June 8, 2024

Competition for Chess Board Cake and Bake Off

3 min read

It was a fantastic day yesterday! A Kenwood Chef Mixer was awarded the top prize in a bake-off competition organized by LeaseWeb, the awesome firm I work for! I was aware of it and registered well in advance, but for the longest time, I had no clue what to produce.  Finally, a few days before the bake-off, it dawned on me that the cake had to be a chess set!

Reasons for a Chest Cake?

A few years ago, after viewing the Nerdy Nummies video, I prepared this cake for my fiancé’s birthday. I started with a one-layer vanilla cake and American chocolate butter cream. It’s a fun game to play and a fantastic nerdy cake. It’s a large cake because of the full-size board, and the chocolate chunks are really striking.


Indeed, the candle holder is for a banana birthday.

When I originally prepared it, it was a great cake, but I thought I should try something a little better this time. Sounds like a first prize winner to you? How about triple chocolate layer cake, salted caramel, buttercream, and Maltesers (chocolate honeycomb balls)? I really hoped so!

Go large or go home.

Exactly seven years ago today, on April 1st, I joined the LeaseWeb family. At the time, there were around thirty-five of us. The firm now employs close to 400 people globally, of whom around 200 work in our Amsterdam headquarters alone. There are a lot of sweet tooths to satisfy with one cake, so this one had to be quite large since I usually make a little extra just in case.


I used more than 2.5 kilograms (5.5 lb) of butter, 2.5 kg (5.5 lb) of sugar, and 2 kg (4.4 lb) of chocolate to make this enormous cake. Making it took more than 12 hours (I think I lost track at one point). Making the chocolate chess pieces took the longest. meticulously shaping, gluing, and tempering each component. Many bishops and knights cracked when someone attempted to remove them from the mold.


There were sixteen cakes vying for first place, and some of them were very excellent. The competition was intense. It was quite astounding to see so many famous chefs in one IT business!


My particular favorites were the delicious Russian honey cake with gorgeous cream tulips on top and the cheesecake lemon meringue. The professional grand jury, which consists of the company’s random cake aficionados, saw each contender exhibit their cake. and a series of categories—originality, appearance, creativity, structure, and taste, of course—were used to determine how people voted.


It was a huge sugar rush when the jurors cast their votes, the cakes were sliced into pieces, and all other staff members cast their votes at lunch. After great excitement, the winners of the day were revealed, and my cheesecake took first place—yay for the new mixer! Many thanks, LeaseWeb



The layers were composed of dark chocolate, malted milk chocolate, and white chocolate vanilla to carry out the cake’s black and white chocolate motif. For it, I modified the delicious Little Sugar Snaps recipe. I used toasted nuts and crushed honeycombs with a liberal drizzle of salted caramel between the layers of the salted caramel Swiss meringue buttercream.


I can’t claim that this dish is simple; it requires a significant amount of time and patience. Although the cake is huge, if you would like to create a smaller version for your family, I would recommend choosing one layer and dividing the recipe into three halves. This will still result in a 30.5 cm x 30.5 cm (12×12 inch) cake, but it will be shorter and a perfect dessert to celebrate a large family birthday.

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