Saturday, July 19, 2008

Party in the Park

Ok, the Party in the Park. My friend S decided to invite a few friends to celebrate her birthday with a picnic in Bushy Park. If you remember last Sunday in Dublin she possibly picked our one day of summer for this event. Nobody should have a birthday without a cake so I provided this one.

An American friend gave me a cookbook of cookbooks Food & Wine ‘Best of the Best’ Vol 8 (thanks BJM). I’m not a big fan of very sweet desserts. I like dark chocolate, lemon and raspberries. I especially don’t like overly sweet icing/fillings, the filling in this cake is white chocolate rather than frosting based which made it jump out at me immediately. It is originally from ‘Pure Chocolate’ by Fran Bigelow. I know my recipe is a mixture of imperial and metric - the original is in American imperial and I converted the sugar and butter to metric because I can never get my head around a 'stick' of butter!!

First things first – when a recipe has an instruction like ‘chill overnight’ it’s probably for a reason. I baked my cake on Saturday evening and simply left it out to cool overnight, as a result it was quite stick and difficult to cut. Thus my cake had slightly-less-than-perfect edges but the taste was still good. It's quite a rich cake and you will easily serve 16 from this recipe. You do need to start this the day before you intend to eat it.

Ganache Filling
½ cup double cream
8 oz white chocolate

  • roughly chop chocolate and place in a bowl
  • heat the cream until just boiling
  • pour over the chocolate and keep stirring until it's smooth and glossy
  • cover with cling film (touching the surface) and leave to cool overnight
8 oz chocolate, chopped

115g unsalted butter, softened

5 eggs, seperated

340g sugar
  • preheat the oven to 150ยบ C
  • grease, line and grease again a 9 x 13'' swiss roll tin
  • melt the chocolate
  • remove from the heat, stir in the butter until the mix is glossy
  • set aside to cool for 20 mins
  • whisk egg yolks + 170g sugar together until tripled in volume
  • fold the melted chocolate
  • in a clean bowl whisk the egg whites until firm
  • add the sugar and whisk until firm again
  • slowly and gradually fold the egg whites into the chocolate mix
  • spread the mix evenly in the pan
  • bake for 25 mins
  • CHILL UNTIL COLD IN THE FRIDGE (wrap in cling film)

Cake Assembly
Put the white chocolate filling in a mixer and whisk for 3-4 mins until it is lighter in colour and texture. Turn the cake out onto a cake board and cut into three lengths of equal width. Spread ½ the filling on slice 1, top with slice 2 and spread it with the remaining ½ of the filling and top with slice 3. Chill for at least and hour before proceeding.

Chocolate Ganache
8 oz dark chocolate, chopped
1 cup double cream

  • heat the cream until almost boiling
  • pour it over the chocolate and stir until smooth and glossy
  • put ¼ the mix in the fridge for 25 mins and leave the rest to cool at room temperature
Writing Icing
2 oz white chocolate

2 tsp vegtable oil
  • melt chocolate
  • stir in oil
Icing the Cake
Use the chilled ganache to thinly coat the top and side of the cake (this seals in the crumbs and provides a smooth surface for the rest of the ganache). Pour the rest of the ganache over the sides and then the top of the cake. For the writing icing I put it into a squeezy sauce bottle but you could use a parchment cone instead. Pipe three lines down the centre of the cake. Then using a cocktail stick draw a continuous series of figures-of-eight down the centre of the cake. Finally chill for about 2 hours so the ganache can set.


EducatedNobody said...

What a nice American to give you such a fine book!
I also hear he is very good looking and has a rapier like wit! (he is also obnoxiously arrogant)

jen said...

Cor. That looks like an amazing sugar rush - a delicious way to celebrate a birthday.

Judy said...

i just baked it. does it shrink A LOT after cooling? cuz mine rose a lot. then shrunk =o its so soft.. the cake ... wat the heck happened =o