Oscars Feast - Django Unchained Crimson Splattered Southern White Cake
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There is no shortage of crimson spray in Tarantino's epic western tale of slavery and retribution. Civility is something that emerges in sly places; through the silver tongue of Dr King Schultz (Christopher Waltz), the kingfisher silk finery favoured by the newly freed Django (Jamie Foxx) and the table manners initially on display at Calvin Candie (Leonardo di Caprio) 's 'Candyland' plantation.
This is a towering cake to be sliced and served as a peace offering, even if like the film, your guest professes not to have a sweet tooth. It's a dessert as pure as driven snow, with vanilla cake as lily white as slave owner 'Big Daddy's' palms and a filling as cheesy as Tarantino's attempt at an Australian accent. As for the frosting, it comes direct from Dr King Schultz's mother country- you might find the white chocolate butter cream when combined with the vibrant cherry juices brings a decidedly blonde filter to the famed flavours of the black forrest.
Serve this cake with the nice cutlery. Try and keep the profanity at a low. Shake hands with your guests if you can. And for goodness sake, if someone really finds the needs to shoot another in the chest at the end of the meal, try to ensure the splatter is artful as the one you've already got on the plate.
Southern White Cake with Crimson Splatter
Makes one large, three layer cake. Feeds 10 - 12.
3 x 23 cm removable bottom cake pans (or 1 pan you can use 3 times). Baking parchment. Electric mixer. Spray bottle.
1 cup milk
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup/225 grams butter, softened
2 cups white sugar
3 cups cake flour *
1 tablespoon baking powder
5 egg whites
(*Nb, to make 1 cup of cake flour measure a cup of flour and then remove 2 tbsp of flour. Replace them with 2 tbsp of corn flour/corn starch and sift it all well to combine.)
Cream cheese filling
800 grams of cream cheese
1 cup of powdered sugar
1 tbsp lemon juice
White Chocolate Buttercream Frosting
1 cup/225 grams unsalted butter, softened
2 and 3/4 cups powdered sugar/icing sugar
170 grams good quality white chocolate, chopped
¼ cup heavy whipping cream/double cream
2 cups of cherry juice, boiled to reduce to half.
1. Preheat oven to 180 C/ 350 F. Grease the three cake pans; line the bottoms and sides with baking parchment. .
2. Stir together the milk and vanilla.
3. Using an electric mixer beat the butter at a medium speed until creamy. Gradually add the sugar and continue beating until light and fluffy.
4.Sift together the flour and baking powder and alternatively add the flour and the milk mixture to the butter mix. Be sure to mix at a low speed until just blended after each addition.
5. In a clean bowl beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form, then gently fold into the batter in stages.
6. Pour the batter into the prepared pans.
7. Bake for 25 minutes, until a stick inserted into the centre comes out clean. Cool in the tins for 10 minutes, then remove to wire racks and cool completely.
To make the cream cheese filling combine the cheese, sugar and lemon juice and beat until smooth.
Melt the white chocolate until smooth and set aside to cool. Sift the sugar over the butter and cream together until light and fluffy. Slowly add the cream and melted white chocolate and beat until well combined.
1. Ensure all cakes are flat on the top. If not, carefully level off with a bread knife.
2. Place one cake on the bottom. Spread half of the cream cheese filling over the top. Place the second cake on top of that and repeat. Place the third cake on the top and very carefully frost the sides of all three cakes and the top. Nb, if you are worried about the cakes shifting you can use a skewer down the centre to hold them together while you frost.
Spray each slice with cherry syrup just before serving. An unused laundry spray bottle works well.