This is super moist and rich chocolate cake with gooey ganache filling. I love when width of cake layer equal to creamcheese frosting, so you can enjoy this harmony without too much sponge or cream... and look at this cute little trees on the top! Love them =))
P.S. Please, measure all ingredients carefully - this cake is some kind of alchemy =)
P.P.S. I want to apologize in advance for my mistakes - it's my first recipe in English =) If you wish - feel free to correct me. It is and will be a big step in my english practice.
Step 1: Ingredients
Cake Layers (for 18 cm in diameter, 2 layers 1-1.5 cm in width)
- All purpose flour - 125 gr.
- Cocoa powder - 30 gr.
- Baking powder - 3.2 gr. (0.8 tsp.)
- Soda - 2 gr. (0.5 tsp.)
- Vanilla extract - 0.5 tsp.
- Vegetable oil without fragrance - 50 gr.
- White sugar - 150 gr.
- Egg - 1 piece (55 gr.)
- Whipping cream 33-35% - 75 gr.
- Hot coffe (liquid) - 115 gr.
+ Cold butter
+ Little bit flour
Cream cheese frosting
- Cream cheese - 800 gr.
- Whippong cream - 200 gr.
- Powdered sugar - 140 gr.
Filling (for 16 cm. in diameter, 1 piece, 1 cm width)
- Milk chocolate 33% cocoa - 115 gr.
- Dark chocolate 54% cocoa - 40 gr.
- Whipping cream - 90 gr.
- Silver candurin powder (optional)
- Green food coloring
- White sugar
- Thin breadsticks
- Chocolate or cocoa-butter (optional)
P.S. If you have different size of a baking tin, use coefficient to get excellent result. For different diameters of a cake:
- 20 cm - 1.24
- 22 cm - 1.5
- 24 cm - 1.8
- 26 cm - 2
This refers to a cake, filling and frosting. Also I've noticed, that sometimes bigger tins yields smaller heigh of a cake - I'm not sure because of what - maybe it's just different metal of a tin, or batter don't have enought power for such thin heigh. So, be ready to make one more baking for a second cake layer.
Step 2: Equipment
Required (absolutely necessary):
- Few bowls for mixing batter, cream and melting chocolate
- Baking ring
- Baking paper
- Grid for cooling a cake
- Wrapping film
- Sharp knife
- Pastry bag with round tip for cream
- Carton board 2 cm bigger than cake
Optional (you can handle without it):
- Baking ring 2 cm. smaller, tnan in section above
- Acetate film
- Cake layer cutter/string
- Flat plate or smal cutting board
- Pastry bag for filling*
- Clean painting brush
Step 3: Prepare Before Starting
1. Turn on your oven to 180 C (356 F)
2. Make a cup of nice americano - all you will need is 115 gr. Just don't make it too strong.
Step 4: Mix Dry Ingredients for a Cake
3. In a bowl sift cocoa powder(30 gr), flour (125 gr), baking powder (3.2 gr, 0.8 tsp) and soda (2 gr, 0.5 tsp). Mix well with a whisk - to combine everything, and avoid lumps of soda in batter.
Step 5: Mix Oil, Sugar and an Egg
4. In another bowl combine vegetable oil (50 gr) and white sugar (150 gr).
5. Add one egg (55 gr), vanilla extract (0.5 tsp) and whisk well for 1-2 minutes.
Step 6: Combine All Ingredients
6. Add half of dry ingredients to mixture of oil, an egg and sugar. Mix well.
7. Add cream (75 gr), mix again.
8. Carefuly pour hot coffe (115 gr), and mix again. At this point you can notice, that soda started reacting with hot liquid, and a lot of bubbles appeared. This is the begining of magic =) Because of it, your cake will be fluffy.
9. Add remaining dry ingredients, and whisk well for 3-5 minutes - to be sure no lumps remain in batter.
Batter will be runny like hot chocolate! But, if you measured everything correctly, it'll be perfect.
Step 7: Prepate a Baking Dish
10. Rub sides of a tin with cold butter, and evenly dust with flour. Remove excess flour.
11. Put a circle of baking paper to the bottom.
12. As I said before, batter will be really runny. So, if your tin leaks, cover it with a layer of foil.
Step 8: Bake a Cake
13. Pour batter in a tin, and bake till done - the toothpick should remain dry, when you pierce a cake with it.
If the cake sit in the oven for more than 30-40 minutes, cover it with a piece of foil (shiny side up). Start checking doneness after 25-30 minutes, when the top of the cake has peaked and covered with crust.
Step 9: Wrap and Store
14. Cool the cake on a grid for 5-10 minutes, and wrap it in film when it still warm - this will help to catch moist inside, and your cake will be awesome B-)
15. Once it has reached room temperature, put it in a fridge for 2-3 hours at least.
Step 10: Make a Filling
1. You have to melt milk chocolate (115gr) and dark chocolate (40 gr) with cream (90gr) - I prefer to put everything in a bowl and heat it up in a microwave for 30-40 seconds. You have to be care and do not overheat the mixture, because chocolate could start crumbling. Just check it every 20-15-10 seconds, and mix well with a spoon.
