As bakers, we all know how fast and evolving our baking world is. Every day you will find new trends and techniques paving their way into our lives.
One such example of the new and latest trend is that of Bento Cakes!
But what is a Bento Cake? Is it some new flavor or a new method of making a cake? No, none of these, dear readers. It’s simply a mini version of any celebration cake that fits in a bento box!
Bento boxes are famous in Japan, where lunches are packed on the go or for parcels! The idea of having a bento cake came into existence during the lockdown period during the Pandemic. People all over the world were obligated to stay at home. We could not celebrate any occasion with friends and family outside our home. Hence, the idea of making mini cakes was developed so that one can enjoy cake cutting ceremony at home without wastage from big cakes!
This idea also gave a boost to home bakers as all market bakeries were shut, and home bakers got a chance to spread some happiness during this period.
Today, I have a very quick and simple bento cake recipe for you which has a soft vanilla sponge and smooth buttercream icing decorated with confetti!
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
- Cute and Elegant: Bento cakes look adorable. Their cute petite size pleases everyone. This cake recipe is simple and elegant. The addition of confetti makes it colorful.
- Versatile Recipe: This recipe is made such that it’s open for flavor variations. You can always add on your favorite berries, chocolate, or caramel.
- Perfect for Any Occasion: Bento cakes are an ideal solution for small parties, gatherings, or just when you crave a delicious cake. The serving is small, so it does not have the hassle of storing any leftovers.
Important Ingredients Used In The Recipe
Let’s first check out what essential ingredients you need for the recipe
- Curd: since curd is acidic, it reacts with a leavening agent like baking soda in the cake batter. This helps incorporate air into the cake batter, making the cake soft and fluffy.
- Milk: Milk adds moisture to the cake. It also helps in adding flavor and some color to the baked cake.
- Apple cider vinegar: when using vinegar for any baking recipe, apple cider vinegar is recommended as it’s natural and less pungent than white vinegar. ACV, when added to milk, will make an instant buttermilk.
- Buttermilk: it is used in many cake recipes, whether egg or eggless. The reason is buttermilk helps weaken the gluten strands in cakes just enough to make them soft and fluffy.
How To Make Bento Cake
- Preparation: To make the confetti sponge and buttercream, gather all ingredients first. Grease and line a baking tray with oil and butter paper. Also, preheat the oven to 180C (OTG mode: upper rod + lower rod + fan).
Method For Sponge
- Buttermilk: Make the buttermilk first by mixing apple cider vinegar with milk. Stir and keep aside for a while.
- Creaming: In the meantime, start creaming butter and sugar until the mixture is light and airy.
- Add Curd and Vanilla Essence: Once you are done with creaming, add curd and vanilla essence to the creamed mixture. Mix this well.
- Dry Ingredients: In a different bowl, sift dry ingredients – flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Give this a mix.
- Make Batter: Now, alternatively, add dry ingredients and buttermilk into the creamed mixture in batches. Ensure that there are no lumps left in the batter. Add the confetti sprinklers into the batter and mix.
- Bake: Transfer the batter to the prepared baking tray and spread it evenly using an offset spatula. Bake the cake at 180C(OTG mode: lower rod only) for about 20 minutes.
Method For Buttercream
- Cream Butter: In a mixing bowl, take softened unsalted butter and start beating it using a hand beater. Beat until it is light and fluffy.
- Sugar-Milk Mixture: In a different bowl, mix milk and icing sugar. Mix until the icing sugar dissolves completely.
- Add Sugar-Milk To Butter: Once the icing sugar has dissolved into the milk, add this mixture gradually into the creamed butter. The mixture won’t mix in the beginning; however, with continuous beating, the buttercream will become homogeneous.
Method For Assembly
- Shaping: As the sponge cools, take a 3.5cm round cutter and cut three discs from the cake sheet.
- Layering and Crumb-Coating: Start by placing a cake board on a turn table. Place a blob of buttercream in the center and put the first sponge layer. Soak it using a simple soaking syrup and apply an even layer of buttercream. Put the second sponge layer and repeat the same process till you have all three sponge layers. Now, crumb-coat the cake nicely and keep it in the freezer for 30 minutes.
