This week for Tuesdays with Dorie, Dharmagirl of bliss: towards a delicious life chose Tarte Noire on page 351. What, you ask, is a tarte noir? It is a rich chocolate ganache poured into a tart shell and served with a diet book. Ganache, made of chocolate and cream, is the luscious concoction used to make chocolate truffles.
I was looking forward to making this, but when the time came, I had a rare, irrepressible urge to eat cake. Now, I may get that urge once a year; unlike my spouse, Master Chow, I am not a fan of cake. So, I decided to make ganache, and put it on a cake. A luscious, moist, decadent cake. I turned to one of my favorite blogs, Smitten Kitchen, for a recipe that I had bookmarked a while ago.
The result? Extraordinary. Truly, truly extraordinary. It puts all other chocolate layer cakes to shame, although the Chocolate Stout cake is definitely in the same league.
Here is what I did and some advice, as well. Instead of two, 10-inch pans, I used three, 8-inch pans to end up with a three layer cake. The ganache was so rich, however, that I don’t think I will do that again; two layers is plenty, and if I make three layers, I’m going to use a jam or a chocolate pudding or mousse to fill some of the layers. Instead of buttermilk, I used low fat kefir (a liquid yogurt), and that worked really well.
Use top quality chocolate. Trust me. I used a combination of Valrhona, Callebaut, and some bits of Guittard that I had laying about.
You MUST freeze the layers before you frost them. The cake is so tender that if you try to frost it with unfrozen cake layers, they WILL fall apart, so plan ahead. Just double wrap the layers in plastic wrap and pop them into your freezer until they are good and hard. They will that while you are frosting the cake.
I also recommend that you place the bottom layer on a foil-covered cake round, then put strips of wax paper UNDER the round between the round and the serving plate. The cake layers are so delicate that when I removed my wax paper strips, I tore up the bottom of the cake, as you can see here:
This cake, with the aforementioned modifications is on the repeat list. It was amazing, and one of the few chocolate cakes that I’ve ever had that did not disappoint. Recipe below the jump, but be sure to visit Dharmagirl for the Tarte Noir recipe, and the TWD blogroll to see what others made!
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