sugar together until smooth, then add the remaining icing sugar a little at a time, beating until the mixture is smooth.
12. Add the milk and cooled chocolate and beat for a further 2 minutes.
13. To assemble, slice a mini-cake into 3 layers. Spread a thin layer of icing on the base layer, then sandwich the middle layer on top.
14. Spread a little more icing on the middle layer, then add the top layer.
15. Repeat with 5 of the mini-cakes so you have 6 cakes in total, leaving one spare. Spoon the remaining icing into a piping bag (fitted with a plain piping nozzle), then pipe all over the cakes until completely covered.
16. Crumble the remaining mini-cake and sprinkle the crumbs over the tops of the piped cakes. Serve dusted with icing sugar.
TIP Cake rings are basically cake tins without a base and they are especially useful if you are ‘building’ a cake.