Speckled White Chocolate Mint Cake
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Speckle Cake: White Chocolate Mint Layer Cake – A Great Easter Bake

Perfectly suited to Easter this Speckle Cake contains layers of white chocolate sponge sandwiched together with delicate pastel coloured peppermint buttercream. It's almost too pretty to eat. The recipes below is sufficient for 3 x 6-inch cake tins - these are smaller than normal. If you would like to use 8-inch tins see measurements in the notes.
Prep Time45 mins
Cook Time25 mins
Total Time1 hr 10 mins
Course: Baking
Cuisine: Worldwide
Keyword: easter cake, peppermint cake, speckle cake, speckled egg cake, white chocolate cake
Author: Jane Saunders

Ingredients

For the Cakes

  • 180 g/ 3/4 cup / 6 1/2oz cups Softened butter
  • 180 g/ 3/4 cup + 2tbsp /6 1/2oz Caster sugar
  • 3 Large eggs
  • 3 tbsp Milk
  • 180 g/ 1 1/2 cups / 6 1/2oz Plain (all purpose) flour (sifted)
  • 1 1/2 tsp Baking powder
  • 150 g/ 1 cup / 5 oz White chocolate - finely chopped

For the buttercream

  • 200 g/ 3/4 cup + 2 tbsp/ 7oz Softened butter
  • 325/ 3 1/4 cups/ 11 1/2 oz Icing (confectioner's) sugar
  • 2 tsp Milk
  • Peppermint extract - I used 2 tsp but this may vary depending on brand so start with 1 tsp and taste before adding more
  • Gel food colouring of your choice - I used ice blue

For the Speckle

  • 1 tsp Cocoa powder
  • 1/2 tsp Vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp Cold water

Decoration - choose from:

  • mini chocolate eggs
  • foil wrapped eggs
  • edible flowers
  • artificial flowers
  • empty egg shells (washed in soapy water and dried thoroughly

Instructions

Bake the Cake

  • Preheat the oven 170°/ 325°F/ GM3
  • Grease and line 3 x 6 inch circular baking tins (note these are smaller than average tins - if you are using 8 inch tins see my notes on how to scale up the recipe)
  • Gently melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl. Set aside
  • In a large mixing bowl beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, using electric beaters. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well between each addition
  • Add 3 tbsp of milk and beat again. Sift the flour and baking powder into the bowl and mix well
  • Take a tablespoon of the cake batter and stir it quickly into the melted white chocolate. Then gently fold this white chocolate mixture back into the bowl containing the rest of the cake batter. This double-action will stop the chocolate from seizing when it is mixed into the cake batter
  • Gently spoon the batter into the baking tins and spread out with a blunt knife - it should reach no more than 2/3 of the way up the pan
  • Bake the cakes for around 25 minutes until the cake springs back when lightly pressed or a skewer comes out clean
  • Let cool in the tins for 2 minutes, then remove from the tins - this cake is quite fragile when still warm so handle gently. Peal off the baking parchment from the bottom of each sponge cake and let cool completely on a wire rack

Make the buttercream

  • Put the butter into a large bowl and beat until smooth
  • Sieve in the icing sugar 1 tbsp at a time and beat well between each addition
  • Once all of the icing sugar has been mixed in, add the peppermint extract a little at a time - start with 1tsp, beat in and taste. Keep on adding more extract in 1/2 tsp increments until you are happy with the peppermint taste
  • Add a tiny amount of gel food colouring and beat until the icing is uniform in colour throughout. Keep on adding tiny amounts of colouring until you reach a shade you are happy with

Assemble the cake

  • Lay one of the sponge cakes onto a board and spread a heaped tablespoon of the icing on top, then place another layer of cake carefully on top of the layer of icing. Top with another spoonful of icing, spread it out and add the final layer of cake
  • Once the final layer of cake has been added, carefully spread a thin layer of icing all over the top and sides of the cake - a palette knife is good for this. I find that coating the cake in a thin layer all over helps to seal in the crumbs. Once you have done this, use the remaining icing to create a thicker layer that covers the cake entirely. If you have the skill to make a smooth layer of icing then do so, but this is not essential
  • Mix the cocoa powder, vanilla extract and the water together in a small bowl until smooth. it should be the consistency of single cream (add a tiny splash more water if it's too thick or a little more cocoa powder if it's too loose). Dip the end of a stiff pastry brush or paint brush into the liquid and hold it upright, about 6 inches from the cake. Gently tap the pastry brush with your free hand so that the liquid splatters across the cake. Keep on doing this around the entire cake and across the top until you are happy with the speckle effect achieved
  • Carefully move your cake onto a serving plate and decorate with the chocolate eggs, egg shells and flowers if using

Notes

To make a 3 layer cake in 8 inch tins use the following measurements - fill your tins 2/3 full. Do not overfill but if there is spare batter make a few cupcakes. You may need to bake these larger sponges for a few more minutes. For the Cake: 300g/ 1 1/3 cups / 10 1/2oz softened butter; 300g/ 1 1/2 cups / 10 1/2oz caster sugar; 5 eggs; 5 tbsp milk; 300g/ 2 1/2 cups / 10 1/2oz plain (all purpose) flour (sifted); 2 1/2 tsp baking powder; 250g/ 1 2/3 cups / 9oz white chocolate - finely chopped. For the buttercream: 300g/ 1 1/3 cups / 10 1/2oz softened butter; 450/ 4 1/2 cups/ 16oz icing (confectioner's) sugar; 1 tbsp milk; Peppermint extract - around 2 1/2tsp but this may vary depending on brand so start with 1 tsp and taste before adding more; Gel food colouring.