Heart Cake

To celebrate Valentine's Day, delight your partner with this impressive heart layer cake.

Ingredients

For the sponge cake
Butter 200 Gram
Unsweetened cocoa powder 30 Gram
Dark chocolate 100 Gram
Flour 200 Gram
Baking powder 8 Gram
Salt 1 Pinch
Sugar 200 Gram
Eggs 5 Medium
Milk 50 Milliliter
For the hazelnut cream
Butter 250 Gram
Hazelnut spread 250 Gram
Water 35 Milliliter
Sugar 150 Gram
Egg whites 1 Cup (16 tbs)
For the chocolate ganache
Dark chocolate 125 Gram
Butter 20 Gram
Heavy cream 125 Gram

Directions

GETTING READY

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C).

2. Grease and dust a large heart shape cake pan, one that holds 5 cups (1,2 lt)

MAKING

3. To make the cake batter - Combine the diced softened butter with the sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer with a whisk attachment and beat for at least 10 minutes until you have a very pale and foamy creamy mixture.

4. Then, beating constantly, add one egg at a time, at room temperature, until you get a well creamed batter.

5. Now beat in the melted chocolate, after cooling a bit, until blended.

6. At this point, in a bowl, mix the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and the salt, and sift them into the creamed mixture alternating with the milk.

7. Pour the resulting batter into the heart shape cake pan. Bake the cake at 350°F (180°C), after about 45 minutes test for doneness with a toothpick and, if needed, bake for an additional 5-10 minutes.

8. While the cake is baking, move on to the hazelnut cream, to fill our heart layer cake. Beat the softened butter with the hazelnut spread. Set the mixture aside and place it in a cool place, but not the fridge.

9. To make the Italian meringue, you need to have 2 different mixtures ready at the same time, so take a stand mixer with a whisk attachment and a candy thermometer. In a small saucepan, like this, combine 1/3 cup (125 g) of sugar with 2 1/3 tbsp (35 ml) of water and bring to a boil until it reaches 240°F (116°C) and becomes syrup, that's why you need a candy thermometer.

10. While the sugar and water are simmering, beat 3,5 oz (100 g) of egg whites in the stand mixer, that is about 3 medium eggs, at room temperature as soon as they turn white, add the remaining sugar (25 g).

11. When the sugar syrup begins to bubble, do not use a spoon, but swirl the pan around, bring it to 240° using the candy thermometer.

12. Now the syrup is at 240°F, so pour it in a thin stream into the bowl of the mixer and continue to beat until the mixture is cold. Once the mixture is cold, turn off the mixer you should get a stiff meringue.

13. Add the butter and hazelnut mixture to the Italian meringue, beating at a lower speed.

FINALIZING

14. When the cake has cooled completely, slice it into 3 layers, and place the bottom layer on a serving platter.

15. Save a couple of tablespoons of hazelnut cream, to use for decorating later and use half of the cream to fill the first layer. 16. Lift the central layer with 2 spatulas, to avoid breaking it, and place it on top, align the edges and spread the remaining hazelnut cream.

17. Now cover with the top cake layer and move on to the coating, that is the chocolate ganache.

18. To make the ganache - In a saucepan, combine the heavy cream with the butter and, as soon as it comes almost to a boil, add the roughly chopped chocolate, remove from the heat and stir until completely melted.

19. Transfer the mixture to a pan, place it in an ice water bath, and beat with an electric beater until thick. The texture should be smooth, but thick and spreadable.

20. Coat the heart cake using a spatula to make the surface smooth or wavy, as you prefer.

21, Finally decorate the cake with the reserved hazelnut cream.

SERVING

22. Celebrate with your loved ones and serve a delicious slice of the heart cake.

NOTES

Hazelnut paste is an unsweetened paste, made from ground hazelnuts, that is used to make the hazelnut flavoured cream.

Recipe Summary

Difficulty Level: Bit Difficult
Cook Time: 50 Minutes
Ready In: 50 Minutes
Servings: 8

Nutrition Facts

Serving size

Calories 1112Calories from Fat 665

 % Daily Value*

Total Fat 75 g115.4%

Saturated Fat 43 g215%

Trans Fat 0 g

Cholesterol

Sodium 191 mg7.96%

Total Carbohydrates 102 g34%

Dietary Fiber 4 g16%

Sugars 75 g

Protein 12 g24%

Vitamin A % Vitamin C %

Calcium % Iron %

*Based on a 2000 Calorie diet