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How to Make a Gianduia Hazelnuts Chocolate Cake
Remove the cake from the refrigerator, cover it with the glaze, and spread it uniformly with a spatula. Put the cake back in the refrigerator for 15 – 20 minutes to allow the glaze to cool. Keep in the refrigerator until serving time. Decorate the sides with crushed hazelnuts.
for the chocolate sponge cake
1½ cups (180 gr) hazelnuts
7 oz (200 gr) semi-sweet chocolate, finely diced
4 + 4 oz (115 + 115 gr) sugar
1 + 6 oz (30 + 170 gr) butter, at room temperature
8 eggs, separated
¾ cup (110 gr) flour
for the chocolate filling
1 cup (250 cc) heavy cream
12 oz (340 gr) semi–sweet chocolate, diced
2 oz (60 gr) butter, at room temperature
for the finishing and the glaze
¼ cup (60 cc) rum or brandy
¾ cup (180 cc) heavy cream
6 oz (180 gr ) semi–sweet chocolate, diced
Preheat oven to 350 F (175 C). Take a 10 inch-diameter (25 cm) oven pan with removable ring. Line it with parchment paper.
Sprinkle it with cocoa powder.
Place the hazelnuts in an oven pan and roast them for 10 – 15 minutes, until they begin losing their skin. Remove the skins by placing the nuts in a kitchen cloth and rubbing the pieces together.
Place the chocolate in a small saucepan and melt it at bain-marie on a larger container filled with boiling water, stirring frequently.
Put the hazelnuts in a food processor with 4 oz (115 gr) of the sugar. Run the blade until the nuts are reduced to a very fine powder.
Remove the mixture from the food processor and transfer it to a small bowl. Work into it the butter with your hands for about 2 – 3 minutes to soften it.
Combine the hazelnuts, the softened butter, and the melted chocolate, and mix it thoroughly until smooth.
Combine the egg yolks one at a time with the hazelnut-chocolate mixture, reserving the egg whites.
Sift in the flour, mixing continuously.
Beat the egg whites. When they are half beaten . . .
. . . add the remaining 4 oz (115 gr) of sugar . . .
. . . and beat the mixture until peaks are formed.
Combine the egg whites to the hazelnut-chocolate mixture in several times, stirring gently with a top–to–bottom motion.
Pour the mixture in the oven pan . . .
. . . level with a spatula and bake it for approximately 30–40 minutes.
Remove from the oven and let the cake cool at room temperature
Put the cream in a saucepan and turn the heat to medium. Remove the pan from the heat immediately before the cream starts boiling.
Add the diced chocolate, and stir until dissolved.
In a small bowl, using a spatula or a fork, beat the butter until soft.
Stir the butter into the cream and let it cool at room temperature for about 2 hours.
Remove the cake from the pan and turn it upside down, so that the bottom smooth face is now the top. Don’t forget to peel the paper off.
Cut the cake into 2 layers. Use toothpicks as a guide.
Brush the bottom layer with the rum, and spread half of the filling over it.
Place the other layer on top . . .
. . . brush it with rum. . .
. . . and spread the rest of the filling on the top and sides of the cake. Place the cake in the refrigerator.
PREPARING THE HAZELNUT-CHOCOLATE SPONGE CAKE
Put the cream in a saucepan and turn the heat to medium. Remove from the heat immediately before the cream starts boiling. Add the diced chocolate, and stir until dissolved.
Whisk and beat the glaze until it is very light and soft.