Five layer cakes, two days, and one tiny NYC apartment


 
Five layer cakes, two days, and one tiny NYC apartment  - tips and tricks for making a whole bunch of cakes all at once over the course of two days #weddingcake #layercake #deconstructedweddingcake
Five layer cakes, two days, and one tiny NYC apartment  - tips and tricks for making a whole bunch of cakes all at once over the course of two days #weddingcake #layercake #deconstructedweddingcake
Five layer cakes, two days, and one tiny NYC apartment  - tips and tricks for making a whole bunch of cakes all at once over the course of two days #weddingcake #layercake #deconstructedweddingcake
Five layer cakes, two days, and one tiny NYC apartment  - tips and tricks for making a whole bunch of cakes all at once over the course of two days #weddingcake #layercake #deconstructedweddingcake
Five layer cakes, two days, and one tiny NYC apartment  - tips and tricks for making a whole bunch of cakes all at once over the course of two days #weddingcake #layercake #deconstructedweddingcake

I got to do a really special thing last weekend - I made cakes for our friend’s wedding. Our good friends got married, and when we heard that they were engaged, I offered to make cakes for them! It’s such a fun thing to do for friends, and I got a zillion questions about my process, so I decided to pop it all here so I have a place to direct people! Rich said multiple times throughout the process “I can’t believe how chill you are about this” (Usually I’m super stressed and panicky about literally everything I do in my life, ever), which I think came down to the planning I did leading up. I planned a lot throughout the week, but did the majority of the workload across two days.

We changed things up a little from the traditional tiered wedding cake, and instead went for five individual cakes. There were 100 guests at the wedding, so I did four 8” cakes, and one larger 10” cake to make sure there would be enough. The great part about having a site with loads of recipes on it that you know is that I can direct people here, and get them to choose from the recipes I already have. They chose a whole bunch of different cakes, which was not only super fun to make, but looked amazing all lined up at the venue! I have a good sized collection of Aheirloom cake stands, so I used them to keep some continuity, but I think this would look so pretty with a whole range of different cake stands too. Cake tables for the win. They were such a huge hit, and I am so honoured to be have been included in our friend’s day! Congrats Damon and April! x

I wanted to leave all my wee tips and tricks I could think of here just in case they are helpful! One thing that REALLY helped is that we have a walk in fridge in our reception of our building (So weird, but SO convenient), so I was able to put two of the cakes down there overnight, which helped loads. Clearing out your fridge would work well too, or borrowing a friend’s fridge space! Just make sure the cakes have time to chill before you transport them. You want them to be nice and cold so that you don’t have to worry about any meltage.

Here are the cakes that we ended up with (in the order they are pictured)

  • Earl Grey Cake with Marmalade filling and Vanilla Bean German Buttercream

    • This cake, with a double batch of the buttercream, and a store bought marmalade, decorated in the style of this cake.

  • Vanilla Bean Layer Cake with Passionfruit Curd and Vanilla Bean Swiss Meringue buttercream

    • I didn’t make any switches in this recipe - I just used this one from my site.

  • Chocolate Mud Cake with Cherry Filling and Vanilla Bean Swiss Meringue Buttercream

    • This one was twin peaks inspired (I haven’t seen it before!), so I did a 1.5 x of this cake, which I baked into 3 x 8” pans, and then cut each cake into two, giving me six layers. I swapped the gluten free flour called for in the recipe for regular flour as it was not required to be gluten free. I then filled it with a store bought Cherry Jam, and finished it with Vanilla Swiss Meringue Buttercream, which I coloured hot pink. This cake also had a sprinkle twin peaks inspired top and sprinkles on the sides - I used sprinkles from Sprinkle Pop Shop.

  • Dairy Free Lemon Cake with Dairy Free Lemon Curd and Torched Meringue

    • The Bride’s Mum is Dairy Free, so I tweaked this recipe a little - I used vegan butter in the curd, and cashew yoghurt in the cake, and it turned out amazing! I then made a quick powdered sugar based buttercream (american buttercream, half this recipe but with vegan butter and no milk or coconut would work great) to stack the cake, then chilled overnight and then covered the day of with swiss meringue, which I torched.