Also you can heat cream to a boil, pour it over the chocolate and set aside for a few minutes. In this case you physically can not overheat the mixture, but heat of cream might be not enough to melt all chocolate, and you would force to use microwave as well.
Or you can use a steam bath.Take a saucepan and fill it with a little bit of water - just cover the bottom for 1-2 cm. Place a bowl with chocolate and cream above, and heat it till chocolate have melted. Be careful with steam!
P.S. If you have smaller % of cocoa in chocolate - reduce amount of cream, or your filling would be runny.
Step 11: Freeze Filling
2a. If you don't want neat cut, just put ganache in a fridge - it will get firm, and wouldn't leak through holes in frosting.
2b. If you want to gain exellent cut with beautiful straight shape of filling, you have to freeze it at least for 4 hours. If you have baking rings 16 cm in diameter (2 cm. less than the cake), use it - pull wrapping film on the bottom, and put firm acetate film on the sides.
Place this construction on a flat surface - plate or a cutting board (to move it. After you've poured in chocolate it will be impossible).
Then pour ganache into it, and put in a freezer.
2c. My small lifehack - I don't have so small baking ring, but I cut a thick plastic circle from the top of a soup bowl from chinese delivery - it can hold acetate film, and everything goes nice - there is a little bit leaking of chocolate because I can't pull film tight on the bottom, but if you can put it in the freezer quickly, that'll work.
2B-C - DO NOT FORGET to pull film on bottom and put acetate film on sides, otherwise you will have to cut it away with a knife and make a lot of mess.
Step 12: Waiting....
Be sure you freezed (or cooled) filling thoroughly. When freezed, ganache wouldn't become a piece of ice - it'll still be a little bit flexible, but you will be able to take it by hands for a few minutes, and put it in the cake.
When cooled, ganache becomes thick gooey paste.
Step 13: Make Frosting
I'm sure about my mixer, so I just put cream cheese (800 gr), whipping cream (200gr) and powdered sugar (140 gr) in a bowl and whisk them till stiff peaks.
If you have a weak mixer, make it step-by-step: whisk cream with sugar till stiff peaks; Lightly beat cream cheese using a tablespoon, to make it softer; combine cream and cheese together by a mixer.
Step 14: Put Cream-cheese Frosting in a Pastry Bag
For nice and even layers of cream, use pastry bag with a round tip. Also I like to close it with IKEA clips - really convenient, when you make a lot of frosting, and don't have experience.
Store in a fridge up to 3 days.
Step 15: Cut the Cake
This is a most helpful trick to make an even cake - how to cut it without fancy equipment.
All you need is a sharp knife, and a flat thing (width of this thing will be equal to width of the layer, and should be about 1-1.5 cm). I use a cookie cutter. Just put it near the cake, a knife on it, and cut the cake for 0.5-1 cm in depth. After it, use floss or thread to cut it through.
Look, how amazingly even this layers!
We need 2 layers for this cake. Also you have to cut off the peaked top (you can make small trifle-cakes from it).
Step 16: Start of Assembling
1. Put small amount of frosting to a carton board - this will prevent the cake from gliding.
2. Place first layer of cake to the board, and wrap with acetate film - this will help to erect straight cake, not The Tower of Pisa =))
If you have an adjustable baking ring this size - use it! It really helps.
Step 17: Frosting + Filling + Frosting + Cake
3. Squeeze first layer of frosting, and make a border for the filling.
4. Place filling. It'll be easy, if you freezed it - just remove all film, and put on. But act quickly - it tends to melt =)
If you cooled it - beat it slightly with a spoon, and put in a pastry bag, or in an thick ordinary bag, and squeeze all on the frosting.
5. Make another layer of cream.
6. Put second cake layer.
7. Cover with film, and give it a rest in a fridge at least for 2 hours.
Step 18: Make Decoration
Meanwile you can make this cute little trees.
1. Divide marzipan to 4 parts, and color every with different amount of green coloring - from light green to dark shade.
2. Form 19-20 cones with different size and color.
3. About breadsticks - they get wet in 15-20 minutes, if you just put it in cream. If you want them to stand longer, you have to cover them with chocolate or cocoa-butter.
4. Stick breadsticks to the cones (leave at least 5 cm out), and cover it with sugar.
Store in a fridge for a week.
Step 19: Cover the Cake
1. Squeeze frosting to cover all surface of the cake.
2. Smooth with a trowel - it's not necessary to make perfect sides or angle - just smooth it.
3. Apply remain frosting to a cake in chaotic manner.
4. Make small waves by spaluta or teaspoon.
Step 20: Add Magic...
5. Dust surface with silver candurin powder - take small amount of powder to a dry brush, and blow.
Step 21: And Finish It!
6. Place trees on a one side of the cake.
Step 22: Enjoy
Store in a fridge for 3-4 days.
Take it out of the fridge 10-15 minutes in advance before serving.