- Final coating: After the cake has been set for 30 minutes, remove it from the freezer and give it a final buttercream coating, ensuring that it’s smooth and the edges are sharp.
- Decoration: Transfer buttercream to a piping bag fitted with a star nozzle. Pipe 8 blobs on the top edge, keeping equal distance in between. Decorate the bottom edge with a layer of sprinklers. Also, throw sprinkles randomly on the top and sides of the cake.
Chef’s Tips For The Recipe
Tip For Boxing
Since the cake board won’t fit in the bento box, you can transfer the cake onto butter paper and then place it in the box.
Neat Sponge Discs
Cut clean discs of the sponge using the cutter when the sponge has cooled down completely. Cutting a warm sponge will bring out many crumbs.
How To Store Bento Cake
The assembled cake should be stored in the refrigerator and consumed within three days.
You can store only a sponge in the refrigerator for a week by cling-wrapping it.
More Easy Recipes
Frequently Asked Questions
Simply because it’s served in a bento box, Bento is a Japanese word that translates to ‘convenience.’ It fits perfectly as it’s very convenient to carry a small cake.
To fit the cake in a bento box, the cake has a specific dimension which is nearly about 2×4 inches in round shape.
A bento cake weighs around 300-350g only.
It can serve 2-4 people maximum.
No, you can make any and as many, many flavors as you like for a bento cake.
All you need is a standard 6-inch square bento box for packing. Place the cake on a piece of butter paper and then transfer it to the box.
Confetti Cake Sponge:
- 137g All-Purpose Flour
- 100g Caster Sugar
- 1g Baking Soda
- 4g Baking Powder
- Pinch Of Salt
- 57g Unsalted Butter
- 120ml Milk
- 6ml Apple Cider Vinegar
- 15g Curd
- 3ml Vanilla Essence
- 35g Multicolour Sprinkles
- 150g Unsalted Butter
- 40g Icing Sugar
- 30ml Milk
Method For Sponge
- Preheat the oven to 180˚C (OTG Mode: upper rod + lower rod + fan). Grease and Line a baking tray with butter paper and oil.
- In a bowl, mix milk and apple cider vinegar. Stir and keep it aside.
- In a new bowl, cream butter, and sugar together until pale and fluffy. Now add curd and vanilla essence. Mix this well.
- Sift all dry ingredients, i.e., flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt, in another bowl. Give it a mix.
- Add dry ingredients and buttermilk alternatively into the creamed butter-sugar mixture. Starting and ending with the dry ingredients batch, combine everything well, ensuring no lumps are in the batter.
- Lastly, mix colorful sprinklers into the batter and give it a nice stir.
- Pour the batter into the lined tray and bake in a preheated oven at 180˚C (OTG Mode: lower rod only) for 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted at the center comes out clean.
Method For Buttercream
- Take soft unsalted butter and start beating it until fluffy.
- Mix icing sugar and milk in a bowl. Make sure to dissolve the sugar properly.
- Now start adding the milk-sugar mixture to the butter in batches. At first, it may seem that the milk is not mixing, however, continue beating for a few minutes, and it will become a homogeneous mixture.
- Take a 3.5-inch round cutter and cut the sponge using the cutter. Get three sponge layers from it.
- Place a small cake board on a turntable and put some buttercream in the center. Now put the first layer of sponge and soak it with the soaking syrup.
- Spread buttercream and make an even layer.
- Place the second sponge layer and repeat the same procedure.
- Put the 3rd sponge layer and lightly soak it. Crumb-coat it with buttercream and let it set in the freezer for 30 minutes.
- Once the crumbs are set, give a final coating to the cake.
- Transfer the buttercream to a piping bag with an open star nozzle. Make eight blobs on top edges with an equidistant gap.
- Now, take your confetti sprinkles and place them on the bottom edge of the cake. Make a proper layer of Sprinklers at the bottom.
- Throw sprinklers randomly on the sides (middle to top).
- Garnish the top with sprinkles as well.
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Assembly Time: 40 to 50 minutes
- Cook Time: 20 minutes