  • Devil’s Food Cake with Hazelnut Chocolate Frosting and Salted Chocolate German Buttercream

    • This cake, doubled and baked in 3 x 10” layers (make sure you have a massive bowl), filled with one batch of this frosting and layered and stacked with a double batch of this German Buttercream

My Timeline:

Monday: Make a list of all the cakes, all the fillings, all the buttercreams, and work out what I am going to need for each.
Tuesday: Make a shopping list, and either do the shop, or order everything to be delivered via online shopping (I went for online shopping, because NYC life)
Wednesday: Get shopping delivered, organise all your groceries, clear out space in your fridge, make a game plan, make any fillings that can be done ahead such as your curd fillings
Thursday: Make alllll the layers. Cool completely, level off, and store in the fridge overnight. Make any buttercream bases (German buttercream you can make the pastry cream the day before as it ideally needs time to cool)
Friday: Make all of your buttercreams, stack and frost the cakes, chill overnight (The overnight chill makes the transport part much less stressful as you know that all your cakes are well chilled).
Saturday: Make any last touch ups, cover the lemon cake with meringue and torch (It will weep if left too long so I did it the day of), transport to the venue!

A few wee tips:

  • You can make your life easier by doing things like making all of the pastry cream for the german buttercream at once, and then portioning it out to whip up individual batches. I think I did a quadruple batch of the buttercream needed to make this cake, cooled it all in one container, and then weighed it, and used as much as I needed for one batch at a time. It means you aren’t making pastry cream a whole bunch of times, just once.

  • I used Acrylic cake discs which I got Rich to cut me on the laser cutter, but cardboard cake boards work great too. I used one that was the size of the cake, and then another which was two inches larger, stuck down with double sided tape, which made moving the cakes around super easy.

  • I popped some milkshake straws through the largest cake just to help give it some stability. Poke them down into the cake, then measure how long they need to be, and snip them off then poke them back into the cake

  • Give yourself a SOLID buffer. Like, a whole day’s worth if you can. I know someone quite well (spoiler alert - it’s me) who has had multiple cake disasters in the back seats of ubers where improperly chilled cakes had total structural blowouts. It’s not cute. Leave time to chill your cakes, and to organise all the last minute bits and bobs. I think this was key to me being a bit chill!

Please feel free to leave any questions or things I may have missed below - always happy to help! x

 

 
Five layer cakes, two days, and one tiny NYC apartment  - tips and tricks for making a whole bunch of cakes all at once over the course of two days #weddingcake #layercake #deconstructedweddingcake

Olive Oil Layer Cake with Meyer Lemon Curd and Rosemary German Buttercream


 
Olive Oil Layer Cake with Meyer Lemon Curd and Rosemary German Buttercream. Fruity olive oil cake is filled with a zesty meyer lemon curd, and finished in a semi naked style with a rosemary german buttercream and spring flowers. #nakedcake #oliveoilcake #meyerlemon
Olive Oil Layer Cake with Meyer Lemon Curd and Rosemary German Buttercream. Fruity olive oil cake is filled with a zesty meyer lemon curd, and finished in a semi naked style with a rosemary german buttercream and spring flowers. #nakedcake #oliveoilcake #meyerlemon
Olive Oil Layer Cake with Meyer Lemon Curd and Rosemary German Buttercream. Fruity olive oil cake is filled with a zesty meyer lemon curd, and finished in a semi naked style with a rosemary german buttercream and spring flowers. #nakedcake #oliveoilcake #meyerlemon
Olive Oil Layer Cake with Meyer Lemon Curd and Rosemary German Buttercream. Fruity olive oil cake is filled with a zesty meyer lemon curd, and finished in a semi naked style with a rosemary german buttercream and spring flowers. #nakedcake #oliveoilcake #meyerlemon
Olive Oil Layer Cake with Meyer Lemon Curd and Rosemary German Buttercream. Fruity olive oil cake is filled with a zesty meyer lemon curd, and finished in a semi naked style with a rosemary german buttercream and spring flowers. #nakedcake #oliveoilcake #meyerlemon
Olive Oil Layer Cake with Meyer Lemon Curd and Rosemary German Buttercream. Fruity olive oil cake is filled with a zesty meyer lemon curd, and finished in a semi naked style with a rosemary german buttercream and spring flowers. #nakedcake #oliveoilcake #meyerlemon
Olive Oil Layer Cake with Meyer Lemon Curd and Rosemary German Buttercream. Fruity olive oil cake is filled with a zesty meyer lemon curd, and finished in a semi naked style with a rosemary german buttercream and spring flowers. #nakedcake #oliveoilcake #meyerlemon

