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Haunted house cake


Serves: 16-20
timePrep time: 1 hr 20 mins
timeTotal time:
Haunted house cake
Recipe photograph by Maja Smend

Haunted house cake

Like a gingerbread house, but much simpler – all you need for this impressive bake is a square cake tin. The delicate orange flavour will be a hit with children and adults alike

Serves: 16-20
timePrep time: 1 hr 20 mins
timeTotal time:

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Nutritional information (per serving)
Calories
638Kcal
Fat
28gr
Saturates
17gr
Carbs
87gr
Sugars
62gr
Fibre
2gr
Protein
8gr
Salt
1gr

Mitzie Wilson

Mitzie Wilson

Mitzie Wilson is a food writer, baker and our former Acting Food Director. Mitzie has been writing recipes for magazines for over 30 years, and was editor of BBC Good Food and Delicious. Her particular speciality is creating show-stopping bakes.

See more of Mitzie Wilson’s recipes
Mitzie Wilson

Mitzie Wilson

Mitzie Wilson is a food writer, baker and our former Acting Food Director. Mitzie has been writing recipes for magazines for over 30 years, and was editor of BBC Good Food and Delicious. Her particular speciality is creating show-stopping bakes.

See more of Mitzie Wilson’s recipes

Ingredients

  • 300g soft salted butter
  • 400g golden caster sugar (we used Billington’s)
  • 6 medium eggs, beaten
  • 450g self-raising flour (we used Allinson)
  • 1⁄2 tsp baking powder
  • grated zest of 3 oranges and the juice of 1
To decorate
  • 150g soft salted butter
  • 50g cocoa, sifted
  • 375g icing sugar, plus extra to dust
  • 1-2 x 125g packs mini jaffa cakes
  • 75g orange ready-to-roll icing
  • 1 x 75g pack jelly beans or jelly tots
  • about 4 curly toffee chocolate bar

Step by step

Get ahead
The decorated cake will keep for up to 3 days in a cake tin.
  1. Grease and line the base and sides of a deep 20cm square cake tin. Heat the oven to 180°C, fan 160°C, gas 4.
  2. Put the butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl and beat for at least 5 minutes with an electric hand mixer until the mixture is pale in colour and really light and fluffy.
  3. Gradually beat in the eggs a little at a time until the mixture is smooth and creamy, adding a little flour if the mixture begins to curdle, then carefully stir in the remaining flour, the baking powder and orange zest and juice.
  4. Spread the mixture into the prepared tin and bake for 1-11⁄4 hours, or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out cleanly.
  5. Cool in the tin for 15 minutes, then turn out, remove the lining paper and leave to cool on a wire rack.
  6. Meanwhile, mark a 20cm square template on a piece of card or paper and draw out a simple wonky house cake shape – we made ours slightly narrower at the base with two pointed roofs.
  7. Make the buttercream by beating the butter, cocoa and 325g icing sugar together with 2-3 tablespoons boiling water until smooth. Keep covered until needed, at room temperature.
  8. Place the cake flat side up on a chopping board. Using your wonky house template, cut out the cake shape. Spread the top surface and all the sides with buttercream, using a small palette knife to give the texture of wooden planks. Cover a 20cm round cake board or plate with buttercream, then stand the cake upright, towards the back of the board. Place 3 tablespoons of buttercream in a small disposable piping bag and set aside for adding detail. Spread the remaining buttercream over the back of the upright house. Arrange the jaffa cakes overlapping onto the roof.
  9. Roll out the orange icing on a work surface dusted with icing sugar to about the thickness of a pound coin. Cut out a coffin-shaped door and 2 windows, then place in position on the cake as desired.
  10. Snip off the end of the piping bag to make a small hole, then pipe window panes and a squiggly outline around the windows, and markings on the door.
  11. Mix the remaining 50g icing sugar with a drop of water – just enough to make a thick, pipeable consistency. Place in a small disposable piping bag and snip off the end to give a small hole. Pipe decorations, such as cobwebs, skeletons and ghostly faces, onto the cake.
  12. Add orange and green sweets around the roof and use red and purple ones to make a path. Bend the toffee chocolate bars slightly and use as a fence around the edge of a board. You could also use one to make a tree, like we did, on the side of the house, and decorate with yellow sweets.

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