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La Belle Cuisine

 


Chocolate Chocolate Pudding Cake
with Chocolate Ganache



Emeril's Creole Christmas
by Emeril Lagasse with Marcelle Bienvenu,
1997, William Morrow and Co., Inc
.

Makes one 9-inch layer cake; 10 servings

For the Cake
8 eggs
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 cup bleached all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
3/4 cup Grand Marnier or
other orange-flavored liqueur

For the Pudding
4 cups heavy cream
1/2 cup cornstarch
1 cup granulated sugar
5 ounces semisweet chocolate chips
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

For the Ganache
2 cups heavy cream
1/2 pound semisweet chocolate
squares, chopped

For the Garnish or Decoration of Cake
11 ounces semisweet chocolate chips
Confectioners' sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
For the cake: Put the eggs and 1 cup of the sugar in a large mixing bowl,
and with an electric mixer fitted with a wire whisk beat on medium-high
speed until the mixture is pale yellow, thick, and has tripled in volume,
about 8 minutes, using the mixer.
 Sift the cocoa, flour, and baking powder together in another large mixing
bowl. Add the egg mixture and fold to mix thoroughly so the mixture is smooth.
Grease two 9 x 2-inch round cake pans with the butter. Sprinkle each
with a tablespoon of the remaining sugar. Pour the cake batter evenly
into the pans and bake until the cakes spring back when touched, about
25 minutes. Let cool for about 2 minutes. Using a thin knife, loosen the
edges of the cakes, then flip onto a wire rack. Let cool completely.
For the pudding: Combine 1/2 cup of the cream with the cornstarch
in a small bowl and stir to make a paste. Combine the paste with the
remaining 3 1/2 cups cream, the sugar, the chocolate chips, and the
vanilla in a large nonstick saucepan. Using a wire whisk, stir the mix-
ture until it is well blended. Put the saucepan over medium-low heat
and whisk constantly until the chocolate melts thoroughly. Cook the
mixture, stirring often, until it becomes very thick, like pudding, about
25 minutes. Pour the mixture into a bowl. Cover with plastic wrap,
pressing the wrap down on the surface of the pudding to keep a skin
from forming. Let cool to room temperature.
To assemble the cake:
Line a baking pan with parchment or waxed
paper and place a wire rack over it. Using a serrated knife, cut each
cake in half horizontally. Brush the tops of three layers each with 1/4
cup of the Grand  Marnier. Place the bottom layer on a 9-inch round
of cardboard and set it on the wire rack. Spread 1 1/2 cups of the
pudding evenly on top of the layer. Top with a second layer of cake.
Spread 1 1/2 cups of pudding evenly over it. Repeat the same process
with the third layer. Top with the fourth layer. If necessary, shave off
any uneven pieces of cake with a serrated knife so that it is smooth
and even on all sides. Chill for 2 hours.
To make the ganache: Combine the cream and chopped chocolate
in a medium-size nonstick saucepan over medium heat. Stir until the
chocolate is completely melted and the mixture is smooth. Remove
from the heat and stir to cool, lifting the mixture out of the pot several
times with a rubber spatula or wooden spoon until it cools slightly. It
should be glossy and slightly thick. This is the tempering* process.
Spoon the mixture onto the top of the chilled cake, allowing the over-
flow to drip down the sides. Cool slightly. Carefully remove the cake
from the wire rack. Chill for at least 6 hours.
For the garnish: Melt the semisweet chocolate chips in a stainless-steel
bowl set over simmering water. Stir until the chocolate has melted and
is smooth. Line a baking sheet with parchment or waxed paper. Pour
the chocolate onto the baking sheet and spread evenly. Let cool, then
chill until it sets. Break the chocolate into pieces, like brittle. Mound
the pieces on top of the cake, sticking them in at various angles.
Sprinkle with confectioners’ sugar. Slice and serve.

* Tempering is a technique by which chocolate is stabilized through
a melting and cooling process, thereby making it more malleable
and glossy. Tempering chocolate isn’t necessary for most recipes,
but it is often done when the chocolate is used for icing a cake
such as this one.


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