I finally got the chance to make my geologist friend a cake for her birthday. In our geology department there's a division of people to so called "hard rockers" and "soft rockers". My friend is the latter so I figured a sandpit would be perfect for her since it's no longer winter so I didn't want to make a cake of her coring sediments from a lake since that's usually done from on top of the ice.
This cake itself already was quite a challenge. On top of everything else the cake had to be "milk-free" so there could be no milk based products whatsoever. I still wanted the cake to taste nice and push the envelope a bit so i decided to make a milk-free caramel filling. The base is a dark 3 egg general base (such as here) baked in 2 small rectangular oven pans.
Milk-free caramel filling and raspberries:
- 2 dl 14% fat soy cooking cream
- 1,5 dl brown sugar (or a mixture of white and brown sugar)
- 2 dl soy whipping cream
This filling is a variation of Kinuskikissa's Caramel filling. Heat the soy cooking cream along with the sugar in a saucepan. (My brown sugar was so hard that even beating it with a hammer i could only get 1/2 dl sugar out of it. So i decided to use 1/2 brown sugar, 1/2 indian sugar/cane sugar and 1/2 dl white sugar.) Let the mixture boil for about 10 mins until it thickens a little while stirring most of the time. Cool the mixture by for example putting the saucepan to sit in some cold water. Your caramel is now ready and you could use it as a sauce now if you wanted.
Whip the soy whipping cream and whip also the cooled caramel until it turns whiter and a airy. Mix the whipped caramel and cream together by gently folding. The filling is quite fragile and starts to melt away and get runny quite easily. Therefore i don't recommend using it as filling in very tall cakes as I did and my sedimentary structures started slowly metamorphosing ; ) Shallow cakes are better or you can try to stiffen it up with some gelatine. Or if you don't need to make a milk-free base you can use heavy cream in both the caramel and the whipped cream.
Moisten your cake base with some juice (I used some red currant juice) and spread on a layer of the caramel filling. Sprinkle on some raspberries.
Next I smoothed the sides of the cake with some sugar cream (recipe found here) and dyed some marzipan to a sand color with some cocoa and a drop of yellow food color. I rolled it flat and shaped it around the cake. I painted of some sedimentary structures and some typical finnish podsol soil coloration for the top. I made some roots to hang from the edges of the sand pit from brown marzipan and also a tree stump. I rolled flat a piece of green marzipan and placed it on top of the cake. Then i molded some moss from two other shades of green and some rocks from different combinations of white and black marzipan. I placed my decorations on the cake along with the marzipan figurine i had made, portraying my friend. I had also made a shovel and stuck it in the "sand". After that I crushed 2 digestive bisquits and sprinkled the crumbs around the cake as loose sand. And here's the result:
Maidoton kakku - Geologikakku - Hiekkakuoppakakku - Hiekkakakku - Kinuskitäyte