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Chocolate and Cinnamon Christmas Tree Bundt with Cinnamon Buttercream and Marzipan Pine Cones

by Melanie Johnson from Bundt

A delightfully festive Bundt featuring chocolate Christmas trees and flavoured with marzipan and cinnamon.

From the book

Melanie Johnson

Introduction

I’m not going to deceive you, this Bundt is a tiny bit fiddly but Christmas is all about detail and magical surprises, so imagine the delight of a slice of cake with a chocolate Christmas tree within it! It never ceases to impress all ages in my house and makes a thoughtful gift.

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Ingredients

For the chocolate Christmas trees:
25g cocoa powder
125g self-raising flour
125g golden caster sugar
A pinch of salt
125g unsalted butter, melted
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla bean paste
For the 12-cup Anniversary Bundt® pan
15g butter
15g plain flour
For the bundt:
300g unsalted butter
200g caster sugar
4 eggs
1 tsp vanilla bean paste
75ml buttermilk
200g self-raising flour
½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
A pinch of salt
1 tsp ground cinnamon
For the frosting:
250g unsalted butter
1 tbsp ground cinnamon
500g icing sugar
50g white chocolate, melted
To decorate
100g marzipan
50g flaked almonds
Sprigs of rosemary
Icing sugar, for dusting

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Method

Preheat your oven to 160°C fan/180°C/350°F/gas 4 and line a baking tray with a piece of baking parchment.

To make the Christmas trees, take a large mixing bowl and add the cocoa powder, flour, sugar and salt. Pour over the melted butter, eggs and vanilla and mix until smooth. Pour it into the baking tray and bake for 25 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Remove from the oven and leave to cool completely. Once cool, use a small Christmas-treeshaped cookie cutter (it needs to be relatively small so that it will fit within the width of the Bundt® pan) and cut Christmas trees from the chocolate sponge. Put the Christmas trees in the freezer while you make the batter for the Bundt.

To prepare the Bundt® pan, melt the butter, then use a pastry brush to brush it generously over the inside of a 12-cup Anniversary Bundt® pan, being careful to get into every nook and cranny. I find it easier to brush from the base up to prevent any butter pooling. Scatter over the flour, moving the pan from side to side to coat it evenly, then tap it while inverted to remove any excess flour. Set aside until ready to use.

Cream together the butter and sugar in a large bowl. Add the eggs, vanilla and buttermilk and continue to beat until fully incorporated. Pour over the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, salt and cinnamon and beat until just combined. Pour half the mixture into the prepared pan. Take the Christmas trees out of the freezer and arrange them upside down in a row all around the Bundt ring, with as few spaces in between them as possible. Pour the remaining batter over the Christmas trees and then bake for 45–50 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the cake comes out clean. Leave to cool in the pan for 15 minutes, then invert onto a wire rack to cool completely.

To make the cinnamon frosting, beat the butter, cinnamon, icing sugar and melted white chocolate together until smooth. Spread over the Bundt.

To make the pine cones, shape a cone from the marzipan and then stick the pieces of flaked almond into it. Place on top of the Bundt, along with a few sprigs of rosemary and dust everything with snow, I mean icing sugar.

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From the book: Bundt

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