Hi! I am super excited to be sharing this recipe today for this super springy Olive Oil Layer Cake with Meyer Lemon Curd and Rosemary German Buttercream! I have a wee list at the front of my diary (planner for anyone in the US), full of all the things that I want to make for the blog. It can be recipe ideas, concepts, or fully written out ideas, depending on how far along in the thought process I am before I write things down. I’ve had “Semi naked cake with flowers” written on it for the longest time, so I am excited to be sharing this with you, and crossing it off the list! Naked cakes came onto the scene a good few years ago now - I love them for how easy they are to decorate, how versatile they are, and how beautiful they look when they are decorated with flowers!

I’ve been wanting to try my hand at an olive oil cake for a while now - I love the flavour and texture that the oil lends to baked goods. After many tries, and a few weirdly domed cakes that looked like Harry from Home Alone’s burnt bald head, I found a combo of ingredients that made a cake that is the perfect texture. It is fruity from the olive oil and a little lemon zest, and then has a beautiful texture thanks to a little bit of cornmeal I snuck into the batter! It comes together super quickly with no mixer needed - even if you weren’t going to layer this cake up, you could bake it off just as one 9” cake, finish it with some icing sugar, and you would have the perfect quick dessert!

I couldn’t help myself though (as per usual), and went all out, turning this into an amazing layer cake situation. I paired the soft cake layers with a meyer lemon curd, which is a little more mellow than curd made with regular lemons, and then finished the whole thing off with a German buttercream, which I infused with some fresh rosemary. I was initially a little hesitant about the rosemary buttercream because it’s a delicate line of a nice infusion and something tasting like hand cream, but it is super subtle, and goes perfectly with the zesty curd and olive oil cake.

The taste of an Olive Oil cake really does come down to the quality of the oil that you use, as it is the main flavour that is carried through, so you want to use a great quality oil that you love the taste of - one that you would have by itself. I used Filippo Berio’s California Extra Virgin Olive Oil in the cake - It is fruity, with a little peppery aftertaste, which makes it the perfect addition to a cake. It is great in baking, but we also use it for eating with bread and oil, and for finishing salads. Fun fact - my childhood best friend’s family owns an organic olive grove back in NZ, so I spent time as a kid sitting in on olive oil tastings, learning all the different flavour profiles in oil!

A few wee tips:

  • I find it easiest to bake layer cakes in three individual layers. I have three of these pans - they are amazing!

  • I put flowers on this cake - ensure that your flowers are either food safe, or you need to wrap the ends of the stems in floral tape so that they can go on the cake safely.

  • I used bake even strips to help stop my cake from doming. You can either use them, or you can make your own like this! They can be a pain to put on, but it made a huge difference in how much cake needed to be trimmed, giving slightly thicker layers.

  • As I mentioned before, make sure that you use a high quality oil in this cake that you love the taste of, or its going to come out tasting weird. Filippo Berio oil is great for this - I love both the California and the Italian for baking where you want the flavour to shine!

  • I used meyer lemons in the curd. You can absolutely just use regular lemons if you can’t get hold of meyer lemons!

