Easy decorated Valentine's Cake with marbled fondant hearts and a buttercream rope boarder. The cake does not only convince from the outside but it is filled with the softest chocolate cake and buttercream and homemade dulce de leche!
Easy marbled fondant heart decoration and Dulce de Leche filling for a beautiful Valentine's Cake inside and out!
Read here why this chocolate cake recipe is the best in my opinion!
How to make marbled Fondant?
For this fun decoration I made marbled fondant hearts. It is an easy method with a great look. You can use store bought fondant or you can make your own marshmallow fondant (recipe following soon). Simply kneed your fondant until it is soft and warm, spread it out on a with vegetable shortening covered surface and roll it into a thin layer. Smooth it with your fingers until it is shiny. Wash and dry your hands to make sure you do not have any food coloring on your hands that would dye the white fondant. Kneed the white fondant until soft and rip it in small pieces. Place the pieces on top of the red fondant and smooth it out. To cut the fondant hearts use a heart cookie cutter. Let them dry for a little bit.
Valentines Day Chocolate Cake
Ingredients for 3 6-inch cake layers
2 1/4 cups (450 g) sugar
3 cups, 2 tbsp (330 g) flour
1 cup 2 tbsp (110 g) cocoa powder
2 tsp baking powder
2 1/2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp salt
1 1/2 cups (375 ml) butter milk
3/4 cup (185 ml) vegetable oil
3 teaspoons vanilla
1 1/2 cup (375 ml) coffee, hot
12 large egg whites
2 1/2 cups (500 g) sugar
2 cups (454 g) butter, softened
1 cup (200 g) shortening (or butter)
3 tsp vanilla extract
6 oz (170 g) melted chocolate
pink food coloring
1/2 cup (60 g) powdered sugar, for rope boarder
1 cup dulce de leche (see notes)
Start off with a large bowl. Combine the sugar, eggs, salt, and vanilla. Add oil and butter milk. Mix it until fluffy. Sift in flour, cocoa, baking powder and baking soda and mix until everything is thoroughly incorporated. Stir in the hot coffee; the batter will be very thin.
Divide the batter evenly among 2 6-inch cake pans. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of each layer comes out clean. Cool the layers in the pans for 10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
For the Swiss meringue buttercream whisk egg whites and sugar in a fat-free heatproof bowl and place it on a pot with simmering water (bain-marie). Whisk it continually until soft peaks form for about 10 minutes. The mixture is warm enough when the sugar has fully dissolved.
Take the meringue out of the water bath and whisk it with a hand mixer until stiff peaks form. Mix in the butter in small pieces. Keep mixing it until it comes together in a smooth buttercream. Separate about 1/2 of the buttercream and mix in the melted slightly cooled chocolate. Add the vanilla, pink food coloring into the other half of the buttercream. Mix it until smooth.
Kneed white and red fondant until it is soft and warm, spread it out on a with vegetable shortening covered surface and roll it into a thin layer. Smooth it with your fingers until it is shiny. Rip the white fondant into small pieces. Place the pieces on top of the red fondant and smooth it out. To cut the fondant hearts use a heart cookie cutter. Set them aside to let them dry for a little bit. It is easier to decorate the cake with the fondant hearts if they are not fully dried and more flexible.
To decorate the cake, place the bottom layer on a plate and spread a thin layer of chocolate buttercream on top and smooth it out. Top it with 1/2 cup of dulce de Leche and add the second cake layer. Repeat the step and cover the cake with buttercream on the top and its sides. Smooth it out and let it cool in the fridge for about 40 minutes or place it in the freezer for 8 to 10 minutes.
When the cake is cooled add a layer of pink buttercream and smooth it. Place the fondant hearts in 3 lines and pipe a rope boarder. To achieve a better piping consistency of the buttercream mix in powdered sugar to stiffen it. I like to add some more food coloring to have a better color contrast. Finish the cake with some fresh raspberries or sprinkles.
Make dulce de Leche at home using a 14 oz can of sweetened condensed milk. Place it in a high pot and fill it with water 1 inch higher than the can. Bring it to a boil and let it cook for about 3.5 hours. Let the can come to room temperature before using. You can boil as many cans as you like at once and keep it at room temperature for up to 6 months.
No coffee fan or no coffee at home? Just use hot water instead.
To intensify the color of the buttercream quickly fill about half a cup of buttercream in a microwave save bowl and add a good amount of food coloring. Microwave it for about 10 seconds and stir it. The color has depend and the buttercream softened. Combine it with the rest of the buttercream.
Add another color highlight with different colored buttercream swirls on the top of the cake!