As promised, I made myself a birthday cake last month. I did choose a recipe from Cake Magic!: Mix & Match Your Way to 100 Amazing Combinations (affiliate link), which has never steered me wrong. Cake Magic follows a formula of cake + syrup which is brushed on the cake after baking + frosting. I opted for “Tea with Cream + Sugar Cake”, a brown sugar cake with tea syrup and cream cheese frosting.
I chose this recipe because I had nearly all the ingredients on hand (minus cream cheese) and it struck me as somewhat special and different, but also something everyone else in my family would enjoy. And a cake with tea in it is certainly up my alley.
Making cake is something I often build up in my imagination as difficult and overwhelming, but in practice I don’t find that to be the case. Cake batter is fairly easy to make and – after spending time searching for my cake pans – generally bake up successfully for me.
Brushing on the syrup was easy to do; I used a silicone basting brush. There’s a decent amount of liquid to be added but I’m a directions follower and I made sure to use all of it. In most of the Cake Magic recipes I’ve made in the past, as well as this one, it’s hard for me to tell if the syrup is adding much flavor to the cake but it does result in a very moist cake.
Cake frosting is not one of my skills. When I first started on this one, it immediately seemed that I wouldn’t have enough frosting to fill between the layers and frost the outside (even though that’s what the recipe is designed to do). Ultimately, I had plenty but my concern led me to do a less even job of filling the middle than I might have otherwise.
I also rushed my cake frosting, as my parents were in town and they arrived at my house earlier than I expected. We ate the cake basically as soon as I’d finished it.
Overall, I really enjoyed this cake. It was super moist, easy to make, and definitely satisfied my birthday cake needs. I’m looking forward to seeing what this coming year brings!