  • It will seem like quite a bit of fresh rosemary needed to infuse the milk for the pastry cream. Don’t worry if it seems super strong - remember that it is going to be mellowed out by the pastry cream ingredients, and again by the butter when you whip up the buttercream.

  • If you can, make the cakes, pastry cream for the buttercream, and the lemon curd ahead of time. I like to wrap the cakes tightly in plastic wrap and freeze overnight to make them easy to frost, but if you are making them the same day, just make sure that they are totally cooled. The pastry cream and curd need time to thicken and cool - either overnight, or if you are in a pinch, pop them into a shallow dish, cover the surface with plastic wrap, and place in the fridge or freezer. A larger surface area helps to cool them quicker.

 

 

Olive Oil Layer Cake with Meyer Lemon Curd and Rosemary German Buttercream

- Makes one 6” layer cake -

Olive Oil Layer Cake
300g sugar
300g all-purpose flour
80g fine cornmeal (fine polenta)
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
300g Filippo Berio California Extra Virgin Olive Oil
320g whole milk, at room temperature
3 large eggs, at room temperature
Zest of 2 lemons
1 tsp vanilla bean paste

Meyer Lemon Curd
Zest of 3 lemons
180g Meyer lemon juice
135g sugar
8 egg yolks
90g unsalted butter (can be straight from the fridge), cut into small cubes

Rosemary German Buttercream
190g whole milk
20g fresh rosemary leaves
110g sugar
12g corn starch
1 egg
1 egg yolk
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla bean paste
340g unsalted butter, at room temperature

 

- PROCESS -

OLIVE OIL LAYER CAKE

Preheat the oven to 350°f / 180°c. Grease three 6” cake pans, and line with parchment paper rounds.

In a large bowl, whisk together the sugar, flour, cornmeal, salt, baking powder, and baking soda. In a medium bowl, whisk together the Filippo Berio California Extra Virgin Olive Oil, whole milk, eggs, and lemon zest.

Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients, and whisk together until combined. Finish with a rubber spatula to ensure that there are no dry parts at the bottom of the bowl.

Divide the batter evenly between the three pans. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes, until a skewer inserted into the middle of the cake comes out clean. Transfer to a wire rack and cool for 10 minutes, then remove from pans, peel parchment from the bottom, and allow to cool completely. These can be made ahead - store tightly wrapped in plastic until ready to use if making ahead.

MEYER LEMON CURD

Place a heatproof bowl over a pot of simmering water, ensuring that the water does not touch the bottom of the bowl. Combine all of the ingredients, whisking often. Watch the edges of the mixture carefully to ensure that it does not catch and go lumpy, switching to a flexible rubber spatula as needed to help clear the sides of the bowl.

Heat, stirring often, until the mixture is thick enough that when you coat the back of a spoon or spatula with curd, you can drag a finger through it, and leave a clear track. Once it is at this point, continue to cook for a further 5 minutes. It will thicken more when it cools. Transfer to a bowl or container, straining through a sieve if you can see any small pieces of egg, then press a piece of plastic wrap directly against the surface of the curd. Place in the fridge to cool completely.

ROSEMARY GERMAN BUTTERCREAM

In a medium saucepan, heat the milk to just shy of a simmer.  Remove from the heat, add the rosemary, stir well, and steep for 30 minutes. Strain through a very fine mesh sieve, and re-weigh the infused milk and top up to 375g. Wipe out the saucepan, and return to the milk mixture to the heat. Bring to just shy of a simmer. Meanwhile, In a bowl, whisk together the sugar and corn starch to remove any lumps, then add the egg, egg yolk, salt, and vanilla bean paste.

Using one hand to whisk constantly, pour half of the hot milk mixture into the egg mixture. This helps to temper the eggs and stop them from scrambling. Whisk until incorporated, and then pour the whole lot back into the saucepan.

