Have you ever started to write a sentence in a card then completely lose your train of thought? It happens to me all the time. In fact it happened to me this weekend. I was signing a card for my friends wedding and for some reason I started a sentence with “after”. I’m still not sure where I meant to go with that. I do know that what I ended up writing might not have made much sense, I got myself all flustered. So Steph, if you’re reading this, I meant to say I love you and I’m so happy for you.
The wedding had me in a celebratory mood the following day. Celebrations to me mean cake, and the best cake I can think of is my mom’s famous chocolate cake. Family members have left their sick beds for a slice of that cake. I would to share the actual recipe with you, but my mom honestly can’t say what the recipe is. It’s been altered and modified so many times it only exists in her mind. I can tell you it’s chocolate cake spiked with Kahlua, with layers of ganache and whipped cream. I based this cake on that but made it my own. I used a chocolate genoise baked in a jelly roll pan, and filled it with chocolate mousse and whipped cream. I think chocolate can always use a little fruit, so I topped the cake with pomegranate seeds. And, of course, I spiked the cake layers with Kahlua.
For the Chocolate Genoise
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 1/3 cup cocoa powder
- 4 tbsp butter
- 6 eggs
- 1 cup sugar
- Preheat the oven to 400 F. Line a 15 by 10 inch jelly roll pan with parchment, then grease the parchment.
- Sift the flour and cocoa together. Set aside.
- Melt the butter. Set aside to cool.
- In a large heat proof bowl, whisk the eggs and sugar together. Place the bowl over and pot with 1 inch of simmering water and whisk until the eggs reach a temperature of 130 F, about 4 minutes depending on the size of the bowl and pot. Remove the bowl from the heat. Using an electric mixer (hand held or standing) beat the eggs until the have tripled in volume are back to room temperature (about 10 minutes).
- Fold the flour into the eggs in three additions. Stir a spoonful of the batter into the butter, then fold the butter into the batter gently. The batter will deflate a little at this point.
- Pour the batter into the prepared baking sheet, then bake for 10 to 12 minutes, until the center springs back when touched.
For the Chocolate Mousse
- 4 oz semi sweet chocolate, chopped
- 2 tbsp butter
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 2 eggs separated
- 1/8 tsp cream of tartar
- Over a double boiler, melt the chocolate and butter. Add the cinnamon once melted. Set aside to cool.
- Whisk the egg yolk till double in volume and the colour has lightened. Mix into melted chocolate. Refrigerate while whipping the egg whites.
- In a large bowl, whisk the egg whites and cream of tartar to stiff peaks.
- Take a small amount of the egg whites and mix it into the chocolate to thin the chocolate, then fold the chocolate into the egg whites.
- Set aside.
- 1 cups35% cream
- 1 tbsp icing sugar
- Using an electric mixer, whip the cream until soft peaks. Add the sugar and continue whisking until stiff peaks form.
- 1 cups sugar
- 1/2 cup Kahlua
- 1 cups water
- In a saucepan bring sugar and water to boil. Remove from the heat, let cool, then add the Kahlua.
- Seeds from 1 pomegranate
- Slice the cake into three 5 by 10 inch slices. Place the bottom layer on the serving plate. Soak with 1/3 of the Kahlua syrup, then top with the chocolate mousse. Place another layer of cake on top of the chocolate mousse. Soak that layer with 1/2 of the remaining Kahlua syrup. Top that layer with half of the whipped cream. Place the final layer of cake on top of the whipped cream layer. Soak with remaining Kahlua syrup. Top with the remaining whipped cream, then decorate with the pomegranate seeds.
- Chill for at least 1 hour before serving to allow the cake to set.