Part of the reason my posts have been sparse is because I've been waiting to perfect a recipe before sharing it with you. For example, right now, I'm fine-tuning recipes for zucchini bread, peach upside-down cake, and your everyday, run-of-the-mill white bread.
But sometimes I make a one-off thing, or discover an important technique or valuable short-cut and I want to share those with you as well.
Last weekend I was invited to a BBQ and, inspired by this post over at Food Network Canada, I made a double cheeseburger cake.
The bun is your basic yellow cake (any recipe, even a package mix will do), baked in two 9-inch cake pans. The patties are two brownie mixes, baked in 8-inch pans. Yes, I used a package mix, because even America's Test Kitchen says (registration required) you can't top it. If you're going to make your brownies from scratch, I would suggest using their recipe. But then, you'd have to really love the people you're baking for because those ingredients ain't cheap.
All of the condiments are a simple buttercream icing (note: this recipe calls for salted butter) with food colouring. Since most people are only familiar with the cheapie colourings at the supermarket, you can really impress by using the higher quality gels (another Wilton product). They're really great because they're vibrant and don't throw off your icing's consistency.
In the original inspiration, the cheese was made our of coloured marshmallow. I tried this, and it was WAY too much of a headache (read: it didn't turn out). Instead, I piped out some orange icing and patted it flat with my finger dipped in some icing sugar.
Finally, I coated the top with a simple syrup (1/2 cup granulated sugar dissolved in 1/4 cup water over high heat), scattered the top with toasted slivered almonds, and brushed more syrup over to fix them down.
I served the cake by cutting slices and splitting up the top bun/patty and the bottom bun/patty. My dad joked that he wanted a top piece because it had all the veggies and he wanted to eat something healthy. :D