If you remember, in my first post I said I would be sharing my trials and tribulations as well as my successes on this blog. Despite the absolutely divine sounding name of this cake, it unfortunately does fall into the “trials and tribulations” category.
First, I’d like give you all a little bit of background on why I was attempting this cake. In just under two weeks “Prince Charming” and I are getting married. I’m sure you’re wondering now what that has to do with attempting a new cake recipe. Well, back when “Prince Charming” proposed, I asked my mother if we could make my wedding cake as a mother-daughter project and she agreed (Thank you mom!). My mother is absolutely amazing in the kitchen and she has done some wedding and anniversary cakes in the past (including my little brother’s wedding cake) that have been just phenomenal.
Since my entire wedding is Fairy Tale themed, you can imagine that the cake I designed isn’t exactly simple or straight forward…
This is the design I sketched out for the wedding cake. The beveled edges are created using the Wilton beveled cake pan set. Obtaining that set was an issue in and of itself since it is a discontinued product! Wilton has replaced the beveled set with their Contour Cake Pan set which is much easier to cover with fondant but does not have nearly the same visual effect.
Half of the cake layers required for this design are pretty standard chocolate, french vanilla or marbled cakes. But the top tier and the two side cakes consist of a layer of cheesecake sandwiched between layers of fudgy almost brownie like cake held together with a dark chocolate caramel ganache.
This recipe was originally intended to be the fudgy layers for those three cakes. Mom has used the recipe before; in taste and texture it was very similar to a flour-less chocolate torte. We thought that the dense fudgy texture was exactly what we were looking for.
Things started off pretty well; we got the pan prepped and the oven preheated. There are essentially only two parts to this recipe, a chocolate mixture and stiff (but not dry) egg whites, so it really doesn’t seem very difficult.
You start by melting together a full pound chocolate with butter…
until it is nice and smooth.
Beat in the egg yolks, one at a time please!
Stir in the flour, sugar and hot water until the mixture is smooth again. At this point, our mixture really didn’t look terribly smooth to me. I think there was some separation of the fats from the rest of the mixture. But in any case, set that aside while working with the egg whites.
In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites until they are stiff, but not dry.
Fold the egg whites into the chocolate mixture. Our chocolate mixture was so thick that I decided to fold the whites in in thirds even though the recipe doesn’t have that instruction. My mother thinks that maybe it was over mixed at this point, but, as you’ll see there are other potential issues here.
I spread the batter into the pan – we were testing the recipe specifically for the bottom bevels which are a very shallow pan and rather difficult to judge the correct batter proportion. Our batter was very thick and not very smooth, but I got it spread out as best as I could. Both mom and I thought the batter probably wasn’t enough, but we wanted to see how it would come out.
Since we were working with such a shallow pan and the batter was spread pretty thin in the pan we decided to leave it in the oven for 2/3 of the recommended time. When we took that “cake” out of the oven, it looked more like a giant chocolate cookie with a lot of cracking on the top. It was dry and crumbly and there is no way it could have stood up to supporting two more layers of cake, one of which would be a cheesecake. Mom and I were both horribly disappointed. It is possible that we could have used more batter or tweaked the recipe, but we decided to move on to another test recipe instead.
In this recipe’s defense, it was intended for an 8″ round cake pan which would have allowed a considerably thicker layer of batter and the flavor was truly all that the name promised. And as I noted before, my mother has used the recipe in the past and enjoyed the results. So, although this recipe did not work as we hoped in the bevel pan, I would highly recommend trying it as it was written.