The Jaffa Cake; Is it a biscuit? Or is it a cake?
Well I would say it is a cake- It has a sponge base, it goes hard when its stale and its called a Jaffa CAKE. However it surprised me to learn that for many years McVities had to defend its classification of the Jaffa Cake as a cake.
In the United Kingdom, Value Added Tax (VAT) has to be paid on all chocolate covered biscuits, but not on chocolate covered cakes. Therefore it seems that many people in the biscuit industry were a bit miffed about the fact that McVities was getting off scot-free from having to pay VAT, when their product was being sold alongside other brands of chocolate covered biscuit.
In the end McVities won the battle and up until this day, Jaffa Cakes are still considered to be a cake and are therefore free of VAT. Rumour has it that in order to fight their case, Mcvities produced a giant Jaffa Cake to take in to court so that they could prove it really was more of a cake than a biscuit.
The outcome of this particular recipe will definitely be cake. The Jaffa Cake cake sticks close to its origins, featuring layers of sponge, topped with orange jelly and then a coating of chocolate ganache. Now I have to admit that this whole thing was a bit of an experiment, therefore I am sorry for the lack of photos towards the end. I had an unfortunate incident with one of my layers of jelly which slightly but me off my game. Turns out that jelly is not the most stable of ingredients to work with… who’d have thought.
Prep Time: 2 Hours
For the Sponge…
200g Caster Sugar
200g Self Raising Flour
1 Tsp Vanilla Extract
For the Icing…
600g Icing Sugar
1 Tsp Orange Extract
2 Tbsp Cocoa Powder
A splash of milk
For the Orange Jelly…
2 Packets of Hartleys Orange flavoured Jelly
1 Tsp of Powdered Gelatine
For the Ganache topping…
100g Dark Chocolate
100g Double Cream
2 Packets of mini Jaffa Cakes to decorate
Equipment: Two 6 inch cake tins
1. First of all you will want to make your layers of orange jelly; I would definitely recommend doing this the night before.
2. Start by lining your cake tins with a layer of cling film, to be sure that none of the liquid jelly leaks out. I also lined a small tupperware tub for any extra jelly that I then used as decoration.
3. Break up the Hartley’s orange jelly in to cubes and place in a heatproof bowl.
4. Now squeeze the juice out of the five oranges. Place the juice in a saucepan and bring to the boil.
5. As soon as it starts to boil, remove from the heat and pour it over the cubes of jelly. Now add a teaspoon of gelatine powder and stir until everything has dissolved.
6. Add a pint of cold water and stir again.
7. Pour the liquid jelly into the cake tins and tupperware tub and then leave to set in the fridge for as long as possible.
8. For the sponge…Preheat the oven to 170°C/ 325 F/ Gas Mark 3
9. Cream together the stork and caster sugar and then add the eggs, vanilla extract and flour.
10. Divide the cake mix between two 6 inch cake tins, putting two thirds in one tin and the remaining third in the other. One of these cakes will be sliced in half so that there are three layers of sponge.
11. Place in the oven and bake for 30- 35 minutes or until they are golden brown and springy.
12. Take the cakes out of the oven and leave to cool.
13. Now its time to make the buttercream… Place your butter, icing sugar and a splash of milk into the mixer and mix on high speed until you have soft fluffy buttercream.
14. Take away a quarter of the buttercream and set to one side. Now add a teaspoon of orange extract and some orange food colouring to the remaining buttercream and beat on high.
15. Scoop the orange buttercream in a separate bowl and leave to one side.
16. Thoroughly clean your mixing bowl. Then put the quarter of buttercream you set aside earlier in to the bowl with two tablespoons of cocoa powder and mix on high.
17. Time for construction… The idea of this cake is that is goes, sponge, orange, chocolate; just like a normal Jaffa Cake.
For the most part it did turn out like this. However I had a slight problem with one of my layers of jelly, which ended up falling apart in my hands. After this occurrence I rethought my jelly handling strategy and I am happy to say that at least one of the layers of jelly remained in tact. Hooray!
(The one jelly layer that survived)
18. You need to slice your bigger sponge in half so that you have three layers of sponge.
19. Top the bottom layer of sponge with a layer of jelly (I trust you will be less clumsy than me at doing this!) Then take your next layer of sponge and cover the bottom in chocolate buttercream. Place this layer on top of the orange jelly, with the chocolaty side facing the jelly. This is the first bit done. You now need to repeat this until your cake goes, sponge, jelly, buttercream, sponge, jelly, buttercream, sponge. At this stage place the cake in the fridge to firm up a bit.
20. Take it out of the fridge once it has firmed up and then cover the cake in a layer of orange buttercream. Having a turn table really helps to give the buttercream a smooth finish, but don’t worry if you don’t have one as you can always go for a more rustic look.
21.One your cake is iced it is time to pop it back in the fridge for a bit.
22. Meanwhile you can make the chocolate ganache to pour on top.
23. Heat up the double cream to boiling point and then pour over a bowl of broken up pieces of dark chocolate. Mix until you have a smooth ganache.
24. Take the cake out of the fridge and then pour the ganache over the top of the cake, making sure you have bits of ganache cascading over the edges.
25. While the ganache is still wet place the Mini Jaffa Cakes in a circle around the top of the cake.
26. Remove the jelly from the tupperware container and slice it into small cubes. Once the ganache has set you can place the cubes in the gaps between the Mini Jaffa Cakes.
And there you have it; One Jaffa Cake Cake.