Layered peanut butter and caramel cake

The days of peanut butter simply being a sandwhich spread are long gone. It now lives quite comfortably in the realm of nut butters, luxury gelatos and exotic nougats. Do you remember those old fashioned hard candy peanut sweets, that look like actual peanuts? Here’s a peanut butter and caramel cake that carries the nostalgia of those childhood candies while elevating peanut butter, in all it’s creamy and sticky glory, to the height of baked confection. peanut butter cake

Ingredients:

Prep time: 30 mins | Cook time : 25 mins | Makes 1 large cake

For the cake
6 extra large eggs
450g castor sugar
300ml milk
150g butter
2 Tbsp peanut butter
1 tsp vanilla extract
350g cake flour
1 tsp salt
3 tsp baking powder

For the salted caramel
1 tin caramel treat
1 tsp flaked sea salt

For the peanut butter icing
1 heaped Tbsp peanut butter
250g Lancewood or Woolworths cream cheese (these have a firmer texture than other brands)
1 tsp vanilla extract
4 Tbsp (60g) icing sugar
80ml sour cream

Peanut brittle, chocolate covered peanuts, etc., to decorate

Method:

1. To make the cake, preheat the oven to 180°C.

2. Line and grease 3 round cake tins (18cm or 20cm will work well for this type of layered cake).

3. Beat the eggs and sugar until pale and fluffy.

4. Heat the milk and butter until the butter has just melted, remove from the heat and add the peanut butter and vanilla.

5. Mix the flour, salt and baking powder together.

6. Fold the flour mixture into the beaten eggs and sugar mixture, alternately adding some of the hot peanut butter milk mixture. Make sure not to make the mixture too dry by adding too much flour at a time.

7. Spoon equal amounts of the batter into each of your three cake tins. Place in the oven and bake for 20–25 minutes until golden brown and springy to the touch. (Don’t be tempted to take the cake out of the oven before the time is up. The cake will brown a fair bit due to high sugar content, but still needs the allotted time to cook through properly.) Remove and leave to cool completely.

8. To make the peanut butter icing, beat the peanut butter and cream cheese together until soft.

9. Add the vanilla and icing sugar, mix together, then add in the sour cream and beat well.

10. For the salted caramel, stir the sea salt through the caramel in a separate bowl.

11. To assemble the cake, place one of your cake layers on the cake stand and ice with a layer of salted caramel icing, followed by peanut butter cream cheese icing. Place the next cake layer on top of that and repeat the icing process and again with the third layer. You can be as haphazard or neat as you like. If you know you’ll have to move the cake a lot (to take it to a party or to work), stick a couple of wooden skewers through the layers of the cake (cut the tops off so they don’t stick out) to keep them from sliding around – just try to remember where they are for when you cut the cake. And remember, icing a cake in hot weather can lead to a slippery mess, so keep your kitchen extra cool while you work and refrigerate the cake layers to make sure the icing doesn’t melt when applied.

peanut butter cake

12. Swirl your top layer of icing together a bit to create a marbled pattern and finally, top with peanut brittle, chocolate peanuts and any other decorative bits that call out to you.

peanut butter cake

You can also use any of the nut butters from the Oh Mega range. This cake makes for a beautiful autumnal centre piece to any gathering and definitely needs a large pot of coffee to accompany it.

peanut butter cake

We’re pretty sure your cake stand will look like this after your guests have left. And that’s a good thing.