Heat the milk and egg mixture over medium heat, whisking constantly, until it begins to bubble. It will thicken quickly. Once it has thickened, cook for one minute, then remove from the heat. Pour into a shallow container or bowl of a stand mixer and press some plastic wrap over the surface to avoid a skin from forming. Refrigerate until cold - at least four hours, preferably overnight. If you need to speed this process up, you can place the pastry cream in a bowl, then place the bowl in an ice bath, or use a shallow container. Stir frequently.

Fit your mixer with the whisk attachment, and place the pastry cream in the bowl. Whip the mixture on medium until creamy and lump-free. Begin adding the butter, a few cubes at a time, until fully incorporated. It may look curdled at some point but just keep whipping - it will come together! Whip for a further 2 minutes.

FILLING AND ASSEMBLY

If the cakes domed in the oven, level them a little with a sharp bread knife. Transfer some of the rosemary buttercream to a piping bag fitted with a medium round tip - this will be used to make a buttercream dam to hold in the lemon curd between the layers.

Secure one of the layers of cake to a cake turntable or cake stand using a little buttercream. Add about half a cup of rosemary buttercream onto the first layer of cake, and smooth using an offset spatula. Create a buttercream dam using the buttercream in the piping bag by piping a ring around the outside edge of the first layer. Fill in the ring with approximately 6 Tbsp of the lemon curd. Place the second layer of cake onto the first, pressing very lightly to secure, and sealing the joins with a thin layer of buttercream. Repeat the layering process - add half a cup of buttercream, make a dam, fill with 6 Tbsp lemon curd, then top with the third layer of cake - I like to put this one upside down to ensure that the top of the cake is flat.

Coat the sides of the cake by applying a thin layer of buttercream over the surface of the cake, and smoothing with a bench scraper or icing smoother. I gave this cake a semi naked look - so added buttercream to the sides, then scraped off to get my desired look. Smooth the top edge of the cake using an offset spatula.

Add flowers as desired (see notes about making flowers safe to use on cakes), and refrigerate until ready to serve. Remove from the fridge about an hour before serving to allow it to come to temperature.

Store leftovers in an airtight container.

Olive Oil Layer Cake with Meyer Lemon Curd and Rosemary German Buttercream. Fruity olive oil cake is filled with a zesty meyer lemon curd, and finished in a semi naked style with a rosemary german buttercream and spring flowers. #nakedcake #oliveoilcake #meyerlemon

Thank you so much to Filippo Berio for sponsoring this post! All opinions are my own.

Caramelised White Chocolate Brownie Cookies with Salted Dark Chocolate German Buttercream


 
Caramelised White Chocolate Brownie Cookies with Salted Dark Chocolate German Buttercream. Perfect tiny mouthfuls of soft chocolate brownie cookie filled with caramelised white chocolate specks, and sandwiched with silky buttercream. These are bound to become your new favourite. #sandwichcookies #browniecookie #germanbuttercream
Caramelised White Chocolate Brownie Cookies with Salted Dark Chocolate German Buttercream. Perfect tiny mouthfuls of soft chocolate brownie cookie filled with caramelised white chocolate specks, and sandwiched with silky buttercream. These are bound to become your new favourite. #sandwichcookies #browniecookie #germanbuttercream
Caramelised White Chocolate Brownie Cookies with Salted Dark Chocolate German Buttercream. Perfect tiny mouthfuls of soft chocolate brownie cookie filled with caramelised white chocolate specks, and sandwiched with silky buttercream. These are bound to become your new favourite. #sandwichcookies #browniecookie #germanbuttercream
Caramelised White Chocolate Brownie Cookies with Salted Dark Chocolate German Buttercream. Perfect tiny mouthfuls of soft chocolate brownie cookie filled with caramelised white chocolate specks, and sandwiched with silky buttercream. These are bound to become your new favourite. #sandwichcookies #browniecookie #germanbuttercream
Caramelised White Chocolate Brownie Cookies with Salted Dark Chocolate German Buttercream. Perfect tiny mouthfuls of soft chocolate brownie cookie filled with caramelised white chocolate specks, and sandwiched with silky buttercream. These are bound to become your new favourite. #sandwichcookies #browniecookie #germanbuttercream
Caramelised White Chocolate Brownie Cookies with Salted Dark Chocolate German Buttercream. Perfect tiny mouthfuls of soft chocolate brownie cookie filled with caramelised white chocolate specks, and sandwiched with silky buttercream. These are bound to become your new favourite. #sandwichcookies #browniecookie #germanbuttercream
Caramelised White Chocolate Brownie Cookies with Salted Dark Chocolate German Buttercream. Perfect tiny mouthfuls of soft chocolate brownie cookie filled with caramelised white chocolate specks, and sandwiched with silky buttercream. These are bound to become your new favourite. #sandwichcookies #browniecookie #germanbuttercream

