This cake is a little more complicated than a standard chocolate layer cake but the extra effort is well worth it. This delicate creation is a tender chocolate mousse cake filled with creamy rich pastry cream. It is lovely for any event but is perfect for an elegant gathering.
Prep Time: 5 hours
Cook Time: 25 minutes
: 6 hours
Total Time: 11 hours, 25 minutes
Yield: One four layer cake
- 1 1/2 cup icing sugar
- 1 cup good quality cocoa powder
- 4 Tbsps. cornstarch
- ¼ tsp. salt
- 1 1/2 cup unsalted butter
- 8 large eggs, separated at room temperature
- 2 cup milk
Chocolate Satin Icing
- 1 cup unsalted butter
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees F
- Butter and flour the bottom and sides of two eight inch round cake pans.
- Line both pans with parchment rounds.
- In a small bowl combine 1 1/2 cups icing sugar with the cocoa, cornstarch and salt and then sift to remove any lumps.
- In a large bowl cream butter until light and fluffy, approximately three minutes.
- Add yolks to creamed butter one at a time beating well after each addition.
- Add cocoa mixture to the butter mixture one tablespoon at a time beating each time until very smooth.
- In a clean medium bowl beat egg whites until frothy.
- Slowly add remaining icing sugar by tablespoons beating until stiff and shiny.
- Gently fold the egg white mixture into chocolate mixture until it is fully incorporated.
- Transfer batter to pans and tap the pans to remove any trapped air.
- Line the outside of the pans with foil and place the pans in a large baking pan.
- Fill the large pan with enough hot water to come approximately halfway up the sides of the cake pans.
- Place the baking pan in the oven and bake approximately 25 minutes.
- Remove the pan from the oven and take the cake pans out of the larger pan and put them onto racks to cool.
- Put cooled cakes into the fridge and chill for at least four hours.
- Pour milk into a medium sauce pan and place over medium high heat.
- Slice the vanilla bean in half and scrape the seeds into the milk.
- Add the vanilla bean halves to the milk and heat milk until steamy.
- In a large bowl whisk egg yolks, cornstarch and sugar until completely combined and set aside until milk is hot.
- Remove the vanilla pod from the hot milk and pour the milk into the egg yolk mixture.
- Whisk to combine and strain mixture back into the saucepan.
- Place the sauce pan back on low heat and whisk until pastry cream thickens.
- Continue cooking, whisking constantly, for at least four more minutes and remove from the heat.
- Stir in butter and salt.
- Transfer pastry cream to a bowl and cover the surface directly with cling wrap, pushing the plastic down onto the top.
- Place in fridge and chill completely approximately two hours.
- Melt the butter and chocolates in a large bowl placed over gently simmering water, whisking constantly.
- Remove mixture from the heat and whisk in the heavy cream.
- Add icing sugar in four batches whisking after each addition until all the sugar is well incorporated.
- Whisk or stir in vanilla until the icing is very smooth
- Set icing aside covered until it is needed for the cake
- Take cakes out of the fridge when it is cooled and unmold the cakes from the pans.
- Peel the parchment paper off the bottom of the cakes.
- Place cakes right side up and level off the tops with a sharp serrated knife.
- Cut the cakes in half horizontally to create four layers and place first layer on a cake board.
- Fill a piping bag with the prepared chocolate icing with a large round tip or just the coupler in place.
- Pipe a circle of icing all around the edge of the cake layer to create a dam for the pastry cream.
- Spoon one third of the prepared chilled pastry cream into the center of the icing circle and spread the cream to the edges.
- Top the first iced cake layer with the second layer pressing down gently to create a seal.
- Repeat the filling process for the second and third layers and top with the last layer.
- Chill the cake for at least an hour to set the icing
- Frost the outside of the cake with the leftover chocolate icing and decorate with the desired cake decorating technique.