Saturday, September 26, 2009

Happy Birthday Hubby!

Today is my husband's Lunar calendar birthday. Have been planning to make him a nice cake that he will enjoy...of course the rest of the family too. You must be wondering why Lunar calendar...why not the usual calendar. I guess it's my fault....no I did not forget, more specifically is I knowingly ask to postpone the celebration! So bad horr...but I was so pressing for time, with the mooncakes and packing for holiday...it's driving me up the walls! *Excuses!* Anyway, my better half (always understanding) said it's alright and decided to have his cake today instead. *phew* Although we did have a mini cake (store bought) while we were back home with the family in Singapore on the actual day. :) But I was really glad that I finally get to make this cake for him....which he lovingly approved the tastiness of it. ;)
You must be going "Eee...so small and simple cake!". Hmmm...I should have placed something beside the cake while taking this picture to show the relative height. This is no small cake, it's actually 5.5 inches tall and 9 inches wide (almost can't fit into my fridge!!). Simple? Mmm...I will let you be the judge of that as we move on.

Wait a minute..did I go haywire and layer the cake wrongly?? Why is it vertical layering instead of horizontal?? No I did not go bongus and mess it up, this is the so call "Thousand" Layer Chocolate Cake. I shan't go into the mushy detail on why I choose this thousand layer cake for my dear husband, haha, just in case. :) Okay, I admit "thousand" is a bit far fetch, but there are indeed several layers in this cake...vertically that is. How I did it? Read on. :)

Ingredients for "Thousand" Layer Chocolate Cake:
330g all purpose flour
325g caster sugar(portion to 200g & 125g)
1.5 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
110g unsweetened quality cocoa powder
5 egg yolks
225g unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup sour cream
5 egg whites
200ml strong brewed espresso coffee
1 tsp pure vanilla extract


Chocolate cream layering:
250ml non-dairy whipping cream, whipped
125g quality dark chocolate
50g unsalted butter

Butter cream frosting:
125g unsalted butter
75g shortening
100g confectioner's sugar
1 tsp pure vanilla extract

Chocolate Coating:
200g quality dark chocolate
200ml heavy cream

Decoration (optional):
Unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 cup dark chocolate crunch balls

Method:
  • In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter and 200g sugar together till it is light and fluffy. Then add in the egg yolks and mix well.
  • Add vanilla extract in and stir till blended. Sift the plain flour, cocoa powder, salt and baking powder into another bowl. Stir the sour cream and buttermilk together and set aside.
  • Alternating with the flour mixture, then the buttermilk mixture, add in 3 separate portions into the butter mixture. Beat well after each addition. Continue till everything is incorporated in.
  • In separate mixing bowl, beat egg whites and the remaining 100g of the sugar till stiff peaks.
  • Gently fold in the egg white mixture into the cake batter in separate portions till everything is blended in.
  • Preheat the oven to 180°C. Greased and lined with parchment paper a baking tray of 10"by12".
  • Pour 1/3 of the cake batter into the prepared baking tray and bake in the oven for 15 minutes. Then lower the temperature to 170°C to bake for another 5 minutes. Bake till cake is done and remove from oven to cool completely on rack.
  • Repeat the above step twice again till all the cake batter is baked and you have 3 sheets of chocolate cake of 10"by12" in size.
  • Meanwhile make the chocolate cream: Melt the chocolate and butter under double boiler and let cool. Mix the melted chocolate mixture together with the whipped cream and set aside.
Assemble:
  • After the cakes has cooled. Cut the cake length wise to get two 5" by 12" cake sheets. Repeat with the other 2 cake and you will arrive with 6 sheets of 5" by 12" cakes.
  • Spread 1/6 of the chocolate cream all over the surface on one of the cake sheet. Then roll it up from the short side inwards in a swiss roll form.
  • Again spread another cake sheet with chocolate cream and roll the cake up placing the first swiss roll inline with the 2nd sheet so as the continue the swiss rolling method....to make a bigger roll. Repeat this process till all the cake sheet is used up and cream is used up and you have an enormous swiss roll cake. See picture below :
  • Be extra careful in handling the cake while rolling as this cake is rather delicate and moist (with the presence of buttermilk and sour cream), not your usual swiss roll cake texture.
  • Refrigerate the cake for 1hr before proceeding. Meanwhile, make the buttercream frosting: Cream all the ingredients together till all is well combined and mixture is light and fluffy. Takes about 4 to 5 minutes.
  • To make the chocolate coating: Heat up the heavy cream till bubbly. Then pour the chocolate in and let stand for 5 minutes. Stir mixture till smooth. Let cool before using it.
  • After 1 hr, take cake out from the fridge and trim away the uneven edges on the top. Then frost the whole cake with buttercream. Place the cake back in the fridge and chill for another 1 hr.
  • After 1hr, gently place the chilled cake on a rack and slowly pour the chocolate coating all over the cake to completely cover it. Let sit for 2 minutes to let the chocolate finish dripping on the sides, then place it in the fridge again to chill for another 30 minutes.
  • Once set, remove cake from fridge. Dust some quality cocoa powder on top and decorate cake with some chocolate crunch balls on top.

