I was thinking of a cake to make for a friend's birthday. Since he really likes chocolate (and so do I, as I would get to eat the cake too), I decided to make a chocolate cake. I've many numerous and most are good but I still continue trying more chocolate cake recipes. I hope to one day find the perfect chocolate cake. The search continues. Anyway, I wanted to dress up the cake and make it even more interesting, so decided to make Chocolate Truffles. Jon's recipe was really easy to make and tasted decadently luscious. I tried various combinations of alcohol and non-alcohol truffles with various nuts and frostings. In the end, my favourite by far was the Grand Marnier truffles with almond frosting.
For the chocolate cake, I tried the Moist Chocolate Cake recipe from Donna Hay's Modern Classics 2. Note to Cindy (if you happen to read this), you may have noticed that my cook book collection has expanded. I now have added another 4 cook books to my collection, expanding by collection by 200% to a whopping 6 books hahaha.
I found this cake very good. It's somewhere between a dense mud cake and a light buttermilk cake. I think this cake worked well with the chocolate ganache as it wasn't overly heavy. The truffles really did lift the cake. Each time you bit into a truffle, you could taste the alcohol and I thought this made the cake another fold (that's an extra 100% for you non mathematicians out there) better. I can't actually quantify that finding as it's my own subjective measurement, so there is an error margin of +- 100%. Regardless, let's just say it was better with the truffles.
Moist Chocolate Cake
From Donna Hay's Modern Classics 2
300g dark couverture chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup caster sugar
1 1/4 cups plain flour
1 1/4 tsp baking powder
3/4 cup almond meal
1. Preheat over to 150C. Line base of 23cm springform cake tin with baking paper.
2. Place chocolate and butter in a saucepan over low heat and stir until melted. Set aside to cool.
2. Place eggs and sugar in a bowl and beat with electric mixer until pale and thick.
3. Sift flour and baking powder over egg mixture and gently fold through with the almond meal and chocolate mixture.
4. Pour mixture into tin and bake for 50 minutes until an inserted wooden skewer comes out clean.
5. Cool in tin.
100g good quality dark cooking chocolate, roughly chopped
120ml thick cream
1. To make ganache, combine chocolate and cream in heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water (water should not touch bottom of bowl). Stir occasionally, till mixture is melted and smooth. Remove from heat and set aside for around an hour, stirring occasionally till it has cooled and thickened to a spreadable consistency.
250g good quality dark Belgian chocolate
250g good quality milk Belgian chocolate
Approx 400ml Pure/ Double Cream (45% fat content)
1. Heat cream until it is boiling and add in broken up pieces of chocolate. Stir until chocolate is completely melted and mixture is smooth.
2. Add alcohol flavours if you wish and pour chocolate mixture into bowls and refigerate for two hours at least.
3. Use a melon baller or teaspoons and make small balls from the ganache. Roll the balls in nuts, dessicated coconut, cocoa powder or whatever you wish.