This cake is simple to make and the result is quite lovely. It was something of an experiment, and as an early attempt the results were not exactly as I had envisaged. Still, I think with practice (or if made by a more practiced cook) it has the potential to be quite beautiful. I have decided that this will be a keeper. Consequently, there may be wreath cakes sporadically gracing my family’s table throughout the year before next Christmas hehe.
You can make it with a whole ring cake or with cupcakes. Personally, I prefer using cupcakes and in this instance I used chocolate cupcakes. To make the cupcakes, you’ll need:
1 cup water
1 cup brown sugar
100g milk chocolate
125g softened butter
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1 1/2 cups self-raising flour
1/2 cup plain flour
I opted for cream cheese frosting and for this you’ll need:
125g softened butter
250g cream cheese, softened
4 cups sifted icing sugar
Green icing coloring
For the leaves and berries I used:
250g white chocolate
Several bunches of mint leaves.
Green food coloring
- Wash and dry the mint leaves.
- Melt the white chocolate and stir in the green coloring.
- Brush the white chocolate over the mint leaves or dip one side into the melted chocolate. Place on a tray lined with baking paper and allow the chocolate to set.
- Preheat the oven to 160 degrees celscius and grease muffin pans.
- Combine the water and milk chocolate over low heat, stirring until the chocolate has melted. Set aside and cool to room temperature.
- Beat the sugar and butter until pale and creamy. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.
- Sift the flours and cocoa together. Gradually add into the sugar, butter and egg mixture, stirring until just combined.
- Stir in the melted chocolate and spoon into the prepared muffin pans.
- Bake for about 20 minutes. Turn onto a wire rack to cool.
- To make the frosting, beat the cream cheese, butter and vanilla until light and fluffy. Stir in several drops of green coloring and mix well.
- Spoon the frosting into a pastry bag and pipe onto the cupcakes using a large star tip.
- Arrange the cupcakes to form a circle then place additional cupcakes to make a second, inner circle.
- Gently peel off the leaves from the hardened chocolate.
- Arrange the chocolate leaves and jaffas on top of the cupcakes
You can also place chocolate cake truffles in the center of the wreath if you prefer. To make the cake truffles:
- Process the unused cupcakes in a food processor until fine crumbs form.
- Pour the cake crumbs into a large mixing bowl and spoon several tablespoons of the remaining frosting until the mixture forms a dough.
- Roll the mixture into balls and then toss in cocoa powder or dip into melted chocolate. Place the balls in the center of the wreath.