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Baby Devil’s Food Cakes

This past Monday was my Grandfather (heretofore referred to as Opa)’s birthday.  His very favourite dessert is… chocolate cake.  As I was unable to attend his birthday dinner (my grandparents are German… they eat dinner in the middle of the afternoon…) because I was working, I wanted to send him some birthday cakes with my mother.

So Devils Food Cakes it was!  I wanted to experiment with fillings (as usual) so I went with the trusty 4″ springforms and I was quite pleased with the results.  I actually found a recipe for Devils Food Cake on Foodnetwork.com and was rather pleased to see that the icing recipe that accompanied it was exactly what I had in mind… sparing me the search for a decent ganache recipe!

I made three different fillings; two of each type (so six cakes total), the first of which I filled with a lovely Raspberry and Blackberry Compote, based loosely on a recipe…. that I will post as soon as I remember where I got it!  I ended up adding a teaspoon or two of Corn Starch to make sure it was very very thick and substantial, as I didn’t want it soaking into the cake too much or running all over the place… It turned out very well.  I then covered it with the ganache and it was very nice.

For cake number two I rolled out some fresh Almond Paste about 1/4-1/2″ thick and cut out a circle of it with a cookie cutter just a little bit smaller than the cakes themselves.  I put the Almond rounds between the cake layers while they were just out of the oven and still quite hot in the hopes that it would melt the paste just a little or at least soften it so they would adhere… Not sure if that actually worked or not, but I then covered it with the ganache and it was a lovely, light Almond flavour accompanied by a nice, slightly solid texture to counter the soft, gooey textures of the cake and icing.

Cake number three was definitely my favourite.  I made Mascarpone Whipped Creme, which is simply a cup of Heavy Whipping Creme, 3/4 cup room temperature Mascarpone Creme and 1/2 cup Confectioners’ Sugar.  It’s actually Giada DiLaurentiis’ recipe… I adore Mascarpone Creme and do what I can to use it as often as possible.  It’s so rich and incredibly yummy.  It’s one of the best improvements you can possibly make on fresh, home made Whipped Cream, believe you me.  So the filling as well as the external frosting was the Mascarpone Cream for this cake.  It was light and fluffy which was a lovely contrast with the rich, dense chocolatey cake.  I was extremely pleased with the combination of the two flavours and textures.  Not to mention the colour combination looked pretty cool as well.

: d

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