Today is my grandfather's 85th birthday! It should come as no surprise to you that I offered to bake a cake for the occasion.
Earlier this year, in June, I baked a cake for my grandparent's 60th anniversary. When talking to my mother and aunts about what to bake for that amazing milestone, I was told one thing: chocolate. Well, maybe it was two things (since the day of the anniversary party was also my aunt & uncle's anniversary): chocolate and carrot cake. See, I have an amazing recipe for chocolate cake (at that party in June it was filled with whipped chocolate ganache and an icing that I was not quite blown away by, and therefore prefer to never make again) and another one for carrot cake. They also happen to be the two recipes that I don't share; they are my secrets...
However, when it came time to decide what to make for my grandfather's birthday, that one thing came to mind again: chocolate.
This time, I went back to the original. The recipe I had gotten from a cooking class I took years ago, tweaked with a few of my own touches, with the original icing -- homemade mocha buttercream. Now, admittedly, I am not a huge fan of buttercream, but this homemade stuff is delicious. Once the cake is iced, I lick the spoon. And then the spatula. And then the whisk....well, you get the picture. It's just chocolate-y and coffee-y enough to give the flavor without overwhelming.
A few icing stars with mocha chocolate beans on top, and the cake is done!
Happy 85th Birthday, Poppy!