For a while now I have been waiting for a reason to bake a proper cake and that day finally came. A couple of days ago it was one of my friend's Birthday and of course this was the perfect excuse to bake a "grandiose" cake. I had promised her a very chocolaty cake and I thought to myself 'why not try and incorporate it in the tarot card recipes?'. I am quite happy with the outcome, although there are certain things I would have liked to do differently, in order to make it look more neat but I also kinda this rough look that I've ended up with.
for the sponge:
-500gr self-raising flour
-200gr caster sugar
-1/2 tsp baking soda
-1/2 tsp baking powder
-1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
-1 small pack of chocolate chips
for the chocolate mousse:
-300ml double cream
-200gr dark chocolate
-1 egg separated
for the ganache:
-100gr dark chocolate
-150ml heavy cream
I hadn't realised how many ingredients I needed and only now I do after writing it all down. This is a four layer cake, I baked two tins and then halved the two sponges.
For the sponge, I mixed all the dry ingredients, incorporated the butter, eggs vanilla and milk and at the end threw in the chocolate chips. I realise now it would make more sense for you to to add half of your batter in the tin, then sprinkle some choc chips, pour the rest of your batter and then sprinkle a few more on the top, otherwise they will all sink and stay on the bottom of your sponge. Yes, mine all sank to the bottom which wasn't a bad thing but personally I would prefer if they were throughout the whole sponge.
One of my favourite things to make is chocolate mousse as I love doing all the whipping and mixing by hand. It is very simple but does require quite some whipping which you can either do with a mixer or by hand if you don't have one. First step is to melt your chocolate by placing your bowl of chopped chocolate over a pan of simmering water until it's melted. Whilst your chocolate is melting over a Bain Marie it is time to start whipping. Start off with the egg white, whip until you get those nice soft peaks and move over to your double cream and do exactly the same thing but this time try and get a medium to stiff peak. Your chocolate should have melted by now so it is time to throw in the egg yolk whilst it is still quite hot as that will allow the egg to cook in the hot melted chocolate. Next, fold your beaten egg white in the chocolate and once it has started to appear runny start adding the whipped double cream. It is very important that you fold the cream with the chocolate as you want to incorporate air and bubbles into your mixture which will make your mousse more light and fluffy. Once everything is combined chill in the fridge for an hour.
Lastly, the ganache is also two very simple steps. Warm your cream in a pan and once it has just started to simmer take it off and pour on chopped pieces of chocolate and stir to get a very glossy look.
When it comes to decorating the cake I have to say, I am not an expert as I do not have many tools, but I think the result is acceptable considering how little I have got. It's up to you to put your cake together however you like. Like mentioned previously I cut my sponge in half, and then layered the mousse and the sponges one on top of the other. Then I covered the exterior of the cake with mousse and allowed it to chill in the fridge for couple of hours. Remember to allow your cake to be completely cool before you start pipping etc as you will find it melting very quickly. Once everything had set I poured the ganache on top and added a few more details to make it look more full and pretty. Again, my pipping skills are very poor but the more I practise the better it will get.