This gorgeous chocolate cake would make the perfect Easter cake recipe for any celebrations you may be throwing this year - and it feeds a crowd so great for a big gathering.
HOW TO MAKE GLAMOROUS CHOCOLATE CAKE
One day before serving
Prepare the sponge
- Butter and line a 20cm (8in) loose-bottomed tin. Preheat oven to 180C, 160C fan, 350 F, gas 4
- In a large bowl combine the almonds, sugar and cocoa. In a separate bowl beat the egg whites until stiff, then add the sugar and beat for a minute. Gently fold the egg white mixture into the almond mixture using a spatula. Spoon into the tin and bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until a metal skewer comes out clean. Leave to cool on a wire rack.
- Finely chop the chocolate and place in a heatproof bowl. Place the cream ina pan, bring to the boil, pour onto the chocolate and leave for a few minutes
- Gently mix together and stir in the butter. If it starts to separate, put the bowl over a pan of simmering water and beat until smooth. Cover with clingfilm, leave at room temperature for 12 hours.
- Prepare the syrup and assemble the cake
- Put the caster sugar and 50ml (2fl oz) water in a pan and bring to the boil. Boil for 2 minutes and leave to cool. When it is cold, stir in the framboise liqueur.
- Using an electric mixer, beat the mousse for five minutes
- Cut the cake into three horizontally and place a layer into a 20cm (8in) cake ring. Drizzle with 3 to 4 tbsp of the syrup.
- Spread on a layer of mousse, add the next layer of sponge, drizzle with syrup and cover with more mousse. Cover with raspberries (reserving 8 to 10). Add the rest of the mousse and top with the final sponge and syrup. Chill for 4 hours.
- To make the ganache, chop the chocolate and put into a heatproof bowl. Put the milk and glucose in a pan and bring to the boil. Pour the milk and glucose over the chocolate and leave for two minutes. Stir gently and add the butter. Be careful not to overbeat the mixture. Place in the fridge for 25 minutes or until the mixture is the consistency of thick double cream.
- When the cake is ready, you'll need to use a cook's blowtorch or run a hot cloth around the cake ring to soften the chocolate so you can carefully remove it. Place the cake on a wire rack, pour over the ganache and smooth with a palette knife. Decorate with raspberries and chocolate fans.
- You will need 250g (9oz) moldable chocolate (available from Squires Kitchen www.squires-shop.co.uk)
- Cut the chocolate into 7 pieces. Take one piece and knead in your hands to make it more pliable. Then roll it to 3mm (1/8in) with a rolling pin. Cut into semi-circles about 10x5cm (4x2in). Take one semi-circle and ruffle into a fan shape. Neaten the bottom edge with a knife and repeat with the other half. Then repat with the other pieces. Press 10 of the fans around the cake and place 4 on top. Dot with edible gold leaf (available from Squires Kitchen www.squires-shop.co.uk).
- 400g (14oz) fresh raspberries, to decorate
- For the sponge
- 250g (9os) ground almonds
- 150g (5oz) caster sugar
- 3tbsp cocoa powder, sifted
- 6 egg whites
- 3 tbsp caster sugar
- For the chocolate mousse
- 250g (9os) dark chocolate (at least 70 per cent cocoa solids)
- 250ml (9fl oz) double cream
- 100g (4oz) unsalted butter, softenened and cut into cubes
- For the syrup
- 100g (4oz) caster sugar
- 50ml (2fl oz) framboise (raspberry liqueur)
- For the chocolate ganache glaze
- 250g (9oz) dark chocolate (70 per cent cocoa solids)
- 250ml (9fl oz) milk
- 50g (2oz) glucose syrup
- 50g (2oz) unsalted butter, softenend and cut into cubes