A triple chocolate bunny cake that's great for Easter, birthdays or baby showers. Dark, bittersweet chocolate cake is topped with reduced sugar white chocolate buttercream and decorated with pink marzipan for the paws and ears. No packet mixes in sight!
75g (3oz)dark cooking chocolate at least 60% cocoa (broken into pieces)
225g (8oz)unsalted buttersoftened
125g (4.5oz)brown cane sugar(I use organic cocoa flower sugar)
150g (5.5oz)plain (all-purpose) flour
75g (3oz)ground almonds (almond flour)(for a nut-free cake, replace nuts with more plain flour)
1/2tspsalt (fleur de sel)
75g (3oz)unsweetened cocoa powder(I use Van Houten)
150ml (5.5 floz)milksemi-skimmed (or full fat)
110g (4oz)good quality chocolate chips
White Chocolate Buttercream
150g (5.5oz)good quality white chocolate dropsor broken into pieces
135g (5oz)unsalted buttersoftened
1/2tsp vanilla powder or extract(optional)
100g (3.5oz)pink marzipan(for paws & ears)
250g (9oz)green marzipan(optional)
Preheat oven to 180°C/160°C fan/360°F/Gas 4. Grease a large ovenproof glass (Pyrex) bowl and 3 muffin moulds with extra butter.
Melt the cooking chocolate in a bowl over a saucepan of simmering water (bain-marie), ensuring the water doesn't touch the bottom of the bowl. As soon as it starts to melt, take off the heat, stir until completely melted and leave aside to slightly cool.
Cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Gradually add the flour, ground almonds, baking powder, salt, melted chocolate, eggs, cocoa powder. When well mixed, add the milk and chocolate chips and combine until smooth.
Pour the mixture into 3 muffin moulds and the large Pyrex bowl. Bake the smaller cakes for 15 minutes and the large cake for 40-45 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean from the middle of the cake. Set aside to cool then upturn on a cake rack.
White Chocolate Buttercream
Melt the white chocolate in a bowl over a saucepan of simmering water (bain-marie), ensuring the water doesn't touch the bottom of the bowl. As soon as it starts to melt, take off the heat, stir until completely melted and leave aside to cool for 10-15 minutes.
Cream the butter in a stand mixer or using a wooden spoon in a large bowl. When the chocolate is cooled right down but still liquid, beat in to the butter (both should be the same temperature). Using a spatula, spread on top of the large cake. Chill until ready to serve. Remove from fridge 30 minutes before serving, to appreciate the chocolate flavours.
Using a rolling pin, roll out the pink marzipan to a thin sheet and cut out paw shapes using a sharp knife: 2 ovals and 6 small circles (use a piping tip).
Cut the top off to even one muffin cake for the tail. Cut off the sides of each of the 2 muffins to make a triangular shape for the paws. Spread on the buttercream, plopping one for the tail and place the 2 as paws, sticking on the pink paw-prints. Optional: roll out the green marzipan into a large circular sheet as a grass-looking base and decorate with edible flowers, Easter eggs and macarons.