Dashing Desserts for a Colorful Retro Pop Party

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There’s no need to wait for #WaybackWednesday or #ThrowbackThursday just to have a perfectly good reason to make colorful retro-ish desserts. So whether you’re throwing a retro pop dinner party for your friends, or you just feel like whipping up some nostalgic sweet treats from your childhood or high school days, then these sweet recipes will surely be a delight!


Battenberg Cake

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This cute pink-and-white checkered cake is not only lovely for your retro pop party not only because of its vintage design but also because it’s actually a traditional English afternoon tea classic, named to honor the marriage of Princess Victoria and Prince Louis of Battenberg in 1884. To bring back this old childhood favorite into your tables, you can even make this in different colors using quality food coloring liquid gels from Chefmaster.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 cup butter, softened

  • 1 cup white sugar

  • 3 eggs

  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour

  • 1 teaspoon baking powder

  • 1/8 teaspoon salt

  • 2 drops red food coloring

  • 1 cup apricot preserves

  • 2 cups ground almonds

  • 3 cups confectioners' sugar

  • 1 egg, room temperature

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons lemon juice

  • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract

Cream butter and 1 cup sugar together. Beat in 3 eggs, one at a time. Mix in vanilla. Stir in flour, baking powder and salt gently. Add milk if needed. Divide batter into 2 equal parts. Add food coloring to 1 part to make a deep pink color. Grease two 7 inch square pans. Spread batter into each pan.

Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) until an inserted wooden pick comes out clean, about 25 to 30 minutes. Let stand in the pan for 5 minutes. Turn out on racks to cool.

Trim edges from both cakes. Cut each cake lengthwise into 4 strips as wide as the cake is thick. Trim to make strips match. Heat jam slightly. Spread on sides to glue 2 pink and 2 white strips together checkerboard fashion. Spread all 4 sides of completed cake with jam. Repeat with remaining pink and white stripes. Makes two cakes.

To Make Almond Paste: Mix almonds, confectioners' sugar, egg, lemon juice, and almond extract together. Knead until smooth, adding a bit of lemon juice or water if too dry to roll. Add only 1/2 teaspoon at a time. It will be stiff. Divide into 2 equal parts.

Roll 1/2 of paste 1/8 inch or so thick on a surface lightly dusted with confectioners' sugar. Cut to fit length of cake, and long enough to cover 4 sides leaving ends uncovered. Lay cake on one end of paste. Wrap to completely enclose all 4 sides of cake pinching paste to seal. Roll in granulated sugar. Place with seal underneath on serving plate, or store in plastic bag. Repeat for second cake. Chill. Slice thinly to serve.


Chocolate Mint Sundae Cake

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Another amazing vintage dessert going way back to the 1940s is this eye-popping mint chocolate cake. Just imagine sinking your teeth into these deliciously moist chocolate sponge cake with green mint frosting and more chocolate toppings-- truly the perfect combo to get that balanced sensation.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1-1/2 cups of sifted cake flour

  • 1-1/4 cups of sugar

  • 1/2 cup of cocoa

  • 1-1/4 teaspoons of baking soda

  • 1/4 teaspoon of cream of tartar

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 2/3 cup of Spry

  • 1 cup of milk

  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract

  • 2 eggs, unbeaten

Sift the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, cream of tartar, and salt in a mixing bowl; drop in shortening, then add a 3/4 cup of the milk, then the vanilla extract, and beat for 200 strokes (2 minutes by hand or on a mixer at low speed). Scrape the bowl and spoon or beater.

Add the remaining milk and eggs and beat for 200 strokes.

Bake in two deep 8-inch greased layer pans in a moderate oven (350 F) for 30-40 minutes.

Spread the green mint frosting (recipe below) between the layers and on top and sides of the cake. Decorate the top with little "rivers and pools" of melted, cooled chocolate (1/2 teaspoon of shortening and 1/2 ounce of chocolate).


Baby Whoopie Pies

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Nope, these aren’t chocolate flavored macarons. In fact, way before macarons were even a thing, these delicious whoopie pies have already been around since the 1800s, originally as a Pennsylvanian Amish dessert. So go ahead and try making this lavishly soft, sweet, and creamy treat. If you’re tempted to make this in different colors just to make use of your favorite food coloring supplies, then go right ahead!


INGREDIENTS:

  • 100 gram butter, softened

  • 2/3 cup brown sugar

  • 2 eggs

  • 1 cup self-raising flour

  • 2/3 cup cocoa

  • salt

  • 1/3 cup buttermilk

  • 2 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 130 gram unsalted butter, softened

  • 2/3 cup icing sugar sieved

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 6 cup cold water

Preheat oven to 190°C (170°C fan-forced). Line trays with baking paper.

Place butter, sugar, eggs. flour, cocoa, salt, buttermilk and vanilla in bowl of an electric mixer with whisk attachment (or use handheld beater). Whisk on low speed to combine, then increase speed to high and whisk for several minutes until mix is creamy and paler in colour. Occasionally scrape down sides of bowl.

Spoon 48 heaped teaspoons of mix onto trays, leaving space between each to allow for expansion during baking. Bake for 12 minutes. Remove from oven and leave to cool completely.

Meanwhile to make filling, place butter in a bowl of an electric mixer and whisk on high speed for about 5 minutes, until pale and fluffy. Gradually add icing sugar and whisk until dissolved. Add vanilla and whisk to combine. Remove bowl from mixer.

Gently pour 1 cup of cold water over surface of mixture, swish it around for 10 seconds, pour out water and return bowl to mixer to mix for 2 minutes, then repeat this process 5 more times until mixture is almost white.

Dollop generous spoonfuls of mock cream onto upturned cakes, and sandwich them together with another cake to make whoopie pie.