Birthdays are a big deal in my house. Like most children they look forward to the one day it’s all about them and no one else. The hype steadily escalates weeks in advance, their fluttering butterflies of excitement provide a spring in their step which is hard to hide. Crossing off the days on the family calendar and counting down how many sleeps till the big day is all part of the anticipation.
My middle sons 6th birthday was no different I think amplified because six is a big deal! “I am now on two hands Mum”. The next faze in their little lives. Starting school, learning to read and write, beginning to be self organised, tying their shoe laces and making real friendships seem to be all part of this year of turning six! What seems like over night he has grown up to be a big boy, really not so big as small things seem like the world to them, like cupcakes for classmates, birthday stickers and chocolate cake with strawberries can make the whole day.
I am certainly not alone when I say that they grow up too quickly, so let them have their special day, love them, hug them and if they want to wear a ninja turtle costume to bed including face mask let them, they are only six once! Recipe below…
By birthday boy request it was homemade chicken nuggets and penne Bolognese for dinner followed by Chocolate Cake with Strawberries and Blueberries.
Strawberries are in season here at the moment making them so juicy, delicious and cheap. Look at the vibrant colour!
I made this chocolate cake with mascarpone cream cheese icing which is no added refined sugar. I always try to use alternatives to refined sugars in any of my baking and this one works a treat. You can use coconut sugar, raw honey, pure maple syrup but if you would like a fructose free option you can use rice malt syrup. I have included some alternatives in the recipe below.
And as for taste the kids loved it with no questions asked!
Basic Chocolate Cake with Mascarpone Cream Cheese Icing
180g Butter cut into cubes
1 cup coconut sugar or 3/4 cup honey, rice malt or maple syrup
3/4 cup milk of choice (buttermilk, cows, almond, soy)
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 cup wholemeal spelt flour (or wholemeal all-purpose plain)
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup cocoa powder (or 60g melted dark 70% chocolate)
Mascarpone Cream Cheese Frosting
250g cream cheese
1/2 cup cocoa or (60g 70% dark chocolate melted)
1/4 cup maple syrup, rice malt syrup or honey
2 tsp vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 160’C line a 20cm round cake tin with baking paper
- Beat butter and sugar with an electric mixer until light and fluffy
- Add eggs, vanilla, and mix for further 2 mins
- Add milk, flour, baking powder and cocoa and mix well to combine until makes a thick batter
- Pour into lined cake tin and bake for 35mins
- To make mascarpone cream cheese icing: Beat all the icing ingredients together with an electric mixer until light and fluffy
- Top with cream cheese icing and fresh strawberries and blueberries
Note- This recipe makes 1 cake you will need to double it to make a double layered cake like pictured.
+ If you don’t have mascarpone you can use 500g cream cheese instead.
++Icing recipe enough for both cakes. You can always cut one cake in half horizontally and ice in-between layers