Tiramisu and Chocolate Mousse Layer Cake

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“Happiness is knowing there is cake in the oven”

Who likes tiramisu? Mascarpone frosting? Chocolate Mousse? Chocolate Ganache?? If you like at least one, or all of these – you will love this cake! This is a little 6-inch cake, perfect for your little birthday needs.

Tiramisu Cake (2 6-inch cakes)

4 eggs, separated

1/2 cup +2tbsp sugar

1/4 cup espresso

2/3  cups flour

1/2 tsp baking soda

Pinch of salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a large bowl, beat egg yolks with electric mixer and half of the sugar. When frothy, add in 1/4 cup of cooled espresso. Continue mixing until it thickens and color becomes off-white. Meanwhile, in the bowl of a stand mixer, beat egg whites until frothy and then add in  the rest of the sugar. Beat until you get stiff peaks. Fold the egg whites into the yolks. In a separate bowl combine the dry ingredients. Sift dry ingredients into the egg mixture until you do not see any loose flour. Do not over mix. Spoon batter into two well-buttered baking pans and bake at 350F for about 15 minutes. Remove from oven – cakes should spring back when touched (this is a sponge cake). Let cool completely.

Mascarpone Frosting

8 oz mascarpone cheese

1 cup powdered sugar

1/2 tsp vanilla

1/2 tsp Kahlua

2-3 tbsp. heavy cream

In the bowl of your stand mixer, combine cheese and powdered sugar until thickened, add vanilla, Kahlua, and heavy cream and mix well. Refrigerate frosting until ready to use.

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Chocolate Mousse

1.5 tbsp water

1.5 tbsp sugar

1.5 egg yolks

4 oz semi-sweet chocolate

2/3 cup heavy whipping cream

Combine water and sugar in saucepan over medium heat until boils and becomes a bit thicker. Remove from stove and turn off heat. Meanwhile, beat egg yolks in a large bowl until frothy and then add in the sugar mixture while whisking. In a separate bowl, microwave the chocolate until it melts, in about 30 second intervals. Combine the slightly cooled chocolate with the egg-sugar-water mixture. In a stand mixer beat the cream to soft peaks. Fold this into the chocolate-egg mixture.

Chocolate Ganache (make after cake is assembled)

4 oz semi-sweet chocolate

¼ cup heavy whipping cream

Heat cream on stove until it starts to just bubble a bit. Turn off the heat and remove from the stove, pour over the chocolate in a separate bowl. Mix until combined and smooth.

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Assembly

Place 1 tiramisu cake into a 6-inch springform pan, and line the sides of the pan with an acetate cake collar. Spread the chocolate mousse out evenly over the tiramisu cake layer in your cake pan and refrigerate for 3-4 hours. Remove from refrigerator and remove side of cake pan as well as acetate collar. Spread a thin layer of mascarpone frosting over the mousse layer, and then top with second tiramisu cake layer. Now frost whole cake with mascarpone frosting (this is thinner than a buttercream frosting, and the cake will appear somewhat “naked” frosted, but you will still have the great mascarpone taste – don’t worry!) Now make the chocolate ganache and let it cool a bit. Pour over the cake evenly with a spoon, and top with desired fruits/meringues/berries. Enjoy!

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Cardamom and White Wine Poached Pear Cake

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“So glad to live in a world where there are Octobers.”

To continue my Fall recipes, I’m bringing you guys this yummy cake today. The pears are poached in white wine and cardamom and all the good Fall spices. I could just eat the pears all on their own (I had to stop myself). Then they’re baked into a cake with fresh apples and pears grated right into it. I’m sure you’ll love Fall after making this cake!

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The Pears

3 Bosc pears, peeled

1/2 bottle pinot grigio

4 cardamom pods

1 cinnamon stick

3 cloves

Combine all ingredients in a saucepan over low heat for a half hour. If the pears are not completely covered, make sure to spoon the liquid over the pears every few minutes and turn them as well. Remove and allow to cool on a plate before cutting off a bit of the bottom to make sure they stand up straight in the cake.

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The Cakes

(makes 2 six inch cakes)

1 apple, peeled and grated

1 pear, peeled and grated

1 stick butter, softened

3/4 cup white sugar

2 eggs

1/2 cup buttermilk

1 tsp vanilla

1 tsp almond extract

1 1/2 cup flour

1/2 cup brown sugar

1 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp baking powder

pinch of salt

Spray two 6-inch  springform pans with non-stick baking spray. Set aside. Preheat oven to 350F. Combine flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl and set aside. Combine butter and sugar in stand mixer until smooth. Add eggs, buttermilk, vanilla, and almond extract and mix in. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients in 3 parts while mixing. Add in the grated fruit until combined. Pour into prepared pans. Take the three poached pears and place into the batter in one of the pans – make sure they are touching the bottom of the pan and can stand on their own. Bake in the oven for about 50 minutes. My cake without the pears took 50 minutes. My cake with the pears took a little over an hour. Don’t worry if your cake with the pears appears lighter and more moist on top – it’s because of the moisture coming out of the poached pears.

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Chocolate Buttercream

2 sticks unsalted butter

4 cups powdered sugar

1/2 cup cocoa powder

2 tsp vanilla

1/4 cup heavy cream

Beat butter in stand mixer until smooth. Combine sugar and cocoa in a separate bowl, then add in 1/2 cups to butter while mixing. Add vanilla and heavy cream, and mix to desired consistency. Should be smooth and strong enough to hold its shape for piping.

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Assembly

Use the closed star tip to pipe one layer of small swirls of the chocolate buttercream on the cake without the pears, starting from the outside, going in. Once that is done, place the second cake (the one with the pears), on top of the other. And you’re done! If you’d like to decorate a bit, I just topped with some powdered sugar, dried rose petals, and a bit of white chocolate ganache drip.