Friday, 25 July 2014

Four Layer Chocolate Ombre Cake

Yes, you read that properly. Four layer. Chocolate. Ombre. Cake. It's like a blogger dream cake, I swear to god- even more so because it goes perfectly with both tea and coffee.

Today is my last day at work. It's a very, very strange feeling- the last six months (and in particular, the four weeks since I handed in my notice) have flown by. I've learned a lot. I've met some wonderful people- colleagues, students, and Kate Granger included- and I genuinely am sad to be leaving.

It's a funny sort of sad though- I'm so excited for the next stage, and as this job was always maternity cover I never really had the full sense of ownership as I did in my last job. It also took so long for my colleagues to get to know me, and me them- I've previously been a real chatterbox and practical joker at work, and in this job have been forced to be a little quieter. No turning my boss' entire desk upside down in this job (which I previously did).

I've had my ups and downs- high points included pulling off an incredible student session at a big national event, and lows included being made fun of at work in a reverse snobbery kind of way (apparently, not knowing what a Toast Topper was equated to me being the sort of person who only shops in Waitrose. I'm not that person).

Over the past six months I have baked numerous cakes, taken a trip to Llandudno, attended multiple events, charmed the director, listened to colleagues rant, written six e-newsletters, scheduled more tweets that I care to think about, and learnt an awful lot about myself.

As I write this, it doesn't even really feel like I'm leaving. My handover document is unfinished, my desk is very clearly still mine, and I really don't believe that I won't be going back on Monday. It's baffling, really.

So it was only fitting really that I took my colleagues a fairly spectacular cake to say farewell. As a number of my colleagues were scheduled to be out of the office today, I took this in on Tuesday. In a team of seven, it lasted two days- which I think is quite impressive going, and tells just how good this cake really is.

I'm not going to post the recipe here, as I followed Kathryn's instructions to the letter- just with gluten-full flour rather than gluten-free, because none of us are gluten intolerant, and in 8 inch pans, so my layers were slimmer than Kathryn's 7 inch ones. And when you make it- maybe put slightly less than a full tablespoon of cocoa powder in the third layer- for me, there wasn't quite enough of a distinction between the third and fourth layers. Still bloody delicious though.

It's a wonderful cake, and I strongly suggest you make it. It might make your colleagues wish you weren't leaving- or it could just make a really great birthday cake for a friend.


  1. That cake looks amazing. If your colleagues weren't going to miss you before they definitely will now! Enjoy your last day at work as much as you can, even though it sounds like you're making the move that's right for you. I'm sure you'll have more fun on your new adventures. I have recently been made permanent in my job and it really changed the way I felt about the place after being on maternity cover for 2 terms. Now the job really feels like my own rather than just babysitting it for someone else; I feel like I can take a few more risks and lay down proper roots to establish myself long term. Onwards and upwards! x

  2. Oh I can't even look directly at it!
    Sending you all of the luck for your new adventure Alice.
    M x Life Outside London

  3. That cake looks amazing - and I have literally never heard of Toast Toppers so you're definitely not alone there! Best of luck again with the move & the new job!


  4. Oh my goodness, be still my beating heart! This cake looks like it's just jumped out of Pinterest or Tumblr and straight on to your blog! Thank you for posting the link to the recipe, I will definitely be using this for birthdays (or just for my own benefit, who needs occasions for cake?!) Good luck to you in the next chapter of your life x

    Olivia's Notebook

  5. Amazing cake! Really felt a pang when you mentioned the reverse snobbery - even the fact that you had to say "i'm not the kind of person who shops in waitrose" makes me so sad that people are so so judgemental :( starting at uni i got a lot of shit for having gone to private school - apparently it's quite a strange thing and I was judged quite harshly by some! It's really not fair cos I'd never judge someone for what school they went to :/ sorry, funny that that part of your post struck me the most! x
    amber love

  6. That cake looks mouth-wateringly delicious! Good luck in the future! :)

    xx Mimmi, Muted Mornings

  7. Oh wow- that looks incredible!! Good luck in your new job :) xxx

  8. You are the queen of cakes. Will I be expecting to see you on the British Bake Off shortly? x

  9. Looks amazing my clever baking friend x

  10. Gosh, I wish I was one of your colleagues just to taste that incredible cake! Good luck in your new role, I'm sure you'll be amazing! :-) xx


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