I know. I just can’t stop with the kawaii faced animals… so I made you this buttercream frosted square bear cake! Fluffy vanilla buttercream and a moist dark chocolate single layer square cake, mixed in one bowl, poured into the cake pan and baked. But surprise – this little bear buddy was baked in my new Panasonic 3-in-1 Steam Oven! I’m not sure if you’ve sensed it, but I feel like microwaves are making a comeback. They are kind of the secret thing that many kitchens use, whether it’s to melt butter or make chocolate ganache or any number of other uses. We have never had a microwave as a family, much to my dear mother-in-law’s annoyance! For reheating meals, we always put a pan in the oven, preheat the damn thing, bake for ten minutes or so and hope for the best… or we would reheat on the stovetop, and soil a pot or two in the process. I kinda dreamed about the ease of something like a microwave but couldn’t mentally commit. Until I met this sweet little friend.
I have made steamed Chinese buns daily using the handy dandy and ridiculously easy Steam function. I’ve used the Microwave function to re-heat my miso veggie bowl leftovers for lunch, which I used to eat cold out of the fridge like a sad sack. I like to call our new Panasonic 3-in-1 Steam Oven THE MAGICAL BOX! Hehe. And perhaps most excitedly, I baked my one bowl chocolate cake recipe in it using the Oven function and it baked as though it was cooked in a traditional oven. I’m excited to share this square bear cake recipe and tutorial with you!
Bake and cool your cake completely. Crumb coat the cake, and then fill a piping bag fitted with a multi-opening grass tip with the rest of the buttercream to make the bear’s fur.
Pipe the entire cake – sides and top! Make the fondant pieces – a white muzzle, two black eyes, a little black nose and pink cheeks and ears. I use a wooden BBQ skewer cut to size to insert into the ears for placing into the cake.
Press down all the facial pieces to adhere and slide the two ear skewers into the top of the cake!
This little square bear is an easy, no-carve way to make a sweet little animal cake for your next party or celebration! Slice into small square and enjoy!
One Bowl Chocolate Square Cake
For the cake
- 1 1/4 cup unbleached flour
- 1 cup Dutch process cocoa powder
- 1 cup granulated white sugar
- 1 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 large eggs
- 1 400 ml can of full fat high quality coconut milk
- 1/4 cup warm water
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
For the buttercream
- 1 1/2 cups unsalted butter at room temperature
- 3 cups icing sugar, sifted
- 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- pinch of salt, optional
- drop of pink gel food colouring
For the decorations
- 2 inch ball of white fondant
- 2 inch ball of black fondant
- 3 inch ball of pink fondant
- wooden BBQ skewer cut to size
- Piping bag , fitted with a large multi-opening grass/fur tip
Make the cake
- Press the OVEN setting to preheat the Panasonic 3-In-1 Steam Oven to 350 degrees. Spritz an 8 x 8 inch square cake pan with vegetable oil. Cut a piece of parchment paper to size and place into the pan.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, combine the flour, cocoa powder, sugar, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Mix on low speed to combine.
- Add the eggs, coconut milk, vegetable oil and pure vanilla extract and mix until combined, about 1-2 minutes.
- Pour the batter into the prepared cake pan, using an offset spatula to level the batter.
- Place into oven and bake for 20-22 minutes. Insert a toothpick into the centre of the cake and inspect it to make sure it comes out clean with only moist crumbs.
- Let cake cool completely on wire rack before frosting.
Make the buttercream
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter, sugar, vanilla, salt and pink gel food colouring on low speed to combine.
- Once combined, beat the buttercream on high speed for about 3-4 minutes until frosting has doubled in volume.
Decorate the cake
- Using an offset spatula, frost the cake with a layer of buttercream, smoothing as you go. You can use a cake bench scraper if you wish.
- Fill the piping bag with the remaining buttercream. Pipe the entire cake with fur.
- With clean and dry hands, make the white fondant muzzle by rolling out fondant to about 1/4 inch thickness. Punch out a circle shape using a large circle cookie cutter or rim of a cup. Gently pull the shape into an oval muzzle and set aside onto parchment paper.
- Roll out a small amount of pink fondant and use the opening of a clean piping tip to punch out little circle shapes for the cheeks. Set aside. Pull off a 1/2 inch piece of pink fondant and mix with 1/2 inch piece of white fondant, creating a lighter pink shade. Using the original pink, form bear ears using your hands. Add “inner ears” using the light pink fondant, using a tiny amount of water to adhere the inner ear to the pink ear. Insert wooden skewers into each ear and set aside.
- Roll out the black fondant and use the opening of a larger clean piping tip or a small circle cookie cutter to punch out two large circles for the eyes. Set aside.
- Pinch a tiny piece of black fondant into a small oval for the nose.
- Place the facial pieces onto top of the cake to make the bear face.
- Insert the ears into the top of the cake!