Sunday, February 14, 2010

HCB - Double Chocolate Valentine

This week's recipe for the Heavenly Cake Bakers is the Double Chocolate Valentine Cake. As soon as this chocolate cake comes out of the oven, you poke holes into it and brush with ganache. And I don't mean a few strokes of ganache. A whole cup's worth of ganache! It doesn't get much chocolatier than this.

Heart-shaped double chocolate cake, with a basket weave decoration, a rope top-border, and a shell border at the bottom.



Making the cake was a breeze. And so was the ganache. While I was brushing the ganache onto the cake, I had a flashback to the Tres Leches Cake. Today's cake was like a chocolate version of the Tres Leches Cake. The cake happily absorbed the creamy ganache.

Scraping batter into the pan.

Use cake strips on the heart-shaped pan.

Poke holes into the cake as soon as it comes out of the oven so it can start receiving the ganache.

When all sides are brushed with the ganache, let the cake sit so the ganache can firm up.

In the book, Rose decorated the cake with fresh raspberries which she glazed with a currant jelly to give them shine. With raspberries not being in season right now, I decided to make a raspberry mousse using frozen raspberries (which taste pretty decent as they're picked when they're ripe and flash frozen). The texture of the raspberry mousse is light and fluffy, with a nice raspberry flavor without being too sweet.

Raspberry Mousse:
(my original recipe)
1/8 cup cold water
1/2 Tbsp gelatin powder
3/4 cup frozen raspberries, thawed, juices included
1/3 cup sugar
1 Tbsp grape jelly, to intensify the color of the mousse (optional)
1 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • Bloom gelatin in water for 5 min.
  • Mash the thawed raspberries with the back of a spoon.
  • Combine mashed raspberries, sugar, grape jelly, and gelatin mixture in a small sauce pan. Heat over low-medium heat until hot to the touch, stirring frequently. Do not bring to a boil! Strain it if you don't like seeds. Cool to room temperature (20-30 min).
  • Whip the cream until stiff peaks form. Gently fold it into the raspberry mixture. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
  • Fill a piping bag with raspberry mousse and decorate your cake of choice. This mousse works great as a filling too.
  • Leftover mousse freezes really well. Put leftover mousse in a ziploc bag, date it and freeze it. When needed, thaw the mousse in the fridge overnight.

The cake is now ready to eat.

May I present to you: a slice of super-chocolatey goodness! Can you see three vertical puddles of chocolate ganache at the bottom of the slice? That's what I'm talking about!!

Final thoughts/tips:
  • Although hubby and I found the cake a tad dry, we both liked it. Hubby liked it a bit less than I did, citing that the cake was a bit "too chocolatey". This translates to, the bitterness of the chocolate significantly decreased the sweetness of the cake. I personally don't mind that aspect so I enjoyed it. The mousse added a nice flavor and texture contrast. Hubby rated this cake: 7.5 out of 10.
  • I made a couple changes to the recipe. I used 4 oz of butter and 1 oz of canola oil because I only had 1 stick of butter in the fridge (the rest was frozen). Knowing that hubby wouldn't like 60% chocolate in the ganache, I used semi-sweet chocolate instead. Good thing I did, otherwise he might not have liked it at all.

39 comments:

  1. Wow, your cake is so beautiful! I gasped when I saw the first picture with the basket weave!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Wow! Talk about superior piping skills! Very beautiful.

    ReplyDelete
  3. beautiful cake! I always wanted to try piping basket weave but dare not as yet..:)

    ReplyDelete
  4. Skillzzz!! Wow.. blow me away with those basket weave!
    I wish I could do that.

    ReplyDelete
  5. ehm.. I think word verification agrees with me, the letters spelled: "worse". Of course I knew that.

    ReplyDelete
  6. WOW! That is amazingly beautiful!! How long did it take you to do the decoration?
    I can't believe your hubby only gave it 7.5! Just looking at the cake makes me drool!

    ReplyDelete
  7. I'm jealous of your piping skills! (Me and the decorating bag go way back and NOT in a good way, we have decided to quit each other). But, wow, your cake looks so good and yummy. Good job!

    ReplyDelete
  8. What about a mini picture tutorial on how you did the basket weave! Amazing. We thought the cake was too dry also.

    ReplyDelete
  9. *picking jaws off the floor*

    gosh! beautiful .. and perfect piping skills ..

    good job hanaa .. and yes, my mom found it a tad dry too .. but you did such an awesome job ..

    ReplyDelete
  10. Your cake looks BEAUTIFUL, Hanaa. I love the way you have decorated it. Jeannette.

    ReplyDelete
  11. hanaa your mousse is brilliant and stunningly piped. hats off!

    ReplyDelete
  12. Thank you all for stopping by and your compliments.

    @Anat: The basketweave took about 10 minutes. The two borders about 7 minutes, maybe. To hubby’s defense, he gave it a 7.5 for taste only. He really liked the way it looked.

    @Virginia: there are several good tutorials on the basketweave online. Here are a couple good ones:
    http://www.creative-cake-decorating.com/basket-weave.html
    http://www.wilton.com/technique/Basketweave

    @Rose: Thank you very much!