*Phew* That was tedious! I have to admit this is no easy piece of cake to make! But the end result makes it all worthwhile. :) This ingenious idea is originated from one of the latest cookbook I bought lately
, "Chocolate Dreams" from some Taiwan publisher which I bought from Kinokuniya. But I did not follow the recipe from the book but came up with this chocolate cake recipe myself, only following the shaping method it showed in the book.

Be sure to use the best quality dark chocolate you can find. I used Valrohna so there was no doubt on how well the chocolate taste turned out. The cake was chocolaty of course, plus it's moist and soft. It's not too sweet and the chocolate cream makes it smooth and silky. The deep chocolate coating plus the mini chocolate balls makes it such a treat to eat the cake...definitely a chocolate lover's dream come true! Not to mention, my whole family enjoyed the cake a lot. Hope I have redeemed myself for not able to make a cake for my hubby on his actual birthday. :-P Anyway, Happy Birthday Dear!

10 comments:

ReeseKitchen said...

Hey Bee Bee, you are very creative...:) Even my husband keep asking how you did it...haha! The shape is special, the taste is good...what can i say! Your hubby must be very happy..:)
Thank you so much for sharing with us!

Honey Bee Sweets said...

Thanks Reese. No larr, just nosing around here and there to get more ideas that's all. But I am always looking out for new and interesting recipes to try out...it's like a challenge to me! Glad that this time it turned out great. ;D

Passionate About Baking said...

Hi HBS,
By the effort of this cake, it just shows how much your hubby means to you! Hahaha... I can understand. I must say, this is really a very special and beautiful cake. I'm sure your hubby is touched by your effort! ;)

Ee Peng said...

Lovely cake! Wish I could taste it :)
Happy Birthday Wilson!!!

quizzine said...

Ohh... this cake really look very challenging, and of course, yummy! Bet your hubby is touched by your efforts & the love u put in ;-)

Honey Bee Sweets said...

Hi Jane,
I'm trying to redeem myself for pushing the celebration to a later date mah, so must put in more effort, hahaha! But thanks for the encouragement! :)

Thanks Ee Peng! Wilson says thanks for the wishes. :) If we meet up early this week, maybe you might get a taste. ;)

Honey Bee Sweets said...

Thanks for the compliment quizzine! I sure hope he is "touched", hahaha! He sees me baking away everyday, and finally something special just for him...so he kind of deserve this one. :)

Kitchen Corner said...

Very special cake! Using a swiss roll method to make a tall and unique celebration cake. I must give it a try. I like cakes in tall shape. Beautiful!

Honey Bee Sweets said...

Thanks Grace,
Yes, I have to agree this is a very special way of "shaping" the cake. :) Extra care is needed while rolling the layers up. Yes, do try and let me know how yours turned out.

Ayu said...

Hi, BeeBee
Already posted this cake in my blog..do come over and see how it turned out to be..heheh..my cake was not tall as yours as I preferred it that way, so I cut it to 2.5 inch height only..Thanks again ..BeeBee