There’s a stigma of announcing that you’re making your own birthday cake. As a person who likes to bake, I do enjoy making or attempting to make complicated cakes and pastries. This year, I decided to make my own birthday cake in honor of making it out of my quarter life crisis when really I should be entering it.
During the midst of busy season, (i.e. not having a life between the months of January – March because of my job), I was able to find time to make something with my hands. I tend to go by the book whenever it comes to new recipes, but with this particular cake I decided to improvise a bit.
The base of the cake is an apple cake that I found on Pinterest. This cake was able to hold up nicely when stacked together with the other layers. I layered the cake with a dulce de leche buttercream, dulce de leche sauce, and a pie crust crumble (taken from the Momofuku Milk Bar recipe book). The combination of these made eating the cake an adventure with all the different textures and flavors. But it was delicious to say the least.
To say the least, Happy Birthday to me! Wow, I just sound so conceited when saying, I guess in this case writing, it.
You can find the recipe here: Cake
Pie Crust Crumble:
(Note: I used the Momofuku Milk bar recipe for this pie crust crumble)
-1 1/2 cup of flour
-2 tablespoons of sugar
-3/4 teaspoon of salt
-8 tablespoons (1 stick) of butter, melted
-1 1/2 tablespoons of water
- Heat the oven to 350 degrees F
- Combine flour, sugar, and salt in a bowl and using a paddle attachment, mix well on low speed
- Add the butter and water and combine together
- Spread the clusters on parchment paper or silpat and bake for 25 minutes.
- Let the crumbs cool and store in an airtight container if using it for later.
Dulce de Leche:
-4 cans of sweetened condensed milk
- Remove the labels of the cans
- Fill your crock pot with the sweetened condensed milk.
- Then slowly pour warm water into the crock pot. Make sure to fill the crock pot with water that is above the cans of condensed milk. This is important to prevent a possible mishap in the kitchen.
- Set the crock pot on high and let it sit for 2 to 3 hours. Check on it from time to time to ensure that the waterline is above the cans.
- Once done, let it cool off and serve as you wish.
Dulce de Leche Buttercream:
-3/4 can Dulce de Leche
-1 1/4 cups of granulated sugar
-1/3 cup of water
-5 large white eggs (room temperature)
-4 sticks of unsalted butter (cut into small cubes)
-pinch of cream of tartar
- In a small saucepan, boil the sugar and water to make a syrup.
- In a bowl of an electric mixer with a fitted whisk with a speed of 2-4, beat the egg whites until a foam forms. Add a pinch of cream of tartar to the egg whites and increase the speed of your mixer to 4-6 until stiff peaks form.
- With the mixer running, slowly pour the sugar water into the bowl and mix for about 3 minutes. Include the butter in the mixture, piece by piece, until the mixture turns into a smooth and spreadable mixture.
Once everything has been prepared, it’s time to assemble the cake. I used a 6 inch cake ring to help with the assembling of the cake.
- Using acetate film, line the 6 inch cake ring.
- Take the first layer of cake and place it inside the cake ring
- With a spatula, spread a dollop of dulce de leche on top of the cake
- With a separate spatula, spread some of the dulce de leche buttercream
- Lightly sprinkle the pie crust crumble on top of the dulce de leche buttercream layer. Once layered, take the next cake layer and place on top of the pie crust crumble layer.
- Repeat until the last layer of cake has been laid and repeat steps 3-5 for the last layer.
- Once done, place the cake in the fridge for 2 hours and let it cool. After the cake has cooled, you may take the film around the cake and place it on a serving plate.
I decided to leave my cake “naked” (i.e not frost the outside of the cake). You may frost the outside of the cake with the dulce de leche buttercream frosting that was made. This cake can be stored in the fridge for a week before it goes bad.