Thursday, 14 April 2011



Almond sponge
75 gm icing sugar
2 ½ tbsp flour
75 gm almond powder
3 eggs - 4 eggs
15 gm butter - melted and cooled
3 egg whites
1 tbsp caster sugar

200 gm superior-quality dark chocolate - finely chopped
120 ml fresh milk
50 ml whipping cream
50 gm butter - softened

Coffee syrup
1 tbsp caster sugar
90 ml water
2 tbsp instant expresso coffee

50 gm caster sugar + 3 tspn water
1 egg white
1 tbsp instant expresso coffee - 1 tspn hot water
100 gm butter - softened

01. To prepare the sponge layer, preheat the oven to 220 degrees C (425 degrees F).
02. Line a 20 x 30 cm baking pan with parchment paper.
03. In a large bowl, sift together the flour and icing sugar, then add the powdered almonds. Mix well.
04. Add eggs, one at a time, and beat until pale. Add the melted butter.
05. Beat the egg whites until stiff, then gradually add sugar and continue beating until stiff peaks are obtained.
06. Add 1/3 of the beaten egg whites to the ingredients, mixing well, then incorporate the remainder, folding until just combined.
07. Pour onto the baking tray and spread evenly. Bake for 10 minutes, or until golden and springy when touched.
08. Loosen the edges with a knife and carefully turn out onto a wire rack covered with a sheet of parchment paper. Allow to cool.
09. Place finely chopped chocolate in a heatproof bowl and set aside.
10. Bring milk and 30 ml of the whipping cream to a boil.
11. Pour the hot liquid onto the chocolate. Wait 30 seconds, then add the butter and mix until smooth.
12. Let cool until a spreadable consistency is obtained.
13. To prepare the coffee syrup, place sugar and water in a pan and stir until dissolved.
14. Bring to a boil and add coffee.
15. To prepare butter cream, place sugar and 3 tspn of water in a heavy skillet and make a sugar syrup, stir until sugar is completely dissolved, then boil, without stirring, until syrup reaches soft-ball stage, between 116  and 118 degrees C (214 – 244 degrees F).
16. Beat the egg whites until soft peaks are obtained.
17. Continue beating while incorporating the hot syrup. Beat until mixture is cold.
18. Dissolve instant expresso coffee in hot water, cool and add to butter.
19. Add one half of the egg-white mixture and beat well, then gently fold in the remainder until well combined.
20. Using a sharp knife, divide the sponge into three equal sections and carefully peel off parchment paper from sections.
21. Each should be 10 x 20 cm.
22. Soak the first section with one-third of the coffee syrup, then spread over it half of the butter cream.
23. Place the next section of sponge on top, then soak with coffee syrup and spread with half of the ganache.
24. Place the last section on top, soak with remaining syrup and spread with the rest of the butter cream, taking care to smooth the surface.
25. Chill until buttercream firmly set for 5 hours or one night.
26. Melt the rest of the ganache over a pan of very hot water.
27. Bring the remaining cream to the boiling point and incorporate into ganache. Allow to cool until a smooth, spreadable consistency is obtained and spread over top of cake.
opera cake..
opera cake..

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