    ReplyDelete
  13. Hanaa.. WOW!!!! That is one beautiful looking cake. I'm jealous of your piping skill. 10 minutes for basketweave? No way! You are very skillful.

    ReplyDelete
  14. Wow, Hanaa! Perfect basketweave and wonderful roping. Though I would expect nothing less from YOU! That's one gorgeous Valentine heart. I like the concentrated spots of chocolate that are visible in the sliced piece of cake. I'm a huge fan of very dark, not too sweet chocolate, so I think I would love this cake. Do you think the cake was designed to be a little dry or, if not dry by design, were you able to pinpoint a reason for the dryness? The look of this chcolate cake reminds me a little of Sacher torte, which is a bit on the dryer end of the moisture spectrum. Your raspberry mousse also sounds delish. That's a recipe I can see myself trying and loving, too!

    ReplyDelete
  15. Stunning, stunning, stunning, stunning, stunning, stunning, stunning, stunning, stunning!

    :)
    ButterYum
    PS - we had similar ideas in mind, but I think I prefer your mousse to my mousseline.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Absolutely gorgeous! One of the prettiest heart cakes I've ever seen.

    ReplyDelete
  17. Hanna! This is incredible!!!

    ReplyDelete
  18. Thanks Hanna! The websites are great. I may be tempted to do this now that I have seen your masterpiece.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Hanaa, your decorating job is impeccable! What a gorgeous Valentine cake. I received Rose's Heavenly Cakes for Valentine's Day and can't wait to look through it.

    ReplyDelete
  20. So lovely! I want to know how you did the rope border. Oh who am I kidding...I can't even do a normal whiz round with the piping bag! But I still would like to see how it is done. It looks professional!

    ReplyDelete
  21. ב''ה

    Wow! Looks great!

    Is the cake supposed to be dry? I am a little confused.

    ReplyDelete
  22. Hi Hanaa! Thank you for your comment on my blog last week--I really appreciated it! :)

    What a beautiful job you did on your Double Chocolate Valentine Cake!! Your basket weave is perfect and I love the idea of the raspberry mousse for the topping of this cake! Well done!! :)

    ReplyDelete
  23. Your cake decorating skills are amazing!! What a beautiful cake! And it sounds like it tastes ridiculously good too!

    ReplyDelete
  24. Oh Hanaa, that is totally gorgeous.

    I can only look on in awe at such perfection. I can barely get my frosting into the bag neatly, let alone out the other end in glory such as this.

    ReplyDelete
  25. I am blown away with how beautiful this cake is!!! And is there really such a thing as too chocolaty? I don't think so. I know taste is subjective, but this cake HAD TO BE delicious.

    ReplyDelete
  26. cake looks gorgeous Hanaa, I just checked my blog to find your post. I've being too busy to make this week's cake.

    ReplyDelete
  27. OMG! That cake looks beautiful!!!! I am starting another class in cake decorating next week and can't wait.

    ReplyDelete
  28. YOu are so gifted in decorating cakes..love it!

    ReplyDelete
  29. Hmm, lekker al die taarten! Jammer dat ik ze niet kan eten omdat ik allergisch ben voor gluten... Maar die orange curd klint erg goed, misschien dat ik me daaraan ga wagen. Kan ik wel mooi combineren met mijn citroen-polenta taart...

    ReplyDelete
  30. Thank you all so very much!

    @Jane: now that you mention it, it does remind me of the Sachertorte.

    @Mendy: I don't think it was supposed to be dry. If I were to make this again, I'd use Rose's All American Choc Cake from TCB. Never had dryness issues with that cake (it uses more butter and a little bit more water).

    @Karien: bedankt voor je bezoek. Ik dacht dat mijn noten-allergie vervelend was, maar een gluten-allergie lijkt me erger. Je citroen-polenta taart klinkt lekker. Heb je 'em op je blog toevallig?

    ReplyDelete
  31. All I can say is WOW, this cake is amazing! It's so much more beautiful that anything I've seen in the bakeries for this holiday... Bravo, it's simply flawless!

    ReplyDelete
  32. BEAUTIFUL! I can't wait to try your mousse.

    ReplyDelete
  33. wow. that's all i can say. wow. you are SO gifted. beautiful!!

    ReplyDelete
  34. Hanaa, your cake is phenomenal! You have gorgeous decorating skills. The ganache, a whole cup? Definitely chocolate and YUM! I would love it!

    ReplyDelete
  35. That cake is beautiful, your basketweave flawless! And, it looks delicious too!

    ReplyDelete
  36. Stunning cake! Your piping skills are impeccable. Can't wait to try your mousse recipe.

    ReplyDelete
  37. My cake didn't last long enough for a photo, and so I didn't blog about this yummy cake. Picture if you will, sides frosted with raspberry buttercream, and the top decorated with only a lattice design and dotted with raspberries. I'll have to find an excuse to make it again sometime, but your version is my all time favorite!!!

    :)
    ButterYum

    ReplyDelete
  38. This looks amazing Hanaa! Another great idea using raspberry mousse instead of fresh raspberries and currant jelly. You definitely made this cake your own. And you also just gave me a wonderful idea for a cake to make this Valentine's Day!

    ReplyDelete

Thank you for visiting my blog and leaving a comment.