Chocolate · Desserts · Italian · Strawberry

Neapolitan Cake


This cake is something which I always wanted to try. The beauty of the three layers always caught my attention.. ❤ 

For those who do not know what a Neapolitan cake is, it is a cake with the 3 core flavours in all Neapolitan desserts- chocolate, strawberry and vanilla. And it is frosted with a white- pink icing. I used ermine buttercream or cooked flour buttercream because I find it less sweet, it has less butter than the AMBC or American buttercream which is loaded with sugar and butter and ermine buttercream is also more creamier. 😉 

DSC_4363

A few tweaks to my tried and tested vanilla sponge and you get a 3 layered cake with minimal ingredients. I am really happy that I made this! 💜  This is a big cake and serves quite a lot of people. So make it if you have lots of people with whom you can share it with.  

DSC_4313a

You could bake the individual cakes one after the other or if you are really up for it, all at once. The batter is a little forgiving. It will stay good for a good 15 minutes after which you will find a change in texture once baked. Also I initially bake at 180° C for 10 minutes after which I reduce it to 170° C. I tried baking it at 180° C for the entire time once but it resulted in an over baked cake with a not so fluffy texture because the cake layer is quite thin. This trick really works to keep the cake moist and and also it maintains the soft texture.

DSC_4329

Ingredients: (Serves about 18-20 people depending on serving)

For Vanilla sponge

  • Soft- unsalted butter- 80 grams
  • Granulated white sugar- 3/4 cup + 2 teaspoons or 158 grams
  • Sunflower oil- 1 tablespoon
  • Eggs- 2
  • All purpose flour- 1 cup or 125 grams
  • Baking powder- 1 1/2 teaspoon
  • Milk- 1/4 cup or 60 ml
  • Vanilla extract- 1 teaspoon

For Chocolate cake

  • Soft- unsalted butter- 80 grams
  • Granulated white sugar- 3/4 + 4 teaspoons or 166 grams
  • Sunflower oil- 2 tablespoons
  • Eggs- 2
  • All purpose flour- 1 cup or 125 grams
  • Baking powder- 1 1/2 teaspoon
  • Salt- a small pinch
  • Cocoa powder- 3 tablespoons or 22 grams
  • Milk- 1/4 cup or 60 ml

For Strawberry cake

  • Soft- unsalted butter- 80 grams
  • Granulated sugar- 3/4 cup+ 2 teaspoons or 158 grams
  • Eggs- 2
  • All purpose flour- 1 cup or 125 grams
  • Baking powder- 1 1/2 teaspoon
  • Strawberries- 200 grams
  • Milk- 1/4 cup or 60 ml
  • Organic liquid pink food colour- 3-4 drops

For The Ermine Buttercream

  • Plain flour- 5 tablespoons or 40 grams
  • Salt- a pinch
  • Granulated sugar- 1 1/4 cup or 250 grams
  • Milk- 1 3/4 cup or 420 ml
  • Soft- unsalted butter- 280 grams
  • Vanilla extract- 1/2 teaspoon

Method:

For the Ermine Buttercream

Combine flour, sugar and salt in a medium-sized saucepan. Whisk together. To it, add the milk and whisk until combined and lump free. Place saucepan over low heat while constantly whisking it. Let it start becoming warm. Keep whisking constantly and and the mixture will start to thicken. This will take about 2 minutes. One thing to be noted is that it can catch at the bottom of the saucepan. So to avoid that keep whisking and whisk it in such a way that the whisk touches the bottom of the pan. Also use a saucepan which has a thick bottom. Once it thickens and flows though the whisk in a thick stream remove from heat. 

Ermine buttercream 1

Beat it for 2 minutes to release the steam. Using a rubber spatula, scrape the sides of the pan and pour this pudding into another bowl and immediately cover it with cling film such that the cling film touches the top of the pudding. This keeps a skin from forming. Allow the pudding to cool to room temperature. Once it comes to room temperature, keep in the fridge for 5 minutes. Once the pudding has cooled, remove it from the fridge. The pudding will be like glue at this point and that is how it should be.

Ermine buttercream 2

Take the room temperature butter in another bowl. Beat the butter using an electric beater until it becomes pale and fluffy. This should take about 3-4 minutes. Add the cooled pudding one tablespoon at a time while constantly beating. Once all the pudding has been added, continue beating till the buttercream starts to thicken and holds soft- stiff peaks. Add the vanilla and mix briefly to combine. The buttercream may initially seem to be very loose but when you keep beating, it will start to become thick, smooth and stiff. If it is still not holding stiff peaks, keep in the fridge for 3 minutes and again beat it. This should form nice stiff peaks. 

