February 7, 2015

Chocolate and Strawberry Pocky Cake

Chocolate and strawberries are a modern, yet classical combination. Especially in a cake - where the tartness of the strawberries helps balance out the richness of the chocolate, and the sweetness of the buttercream. It might sound cliché, but it is, I believe, a match made on Earth for those romantics out there (hahaha....nope?).
This cake captures the essence of the chocolate and strawberries - an idea presented to me by my adorable best friend and university buddy K, who I am proud to dedicate this cake and post to. After going through some of the toughest times in my life, K was there to listen, give advice and ultimately helped me get through it. Also, props to K for helping me assemble and decorate the cake!!
The strawberry pocky decoration was inspired by two of my favourite bloggers - Raspberri Cupcakes and Sprinkle Bakes. After seeing the cake on the blogs for the first time, I immediately added it to my long baking list that always seems to end up at the bottom of my cupboard. Going through the list was like uncovering buried treasure because it contained some recipes I even forgot that I added a few years back.
Since chocolate and strawberries were the theme for this cake, an idea popped in my head to have chocolate cake layers, filled with fresh cream and strawberries, covered in strawberry swiss meringue buttercream and encased in strawberry pocky sticks. What I love about this cake is that the strawberry pocky - I used 4 boxes - helps to cover the messy frosting underneath and removes the hours (okay - maybe minutes if you're pro) to smooth out the frosting.
I used my go-to chocolate cake recipe by Sweetapolita, which always results in a rich, moist, chocolatey cake. I love swiss meringue buttercream - the silky texture compliments the cake and its subtle sweetness avoids the whole cake from tasting sickly sweet. Although it can taste quite buttery due to the large amount of butter, I found that the strawberry puree helps cut the taste of butter and gives it a fresh tart flavour. You can find the recipe here. I'd like to believe that love = chocolate + strawberries....

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