Those number cakes loaded with meringues, macarons, fruit, flowers, etc are so gosh darn adorable! And the best part is, they’re pretty easy too. I made this number 3 cake with chocolate joconde, raspberry buttercream, and some fun toppings.
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Okay, it doesn’t have to be chocolate, but I really do suggest using a joconde sponge for your number cake. You can find a non- chocolate recipe in my Mini Opera Cake recipe (which is another bangin’ dessert, just sayin’).
But back to the sponge. Joconde will not dry out nearly as quickly as a traditional cake. After it is baked, we top it with a coating of sugar, which melts into the sponge overnight. This keeps the joconde moist for much longer. Which means it is perfect for a number cake!
Basically, you’re going to be beating together your whole eggs and dry ingredients, folding in a chocolate mixture, and then gently folding in your meringue. It is very important to fold the egg whites in gently. If you are too rough, you will deflate your sponge and have a poor texture.
I found that this chocolate joconde sponge was slightly different than the original joconde I made. Because of the added cocoa powder, I found it slightly more dense, though not hard. And just like with chocolate cake, the finished sponge was stickier. But it came out great!
After you bake the chocolate joconde sponge and it is properly cooled, sprinkle with a little bit of sugar. I suggest using caster sugar, if you have it, simply because it is more fine. I’ve used regular granulated sugar too, and it was fine. Then wrap the sponge and let it chill in the fridge overnight.
I actually had one heck of a time figuring out how to make my number 3 template. It was soooo frustrating, but I finally got it sorted. You can find templates for all the numbers (0- 9) in the Resource Library.
Print out your number, cut it out, and cover it in clear contact paper. Then trim off the excess. If you’re making a plain joconde, you might be able to skip the contact paper. But the chocolate joconde sponge is quite moist and sticky, so you really do need this so that the paper doesn’t tear or become disgusting.
2. Cut Your Sponge
Place your number template on one side of your chilled cake. Use a sharp knife to trim around the edge of the template. Before you cut, I suggest making sure that you can fit the number on the sponge twice. If you’re too far towards the center, that could mess you up.
After you’ve cut the outline of your two numbers (these are your two layers), carefully and gently remove the excess sponge. If you have any ragged edges on your number, carefully trim those off.
Place a dab of frosting on your prepared cake board where you will be placing your number. I used my template to figure that out. Gently pick your first number up and position it on the board.
Use a large round piping tip to create a border of buttercream plops around your number. I used this amazing raspberry frosting. Then fill in the center with more plops and top with the other layer. Once again, cover your number in buttercream plops.
Number cakes are a great way to celebrate anniversaries, birthdays, or any other major milestone. This fella was for a couple celebrating 3 years of marriage and I just love it! Make your own number cake and customize it with different flavor combinations and a unique assortment of toppings.
If you make this chocolate joconde sponge or use this tutorial to make your own number cake, I want to see pictures! Post a picture on Instagram and tag @bakesandblunders so I can see your amazing work.
Preheat the oven to 425°F. Line the bottom of a 12x17in baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.
Sift the almond flour, powdered sugar, and cake flour into a bowl. Whisk until combined. Add the whole eggs and beat on medium until well combined and fluffy. Set aside.
Add the cocoa powder to the melted butter. Stir until well combined. Set aside to cool slightly.
In a stand mixer, whip the egg whites to soft peaks. Then begin adding the sugar 1 tablespoon at a time. Continue whipping on high until you reach firm peaks. Do NOT over whip the eggs. Just short of firm peaks is fine too.
Add the chocolate mixture to the almond flour mixture and beat until combined. Gently fold in ⅓ of the whipped egg whites. Once that is mostly combined, add another third, then the final bit of egg whites. Fold gently until the mixture is no longer lumpy and is just combined.
Pour the batter into the prepared baking sheet. Use a spatula or an offset spatula to gently spread the batter into an even layer.
Bake for 8 minutes, or until the sponge springs back when touched. Cool in the baking sheet for 15 minutes. Then place a sheet of parchment paper on top of the joconde. Place one large or two smaller cooling racks upside down onto the baking sheet, then invert so that the baking sheet is upside down on the cooling racks. Remove the baking sheet and gently peel off the parchment paper and set it aside for later.
Let the joconde cool, upside down, on the cooling racks for an hour, or until completely cool. Then place the parchment paper back on the bottom of the sponge. Place the baking sheet back over the sponge and invert the cooling rack so that the sponge is back in the baking sheet.
Gently remove the parchment paper and set aside. Sprinkle the top of the joconde with an even layer of sugar, about 2- 3 tablespoons. Use a pastry brush to even out the sugar. Gently top with the parchment paper and cover with cling wrap. Chill in the fridge overnight, or at least for several hours before assembling your cake.
Use caster sugar, if possible, but regular granulated sugar works just fine too.
Hi there! I’m Colleen, a novice baker with a passion for learning and improving my bakes… and blunders. On Bakes and Blunders, you can find all sorts of tasty recipes that range in difficulty, but most importantly, I’ll try to explain the reason behind important steps. If you know why a recipe works, you can tweak and adapt it to suit your unique tastes, and you’ll be able to reliably produce some very delicious treats. If you love baking and want to expand and grow your skills, or if you are a casual baker and just need some pointers, my blog is right up your alley! Join me on my baking journey and we’ll learn how to make more impressive recipes together.