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Mille-Feuilles Dark Chocolate Crêpe Cake with Candied Hazelnuts

18 Jan

This Sunday was my honey’s birthday! Happy Birthday my love! To celebrate- a bottle of Rioja on la playa and this most decadent of cakes!

Mille-Feuilles Dark Chocolate Crêpe Cake With Candied Hazelnuts Recipe c/o Mme. Stewart with this caveat: this cake is quite an endeavour and you will most likely experience a gauntlet of emotions while making it. May I suggest pairing the process with a screening of Chocolat. I’m starting to realize that one should not bake without Alfred Molina!

Ingredients:

  • Unsalted Butter, 2 1/2 cups
  • Semisweet Chocolate, 18 ounces
  • All-Purpose Flour, 1 1/2 cups
  • Sugar, 3 cups
  • Salt, 1/2 teaspoon +2 pinches
  • Whole Milk, 2 1/2 cups
  • Eggs, 12
  • Pure Vanilla Extract, 1 tablespoon +1 teaspoon
  • Heavy Cream, 2 cups
  • Hazelnut Cream, 1/3 cup
  • Hazelnuts, 10

Dark Chocolate Crêpes:

  • Boil 1/4 cup water and add 3/4 cup butter, whisking to combine. Remove from heat and stir in 8 ounces chocolate until completely melted. Set aside.
  • Set out 2 large bowls.
  • Bowl the First: Whisk together 1 1/2 cups sifted flour, 1/3 cup sugar, and 1/2 teaspoon salt.
  • Bowl the Second: Whisk together 2 1/2 cups milk, 6 eggs, and 1 tablespoon vanilla.
  • Gradually add the contents of Bowl 2 into Bowl 1.
  • Whisk in the chocolate butter mixture until smooth.
  • Pour through a seive into an airtight container and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
  • 2 hours later…2 tablespoons of batter at a time, cook crêpes on a lightly buttered crepe pan until edges are golden and the center is dry.

Hazelnut Meringue:

  • Beat 2/3 cup cream until soft peaks form. Refrigerate 1 hour.
  • Whisk 6 egg whites and 1 2/3 cups sugar in a bowl over simmering water until sugar dissolves.
  • Beat egg whites and sugar mixture until stiff peaks form.
  • Beat in 1 3/4 cups butter a little at a time.
  • Add 1 teaspoon vanilla, 1/3 cup hazelnut cream, and 1 pinch of salt and beat until mixture comes together.
  • Fold in Whip Cream.

Dark Chocolate Glaze:

  • Bring 1 1/4 cups cream and a pink of salt to a boil and then remove from heat.
  • Add 10 ounces of finely chopped chocolate and let stand for 5 minutes.
  • Stir until smooth and let cool completely.

Candied Hazelnuts:

  • Remove hazelnuts from shells, blanch, remove skins, & toast.
  • Skewer hazelnuts.
  • Dissolve 1 cup sugar in 1/4 cup water. Bring the syrup a boil and cook until it turns a light amber. Let stand for 10 minutes. Do not attempt to dip you finger in for a taste. As delicious as it may be (yes, it is), it will only end in tears (yes, it does)!
  • Dip the skewered hazelnut into the syrup. Let the caramel drip over an edge and harden.

Dark Chocolate Crêpe Cake With Candied Hazelnuts:

  • Place a wire rack over a rimmed baking sheet.
  • Place a crêpe on the wire rack and spread 3 tablespoons of the hazelnut meringue over it. Repeat until all the crêpes and hazelnut meringue are used. Be careful of slidage- use one of the skewers to hold everything in place. Refrigerate until firm.
  • Spread the chocolate glaze over the cake, coating it completely. Refrigerate until glaze is firm.
  • Garnish with toasted and candied hazelnuts.
  • Feast!

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Toasted Almond Glazed Bundt Cake

15 Jan

…Speaking of Betty Draper…

I’ll bake a cake! I’ll bake a cake to kick off my honey’s birthday week! This shall be my finest hour!

So I preheat the oven, rally Pup, put on my rouge, get An Education playing on the big screen and…get utterly swept away by Carey Mulligan and 1960s England.

But wait, the cake! I’m meant to be conquering domesticity! With gusto, no less! But look at her gorgeous dress (nude with one red strap) and have I not already eaten all the almonds?

Mmm delicious almonds! Focus!

Toasted Almond Glazed Bundt Cake Recipe c/o Martha Stewart with this caveat: every time you spy this treat, you’ll feel an overwhelming and all-consuming compulsion to help yourself to yet another morsel!

Ingredients:

  • Butter, 20 tablespoons
  • Sliced Almonds, 12 tablespoons
  • Chopped Almonds, 2/3 cup
  • Brown Sugar, 10 tablespoons
  • Cinnamon, 2 teaspoons
  • Nutmeg, 1/4 teaspoon
  • All-Purpose Flour, 3 cups
  • Baking Powder, 2 teaspoons
  • Baking Soda, 1 teaspoon
  • Salt, 1/2 teaspoon
  • Granulated Sugar, 1 1/2 cup
  • Eggs, 2 large
  • Pure Vanilla Extract, 2 tablespoons
  • Plain Yogurt, 1 1/2 cup
  • Confectioners’ Sugar, 4 cups sifted
  • Milk, 6-8 tablespoons

Toasted Almonds:

  • Preheat the oven to 350F. Bake sliced almonds on a baking sheet and toast until golden brown.

Cake:

  • Set out 3 large bowls.
  • First Bowl: combine chopped almonds, brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg.
  • Second Bowl: Sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  • Third Bowl: Beat 12 tablespoons of butter and granulated sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs. Mix in 2 teaspoons of vanilla. Mix in 1/3 of the mixture from Bowl 2 and 1/2 the yogurt. Repeat. Mix in final 1/3 of flour mixture.
  • Generously butter the bundt cake pan and fill with half of the mixture from Bowl 3. Sprinkle the almond-spice mixture from Bowl 1 on top. Pour the remaining mixture from Bowl 3 on top.
  • Bake for 45 minutes, or until golden brown.

Glaze:

  • Melt 8 tablespoons of butter over medium heat until color turns nut brown.
  • Pour butter into a large bowl and stir in sifted confectioners’ sugar, 4 teaspoons of vanilla, and 6 tablespoons of milk until smooth.
  • Drizzle glaze over the cake and sprinkle with toasted almonds.
  • Feast!