I have a problem… I’m addicted to baking cakes! Well, I’m addicted to baking in general, but cakes are my all-time favourite thing to make. I love planning out flavours and how to decorate the cake. The problem is that I can’t bake a cake every week and keep a healthy figure!
Last week was going to be my last cake until my daughter’s birthday next month, but then I went down a YouTube rabbit hole and had to try one more cake. It started with watching a video about a new trending cake decorating technique called an origami cake posted by Cakes by MK.
From there I started watching more videos about it to see what different cakes look like using this technique. Most of the videos are in Portuguese. From what I gather the person who started this trend is Andri Olekszechen who is from Brazil. After watching a bunch of videos (even the ones in Portuguese!) I wondered if I could use this technique to make a cake that looked like a giant peanut butter cup. I was excited to try it out!
First, I needed a cake recipe. I wanted it to be a peanut butter cake and haven’t made that before. I looked at a few recipes but was most inspired by this recipe. For my version, I lowered the amount of sugar in the cake, used brown sugar instead of white and increased the vanilla. I already have a peanut butter frosting recipe so it was just a matter of figuring out how much to make for the size of cake I was making.
Next, I had to decide how to put this cake together. To get slanted sides, I baked two different sizes for the two cake layers. One was 10-inch and the other was 8-inch. After they were baked and cooled, I trimmed the sides of the larger cake on a slant so that they would slope down to the smaller cake, which I put on the bottom. I made a peanut crunch layer because I liked those layers so much in my two previous mousse cakes. I put a bit of frosting on the bottom cake, then put some of the peanut crunch and topped it with the larger cake. Then I frosted the whole cake and froze it to solidify the frosting.
The next step was to do the ganache. I wasn’t sure how much to make because most of the cakes in the videos I saw were 6-inch cakes, but I’m not sure how many layers they were. I started with 500 grams of chocolate. Then I spread a thin layer over the top and sides of my frosted cake. I knew then that it wouldn’t be enough ganache so I made some more.
To make the ridges on the sides, I folded two pieces of cardstock into accordion folds and cut them in half so that I had four long strips. Then I spread ganache over the top, filling the paper pieces in an even layer. I pressed the sheets onto the sides of the cake and was amazed that they held!
The sheets were a bit taller than the cake, so I let the ganache set a bit in the fridge then used scissors to cut off the excess. I put the excess ganache back into the extra that I had made and re-melted it. Then I put a thin layer of ganache over the top all the way to the edge of the paper, trying to make it as smooth as possible. After that, I let the cake set in the fridge for 1 hour.
I was nervous about how it would go, peeling off the paper once the ganache had set, but it was a breeze. I still had some ganache leftover, so I used that to fill any air holes and smoothed everything as best I could with an offset spatula and butter knife.
The resulting cake was amazing! It looked just like a giant peanut butter cup! I really liked the taste as well. I’m glad that I reduced the sugar in the cake recipe because I found the cake and frosting sweet enough. The ganache was a nice contrast and added a bit of bitterness. It was quite thick on the sides, so we ate thin slices. That just means the cake will last longer so we will get to enjoy it all week!
Here is a picture of the cake cross-section.
For the Peanut Butter Cake
- For the Peanut Butter Frosting
- For the Chocolate Ganache
- Special equipment
For the Cake
- Preheat oven to 350F/180C. Grease, flour and line 2 round baking pans. (I used a 10-inch and an 8-inch, but you could use two 8 or 9-inch).
- Combine, water, peanut butter and 1/2 cup (120 ml) buttermilk in a medium saucepan. Cook over medium heat until the mixture is well combined. Remove from heat and set aside.
- In a small bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together eggs, sugar and vanilla until well combined. Pour in peanut butter mixture and whisk to combine. Add flour mixture and stir until combined.
- Pour into prepared pans and bake for 20-25 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean. Let cool in pans for 10 minutes then turn out onto racks and remove the parchment paper. Let the cakes cool completely. For the Frosting
- Whip together peanut butter, butter, vanilla and salt until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
- Add powdered sugar and beat until well combined and a spreadable consistency, about 3 minutes. If the frosting is too thick, add cream, 1/2 tbsp at a time until you reach the desired consistency. For Assembly
- Once the cakes have cooled, trim the tops so that they are flat if necessary. If using two sizes of cake, trim the sides of the larger cake on a diagonal so that they go in toward the smaller cake, which will be on the bottom.
- Place the smaller cake on a cake board or place. Spread with 1 cup of frosting. Place the larger cake on top. Frost the top and sides of the cake, trying to get the frosting as smooth as possible. Freeze the cake for 30-60 minutes until the frosting has hardened. For the Chocolate Ganache
- Place the chopped chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl (you will occasionally need to reheat the chocolate to soften it.)
- Bring the cream to a simmer over medium heat then pour it over the chocolate. Let sit for 5 minutes to let the chocolate soften, then stir with a spatula until you have a smooth ganache. Let cool for 15 minutes until it becomes thicker and is a more spreadable consistency.
- Spread a thin layer of ganache over the top and sides of the cake. Place the cake in the fridge to set slightly while you prepare the origami ganache strips.
- Place your folded strips of paper on a baking sheet then pour ganache over the strips, spreading it to coat the strips in an even layer that goes to the top of each accordion fold. (I've linked a video of this in the notes.) Make sure to save ganache for spreading over the top and any needed touch-ups at the end.
- Put the cake in the fridge to set for 30 minutes. Once the ganache has set a bit, use scissors to cut off the parts of the strips that go above the top of the cake. You can save the ganache that is cut off for later use.
- Warm up your reserved ganache in the microwave for 10-15 seconds until pourable. Pour about 1/2 cup of ganache over the top of the cake and spread it evenly all the way to the paper sides of the cake. Put the cake in the fridge to firm up for 1 hour.
- Once the ganache is completely set, gently peel the paper off of the cake. Touch up any gaps in the ganache with some of your reserved ganache. Smooth any bumps in the ridges by pressing them gently with some parchment paper. Gently mooth the top with an offset spatula or butter knife.
To see a video of how to spread the ganache on the folded paper click here.
this sounds amazing