Baking Bad: Cheeseburger Cake

I can haz? k.

I can haz? k.

I’ve had a couple of requests as to how to make the cheeseburger cake I made for the departmental bake-off on Thursday, and I’ll happily share that with you.

I got the idea from a youtube channel called “Nerdy Nummies” (how a video blog featuring an attractive young woman making Doctor Who-themed treats got my attention is anyone’s guess) and it goes along the same lines as what she’s said, except she uses something called “yellow cake mix”, which was completely lost on me, so to make the bun I used Mary Berry’s tried and trusted Victoria Sponge recipe instead. I put a couple of drops of vanilla flavouring in it too. 

For that part of the recipe, to get the lid of the bun, you’ll need to bake that half in an oven-proof bowl rather than a tin, and it will also need to be in the oven a bit longer (though not too long as the edges will start to over-cook). When both bits have cooled, you might find that the lid is smaller than the base: you can trim the base to fit it if you want to.

For the actual burger bit, I used this brownie recipe, baking it in two 8″ round tins (only one of them is necessary, unless you want a Big Mac effect!). I omitted the walnuts, but I put a teaspoon of orange flavouring in instead of the vanilla for a bit more zing. Again, you might find the brownie is bigger than the base and you can trim it if you like.

You might like to leave the cake as it is, but I iced my bun using normal buttercream icing with two drops of yellow food colouring and a drop of red to give it a slightly tan colour (the video uses a ready-made “tan food colouring” which I didn’t even bother trying to find). Something I’ve learned in recent weeks is that icing a cake is easier if the cake is cold and the icing (and palette knife) is hot. You can also put on a preliminary “crumb coating” which makes icing the “real” coating a great deal easier. I used a lemon icing for this purpose.

Then, for the sesame seeds, I soaked a few mini smarties in milk to remove the colour (though this removed the shell as well, meaning I could just as easily have used chocolate chips) and sprinkled them over the top of the cake while the icing was still sticky.

To make the tomatoes, cheese, and lettuce, I used a pack of Doctor Oetker ready to roll icing and cut out appropriate shapes.

To put the cake together, I started with the bun base, stuck on the lettuce shapes and spread some strawberry jam on the top.  I put the brownie on and stuck on the cheese and tomatoes, spreading more strawberry jam. Then the lid went on and that was it!

I need to thank Luke and Debbie as well for providing me with the tin (and shelter when I locked myself out) to get it to work!

For the record, I finished 7th out of 13 (some of the other entries are below) and the winner (of which I have no picture because I was on holiday that day) was a Rubik’s cube.

But it was good fun anyway!

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