Hi! Here with another collab - this time these super delicious Caramelised White Chocolate Brownie Cookies with Salted Dark Chocolate German Buttercream. They sound like a mouthful, and they truly are, but the good kind. lolz.

These wee cookies were something that my friend Becky and I dreamt up for Cherry Bombe University last year. We partnered up for a bake-off, and because we live on opposite coasts, decided to divide and conquer our recipe by doing a sandwich cookie, and coming up with one component each. Being our resident internet cookie queen, Becky whipped up these incredible cookies - little brownie cookies with a caramelised white chocolate ‘dust’ swirled throughout. I paired them with my very favourite thing - a salted chocolate german buttercream. Alone, the components are pretty good, but paired up, these cookies are just ridiculous. The cookies are perfectly soft, and sandwiched with the slightly salty, silky buttercream, they are some of the very best cookies I have had in quite some time. Becky came around the morning of the event and we baked our little butts off, filling my teeny apartment with boxes and boxes of cookies - we had to make 200, so kept them on the small side, because making 400 cookies is a whole shitload of cookies. They won crowd favourite at the event, and I promise you they will become your new favourite too.

A few wee tips:

  • Don’t go out and buy amazing quality white chocolate for this. Get good dutch cocoa and good dark chocolate and good butter, but we found that for a great dusty texture, regular white baking chips worked best. We used the white baking chips from Ghirardelli.

  • The time for the caramelised white chocolate may vary from brand to brand. If you take it too far by mistake and it goes smooth again, just chop up once cool into small pieces.

  • The white chocolate dust recipe is easily doubled on one half sheet pan - I suggest making extra because they are super good to have as a garnish for a dessert, or just for a quick stress eat when you need it (happened to me v recently)

  • You will see that there is bread flour and all-purpose flour in these cookies, which is a signature move of Becky’s. It gives the cookies amazing height and chew - don’t skip it if you are able. If you are in NZ, Bread flour is the same as High-grade.

  • I used King Arthur’s Double dutch cocoa for this - which is a blend of black cocoa and dutch cocoa, so the cookies came out a little darker than they would if you used regular dutch cocoa. Either works!

  • These will seem small, but remember that there will be two cookies, plus buttercream in a sandwich. They pack a wee punch. A tablespoon cookie scoop really helps to keep them consistent in size.

  • Muscovado sugar is great - it is dark and super flavourful. If you can’t get hold of it, dark brown sugar works great too.

  • The dough for the cookies will seem quite loose - but with an overnight rest it firms up nicely. Make sure you account time for this.

 

 

Caramelised White Chocolate Dust Brownie Cookies with Salted Dark Chocolate German Buttercream

- Makes about 35 sandwich cookies cookies -

Caramelised White Chocolate Dust
285g (10 oz) White Chocolate Baking Chips

Brownie Cookie
115g (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, room temperature
250g (1 1⁄4 cups) granulated sugar
100g (1⁄2 cup) dark muscovado sugar, packed
2 large eggs, room temperature
1 large egg yolk, room temperature
3 teaspoons (15 ml) real vanilla extract
1⁄2 cup (118 ml) sunflower seed oil
156 g (1 1⁄4 cups) bread flour
156 g (1 1⁄4 cups) all-purpose flour
75g (2/3 cup) unsweetened dark (Dutch process) cocoa powder
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 ½ teaspoon sea salt

Salted Chocolate German Buttercream
110g sugar
12g (1 1/2 Tbsp) cornstarch
1 egg
1 egg yolk
1 tsp kosher salt
190g whole milk
1 tsp vanilla bean paste
340g (3 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
180g good quality dark chocolate, melted and cooled slightly
½ tsp flaky sea salt

- PROCESS -

CARAMELISED WHITE CHOCOLATE DUST

Preheat your oven to 250°F (120°C).

