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Summary: Adapted from Le Cordon Bleu’s baking recipe packet Ingredients
For the cake:
4.5 oz. unsalted butter, about room temp
5.75 oz. baker’s (superfine) sugar
4 oz. egg yolks (about 5)
6 oz. egg whites (about 4)
1.5 oz. cake flour
1.5 oz. good quality cocoa powder
1.75 oz. finely ground almond meal
4 oz. apricot jam or preserves (no chunks)
4 oz. simple syrup (1/2 c sugar, 1/2 c water) flavored with brandy or vanilla (instructions below)
For the glaze:
8 oz. semi-sweet chocolate
6 oz. unsalted butter
1 Tbs. light corn syrup
Optional: reserve an additional 4 oz. semi-sweet chocolate to write on the cake
Make the cake (read through everything first before starting, more pictures are available in the original post, link above, to guide you)
Cream the butter and just 3 3/4 oz. of the sugar in a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment until light and fluffy. Gradually add the egg yolks until incorporated. Place this mixture in a large mixing bowl and wash out the bowl to your stand mixer.
In a separate bowl, sift all dry ingredients together. (The almond meal may not go through the sifter as it is thicker than flour, that’s ok).
In your stand mixer, make a meringue by beating the egg whites until foamy on high speed with the whisk attachment. Add the remaining 2 ounces of sugar and continue to beat until medium stiff peaks form. (To test your peaks: take the whisk out with a little egg white stuck to it. Invert the whisk, and if the foam falls off completely it’s not stiff enough. If the foam crests like a wave you’re there. If the foam stands up straight, that’s stiff peaks and you’ve gove too far). Do not over beat.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Carefully fold the meringue into the creamed butter/sugar batter, one third at a time until just incorporated. Do not overwhip your egg whites or your cake will be too dense, save as much air in those egg whites as you can when folding.
Carefully fold in the sifted dry ingredients.
Line an 8-inch cake pan with parchment paper. Add the batter, and bake until set in the center (until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean), between 20-30 minutes (test it to be sure). Cool for 10 minutes, then invert onto cooling rack and remove torte from pan to finish cooling.
When cooled, carefully slice the torte in half horizontally so you have 2 layers. Make a simple syrup by combining 1/2 cup of sugar and 1/2 cup of water. Heat on stove until sugar is just dissolved. Add 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract or 1 tablespoon of brandy to the syrup for flavoring. Using a pastry brush, brush the simple syrup on the top and sides of each layer so it moistens the torte. Be generous with this. You want a lot of moisture on the torte.
Using a spatula, spread the apricot jam thickly on the bottom layer. Put the second layer on top.
Make the Chocolate Glaze
Combine the chocolate, butter, and corn syrup in a bowl. Place the bowl over a pot of simmering water (double boiler) to melt these together, stirring frequently until melted.
Divide the chocolate glaze: put 1/3 of it in a separate bowl and set aside. Keep the remaining 2/3 in your original bowl and place this bowl over an ice bath (water and ice) to cool the glaze. Whisk it the whole time while cooling. If the chocolate freezes on the sides of the bowl, take out of the water bath, keep whisking to incorporate, and then put it back in the water bath to whisk some more. After about 3-5 minutes the chocolate will get nice and thick as it cools and will have the consistency of spreadable frosting.
Place the torte on cardboard. Coat the entire torte with this frosting and make it smooth with your offset spatula. Chill for 10 minutes. Trim around the cardboard if necessary so it is the same size as the torte.
Place the frosted tort on a wire rack and place the wire rack on a cookie sheet that is lined with plastic wrap.
With the reserved 1/3 of the chocolate sauce, pour it right over the center of the torte and let it drip down the sides. Try to coat the entire torte and get the sides smooth. If you run out of chocolate sauce before the entire torte is covered, pick up the plactic wrap where the sauce dripped on it and pour the sauce over the torte again. Let the chocolate set on the counter, do not refridgerate or you’ll lose all that cool shine on the chocolate.
Optional: melt 4 ounces of semi-sweet chocolate over a double boiler. Place melted chocolate in a pastry bag and cut a small tip off it. Write “sacher” on the torte (traditional); or write whatever you want (modern).
Serve the same day. Congratulations.
Preparation time: At least 90 minutes.
Cooking time: 30 minutes, approx.
Number of servings (yield): 8-12
Copyright © TamaraEsq 2011.