Ermine buttercream 2

 

NOTE- Make sure your pudding is completely cool because if the pudding is not cool it can lead to loose buttercream. Also make sure your butter isn’t too soft or melting. It should be at room temperature. Usually people keep beating the pudding and add the butter a tablespoon at a time but I feel that adding the pudding to the creamed butter yields a creamier, smooth and stiff buttercream.

For Vanilla cake

Preheat oven to 180° C. Grease a 22 cm tin with butter and line the base with a disc of parchment paper. Add the butter to a bowl and beat slightly until soft. Add the sugar and beat until light, creamy and fluffy. Add the sunflower oil and mix well. Add the eggs one at a time making sure you completely incorporate each egg into the mixture before adding the next. Add the vanilla and mix. Sift the flour and baking powder into a clean dry bowl. Fold the flour into the mixture slowly.

Neapolitan cake vanilla 1

Add the milk and fold gently making cutting movements to avoid any spilling of milk. Pour into the baking tin, spread evenly and tap it gently in order to release air bubbles. Bake in the oven for 10 minutes and the turn the oven down to 170° C and bake for a further 16- 18 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean. Touch the skewer if it has dry crumbs attached to it, it is done. If it is a bit sticky, bake for a further minute or so. Allow the cake to cool in the tin for 5- 8 minutes and then gently flip it onto a wire rack, peel off the parchment paper and allow it to cool completely. Meanwhile, make the chocolate layer.

Neapolitan cake vanilla 2

For the Chocolate cake

Preheat oven to 180° C. Grease a 22 cm tin with butter and line the base with a disc of parchment paper. Add the butter to a bowl and beat slightly until soft. Add the sugar and beat until light, creamy and fluffy. Add the sunflower oil and mix well. Add the eggs one at a time making sure you completely incorporate each egg into the mixture before adding the next.Sift the flour, salt, cocoa powder and baking powder into a clean dry bowl. Fold the flour- cocoa mix into the butter mixture mixture slowly.

Neapolitan cake chocolate 1Add the milk and fold gently making cutting movements to avoid any spilling of milk. Pour into the baking tin, spread evenly and tap it gently in order to release air bubbles. Bake in the oven for 10 minutes and the turn the oven down to 170° C and bake for a further 17- 19 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean. Touch the skewer if it has dry crumbs attached to it, it is done. If it is a bit sticky, bake for a further minute or so. Allow the cake to cool in the tin for 5- 8 minutes and then gently flip it onto a wire rack, peel off the parchment paper and allow it to cool completely. Meanwhile, make the strawberry layer.

Neapolitan cake chocolate 2

For strawberry cake

Remove the green leaves of the strawberries and cut off the topmost portion. Add to a blender and blend it till you get a smooth puree. Pass the puree through a sieve. This will remove the coarse seeds.

Neapolitan cake strawberry 1

Preheat oven to 180° C. Grease a 22 cm tin with butter and line the base with a disc of parchment paper. Add the butter to a bowl and beat slightly until soft. Add the sugar and beat until light, creamy and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time making sure you completely incorporate each egg into the mixture before adding the next.Sift the flour and baking powder into a clean dry bowl. Fold the flour into the mixture slowly.

Neapolitan cake vanilla 1

Add the strawberry puree and mix. The mixture will look slightly curdled so do not be alarmed. This is due to the slightly acidic puree. Add the milk and fold gently making cutting movements to avoid any spilling of milk. Add the food colour and mix. If you feel it is not pink enough, add a drop more. Pour into the baking tin, spread evenly and tap it gently in order to release air bubbles. Bake in the oven for 10 minutes and the turn the oven down to 170° C and bake for a further 16- 18 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean. A few cracks may appear due to the sudden change in temperature but that’s fine as it will be covered with frosting. Touch the skewer if it has dry crumbs attached to it, it is done. If it is a bit sticky, bake for a further minute or so. Allow the cake to cool in the tin for 5- 8 minutes and then gently flip it onto a wire rack, peel off the parchment paper and allow it to cool completely. 

Neapolitan cake strawberry 2

To assemble

Place the chocolate layer on your cake stand. Spread a generous amount of the buttercream evenly. Place the strawberry layer on top of that and again spread the buttercream. Finally place the vanilla layer. Frost the whole cake with the remaining frosting using a spatula or palette knife. I tinted half of the remaining butter cream with pink and tried a two tone frosting but that is totally optional. I also piped a shell border in the bottom and also sprinkled the top with sugar balls.

Neapolitan cake assembly

Slice it with a very sharp knife and serve. Make sure the knife is really sharp or the layers may move or slide.

DSC_4350

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s