This delightful German layer cake was the Daring Baker’s challenge for January, just in time for 3G’s birthday. It was a huge hit! 3G’s word for it was “scrumpiducious” 🙂
I didn’t end up following the challenge recipe provided (this was okay according to the challenge rules – it was the method that was the mandatory thing), adapting this one instead because it has no marzipan. The glaze recipe was adapted from here.
10 medium eggs, room temperature, separated
1/4 teaspoon salt
100g (1/2 cup) granulated (white) sugar
170g (3/4 cup or 1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
100g (4/5 cup) powdered (confectioners) sugar
125g (1 cup) all-purpose flour
65g (1/2 cup) cornstarch
2 tsp vanilla paste or extract
2 tbsp cocoa powder
200g (7oz) good quality milk chocolate, chopped
180ml (3/4 cup) whole cream
2 tsp light corn syrup
55g (4 tbsp) unsalted butter, room temperature
Note: This recipe uses a lot of bowls… For dividing the batter and egg whites, I weighed the bowls before I started then weighed them with the batter/egg whites in them, subtracted the weight of the bowl and weighed out half into another bowl. There’s probably an easier way. You could also do it using cups. Or just eyeball it, if you’re a good judge of these things.
Preheat oven grill (broiler) with the rack in the centre of the oven. Butter a 23 cm (9″) springform cake tin, line the base with parchment paper and butter the parchment.
In a very large bowl, beat the egg whites with the salt until nearly stiff, gradually add the granulated sugar and beat until very stiff.
In a second mixing bowl, beat together the softened butter and powdered sugar until light and fluffy. Add the egg yolks one by one and beat well after each addition.
In a third bowl, whisk together flour and cornstarch, add to butter mixture and fold in until just combined.
Divide batter in two. Add vanilla to one and cocoa to the other, folding until just combined.
Divide beaten egg whites in two and gently fold into the batters, trying not to lose too much air.
Spread 4 rounded tablespoons of the chocolate batter evenly on the bottom of the tin and cook for about 2 minutes under the oven grill (broiler). Take the tin out of the oven, spread 4 rounded tablespoons of the vanilla batter evenly over the first layer (the batter will thin as you spread it over the warm layer below, but don’t worry), and cook for another 2 minutes or until golden. Repeat, alternating layers, until all batter is used.
Let the cake cool in the tin for five minutes, take it out, remove the parchment and let the cake cool completely on a wire rack.
Put the chocolate into a medium bowl. Heat the cream and corn syrup together in a small saucepan over medium heat just until it boils. Pour the cream over the chocolate and let sit for one minute.
Using a spatula, stir the mixture until it is smooth and glossy and all the chocolate has melted. Add the butter and stir until it is completely melted and the mixture is smooth.
Pour the glaze into a 2 cup jug (pitcher). Set aside to cool to about 32°C (90°F) before using.
Leave the cooled cake on the wire rack and set the rack on a baking sheet or a large plate to catch the glaze drippings. Pour half the glaze over the top of the cake, so the top is completely covered. Allow the glaze to set for 10 – 15 minutes, then pour the other half over the cake. Scrape the dripped glaze from the sheet/plate and spread it around the side of the cake with a spatula.
Allow the glaze to set completely, around 30 minutes, before moving the cake. The glaze should be firm to the touch. If your kitchen is warm, move the rack into the refrigerator until the glaze becomes firm, just a few minutes.
Run a hot offset spatula under the bottom of the cake to release it from the rack if necessary and transfer to a serving plate.
Blog-checking lines: The January 2014 Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Francijn of “Koken in de Brouwerij“. She challenged us all to bake layered cakes in the tradition of Baumkuchen (tree cake) and Schichttorte (layered cake).
Download printable .pdf here.