My friend Crl told me recently that November was upon us and it was almost time to soak raisins in rum (for Christmas cake). And that statement plus all the wonderful baking happening on Rachel Allen’s Cake Diaries made me want to bake a cake more than anything else ever did!
Determined to make something spectacular, I made this four layer chocolate cake with a rich, decadent chocolate mousse frosting. The cake itself tastes like an extra chocolatey and fabulous version of chocolate cakes made from ready mixes. But the dark chocolate frosting is what makes this cake truly, deeply divine. For those of you who love chocolate, this is just the thing you need.
And while a four layer cake may sound intimidating, this cake was quite easy to make. And I say this inspite of the fact that since I have only one 23 cm tin, I had to measure out the ingredients for one cake, whip up the batter, bake it, wait for it to cool before removing it from its tin, and repeat the entire process for the next cake. And I also didn’t use an oven for baking but made it on my stove like I had baked this tea cake!
My friend Crl told me recently that November was upon us and it was almost time to soak raisins in rum (for Christmas cake). And that statement plus all the wonderful baking happening on Rachel Allen’s Cake Diaries made me want to bake a cake more than anything else ever did! Determined to make som
Cooking Time: 90 mins
For the cake:
100 g butter , plus extra for greasing cake tins
300 g caster sugar
200 g plain flour , plus extra for dusting cake tins
75 g cocoa powder
3 tsps baking powder
1 tsp vanilla essence
For the dark chocolate mousse
275 g dark chocolate
6 eggs , separated
175 g butter , softened
3 tbsps rum
For chocolate cake : Butter two 23 cm cake tins. Sprinkle over some plain flour and tap off excess. Line the bottom of the tins with cut out parchment paper.
Melt butter over low heat and set aside to cool down.
Choose two large vessels with lids into which the cake tins can fit snugly. Once the cake tin is in, you should be able to cover the vessels. I used a large aluminum pot for this.
In a large bowl, beat eggs and sugar together. I used a hand held electric whisk and beat at low and medium speeds alternately for about 8 minutes. The batter should hold a figure of eight in the bowl for a couple of seconds.
Put the aluminum pots (or whatever vessels you are using) onto the stove over highest flame. Cover the vessels.
Sift plain flour, cocoa powder and baking powder into the beaten eggs and fold in gently and as quickly as possible so as to not loose too much of the air beaten into the eggs. Pour in the vanilla essence and the melted butter and fold in again, till there is no unincorporated flour.
Divide the batter between the cake tins. Quickly remove the lids of the vessels heating up on the stove and pop the cake tin in quickly. Reduce heat to the lowest, cover and bake for about 35 minutes or till a skewer inserted into the centre of each cake comes out clean.
Remove cake tins from the vessels and let the cakes cool down for 5-10 minutes in the tins. Then, run a knife along the edges of the tins and ease out the cakes. Cool completely on a wire rack.
Chocolate Mousse : I followed the exact method given http://uktv.co.uk/food/recipe/aid/654152
Assembling the cake : To layer the cake, place it on an inverted plate. Find the centre on the side of the cake, hold a bread knife flat against this point(even a slightly titled knife will cause the layers to be uneven) and divide the cake into two layers with back and forth motions of the bread knife. Repeat the same for the next cake.
Place the bottom half of one of the cakes on the cake stand. Using a spoon or a palette knife, spread over some of the mousse in a layer about 5mm thick, then sandwich with the other half of the cake, placing it cut side down. Again spread over some mousse over the cake, and repeat with remaining layers till the four layers of cake are sandwiched together.
Cover the top and sides of the cake with remaining mousse and smooth it out with a palette knife.
~ The original recipe includes 1/4 tsp of salt in the cake batter. But I skipped it since I was using salted butter.
~ If using an oven, bake the cake in a preheated oven at 180 C.
~ If you, like me, have only one cake tin and are planning to half the recipe and make one cake after the other, then it would be easier to write down the cake recipe with halved quantities of each ingredient. Especially if you are as careless as I am.
~ In the chocolate mousse, you can substitute dark rum with brandy, whiskey, orange liqueur rum, or 1 tsp vanilla extract as per the original recipe. I added a bit more than the recipe called for just to make sure that the mousse did not taste eggy. Get the original chocolate mousse recipe here.