Sprinkle the white chocolate over a baking sheet and bake in the center of the oven for 10 minutes. Take out of the oven and stir the chips and place back in the oven for 10 more minutes. Repeat this process 3-4 more times, until they have turned a nice bronze color and the chips have crumbled - this usually takes me about 40 minutes. Take out of the oven and set aside to cool.

 

BROWNIE COOKIES

In an electric stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment add the butter, granulated sugar and brown sugar and mix on medium for 4 minutes or until light and fluffy. Add in the eggs and egg yolk, one at a time taking care that each is well blended before adding in the next. Add in the vanilla and oil running the machine 1 minute more or until thoroughly blended. Be sure to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl so that everything is well blended. Take the bowl out of the mixer.

In a medium bowl whisk together the bread flour, all-purpose flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and sea salt. Add this to the butter mixture and combine in as few strokes as possible and no flour streaks remain. Take the bowl out of the mixer, sprinkle the caramelized chocolate dust over the top and barely fold into the dough…you want there to be thick swirls of it in the dough. Wrap tightly and chill for at least
3 hours or overnight.

Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C) and cover several baking sheets with parchment paper.

Roll into 1 tablespoon-size balls and set on the prepared baking sheet leaving a 1 1⁄2-inch (3.7-cm) space between dough balls. If dough gets sticky while rolling, place it in the freezer for 10 minutes to firm back up.

Bake one sheet at a time for 8 minutes in the center of the oven. Let cool for 5 minutes on the baking sheet and then transfer to a rack to finish cooling.

SALTED CHOCOLATE GERMAN BUTTERCREAM

In a bowl, whisk together the sugar, corn starch, egg, egg yolk and salt. In a medium saucepan, heat the milk and vanilla to just shy of a simmer.  Remove from the heat.

Using one hand to whisk constantly, pour half of the hot milk mixture into the egg mixture. This helps to temper the eggs and stop them from scrambling. Whisk until incorporated, and then pour the whole lot back into the saucepan.

Heat the milk and egg mixture over medium heat, whisking constantly, until it begins to bubble. It will thicken quickly. Once it has thickened, cook for one minute, then remove from the heat. Pour into a shallow container or bowl of a stand mixer and press some plastic wrap over the surface to avoid a skin from forming. Refrigerate until cold - at least four hours, preferably overnight. If you need to speed this process up, you can place the pastry cream in a bowl, then place the bowl in an ice bath. Stir frequently.

Fit your mixer with the whisk attachment, and place the pastry cream in the bowl. Whip the mixture on medium until creamy and lump-free. Begin adding the butter, a few cubes at a time, until fully incorporated. It may look curdled at some point but just keep whipping - it will come together! Once the buttercream is homogenous, add the cooled melted dark chocolate and flaky sea salt, and mix well to combine. Store in an airtight container until ready to use, or if using immediately, transfer to a piping bag fitted with a round tip.

To assemble, pair similar-sized cookies, pipe a blob of buttercream on one half, and press the other cookie on top.  Alternatively you can use an offset spatula, and smear the buttercream on. Repeat with the remaining cookies.

Store leftover cookies in an airtight container in the fridge.

Caramelised White Chocolate Brownie Cookies with Salted Dark Chocolate German Buttercream. Perfect tiny mouthfuls of soft chocolate brownie cookie filled with caramelised white chocolate specks, and sandwiched with silky buttercream. These are bound to become your new favourite. #sandwichcookies #browniecookie #germanbuttercream