- Bake the cake and let it cool completely. Prepare the filling and icing. Fill and crumb coat the cake as directed on pages 30–32. Chill the filled cake.
- Melt the wafer chocolate. Tint the chocolate with your choice of candy color. Pour the chocolate into a pastry cone and cut a medium-size hole.
- On a sheet pan lined with parchment paper, pipe out approximately 50 polka dots. They can be uniform or varied in size, many colors or just one. Set aside to harden.
- Prepare the chocolate glaze. Ice the cake.
- Before the icing sets, press the polka dots onto the sides of the cake. For an even distribution, place two dots in a row, approximately 1 inch apart. Center another dot between these two, 1 inch to the right. Continue this pattern around the side of the cake. On top center a line of polka dots down the middle of the cake. Place another line of polka dots on each side, offset from but parallel to the first line. Repeat until the top is covered.
- Adhere the cardboard round supporting the cake to your base. Press shavings of chocolate sprinkles around the bottom of the cake.
CHOCOLATE CHIP POUND CAKE
The secret of our unbelievably moist and delicious pound cake is cream cheese. For casual entertaining, this cake can be baked in a Bundt pan and simply dusted with confectioners’ sugar or iced with Chocolate Glaze. Pound cake is an unexpected but surprisingly good choice for wedding and special-occasion cakes. Here’s a Bakehouse trick: Both this and the Lemon Ginger Cream Cheese Pound Cake batter can be frozen in their prepared pans. Bring them to room temperature before baking.
Grease and flour a 21⁄2-quart Bundt pan or kugelhopf mold or two 9x2-inch round pans. Preheat the oven to
350ºF. Have all ingredients at room temperature.
In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat at high speed until light and fluffy:
8 ounces (2 sticks) unsalted butter
Add and beat well at high speed:
8 ounces cream cheese
Add and cream at high speed until light and fluffy:
1 1⁄2 cups sugar
Add and mix well at medium speed:
2 tablespoons sour cream
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Add one at a time, mixing well after each addition:
4 large eggs
On a piece of wax paper, sift together:
2 1⁄4 cups cake flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1⁄4 teaspoon salt
Add the dry ingredients to the butter and egg mixture and beat on low speed until smooth.
Stir in by hand:
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
For the Bundt or kugelhopf pan, pour the batter into the pan and bake 45 to 55 minutes or until a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack for 15 minutes before turning out of the pan.
For the 9-inch round pans, put a scant 3 cups in one pan and the remaining batter in the other. Bake the less full pan for 25 to 30 minutes and the fuller pan for 30 to 35 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean. Cool the cakes on wire racks for 15 minutes before turning them out of their pans.
Yield: 8 cups of batter
WHIPPED CHOCOLATE GANACHE
We use Whipped Chocolate Ganache instead of chocolate mousse because it is simple to make, whips up easily, and tastes delicious. Unwhipped, it will stay fresh for 2 weeks in your refrigerator. Add thin layers of melted chocolate to your cake layers before filling for a wonderful and unexpected crunch that contrasts nicely with the creamy whipped ganache.
Melt in a bowl over hot water:
1⁄2 pound semisweet chocolate
In a saucepan, bring to a boil:
1 quart heavy cream
Whisk one third of the cream into the chocolate until smooth. Slowly whisk in the remaining cream. Refrigerate overnight or freeze for a few hours.
Whip until stiff.
Yield: 4 3⁄4 cups of filling when whipped
This basic recipe for chocolate glaze icing comes from Luiz Silva, my much-loved son-in-law, but I added a little more cream to make it easier to work with. It is a delicious, easy, and elegant covering for almost any cake. With the addition of 2 cups of hot cream and 1⁄4 cup of Grand Marnier, it makes a fabulous dessert sauce for ice cream or plated desserts.
In a metal bowl over hot water, melt:
3 pounds semisweet chocolate, cut into small pieces
In a saucepan, warm over medium-high heat:
1 quart heavy cream
10 ounces (21⁄2 sticks) unsalted butter
1⁄2 cup light corn syrup
Stir until the butter melts, then continue to heat to just before the boiling point.
Slowly pour the scalded liquid over the melted chocolate, whisking constantly until smooth. Strain the icing through a fine sieve. The icing can be used immediately or cooled and refrigerated for up to 2 weeks. If it has been chilled, reheat slowly in a double boiler before using.
Yield: 11 cups