2 cups all purpose flour, spooned in and levelled off
2 tbsp Dutch process unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 large eggs
2 tbsp red food colouring
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup buttermilk
1 tsp each baking soda & cider vinegar
1 cup whipping cream
6 oz white chocolate, finely chopped
1 cup (250 ml ) deli-style cream cheese ( light )
2 cups whipping cream
1/4 cup sugar
1/8 tsp peppermint oil
2 tbsp crushed candy cane
Preheat oven to 325. Butter a 9 x 13 pan and line the bottom with parchment paper. Sift together flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt. Reserve. Beat butter and sugar together with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well and scraping down sides of bowl, between additions. Add food colouring and vanilla and beat until uniform.
Add a third of the flour mixture to the butter, beating until combined. Add half of the buttermilk. Repeat, adding alternating ingredients until all the flour mixture and buttermilk have been incorporated.
Combine baking soda and vinegar in a small bowl, and stir until it foams. Add to batter and mix just until fully incorporated. Scrape batter in a prepared pan and bake for 45 minutes or until a cake tester comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes and then turn out on a rack, remove parchment paper and cool fully. Reserve.
To make ganache, bring cream just to a boil on medium heat. Remove from heat, add white chocolate and let stand, stirring occasionally, until white chocolate is melted and mixture is combined. Place cream cheese in a bowl, and whisk in white chocolate mixture a little at a time until fully combined. Place in the refrigerator for 30 minutes or until ganache is cold and slightly thickened.
To make peppermint cream, beat cream with sugar and peppermint oil until it holds soft peaks. Reserve.
To assemble, cut cake into 1 inch cubes with a serrated knife. Spoon about 1/3 cup of ganache into the bottom of a large glass trifle dish or decorative bowl. Place half of cubed cake into dish fitting them tightly to make a single layer. Spoon about 1 cup of ganache over cake to make an even layer. Dollop on a little less than half of the peppermint cream, and repeat layers, ending with peppermint cream. Sprinkle trife with crushed candy canes just before serving.
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